Western, Hajrullahu on pace for scoring marks

Western, Hajrullahu on pace for scoring marks
OTTAWA (CIS) – The first six weeks of the CIS football season have been highlighted by some remarkable performances and a number of star players could add their name to the record book by the end of the regular schedule.  
For the most part, the 2013 campaign has been dominated by offence.
No less than four quarterbacks have passed for over 500 yards in a game already, including McGill freshman Pierre-Luc Dussault (538), Bishop’s Jordan Heather (538), Ottawa’s Aaron Colbon (523) and Calgary’s Andrew Buckley (512).
The foursome has combined to tie the CIS mark for most 500-yard games in a season. In 2009, the top two passers in CIS history, Western’s Michaels Faulds and Queen’s Danny Brannagan, both reached the plateau on two occasions, including once each in the playoffs.
McGill’s Casey Cook benefited from Dussault’s amazing debut as a CIS starter last Saturday and racked up 294 receiving yards in a wild overtime win over Concordia, a school record and the eighth best tally in CIS annals.
On the same day, Calgary running back Mercer Timmis had his second consecutive four-touchdown game, bringing his total to 14 all-purpose majors on the year. With three contests remaining, the super sophomore has a chance to become only the sixth CIS player to reach the end zone 20 times or more in a single campaign. His 13 rushing touchdowns this fall are one shy of the Canada West conference mark.
While all those performances are truly impressive, no team has made more noise so far in 2013 than the nationally top-ranked and OUA-leading Western Mustangs (6-0).
The Mustangs have scored a CIS-best 357 points in their first six confrontations and, should they maintain their current average of 59.5 points per game over their final two outings against Windsor (Oct. 5) and York (Oct. 19), they would finish league play with 476 points, well over the OUA record of 424 set by McMaster in 2003 and just shy of the CIS standard of 481 established that same year by Laval.
Saint Mary’s is second on the all-time national list with 480 points in 2001, while McMaster’s tally from a decade ago ranks third.
Western kicker Lirim Hajrullahu is eying a scoring record of his own, this one of the career variety. With two conference games left in his fifth and final university season, the senior from St. Catharines, Ont., has 385 career points, good for third all-time in CIS behind Neil Lumsden, who scored 410 for Ottawa from 1972 to 1975, and Frank Jagas, who amassed 392 for the Mustangs between 1990 and 1994.
Hajrullahu, who averages 15.5 points per contest this fall, could also become Western’s career leader in field goals on Saturday. He currently ranks fifth on the CIS list with 69, one shy of Jagas’ team record and six behind the OUA mark. The CIS record is 82.
Another Mustang enjoying a stellar season is sophomore quarterback Will Finch, who currently leads the country in passing yards per game (356.3), touchdown passes (17) and completion percentage (71.4).
With 2,138 yards through the air after six matches, the product of Burlington, Ont., has an outside shot at the CIS mark of 3,033 set by Faulds in 2009. Meanwhile, his current completion percentage would be an OUA record and ranks third all-time behind a pair of superb campaigns put together by former Hec Crighton Trophy winner Benoit Groulx of Laval, who maintained success rates of 75.2 percent in 2008 and 73.2 in 2009.
On the defensive side of the ball, Rob Jubenville of Saint Mary’s is a player to keep an eye on over the next four weekends. The fifth-year lineman, who already holds the AUS career record of 27 quarterback sacks, has tackled rival pivots behind the line of scrimmage eight times in only four games this fall. The single-season CIS standard of 12.5 was set a year ago by McMaster’s Ben D’Aguilar and Montreal’s Jean-Samuel Blanc.
Other players currently moving up CIS leader lists include Regina receiver Mark McConkey and Laval returner Guillaume Rioux.
McConkey set a Canada West record and reached 10th place on the national list last weekend with his 175th career reception. With three games remaining, he has an outside chance at becoming only the fourth CIS player to reach the 200-catch plateau.
Rioux also has three regular season games left in his university career and, with 1,802 punt return yards, he ranks ninth all-time nationally. Only four CIS players are members of the 2,000-yard club.
Points in a season (team)
481 (Laval – 2003)
480 (Saint Mary’s – 2001)
424 (McMaster – 2003)
357 (Western – 2013)
Career scoring (individual)
410      Neil Lumsden, Ottawa (1972-75)
392      Frank Jagas, Western (1990-94)
385      Lirim Hajrullahu, Western (2009-)
385      Christopher Milo, Laval (2007-10)
Career field goals (individual)
82        William Dion, Sherbrooke (2008-12)
75        Matthew Falvo, Ottawa            (2008-12)
71        Aaron Ifield, Calgary (2006-10)
70        Frank Jagas, Western (1990-94)
69        Lirim Hajrullahu, Western (2009-)
69        Christopher Milo, Laval           (2007-10)
Single-season all-purpose touchdowns (individual)
25        Paul Brule, StFX (1967)
21        Jesse Lumsden, McMaster (2004)
20        Paul Brule, StFX (1966)          
20        Kojo Aidoo, McMaster (2000)
20        Jesse Lumsden, McMaster (2003)
14        Mercer Timmis, Calgary (2013)
Single-season rushing touchdowns (individual)
21        Paul Brule, StFX (1967)
21        Jesse Lumsden, McMaster (2004)
20        Paul Brule, StFX (1966)          
20        Kojo Aidoo, McMaster (2000)
13        Mercer Timmis, Calgary (2013)
Single-season passing yards (individual)
3033    Michael Faulds, Western (2009)
3001    Tommy Denison, Queen’s (2002)
2907    Tommy Denison, Queen’s (2003)
2823    Greg Vavra, Calgary (1983)
2806    Chris Hessel, Western (2002)
2138    Will Finch, Western (2013)
Single-season completion percentage (individual)
75.2     Benoit Groulx, Laval (2008)
73.2     Benoit Groulx, Laval (2009)
71.4     Will Finch, Western (2013)
70.6     Eric Dzwilewski, Calgary (2012)
70.4     Garry Smith, Alberta (1962)   
Single-season quarterback sacks (individual)
12.5     Ben D’Aguilar, McMaster (2012)
12.5     Jean-Samuel Blanc, Montreal (2012)
12.0     Leroy Blugh, Bishop’s (1988)
12.0     Jim Aru, Queen’s (1996)
8.0       Rob Jubenville, Saint Mary’s (2013)
Career receptions (individual)
251      Charles-Antoine Sinotte, McGill          (2006-10)
238      Julian Feoli-Gudino, Laval (2007-11)
206      Gary Ross, Mount Allison (2006-10)
194      Erik Galas, McGill (2004-08)
192      Jordan Brescacin, Windsor (2008-12)
175      Mark McConkey, Regina (2007-)
Career punt return yards (individual)
2517    Chris Evraire, Ottawa (1994-98)
2279    Eric Duchene, Saskatchewan (1999-03)
2166    Jahmeek Taylor, Saint Mary’s (2008-12)
2071    Dillon Heap, Laurier (2005 / 2008-11)
1981    Gary Ross, Mount Allison (2006-10)
1802    Guillaume Rioux, Laval           (2009-)
Source: CIS
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