Monday, 2 November 2009

CIS Top 10 Week of November 1st, 2009

Only one change in my Top 10 from last week however the coming weeks bring on extensive league play which should create some reasons to rethink the current Top 10, the first seven of which currently are very difficult to argue in my opinion. NOTE that the first CIS Coaches Top 10 is due to be released on Tuesday morning. Also, thanks to the efforts of Rob Pettapiece of the CISBlog, readers from around the country will have weekly access to an CIS RPI, the first of which can be accessed by clicking here


#1 Carleton (6-0) (LW #1) After a terrible effort at Seton Hall on Friday, the Ravens by all accounts looked much better on Sunday in a scrimmage in Virginia. Carleton will be tested immediately when the OUA regular season kicks off this Friday as the Ravens go to Guelph, a team playing very well on the defensive end and with an emerging young front line.

#2 UBC (4-0, 1-0) (LW #2) Putting to rest any whispers that the T-Birds may have slipped significantly after losing three top players to graduation, UBC locked up highly-touted Trinity Western defensively on Friday and played with the swagger of a team that has been there before and knows how to and deserves to win every game. UBC has games this week against NCAA Division 1 teams Oral Roberts and Oklahoma, where a crowd of better than 10,000 is expected in Norman.

#3 Calgary (5-0, 2-0) (LW #3) Dominant is not a word to be thrown around loosely however it was likely applicable this weekend in Calgary as the Dinos thrashed Winnipeg in consecutive games. The backcourt, thought to be a possible area of concern for the Dinos, has been tremendous with 6'0" fifth-year guard Jamie MacLeod and 5'10" freshman Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson. The diminutive freshman guard goes home this weekend as the Dinos have a pair of games against Manitoba Bisons in Winnipeg.

#4 McMaster (7-0) (LW #4) Mac's win Saturday against Wagner, an NCAA Division 1 team, by 10 was another indicator of how strong CIS teams at the top are. With Keenan Jeppesen leading the way, as long as he stays healthy, the Marauders should be a Top 5 team which will be very difficult to beat all season. The Marauders will be tested on Saturday night when they visit Kingston to face the currently-undefeated Queen's Golden Gaels led by 6'6" Mitch Leger.

#5 Dalhousie (7-1) (LW #5) Dal's lock-down half court "d" is the more underrated part of their game and it was again on display this past weekend. Most winning teams defend and rebound so the work inside of 6'9" Joe Schow and 6'7" Sandy Viet plus a set of emerging young bigs should be the underlying catalyst to ensure Dal remains a Top 10 team all season long. Dal kicks off their AUS season next weekend at UNB.

#6 Toronto (6-1) (LW #6) The Varsity Blues are proof that a system, when properly executed with good players, can create a consistently-strong program. Throw in veteran guards, an experienced big man plus an emerging bench and one can see why Toronto is a legitimate Top 10 team. Defensively, Varsity's zone has carried them through a stretch of injuries to several big men and later their top scorer. When right, Toronto should be able to score the ball with any team. The necessity to continue to play much zone and opponents ability to dissect that zone and make shots will play a big role in Toronto's future success. The Blues host strong OUA West teams Laurier and Waterloo as the regular season kicks off this weekend.

#7 Cape Breton (5-1) The Capers have done all their work away from Sydney and have shown a deep, athletic and talented roster. 6'3" impact newcomer Paris Carter remains out (he has a cast on his hand) however CBU can go at least 10 deep with little drop off in talent or intensity. The Capers open their AUS season with their first two home games of the season: a doubleheader against Saint Mary's.

#8 Windsor (2-1) With several first-year players still getting comfortable with the notion of how competitive CIS basketball is, expect Windsor to lean on their veterans as OUA regular season play kicks off next week. As with most programs that have an influx of new talent, there could be some ups and downs however the Lancers were very good on the road two weeks ago. The Lancers host York and Laurentian this coming Friday and Saturday.

#9 Saskatchewan (5-1) The Huskies get a significant opportunity to fortify their ranking with a busy and challenging upcoming two weeks, first visiting Montana State, an NCAA D1 team this week and then get their second tough test of the year and first in Canada West play as they entertain Brandon Bobcats for a pair of games this coming weekend. The following weekend, the Huskies travel to UBC and UVic.

#10 Laurier (4-1) There are several teams which were considered for this spot however the Golden Hawks won at Concordia where it is always difficult to win and their only loss was to #5 Dalhousie at home, a game which was tied very late. The Hawks have a veteran guard in 6'2" Jesse MacDonald plus an OUA POY candidate in 6'5" Kale Harrison. Laurier at #6 Toronto is a very good first night OUA regular season matchup.

Out of Last Week's Top 10:
NR but Honourable Mention: Trinity Western (1-1, 1-2) (LW #7) Completely dominated on Friday in the highly-anticipated Canada West opener against UBC, the Spartans have a ton of talent up front however large questions about their guard play and overall ability to run offense against teams who can defend, like UBC can, will determine when TWU can push back up into the Top 10. The Spartans play away from home at three NCAA Division 1 teams this week: Tuesday at Utah Valley University, Thursday at Brigham Young and Saturday at Utah State before continuing their Canada West regular season schedule the following weekend at Brandon and at Regina.

Honourable Mention:
Queen's (4-0) The undefeated Gaels have played all four games in the friendly confines of the Bartlett Gym, including wins against solid programs in Laval and Concordia. However, none of the team they have defeated have records better than .500. Gaels have an opportunity to make a bold statement as they host McMaster on Saturday but first have to deal with a very good Lakehead team on Friday night.
St. FX (6-2) The injury-riddled X-men's record is impressive however in both losses to Mac and Guelph, X had large deficits. With 6'6" Terrence Taylor back in the lineup and producing as in past years, St. FX can play bigger and has much more experience on the floor. If X can keep winning, it will be difficult to keep them out of the Top 10 in the coming weeks.

123 games played (through Sunday Oct 31st):
Canada West Pacific 13-14
Canada West Prairie 22-22
OUA West 23-13
OUA East 22-24
QSSF 16-27
AUS 27-23


Anonymous said...

Was there any score mentioned in the Carleton-Radford game?
The game wasn't even mentioned on Radford's website.
Why all the secrecy?

Anonymous said...

FROM CURBAA mail list:
The Ravens moved on to play the Radford University Highlanders, from the Big South Conference, in what are now being described as "scrimmages." The one report I found on the "scrimmages" indicated that they were played with referees and were played as 20 minute games. The Ravens won the first "scrimmage" 40-32, then tied the second "scrimmage 45-45 on a buzzer beater three by Elliot Thompson.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Mark for this information.
Since these mini games were just scrimmages, I wonder if they were even open to the public?