2013 Grey Cup Championship
November 18, 2013
By David Schwab
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101st CFL Grey Cup Championship
Matchup: Hamilton Tiger-Cats at Saskatchewan Roughriders
Venue: Mosaic Stadium at Taylor Field (field turf)
Location: Regina, Saskatchewan
Date: Sunday, Nov. 23
Time/TV: 6:00 p.m. ET, NBCSN
Line (Total): Saskatchewan -5 (54)
This Sunday at Mosaic Stadium in a 6:00 p.m. ET start, the East Division’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats will square-off against the West’s Saskatchewan Roughriders in this season’s CFL Grey Cup Championship. Both teams took the hard road to get into this title game by pulling off an improbable upset in this past Sunday’s Division Finals.
The Tiger-Cats made it in first with a 36-24 victory over the defending champion Toronto Argonauts as 4 ½ -point road underdogs. The Roughriders followed suit by knocking-off Calgary 35-13 as five-point underdogs on the road.
Hamilton started this season with just one straight up victory in its first five games and it was a costly 0-5 against the spread. Since that point it has gone 11-4 SU while covering the spread in 10 of the 15 games. The Tiger-Cats are just 3-7 ATS at home this season but a profitable 7-3 ATS on the road. The total has stayed UNDER in 13 of their 20 games.
The key to Hamilton pulling off the upset in this game will hinge on the play of quarterback Henry Burris. He led the CFL in passing yards during the regular season with 4,925 while completing 65.8 percent of his 567 attempts. He was tied for second in touchdown passes with 24, but he also led the league in interceptions with 19. After throwing for 204 yards in the team’s 19-16 victory over Montreal in the Division Semifinals, he torched the Argonauts for 371 yards and three touchdowns in this past Sunday’s win.
The Roughriders made life a little rough on themselves after following up an 8-1 SU start with four consecutive losses both SU and ATS in the month of September. They went 3-2 SU down the stretch to finish 11-7 SU on the year which was good enough for second place in the West. Saskatchewan went 8-9-1 ATS in 18 regular season games with the total staying UNDER in six of its final seven games. It started the playoffs with a 29-25 victory over British Columbia in a game that ended as a PUSH with the total going OVER the 51-point closing line.
This is another team that lives and dies with the play of its quarterback. Darian Durant was third in the league in passing with 4,154 yards with a completion rate of 61.2 percent on 531 attempts. He led the CFL in touchdown throws with 31 against just 12 interceptions. He carried this form into the playoffs with 550 passing yards and five touchdowns in the two games. The difference on Sunday could be a rushing attack led by running back Kory Sheets. After racking-up 1,598 yards in the regular season, which was the second-highest total in the league, he added another 245 yards on the ground in the playoffs.
CFL Grey Cup Betting Trends
Hamilton is 7-1 ATS in its last eight games on the road and 6-1 ATS in its last seven games against a team with a winning record. The total has stayed UNDER in four of its last five road games
Saskatchewan is 3-9-2 ATS in its last 14 contests which includes 1-4-1 record ATS in its last six games played at home. The total has stayed UNDER in 11 of its last 14 games in the postseason.
Head-to-head in this showdown, the Tiger-Cats are 6-21-1 ATS in the last 28 meetings and 3-12-1 ATS in their last 16 trips to Saskatchewan. The total has stayed UNDER in four of the last six meetings. These teams met two previous times this season with Saskatchewan winning both games SU and ATS. The total stayed UNDER in both contests.