Under Centre: 1-on-1 with Sunday's quarterbacks
As the biggest game of the year looms, Donnovan Bennett sits down for a candid, 1-on-1 interview with Dane Evans and Zach Collaros.
Both pivots have an opportunity to add to two very different narratives. Evans, it is a chance to tie on bow on one of the most rapid rises in CFL history and etch his name in Tiger-Cats history before he has even played a full season as a starting quarterback. Many thought Hamilton’s chances at capturing a Grey Cup were all but done once Jeremiah Masoli went down to injury. Insert Evans into a star-studded lineup and a deadly aerial attack and the ‘Cats don’t miss a beat.
For Collaros, there is an opportunity to pen the final chapter in one of the most storybook comeback seasons in CFL history. The year began with an injury sustained against the star linebacker on the other sideline, traded to Toronto and then platooned in at the trade deadline into a Winnipeg squad looking to salvage their season. The pivot who many wrote off and thought would never play again has been lights out since his return, leading the Bombers to within one game of breaking a Grey Cup drought that has lasted 29 years.
Bennett on Evans: “Like many people I was curious to get to know Dane Evans and figure out what he’s about as he’s been under the radar and then exploded on the scene this year. My first takeaway was how grateful he is for this opportunity. He’s really living in the moment during Grey Cup week. He was looking at all the storied names on the Cup and thanking us afterwards for interviewing him. You can tell he’s not taking any of this for granted. It’s the first time an interview subject said “thank you sir” to me after we were done on camera. The other thing is he’s a grinder. He really loves diving deep in the minutia of preparing to play. He’s seems giddy talking about getting ready to play on Sunday.”
Bennett on Collaros: “The biggest thing I sense from talking to Zach is he’s ready to play the game. Lots of people are happy for him or are interested in his improbable storyline and compelling narrative but he’s not allowing himself to get caught up in any of that. Sounds cliché but he’s laser focused only on the things he can control which doesn’t help us as media members but explains why he’s the tough competitor he is and that’s the character trait of his I respect the most.”
Listen on the extended interview:
Download the latest edition of The Waggle presented by SportClips to listen to the extended interviews with Evans and Collaros or stream below!