Team East defeated Team West by a score of 37-0 in the annual U Sports East-West Bowl, a showcase game for players who are eligible for the 2024 CFL Draft.
Anthony Robichaud out of the Université de Sherbrooke started at quarterback for Team East and capped the club’s opening drive with a one-yard touchdown plunge. He finished the game completing 18-of-23 pass attempts for 228 yards and two touchdowns along with six carries for 33 yards and one score. His touchdown passes were thrown to Liam Stewart and Isaiah Okoli, both of whom play at Saint Mary’s University.
University of Windsor running back Christopher John provided the other two majors for Team East as he rushed for two touchdowns on 12 carries for 72 yards. Bishop’s University running back David Chaloux got 10 carries but was largely held in check by Team West’s defence, recording only 20 yards.
Team East’s defence allowed only 157 yards of total offence as they held Team West off the scoreboard. Carleton University linebacker Malik Yusuf led the way with five total tackles while he and Okoli both registered interceptions. University of Saskatchewan linebacker Ramsey Derbas made a team-high two tackles for loss, while York University defensive lineman Jason Janvier-Messier and University of Ottawa defensive back Eric Cumberbatch both knocked down passes.
University of Toronto quarterback Kinsale Philip started for Team West and completed six-of-21 pass attempts for 73 yards and two interceptions along with four carries for 44 yards. Wilfrid Laurier University running back Tanner Nelmes led the club with 10 carries for 44 yards, while University of Manitoba receiver Birhanu Yitna made a team-leading three catches for 30 yards.
Western University linebacker Max Nixon led Team West in tackles with a total of six, while University of Manitoba defensive back Stephen Adamopoulos made one interception.
Canadian Football Hall of Fame and retired bench boss Dave ‘Tuffy’ Knight served as the head coach of Team East, while Vanier Cup-winner Gary Jeffries was the head coach of Team West.
For the East, Tom Flaxman (Queen’s) was the offensive coordinator, Alex Lothian (Carleton) was the defensive coordinator, and Zak Colangelo (Mount Allison) was the special teams coordinator. For the West, Joe D’Amore (Toronto) was the offensive coordinator, Shomari Williams (UBC) was the defensive coordinator, and Nathan Mollard (Calgary) was the special teams coordinator.
Team East was comprised primarily of student-athletes from Atlantic University Sport (AUS), the Réseau du sport étudiant du Québec (RSEQ), as well as a handful of Ontario University Athletics (OUA) programs including Carleton, Ottawa, Queen’s, and York.
Team West included players from Canada West and the remaining OUA programs including Western, Wilfrid Laurier, Toronto, Windsor, McMaster, Guelph, and Waterloo. A few adjustments were made to the rosters with the goal of fielding two balanced teams.
Attendance for the game at Ron Joyce Stadium in Hamilton was 632. The contest can be viewed in full below.