Remembering the 1993 Grey Cup Champions

As the Edmonton Elks regular season gets underway it is important to reflect and remember the 81st Grey Cup Champion Edmonton Eskimos. This season marks the 30th anniversary since Ron Lancaster led Edmonton to its 11th Grey Cup victory. It took the Esks another decade to replicate this feat again. While the Edmonton Elks embark on the beginning of what hopes to be a promising season it is important to reflect on the team's historic past and honour the 1993 Grey Cup champions.

Head Coach Ron Lancaster

The fourth most winningest head coach in CFL history, Ron Lancaster would win his one and only Grey Cup with the Green & Gold in 1993. The EE would lose in 1996 to Doug Flutie and the Toronto Argonauts in the classic Snow Bowl game. Not long after Lancaster would leave Edmonton for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in 1998. Lancaster's overall coaching record with the EE was 83 - 43 and had a .659 winning percentage.

Quarterback Damon Allen

Damon Allen played in all 18 regular season games for the Esks in 1993. Allen threw for 3,394 passing yards, 25 passing touchdowns, and only threw 10 interceptions on the season. He also rushed for 6 touchdowns. Allen finished the regular season with an effective QB rating of 92.4%. Damon Allen finished his career in 2007 as both the CFL's all-time passing yards record holder with 72, 381 passing yards and as the CFL's all-time passing touchdown leader with 394 TDs. Both of these records were later surpassed by Montreal's Anthony Calvillo.

The 81st Grey Cup Game

It was a mild winter day on November 28th, 1993 when the 12-6 Edmonton Eskimos played the 14-4 favourite Winnipeg Blue Bombers in front of over 50,000 screaming CFL fans at McMahon Stadium in Calgary. The game started with a 4-yard rushing touchdown by EE running back Lucius Floyd. This was followed by a Damon Allen passing touchdown to wide receiver Jim Sandusky. These two touchdowns alongside Kicker Sean Fleming's 2 converts and made field goal gave the Esks a 17-0 lead at the end of the 1st quarter.

The EE started the game on a 21-0 run before the Blue Bombers running back Mike Richardson scored a short rushing touchdown in the 2nd quarter. The Green & Gold defence did a terrific job at limiting the Blue Bombers scoring chances throughout the game. The Blue Bombers largely had to rely on Kicker Troy Westwood for offense besides Richardson's touchdown and Sammy Garza's 3rd quarter touchdown.

Winnipeg made a valiant comeback attempt and were down by only 4 points in the 4th quarter but Edmonton had their number forcing Winnipeg to turn the ball over 7 different times in the Grey Cup. Ultimately the Blue Bombers could not stop EE Kicker Sean Fleming who converted 3 of his 6 field goals in the 4th quarter to help Edmonton defeat Winnipeg by a score of 33 - 23.

30th Anniversary of a Historic Team

This season marks the 30th anniversary of this amazing Green & Gold team. The '93 Grey Cup champs had several future Canadian Football Hall of Famers on the team including Grey Cup MVP quarterback Damon Allen, wide receiver Gizmo Williams, linebacker Willie Pless, defensive back Don Wilson and of course legendary head coach Ron Lancaster.

 Photo courtesy of the Edmonton Sun