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Regina Rams Football

Friday, October 21, 2016

PREVIEW: THUNDERBIRDS AT RAMS FRIDAY


KICKOFF: Friday, Oct. 21 (7:00 PM)
SITE: Mosaic Stadium (Regina, Sask.)
CAPACITY: 33,427
RANKINGS: UBC NR, Regina #8
TELEVISION: Canada West Football on Shaw - Access7 in Regina (Jim Mullin/PxP, Wray Morrison/CC)
REGINA RADIO: 620 CKRM (Michael Ball/PxP, Luc Mullinder/CC)
LIVE VIDEO: www.canadawest.tv ($)

• With only two weeks to go in the Canada West schedule, there’s plenty at stake for Friday’s game. A win for the Rams would not only clinch a playoff spot, but would also nail down a home game in the Canada West semifinals.

• A loss by the Rams to UBC opens up a mind-numbing amount of tiebreaking possibilities where points for and against would play a major role in determining Canada West’s final standings. In the event of a UBC win on Friday, the Rams could also clinch a playoff spot with an Alberta win over Manitoba on Saturday.

• Friday’s game will be a rematch of Week 3, which saw the Rams travel to the West Coast and grind out a 20-10 win over UBC.

RAMS NO. 8 IN THIS WEEK’S TOP TEN: After being upset last week at Alberta, the Rams predictably fell a significant amount in this week’s CIS Top Ten. They’re down four spots this week to No. 8, as Calgary takes over the Rams’ old No. 4 ranking and McMaster, Carleton, and Wilfrid Laurier all jump ahead of them. Calgary and Regina are the only two Canada West teams ranked in this week’s poll.

PICTON POISED TO SHATTER COMPLETIONS RECORD: QB Noah Picton is now only 14 completions short of the Canada West single-season record, set at 182 by former Rams pivot Marc Mueller in 2010 and matched by Saskatchewan’s Drew Burko last year. He’s also on pace to break Derek Wendel’s CIS record of 216 completions that was set just last season, but so is Wendel – the Ottawa quarterback has 203 with one game still remaining on the OUA schedule.

ON PACE FOR CIS RECORD: Besides his completions mark, Picton remains on pace to break Andrew Buckley’s Canada West and CIS record of 3162 passing yards that he set last season in his final year with the Dinos. Picton has 2398 passing yards through the first six Canada West games of the year, which would give him just under 3200 for the season if he continues at his current pace of 399.7 yards per game.

MITCHELL PICTON NEARS RECEPTIONS MARK: Addison Richards’ school single-season record of 55 receptions is in grave danger, as SB Mitchell Picton has compiled 50 through the team’s first six games of the schedule. Picton is also on pace to break the Caanda West single-season mark of 66, which was set last year by Saskatchewan’s Mitch Hillis.

CHASING CLERMONT: Mitchell Picton is also nearing the U of R’s single-season touchdown reception record, set by Jason Clermont back in 2001 with 11. Picton currently has nine, needing just one more to join Clermont and Chris Bauman (10, 2006) as the only players in University of Regina history to break into double digits for a season.

DON’T YOU (FORGET ABOUT ME): Second-year SB Ryan Schienbein has enjoyed a spectacular breakout season for the Rams, ranking second in Canada West (behind Picton) in all three major receiving categories. He has 43 receptions this year and also ranks among hte nation’s top five in both receiving yards (620) and TD catches (7).

DHEILLY TIED FOR CONFERENCE SACKS LEAD: DL Nicholas Dheilly was held without a sack last week at Alberta for the first time since taking over as a starter, but still remains tied for the Canada West lead in sacks. He has four for the season, three of which came in the Calgary win. Dheilly is tied with Manitoba’s Evan Foster for the conference lead, with Calgary’s Jack McEwen just behind with 3½.

IN THE FAMILY: Three players on the offensive side of the ball for the Rams are first cousins – RB Blake Anaka, SB Mitchell Picton, and QB Noah Picton - while K/WR Daniel Scraper and WR Michael Scraper are brothers. LB Danny Nesbitt is the son of defensive line coach Greg Nesbitt.

(Courtesy Braden Konschuh)

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