Will Laval Make it 7 in a Row? (Dunsmore Cup Preview)

The Laval Rouge et Or have been the big red machine in CIS football winning 6 Vanier Cups and 9 Dunsmore Cups. They have become the team to beat every year in the playoffs and throughout the season as they have been a top ranked team almost every year. This year was no different in the RSEQ as Laval remained the team that everyone looked up at. They were ranked #1 in the CIS for the first five weeks of the season with almost no team getting close to them. They were not without their issues though as their perfect season was shattered in week 6 by their rivals the Montreal Carabins. Laval struggled to get their offence going in the middle of the season as they won many games with a few TDs by their defence and a lot of field goals and safeties. With the loss to Montreal, Laval was exposed as a beatable team but nobody took too much advantage as the Rouge et Or went undefeated the rest of the season. Laval finished #1 in the CIS again this year with their strong finish and won the regular season title in the RSEQ. Of course they are favorites again to win the Dunsmore Cup for the 7th year in a row but there are a number of teams looking to unseat the already crowned champions. Sherbrooke is one team that will be looking to take out the #1 ranked Laval and have some chance to do it. The Vert et Or had a good season but their two losses on the season came at the hands of the one team they need to beat. Sherbrooke is clearly a great team but they will struggle especially if they have to face Laval who beat them twice by scores of 40-27 and 40-10. The Vert et Or would be the dominant team in the RSEQ but they are outclassed by Laval and Sherbrooke may have an uphill battle as the path to the Dunsmore Cup goes through Quebec City. As Sherbrooke may have the best opportunity to beat Laval the rest of the playoff teams will look to disprove this and take their shot at the big red machine. The Montreal Carabins are the only other team with a winning record but have had a very interesting year. First one of their games was questioned due to the use of an ineligible player but an appeal has halted any action against their team. Then recently a player was suspended for two years for using performance enhancing drugs. Throughout all of this Montreal earned a 6-3 record and was the only team in the CIS to beat the Laval Rouge et Or this year. The three losses came once against Laval and twice against Sherbrooke who they will have to face in the Semi-Finals. The Carabins will need to get by Sherbrooke if they hope to play for the Dunsmore Cup which could be their biggest challenge. The last spot in the playoffs was taken by the Concordia Stingers who finished the season with a 4-5 record. They will have a rough go however as they will need to play Laval in their first playoff game and have had no success against the teams ahead of them this year. Meanwhile out of the playoffs will be Bishop’s and McGill. Bishop’s had a disappointing season after having a good season last year they finished in 5th place with a 3-6 record. Their last week loss to the Rouge et Or sealed their fate as Concordia won their game eliminated the Gaitors from the playoffs this year. McGill had a terrible season as they disappointed many people going without a win all season and finishing in last place. The season is done now and it is obvious the road to the Dunsmore Cup goes through Quebec City. The team that wants to win the Dunsmore Cup will need to beat Laval but it is possible as there is a blueprint made by Montreal on how to beat the big red machine.  Laval is a clear-cut favorite but anything can happen in the playoffs and any team has a chance at representing the RSEQ conference in the Vanier Cup playoffs.

 

Semi-Finals #1

Laval Rouge et Or 35 vs. 14 Concordia Stingers

– Concordia has not had a great season and facing Laval will not give them much opportunity as the Rouge et Or have seemingly fixed their offensive woes that plagued them in the middle of the season and look as strong as ever

 

Semi-Finals #2

Sherbrooke Vert et Or 23 vs. 17 Montreal Carabins

– Montreal is a strong challenger for the Dunsmore Cup but they will have to overcome the Vert et Or who beat them twice during the season and look to do it again in the playoffs as the second strongest team in the RSEQ

 

Dunsmore Cup Finals

Laval Rouge et Or 40 vs. 21 Sherbrooke Vert et Or

– The Rouge et Or will take on the Vert et Or in a classic RSEQ matchup but Laval seems just too good for Sherbrooke as they took both games during the season by big scores and will win their 7th straight Dunsmore Cup

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