Heading into the 2002 season, the Dinos football squad was all smiles with high hopes for the very near future. With all-star offensive players like quarterback Lincoln Blumell, receivers Jamie Elliott and Blake Machan, and CFL-drafted fullback Jeff Almon, there was no reason to believe the Dinos were not capable of winning the Vanier Cup. And then the season happened.
The Dinos defense looked solid with the likes of rush end Tyler Lynem and linebacker Agustin "Goose" Barrencchea, and Head Coach Tony Fasano and company were looking forward to a successful season. However, injuries decimated the secondary, and at the end of the regular season, the Dinos finished a very respectable, but unfortunate second to the unstoppable University of Manitoba in the Canada West conference with a solid 4-3-0-1 record.
In the first round of playoffs the Dinos were ousted in a forgettable game against the Regina Rams. I was very impressed on many occasions with the spectacular play of the offense, and the defense and special teams had their moments too. However, the team's biggest problem from where I stood was consistency. The Dinos struggled to keep all their units solid at one time. One minute the offense was playing well and the defense wasn't, then the tables would turn.
But despite inconsistency, the Dinos squad of 2002 had a lot of talented players and a talented coaching staff. With the departure of Lincoln Blumell, Jeff Almon, and Assistant Coach Dave Johnson, Head Coach Fasano has a big void to fill in the 2003 season.