The Uteck Bowl is always a huge event in Halifax — but Saturday’s might surpass them all.
It’s not just the Saint Mary’s Huskies and Calgary Dinos battling in the Canadian Interuniversity Sport football semifinal for a spot in the Vanier Cup. At the heart of this matchup is a subplot that should leave Huskies Stadium packed beyond its 6,500 capacity for the highly-anticipated 1 p.m. tilt.
Dinos head coach Blake Nill returns to Huskies Stadium for the first time since resigning from Saint Mary’s in 2006 after winning two Vanier Cups. And the star quarterback who left Saint Mary’s in January to join Nill in Calgary — Hec Crighton winner Erik Glavic — is coming home, too.
“The excitement of this week’s game is everywhere,” said Huskies head coach Steve Sumarah, who was none too impressed with his close friend Nill after Glavic departed.
“Everywhere I go, people must think I have rolls of tickets in my pocket. I’ve got more friends than I’ve ever had.”
During Thursday’s “meet the coaches” press conference at The Tower, Nill, Sumarah and Glavic couldn’t escape questions about how Glavic’s controversial departure went down. They ultimately downplayed the controversy and said they’ve been eager to face each other for the past year.
“The time has come,” Nill said. “We’re all aware of the subplots but both of us are football coaches, both of us are competitors, and both of us want to win this game.”
Glavic called Saturday’s game a “clash of the titans.” He even suggested it’s a bigger game than the 2007 Uteck Bowl, where he quarterbacked the Huskies to a 24-2 upset win over the Laval Rouge et Or before a home crowd of 6,549.
“That was a big game between two big-time teams,” Glavic said. “It was probably on the same level, but with all the subplots here … I’m sure this one will take the cake.”