GAME DATE: Friday, Sept. 18
KICKOFF: 7:00 p.m.
LOCATION: Griffiths Stadium (Saskatoon, Sask.)
REGINA RADIO: 620 CKRM (Michael Ball, Braden Konschuh)
SASKATOON RADIO: CJWW 600 (Dave Thomas, Barclay Schlosser)
VIDEO WEBCAST ($): www.canadawest.tv
WHAT TO WATCH FOR:
• Both teams enter the weekend at 0-2, but the winner will immediately pull into a tie for the fourth and final Canada West postseason spot
• The two teams have one common opponent this year - Alberta defeated Regina 29-22 in Week 1, then beat Saskatchewan 38-26 last weekend
• Friday will mark the first of two meetings between the provincial rivals this season - they’ll also play in Regina (Oct. 30) to close out the conference schedule
• The Rams will be attempting to snap a three-game losing skid to the U of S - they last beat the Huskies in 2012, winning in Saskatoon in a conference game and again over the Huskies in a home playoff game
ALL-TIME SERIES: The Rams have played no other opponent more than Saskatchewan, as this will be the 27th Canada West game played between the two teams since 1999. The Huskies own a 20-6 advantage in conference play, though the Rams have a 3-2 edge in five postseason meetings.
SIMON JUMPS UP CAREER CHART: He might be only in his second year with the Rams, but RB Atlee Simon jumped from eighth all the way to fourth on the U of R’s all-time rushing list after piling up a career-high 207 rushing yards last week at UBC. He leapfrogged Mark Anderson, Derek Belvedere, Luke Derkson, and Michael Kiapway but has a long way to go to reel in Adrian Charles for third place - Simon now has 920 career rushing yards, but is less than halfway to the 1883 that Charles put up in two seasons with the Rams.
INJURY UPDATE: The Rams lost QB Noah Picton in the second quarter of last week after absorbing a hit following a completed pass, but he’s expected to start under centre for the Rams on Friday. They’ll still be without DL Tyler Perkins (injured in Week 1) and OL Jeremy Zver (injured in practice leading up to the UBC game), and also lost rookie OL Braydon Johnson last week for what’s expected to be a significant amount of time.
RAMS IN THE PROS: The Rams currently boast three former players in the NFL, including DL Stefan Charles (Buffalo), DL Akiem Hicks (New Orleans), and P Jon Ryan (Seattle). OL Brett Jones was making a push for the New York Giants’ 53-man roster, but suffered a suspected MCL sprain in their final preseason game and was put on injured reserve. Five former Rams are currently in the CFL, including LS Jorgen Hus and OL Brendon LaBatte who are both on Saskatchewan’s active roster. WR Addison Richards (Winnipeg) and SB Chris Getzlaf (Saskatchewan) are both on the six-game injured list, while CB Tevaughn Campbell is on Calgary’s practice roster.
RAMS FAMILY TIES:
• OL Aaron Picton and SB Mitchell Picton - brothers
• DB Luke Wilson and SB Riley Wilson - brothers
• OL Aaron Picton/SB Mitchell Picton, QB Noah Picton, RB Blake Anaka - cousins
• Defensive line coach Greg Nesbitt and LB Danny Nesbitt - father/son
• Greg Nesbitt and defensive coordinator Paul Dawson - brothers-in-law
(Courtesy U of R Athletics/Braden Konschuh)