It is an exciting time for football for sure. This weekend you have the CFL playoffs, NCAA, the NFL and of course the CIS playoffs. However, if you are on Telus TV, like I am, you are out of luck in watching the 2016 Hardy Cup between the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds and the University of Calgary Dinos from McMahon Stadium in Calgary on Saturday. Here are the events that are on television or can be seen free on the Internet.
Saturday—Snowboarding Big Air World Cup—cbc.ca—10 am PT—One of the new events on the Olympic program for the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang is big air snowboarding. Canada is very deep in the discipline on the men’s side. One of Canada’s top big air snowboarders— Mark McMorris of Regina, Saskatchewan is scheduled to compete in Milan, Italy.
Saturday—NCAA Football—Pittsburgh @ (2) Clemson—ABC—12:30 pm PT—The Tigers enter the game with a perfect record of nine wins and zero losses and have not lost since falling to Alabama in the 2016 National Championship game by a score of 45-40. The Tigers once again have Deshaun Watson at quarterback and are coming off a dominating 54-0 win last week over Syracuse.
Saturday—NBA—New York Knicks @ Toronto Raptors—TSN—4:30 pm PT—It has been an outstanding start to the season for Raptors all-star DeMar DeRozan, who leads the NBA by averaging 34.1 points per game. This past week the Raptors had a very impressive 112-102 win in Oklahoma City.
Saturday—NCAA Football—(20) University of Southern California @ (4) Washington—FOX—4:30 pm PT—Like the Tigers, the Huskies are a perfect 9-0. Three times this season the Huskies have scored 50 points or more including a 66-27 win over California last week. The Huskies are led by quarterback Jake Browning, who already has 34 touchdown passes this season.
Saturday—NCAA Football—(3) Michigan @ Iowa—ABC—5 pm PT—The Wolverines’ greatest asset could be their head coach, Jim Harbaugh. The former San Francisco 49ers head coach has the Wolverines at 9-0, and according to FOX Sports is not going anywhere, despite reports that he could receive significant offers from the NFL pretty soon. Expect Harbaugh to stay in the NCAA for the time being however. The job in Michigan is simply too cushy for him to entertain other offers.
Saturday—NHL—New York Rangers @ Calgary Flames—CBC—7 pm PT—The Flames have now lost three straight Western Conference games to Los Angeles, Anaheim and Dallas and are tied with Vancouver for fifth in the West with a record of 5-9-1. The Rangers meanwhile shockingly lead the NHL with 58 goals. Their leading scorers are Kevin Hayes and J.T. Miller, who each have 13 points.
Sunday—CFL—Eastern Conference Semi-Final—Edmonton Eskimos @ Hamilton Tiger-Cats—TSN—10 am PT—The Eskimos (10-8) find themselves on the road for this one despite having a much better record than Hamilton (7-11) during the regular season. The Eskimos scored 549 points this year, the second most in the CFL. Only the Calgary Stampeders at 586 points, scored more. In the regular season, Hamilton beat Edmonton at Commonwealth 37-31 on July 23, and Edmonton won in Hamilton 29-26 on October 28.
Sunday—NFL—Atlanta Falcons @ Philadelphia Eagles—FOX—10 am PT—This will be a very intriguing NFC matchup. The Eagles (4-4) defense was stellar on national television at home earlier this season when they shut down Ben Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh Steelers. It will be interesting to see how they now matchup against a Falcons squad which has Matt Ryan, the number one fantasy quarterback in the entire NFL. Atlanta (6-3) scores a lot of points (305), but also give up a lot of points (259). Philadelphia’s defense is drastically improved (only given up 145 points), but have only scored 202 points.
Sunday—NFL—Miami Dolphins @ San Diego Chargers—CTV2—1 pm PT—After a slow start to the season, the San Diego Chargers (4-5) have picked up the pace and have won three of their last four games. Their last victory was a 43-35 shootout win over the Tennessee Titans. One may not think of Philip Rivers as an elite NFL quarterback anymore, but one cannot ignore the fact that he is fourth in the NFL in passing yards with 2560, and that the Chargers top receiver Keenan Allen was out for the season in week one after tearing his ACL. Miami meanwhile has an underrated defense and sit at 4-4 in the AFC East.
Sunday—NFL—Dallas Cowboys @ Pittsburgh Steelers—FOX—1 pm PT—The 4-4 Steelers now have Ben Roethlisberger back and now the question is will the 7-1 Cowboys have Tony Romo back? It appears Dak Prescott will be the starter for now in this interconference battle. There is no question that Prescott is making a strong case for the NFL rookie of the year. His major competition however is his teammate, Ezekiel Elliott, who leads the NFL with 891 rushing yards.
Sunday—CFL—Western Conference Semi-Final—Winnipeg Blue Bombers @ British Columbia Lions—TSN—1:30 pm PT—Two very even defenses will battle this weekend in Vancouver in the Canadian Football League playoffs. Just how even? The Blue Bombers (11-7) and Lions (12-6) each gave up 454 points this year, tied for the third least in the CFL. The Lions are led by linebacker Solomon Elimimian, who led the CFL with 129 tackles this year and is expected to be named the CFL’s top defensive player in 2016.
Sunday—NHL—Montreal Canadiens @ Chicago Blackhawks—Sportsnet—4 pm PT—The top two teams in the NHL play Sunday. The 12-1-1 Canadiens play the 10-3-1 Blackhawks. Chicago may not have leading scorer Artem Anisimov in their lineup. The Russian center is day-to-day with an upper body injury. The Canadiens are led by goaltender Carey Price, who leads the NHL with nine wins.
Sunday—NFL—Seattle Seahawks @ New England Patriots—NBC—5:30 pm PT—In a rematch of the 2015 Super Bowl, the 5-2-1 Seahawks lead the AFC West and the 7-1 Patriots are tied with the Dallas Cowboys for the best record in the entire NFL. Due to the scheduling, the Patriots will not face the Cowboys in the regular season, so this could be as good of an interconference matchup we will get this season.
Sunday—NHL—New York Rangers @ Edmonton Oilers—Sportsnet One—6:30 pm PT—The Oilers will look to rebound after losing 5-3 to the Rangers on November 3. This will be the second game of a back-to-back for New York as they played in Calgary on Saturday. The Oilers are led by Connor McDavid, who is second in the NHL at the moment with 17 points.