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Game Preview: BC Lions look to bounce back in Saskatchewan

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Rob Williams Jul 15, 2016 10:27 am

The 2-1 BC Lions roll into Mosaic Stadium, looking to get back on track against a struggling Roughriders team.

Fans must be wondering what to make of this Lions team early on. A young team in transition, Wally Buono appeared to have his team firing on all cylinders, beating Hamilton 28-3 on the road.

Was BC’s subpar performance against Toronto the following week at home just a sign of an overconfident young team or was that the sign of more to come?

The most promising sign early on this season has been the play of the Lions’ defence. With just 46 points against, BC has given up the fewest points per game of any team in the CFL. Saskatchewan, on the other hand, has given up 69 points in two games, which is the most points allowed per game in the CFL.

Matchup

Venue: Mosaic Stadium, Regina

Date/Time: Saturday, July 16 at 4 pm

TV: TSN

Radio: TSN 1040

Lineup

bc-lions-roster-july-15-2016

Jennings still trying to prove himself

This is a big game for Jonathon Jennings. The 23-year-old starting QB got the hook during the third quarter of last week’s game against the Toronto Argonauts. If he struggles in this one, will he be looking over his shoulder at veteran Travis Lulay?

Jennings is eighth in the league in passing yards this season, completing 51 of 87 passes for 608 yards. He’s thrown just one touchdown pass in three games, but he’s also only thrown one interception.

Buono would be wise to stay patient with the young QB though. This team can only go so far with Lulay in at quarterback. We don’t know what they can do with Jennings, so it behooves Buono to give him every opportunity to show them.

Jennings will get as good a chance as any to get on a roll on Saturday, as the Riders have given up 34.5 points per game through their first two games.

Rough ride for Saskatchewan

Mosaic Stadium was once one of the toughest places to play in the CFL. It’s still a hostile environment with Saskatchewan’s passionate fanbase, but winning there isn’t as difficult as it used to be.

The Riders finished dead last in the league last year with a 3-15 record, including a woeful 2-7 record at home. This year, Saskatchewan is 0-2.

As poor a year as the Lions had been last year, BC won all three games against Saskatchewan in 2015.

Allen returns to Saskatchewan

Anthony Allen promises to be a very motivated player on Saturday. The former Rider is playing his first game in Regina since being released by Saskatchewan in December.

Apart from a fumble, Allen was excellent last week against Toronto, running for 107 yards on 16 carries.

Allen is splitting the tailback duties this year with Jeremiah Johnson, who is still nursing an injury. The two will likely battle it out all year, as Buono appears to like the internal competition and the ability to sit one of them out to keep them fresh.

Prediction

35-26. Jennings has his way with a poor Riders defence and BC pounds the ball on the ground as well. Saskatchewan fans go back to their farms and wonder what’s wrong with their team again this year.


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Rob Williams
Man of the people, voice of the fans. Daily Hive Sports Editor.

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