SIDELINES: this week in sports


College football this week was not so exciting as weeks past. Penn State and Saquon Barkley took a beating to Michigan at Beaver Stadium. The Wolverines and John O’Korn were completely dominated by the Penn State defence, and the Nittany Lion offence put holes in the Michigan defence like no one has this season. When Jim Harbaugh asks his team who’s got it better than Michigan, well, the answer is Penn State. The Nittany Lions are travelling to Ohio Stadium to take on the Buckeyes, which is fixing to be a thriller. Notre Dame reclaimed (some) of their glory in the college football world after taking down number-21 ranked USC 49-14. Though USC will face unranked Arizona State this weekend, they will be going up against a team who — in the past two weeks — has taken down an undefeated Washington team and Utah. Butch Jones’ seat is even hotter after Tennessee was demolished by Alabama 45-7, including an unsportsmanlike penalty on one of the Vols players for flipping off the Alabama fans. Perhaps most surprisingly out of Florida is that while the Seminoles of FSU are struggling this season and the Gators have fallen off the radar, UCF and USF are both undefeated, sitting at 6-0 and 7-0 records respectively. Syracuse put up another battle against an undefeated team, but fell short to Miami 27-19.

The World Series is set with the Houston Astros and the Los Angeles Dodgers locked in for what is expected to be an exciting match-up. The Astros have turned their team around completely, after just a few years ago being a team with more than 100 losses. The Dodgers haven’t won a World Series since 1988, while the Astros are an organization still searching for their first.

The Niagara IceDogs are 7-2-2, losing in the last four seconds of overtime this past Saturday to the Ottawa 67s by a score of 1-0. Both Stephen Dhillon and Ottawa goaltender Olivier Tremblay were stellar for their teams, though Dhillon was visibly unhappy with the near-sided shot that sneaked by him in the dying seconds of overtime. The IceDogs currently sit in second in the central division, one point behind the Barrie Colts, whom they will visit on November 11 at the Barrie Molson Centre.

There is nothing better than watching hockey on Saturday night in Canada. Yes, that is biased, but in my books nothing beats the culture around hockey and the NHL. Every week, the opening montage and remarks from Ron MacLean could almost bring a tear to your eye. This Saturday night, though, the spotlight wasn’t on the Toronto Maple Leafs and Auston Matthews, not on Connor McDavid (though he got his spotlight on Coach’s Corner) or the Vegas Golden Knights. This Saturday night was about the legendary Gord Downie of The Tragically Hip. His connection to hockey and the Canadian culture — and perhaps most importantly — his efforts to include and unite the Indigenous culture with the rest of Canadian culture, were second-to-none.

Even a team like Toronto, who have set expectations high in the first eight games of the season, can have a game where the defence struggle miserably, yet still we are itching for the next game. The next Saturday night in Toronto though, hopefully, order will be restored.

The Badgers have had plenty going on with fall sports roudning up their seasons and winter sports kicking into regular season mode as they’ve finished off their preseason schedules. On the first podcast of Inside the Badger Den, Satbir, Cameron and I discussed men’s basketball, women’s hockey, and men’s and women’s soccer. Make sure to tune in to the podcast this week as we’ll be discussing men’s hockey, both basketball programs, men’s soccer and both rugby programs.

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