Huskies quarterback Laurence Nixon appeared to struggle at times in the Huskies lone loss of the season against UBC on Friday night. He expects to be in much better form as the Huskies travel to Regina to take on the Rams on Saturday.
Many players and coaches felt the team did not have a good week of practices as they prepared for UBC after a tough, physical victory over Calgary to start the season. The Huskies had a long, overnight bus trip home from that game and many of the players looked sluggish to start the week.
“Some guys were a little banged up when we started practice last week,” said the fifth year pivot. “I don’t think that it was lack of effort, but it was really more that we had aches and were sore. That led to a slower tempo and less intensity all week.”
“This week, we’ve had a great couple of days so far,” Nixon said. “People are flying around and were having fun again. Guys are making plays and it is becoming more competitive. There is a lot more intensity right now and we are excited to play this weekend.”
Nixon was pulled out of the UBC game in the third quarter after going 12 for 23 and one interception. He was replaced by Trent Petersen who led the team’s only TD drive.
“I talked with the coaches and it wasn’t like I was playing terrible,” Nixon said on being pulled. “They just felt the team needed a spark. Jhalani (Gilbert-Knorren) got in there and had a huge run, and like BT (Head Coach Brian Towriss) said, there weren’t too many guys on the sideline getting jacked up. We had bad tempo and bad intensity against UBC.”
“They put Trent (Petersen) in there to try to give us some new life and spark a drive. He did too, as we marched downfield and scored a TD, so we got that spark.”
“It was frustrating at the time when I got pulled,” Nixon added when asked about his reaction to the news. “I had good chats with all of the coaches over the weekend, and I realize that they are doing what they think is best for the team and I fully support that. Me coming out of that game, it helped the team, so that was my role.”
“I learned from that and now I am trying to focus more on things that I can control and not getting too involved in the emotions of the game. That was maybe a distraction for me last week.”
Nixon, and the rest of the Huskies are looking forward to this weekend. “Their DBs are flying around and making plays, much like last year,” Nixon said. “They had a huge win against Manitoba and a near win against Calgary, so they are playing well and we need to be ready.”
“There defense looks really sharp right now,” he added. “But, like every week, it comes down to us executing our offense. If we execute they we we should, we should have success. We’ve got a great Oline, some great receivers and some great running backs.”
Whenever the Huskies play the Rams, there is a lot of personal pride on the line as many Rams players grew up in Saskatoon and many Huskies players grew up in Regina.
“You prepare for ever team the same,” said Nixon. “But there is that added emotion when so many guys have friends on the other team. Guys in our locker room know about a third of their team. When it comes down to it, we are playing for our fans and we are playing for pride.”
“In the end though, we do have to take things one game at a time. It’s just that our next game is against Regina.”
Game time is at 7:00pm and it can be heard on CK750.