2013 Dunsmore Cup Preview

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It is that time of the year again as the Laval Rouge et Or prepare to take another team photo at the end of a game with a trophy and a banner. It is the time of the year when the Laval Rouge et Or take home another Dunsmore Cup and begin to prepare for a run at the Vanier Cup. It has become almost a November tradition as the Rouge et Or have not lost a Dunsmore Cup in the last 10 years. They have remained the most dominant team in the CIS. They have been a team that never seems to slow down as they remain a favorite every year to win the Vanier Cup. Ever since the Rouge et Or started their program in 1996 they have been working their way up to being the best team in the CIS. They may not have the history of many other programs but with their 10 year reign over the RSEQ they have solidified themselves as one of the best programs in the history of the CIS. Once again they would prove to be the top team in the CIS as they would go 8-0 in the 2013 season with no team really challenging them along the way. With another dominant season behind them they enter another Dunsmore Cup looking to continue the era of the Rouge et Or. The 10 year dominance of the RSEQ has not seen much of a challenge but Laval has had one team continually behind them hoping that they could knock off of the Rouge et Or. The Montreal Carabins have played second fiddle to the Rouge et Or for years as they have been the best team in the RSEQ aside from Laval. The Carabins would hire Danny Maciocia as their head coach in 2011 and would take another step towards challenging Laval. Since Maciocia took over the Carabins they have looked closer and closer to unseating the Rouge et Or for the Dunsmore Cup. They would continue to make the finals where they take on the Rouge et Or and they continue to fall short. That doesn’t mean that the Carabins have had no success against the Rouge et Or though as they have been one of a few teams to actually beat Laval in the last 10 years. All of these wins have come in the regular season and many of the closest games that Laval has been involved in are against the Carabins. Yet when it matters most the Rouge et Or step up and beat the Carabins to remain the champions of Quebec. It is has been played out before as the Carabins take on the Rouge et Or in the finals with everyone watching and wondering if an upset can happen. There is a possibility of an upset as with any game and if some team would do it the Montreal Carabins would be that team. Still there is a an overwhelming thought that the Rouge et Or are headed towards another Dunsmore Cup and likely another Vanier Cup as they once again are the team to beat in the CIS.

The Carabins and Rouge et Or have gone about things in very similar ways this year as both do not have the most powerful offences but their defences are stifling. The Laval Rouge et Or have followed this path many times through their 10 year run but many times they have had a great offence to back it up. The defence of the Rouge et Or is the best in the country as they rank at the top of the league for points allowed per game. They have used this defence to overcome their offence that has not been able to produce like most of the top teams. They are still averaging over 30 points a game on offence but with teams putting up 40 or more in the rest of the country they are lacking in their firepower. The Rouge et Or depend on the defence to shut down the opposition and allow their offence to score the few points they need to win. The Carabins are very similar as they are only one step behind the Rouge et Or in terms of defence. They rank #2 for points allowed per game in the CIS and like the Rouge et Or have depended on their defence to win games. The biggest issue that the Carabins have had is the fact that their offence does not have any real power. When the defence does their job there is not much on the other side of the ball to support the team. Although this has been the case for the entire regular season the playoff game against the Bishop’s Gaiters showed that there may be some life in the offence after all. Putting up 51 points against the Gaiters showed that the Carabins may just be capable of putting up points thanks in large part to the performance of running back Manuel Crisi. They will look to take this newfound offensive power into Quebec City and surprise the Rouge et Or in trying to overcome that great defence. The fight will be between two of the best defences in the CIS and so as with any defensive battle it will come down to who has the better offence to win the game. With that in mind it could be an upset if the Carabins can repeat their performance from last week but it is hard to bet against the consistency of the Rouge et Or.

Prediction:
Laval Rouge et Or 38 – 28 Montreal Carabins

Dunsmore_Snapshot

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