The Western Mustangs are the new team to beat in U SPORTS football, topping the national rankings for the first time this season.
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The Mustangs (4-0), ranked second in each of the first three polls of 2019, received 10 out of a possible 16 first-place votes this week from the Football Reporters of Canada panel, good for 473 total points when combined with statistical calculation by the ELO Rating System.
Ranked first since the start of the campaign, the reigning national champion Laval Rouge et Or (2-1) drop to No. 3 following their first loss since the 2017 Vanier Cup final, a 23-18 setback against their RSEQ archrivals, the Montreal Carabins (4-0).
Montreal earned the remaining six first-place nods from the FRC panel and 449 points to climb to No. 2, while Laval settled for 416 points.
Rounding out the new top 10 are the No. 4 Calgary Dinos (3-0 / 374 points / no change), No. 5 Acadia Axemen (3-0 / 326 / up two positions), No. 6 Guelph Gryphons (3-1 / 299 / no change), No. 7 McMaster Marauders (3-1 / 289 / down two) No. 8 Saskatchewan Huskies (2-1 / 276 / up one), as well as the No. 9 Ottawa Gee-Gees (2-1 / 204) and No. 10 Toronto Varsity Blues (2-1 / 141), but unranked last week.
It marks Toronto’s first top 10 appearance since the Sept. 29, 1997 poll, when the Varsity Blues were also at No. 10.
Top-ranked Western is still undefeated at the midway point of its OUA regular schedule thanks to a convincing 40-23 home win over Carleton last weekend.
The Mustangs, who have now won 24 straight overall against OUA opponents dating back to the 2016 Yates Cup final and 26 consecutive regular season games dating back to Sept. 4, 2016 against Carleton, put both streaks on the line on Saturday when they visit No. 6 Guelph.
The top 10 confrontation gets under way at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT, live on OUA TV (tape delayed on Rogers TV).
Meanwhile, in the most anticipated matchup of the past weekend, Montreal and Laval showed once again why they are considered the top two defensive teams in the country. The RSEQ powerhouses combined for 289 yards of total offence in the Carabins’ 23-18 home victory, marking the 16th time in the past 20 head-to-head duels that the game was decided by seven points or less.
In the Canada West and AUS conferences, Calgary and Acadia remained atop their respective league standings with a 47-13 win at UBC and a 51-32 success at Saint Mary’s, respectively.
Other Week 4 results from top 10 squads included Guelph 39, Waterloo 13 (at Waterloo); McMaster 27, York 9 (at York); Saskatchewan 44, Regina 9 (at Regina); Ottawa 25, Laurier 22 (at Ottawa).
Calgary and Acadia both play at home this weekend as they look to match Western and head into the second half of the regular schedule with an unblemished record.
The Dinos host Regina (1-2) Friday at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT (Canada West TV Presented by Co-op & SaskTel maxTV, TELUS Optik TV, Bell MTS Fibe TV), while the Axemen host Mount Allison (0-3) Saturday at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT (AUStv & Bell Aliant TV1).
Defending Vanier Cup champion Laval hopes to rebound Sunday against McGill (1-2), also on home turf.
FRC – U SPORTS FOOTBALL TOP 10 (#4)
For the second straight season, U SPORTS is using the ELO Rating System for the calculation of its weekly national rankings. Powered by RankR, ELO’s unique algorithm blends a statistical calculation with customized variables that is adaptable across a range of sports. For football, it will be combined with the results of the Football Reporters of Canada panel balloting (each weighted 50%) to produce the final top 10.
|Rank||School||Record||media points (1st Place)||ELO POINTS||TOTAL POINTS||PREVIOUS RANKING|
|Honourable Mention: Saint Mary’s (134), Alberta (125), Waterloo (107), Manitoba (87), Laurier (50)|