When Kerry Joseph scored on a three yard touchdown run I'm sure most Toronto Argonauts fans were resigned to the fact that the team's remarkable run was about to come to an end.
Down by three touchdowns (22-1) with Joseph playing well for an injured Mike Reilly (more on that in a moment) it was logical to come to the conclusion that Toronto would return home after a four week odyssey with a more than respectable 3-1 record.
Wins over the red hot Stampeders and an always dangerous Roughriders squad had more than validated the Argonauts as the best team in the East.
Toronto was just the fourth team in CFL history to embark on a four game road trip and no franchise had ever won four straight in this manner.
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Why should this result be any different? Maybe because this team seems to playing with a higher level of "sports-faith" right now. Not to get religious on you but we see this is all the time in professional sports.
A team gets on a roll, they start pulling off late game heroics with guys you have never heard of before making a name for themselves and suddenly you have everyone on the roster believing that no matter what, somehow they will win.
That's what I call "sports-faith".
When you just start to believe some sort of higher power is watching over you.
Toronto trailed Edmonton 22-1 on that Joseph touchdown, Montreal held a 23-8 lead in 3rd period and the combined halftime score of these past four games saw Toronto trailing 69-33. Ye through it all, the team found a way to come back.
Of course in this case that higher power is Scott Milanovich. Now while I would strongly dissuade any fan from erecting a statue in Milanovich's honour I think it is important to look back at the job he has done this season.
If you want to see just what sort of impact Milanovich has had on the Argonauts just look at the season of Zack Collaros. Coming into 2013, Collaros had thrown just 11 passes in the CFL. One common phrase you hear in every football locker room is "next man up"; can you think of a better expression for the 2013 Argonauts?
Injuries are a way of life in football and it is the coach’s job to limit the level of drop off in productivity when a starter goes down. Collaros never had a chance to ease into being a starting quarterback; his first start was against the vaunted B.C. Lions defence.
Yet Collaros went out and completed 84 per cent of his passes, threw three touchdowns with zero interceptions in a 38-12 win.
During this current four game road win streak Collaros has thrown eight touchdowns compared to three interceptions while completing about 65 per cebnt of his passes. We have seen late game heroics and moments of patience from Collaros, full credit goes to Milanovich for putting his young quarterback in a position to win.
No one thought Collaros would have this level of success, be honest, you didn't. This is all about Milanovich and his entire coaching staff installing the right game plan, this is all about giving Collaros the confidence he needs to succeed.
Of course this goes beyond the quarterback. The Argonauts are doing their best to not beat themselves. Toronto has committed fewer penalties in each of their four road wins, a reflection of the level of discipline that Milanovich has instilled within the team.
Again I am not saying we should all worship at the altar of Milanovich maybe just offer him some oxen, or sheep or whatever the Gods love being given.
Of course setting any sort of record luck has to be involved. Mike Reilly was knocked out of this past weekends game, Kory Sheets didn't make it out of the first quarter and the Argonauts greatest nemesis, Anthony Calvillo was not avaliable when Toronto started this historic four game road winning streak.
Toronto held on for dear life in their 31-29 victory over Saskatchewan as Darian Durant's two point conversion was thwarted by second year defensive end David Lee sacking Durant.
Now the flip side to this argument is an easy one, Toronto's injuries on offence easily negates most of the "luck" talk throw at Toronto. But I don’t look at luck as necessarily and evil four letter word. Good teams create their own luck.
Some other thoughts from Toronto's road swing:
(1) The most impressive aspect of Toronto's win over Edmonton was that it had little to do with Zach Collaros. The best teams always have different ways to beat their opponents. A great passing attack can be shut down with bad weather or a relentless pass rush. Coming of his best game of his career against Calgary (330 yards, four touchdowns and no turnovers) Collaros was ordinary at best against Edmonton. Not to worry as Chad Kackert flashed his Grey Cup MVP form rushing for 155 yards and two scores.
(2) Going into the season the biggest concern for Toronto's defence was their completely revamped secondary. That hasn't been an issue as the team has collected 12 interceptions during this run including four by Patrick Watkins in the last two games.
(3) I think it needs to be brought up ... a four game road trip? The league is about 350 years old and this, as mentioned before, has only happened three other times.
Matthew Cauz is the Weekend Host for 'GAME DAY' on TSN 1050 Radio. Previously, he was a producer and football analyst for SUN TV where he appeared regularly on the “Casino Rama Grill Room” and he spent seven years working for TSN's “Off The Record”. Follow Matthew on Twitter @mcauz56.