The Edmonton Eskimos carried their dominance of the late 1970s into a new decade, reaching the final for the fourth consecutive year in 1980. The Eskimos made it three straight victories with a 48-10 rout of the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in the 68th Grey Cup.
The game proved to be merely a formality. The Ticats were no match for the Eskimos, who people were beginning to label the best Canadian football team ever.
The margin of victory was the largest since Queen’s University shut out the Regina Roughriders 54-0 in 1923. The 48 points scored by the Eskimos were the most by one team at the Grey Cup since the 1956 Eskimos scored 50.
Statistics were just as one-sided as the scoreboard. The Ticats were limited to 12 first downs and 201 yards in total offence, compared to 31 first downs and 606 yards for the Eskimos.
Warren Moon, ending his first season as a starter in the CFL, completed 21 of 33 passes for 398 yards. He connected on a couple of long passing plays in the first half; a 55-yard completion to Danny Buggs to the Hamilton goal line setting up Jim Germany for the first of his two touchdowns, and a 75-yard play with Brian Kelly for a touchdown.
Tom Scott caught 12 passes for 174 yards. His three touchdown receptions set a record for most TD receptions in a single Grey Cup game. Scott joined Hamilton’s Ross Craig (1913), Toronto’s Red Storey (1938) and Edmonton’s Jackie Parker (1956) as the only other players to score three majors in a Grey Cup game. Art Wilson holds the Grey Cup record of four, set in 1913.
In total, 21 records were set or extended by the Eskimos and Ticats in 1980, and five were tied.
Many of the Ticats were talking the talk leading up to the game, but couldn’t back up their words. Hamilton running back Obie Graves predicted he would rush for 200 yards against the Eskimos, but only managed 67. No player rushed for 100 yards against the Eskimos 'Crude' defence the entire season. Graves returned seven kick-offs in the game, shattering the previous Grey Cup record of four.
All of Hamilton’s points came off the foot of kicker Bernie Ruoff, who booted three field goals and missed on another attempt for a single. Edmonton’s Dave Cutler split the uprights twice and added six converts.
The three-peat was the fourth in Grey Cup history, as the Eskimos matched the Eskimos' string in 1954 to 1956. The University of Toronto (1909-1911) and Queen’s (1922-1924) were the others.