THEY'VE had the big guns looking over their shoulder but Collegians need to do some peeking over their own or risk dropping out of the race for a top two finish.
That's the opinion of Dogs coach Nathan Fien ahead of his side's clash with fourth-placed Helensburgh on Saturday, with the Tigers on the hunt for a big scalp after righting their finals ship.
A win would give Collies some welcome breathing room in third sport and keep them well in the hunt to unseat Thirroul or Wests in the top two.
It makes for an intriguing clash at Collegians Sports Centre, but Fien remains confident his side remains on an upward trajectory at the mid-point of the year.
"We're pretty happy with where we're at at the moment considering the two losses we've had this year have been against last year's grand finalists' by one and two points," Fien said.
"We know we're there or thereabouts, we're probably just not closing out matches at the moment. We're getting on top at certain points and looking pretty good but just not finding that killer punch to really go on with it.
"That comes with time, we've got a young squad and they're getting better. I got a lot of confidence out of our preseason but what we have learned is that the preseason's a lot different to the actual competition.
"I'm happy with how we're tracking but we're probably sitting in third for a reason at the moment. That's the best way of putting it."
A one-point loss to the Devils in round four was the last time the Dogs tasted defeat. They came out of the bye with win over Corrimal a fortnight ago and Fien says Saturday's clash looms as another danger match.
"This game's big for us in the context of the season, the Burgh's going quite well," he said.
"They're sitting in fourth for a reason, they're playing with a lot of energy and confidence, they're going to want to knock off a side that's above them to stay in touch with the top two and secure that semi-final berth.
"I thought the Corrimal game was an example of where we're at at the moment. We went out to 22-0 and went away from what we were doing and tried to cruise through it.
"If we do that against the Burgh we could be in for a long afternoon. If we're near our best, we'll give ourselves a good chance but for me it's about putting together that 80-minute performance."
The match will be the Dogs second outing in almost five weeks, with the bye and long weekend leaving them sidelined twice in the space of three rounds.
Fien said it will be a relief to see his young charges get some regular action.
"We've got a big block of footy that all the boys are really looking forward to," he said.
"It's been a bit stop start the last couple of weeks but we've got five straight weeks of footy now so hopefully we can settle into our groove a little bit more and get some 80-minute performances together."
Elsewhere, Berkeley host Thirroul while Dapto travel at Parrish Park to take on Wests.