Vavra scores only touchdown at East-West Bowl

Rhett Vavra Electric Umbrella/Derek Elvin photo courtesy of Huskies Athletics

Rhett Vavra’s stock continues to rise after the University of Saskatchewan Huskies receiver helped lead Team West to a 16-1 win at the 2024 East-West Bowl in Waterloo, ON on May 11.

The Swift Current product scored the only touchdown and led all players in both yards and receptions.

“It was pretty good. We got lots of chemistry with the QBs and receivers on and of the field just learning the playbook with each other, hanging out, riding the scooters, banquets, doing whatever. It was good to get that connection on the field, but also off the field,” said Vavra.

The fourth-year Huskies receiver caught six passes for 96 yards at the East-West Bowl. His touchdown was a 22-yard catch from Manitoba Bisons quarterback Jackson Tachinski in the second quarter.

“It’s just a game for the top three to five guys from each team in U Sports to come showcase their ability and just be able to play. If their able to excel at a higher level then the scouts come watch our practice or games. It’s nice for them to come get a look at us I guess.”

Vavra was joined by Huskies teammates Ryker Frank, Daniel Wiebe, Seth Hundeby, and Lane Novak. The West has now won six of the past seven all-star games and holds a 14-7 overall advantage over the East.

“It was great…We learned a whole new playbook. A couple of guys that we usually line up against, so it was good seeing the other side of that and becoming buddies with those guys for a week or two.”

The Huskies finished 5-4 last season. They were eliminated in the Canada West semi-final by the Alberta Golden Bears.

“It went pretty well,” said Vavra. “It was Anton Amundrud’s first year sitting back in the pocket. Things obviously weren’t perfect because we didn’t end up with that ring and the Vanier Cup, but there’s definitely some things that we know that we need to work on and we’re just going to polish them over the summer and hopefully get back to that championship game.”

Vavra led the Huskies with 34 catches for 561 yards and five touchdowns. He also returned 16 punts for 134 yards.

“I guess on paper it seems like I did pretty decent. Looking back I know there was lots of miscommunication and just missed plays overall that I know if we clean up we can have a way better season and better overall stats for me and Anton, not just us two, but the whole team just having more wins in the season than losses. You just really want to win your last game because that last game is always going to be a bowl.”

Vavra, who is studying in the College of Kinesiology, still has two years of eligibility remaining.

The Huskies will open the season on August 22 when they host the Alberta Golden Bears. Vavra is spending the summer in Saskatoon with many of his teammates as they get an early start to training.

“Year by year I still can’t believe I’m not a first year on this team anymore. Years have flown by, but the goal is the CFL, maybe make a camp or get drafted is the goal. I’m just going to focus one year at a time. Dogs year four is my next year to accomplish.”