CIS Football Top 10 - UBC Thunderbirds ranked seventh
September 1, 2015
For the first time in program history, the University of Montreal Carabins top the inaugural national rankings of the CIS football season.
The Carabins, who last November captured their first-ever Vanier Cup title, received 25 of 30 first-place votes and 289 points from the Football Reporters of Canada panel to easily distance the second-ranked Laval Rouge et Or (231 points), No. 3 Western Mustangs (226) and No. 4 Calgary Dinos (213). Laval (2), Western (2) and Calgary (1) also received first-place consideration.
Before this year, the Carabins' best season-opening ranking was No. 3 in 2006. Last fall, they opened at No. 4 before capping their historic campaign with a thrilling 20-19 win over McMaster in the CIS championship game at Percival Molson Memorial Stadium in Montreal.
The Carabins had last topped the national rankings in October of 2009, for two consecutive weeks (Oct. 6 & Oct. 13 polls).
Rounding out the first Top 10 of 2015 are the No. 5 McMaster Marauders (148 points), No. 6 Guelph Gryphons (137), No. 7 UBC Thunderbirds (109), No. 8 Saskatchewan Huskies (87), No. 9 Mount Allison Mounties (79) and No. 10 Manitoba Bisons (73).
The new regular season kicked off on Sunday with five games in the OUA, including resounding wins by No. 3 Western (76-7 vs. Windsor), No. 5 McMaster (55-33 vs. Toronto) and No. 6 Guelph (78-7 vs. Waterloo). In other OUA action, Queen's beat Carleton 34-24 and Wilfrid Laurier outscored York 38-21.
The RSEQ and Canada West conferences open league play this week, while AUS action is set to get under way on Sept. 11.
The Week 2 schedule is highlighted by a trio of Top-10 contests.
The marquee matchup sees top-ranked Montreal travelling to Quebec City to face off against archrival Laval Saturday at 7 p.m., live on TVA Sports 2. Last November, the Carabins edged the Rouge et Or 12-9 in overtime in the Dunsmore Cup final to put an end to Laval's CIS record streaks of 11 straight conference titles and 70 consecutive wins overall on home turf.
In preseason action, Montreal was an easy winner over Ottawa (36-3) on Aug. 23, while Laval suffered a surprising 41-16 home loss to UBC last Saturday.
Other Top-10 confrontations this week – both out West Friday night – include No. 7 UBC at No. 4 Calgary at 5:30 p.m. MT (live on CanadaWest.TV) and No. 10 Manitoba at No. 8 Saskatchewan at 7 p.m. CT (live on Shaw TV & CanadaWest.TV).
NOTES: Sportsnet and Radio-Canada are once again the official broadcasters of the CIS football semifinals and final in 2015. The ArcelorMittal Dofasco Mitchell Bowl (RSEQ at OUA) and Uteck Bowl (Canada West at AUS) are set for Nov. 21 at 12:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. Eastern Time, respectively. The Vanier Cup follows on Nov. 28 at 1 p.m. ET in Quebec City. Learn more and find tickets for the 51st Vanier Cup.