Antigonish, NS—This Saturday, the final game of the AUS regular season will have an added value to it as the StFX X-Men and Bishop's Gaiters will be competing for the right to hoist the Bigg Bowl.
The Bigg Bowl was donated in 2002 by the family of Reverend H. R. Canon Bigg, and to date, has been awarded after competition between the StFX X-Men and Bishop's Gaiters in U SPORTS football. Since Bishop's joined the AUS conference this season and the teams will now play twice during the regular season, one game annually will be selected as the Bigg Bowl, and for 2017 the date is October 28th.
X-Men head coach Gary Waterman is looking forward to the game, commenting "We look forward to once again having the opportunity to compete for the Bigg Bowl. It is a fun tradition."
"However, we are also fighting for a playoff spot and making the AUS playoffs is one of our team goals. Bishop's is a good football team and we are going to have to play a great game on Saturday to get the job done."
Gaiters head coach Cherif Nicolas will be coaching in his first Bigg Bowl on Saturday and notes, "It is exciting to now be able to compete for the Bigg Bowl on a yearly basis, and there is always a little added incentive when you can bring a trophy home after a game."
StFX alumnus Brian McA'Nulty has ties to both StFX and Bishop's universities and when the AUS and RSEQ interlock games commenced in 2002, he wanted to commemorate the inaugural game between the two schools, tying in the historical traditions of both universities and bringing significance to the game. StFX and Bishop's are small liberal arts universities that share a rich history of athletic excellence as well as community outreach.
The beautifully crafted Bigg Bowl trophy came from England, and was generously donated by Mr. and Mrs. Brian McA'Nulty in honor of his grandfather Reverend H. R. Canon Bigg, a rector in Sherbrooke, QC from 1915 to 1940 and a multi-sport athlete. Other members of the McA'Nulty family have ties with Bishops University.
Coach Nicolas adds, "It is always special to play for a trophy named in honour of someone, in this case Reverend Bigg. There are many great traditions surrounding the game of football and this is certainly one of them."
Saturday's game, slated for a 3:00 pm kick-off at StFX Oland Stadium, will be the fourth Bigg Bowl encounter between the two teams. Bishop's won the last meeting in 2009 by a 33-12 score, while the X-Men won the first two games in 2002 (22-7) and 2004 (50-17).
Tickets for the Bigg Bowl game may be purchased online at www.goxgo.ca/tickets or at the StFX Keating Centre box office. The game will be webcast live on www.austv.ca and televised on Bell Five TV1 (channel 401) in the Atlantic Canada region.
BIGG BOWL HISTORY:
Year Winner Score Host
2009 Bishop's 33-12 StFX
2004 StFX 50-17 StFX
2002 StFX 22-7 Bishop's