OUA and U Sports cancel programming while RSEQ is suspended until further notice.
Together on Oct. 15, the governing bodies of university-level sport across Canada all announced updates regarding the possibility of returning to play for the winter semester.
The national governing body, U Sports, officially announced that the 2021 winter national championship events will not be held due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The decision was supported unanimously by all four university sports conferences in the country, and the U Sports Board of Directors.
The affected sports include basketball, hockey, swimming, track and field, volleyball and wrestling. Curling Canada previously announced the cancellation of the 2021 university championships as well.
“As the number of cases rise during the second wave of COVID-19, and without an available vaccine, on-going sports restrictions are required to ensure student-athlete health and safety,” said Dr. Taryn Taylor, U Sports chief medical officer in the U Sports release.
In addition, the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) announced the cancellation of all sanctioned sport programming and championships until March 31, 2021.
“While we would love nothing more than to see our student-athletes back on the field of play and participating in OUA-sanctions competition during the second term, we are yet at a place where that can occur safely,” said president Gord Grace in the OUA press release.
The University of Ottawa said the decision affects the following Gee-Gees teams: “men’s basketball, women’s basketball, men’s hockey, men’s and women’s track and field, badminton, men’s and women’s fencing, men’s and women’s nordic skiing, and men’s water polo.”
The Gee-Gees athletes competing in the Réseau du Sport Étudiant du Québec (RSEQ) are also affected as the league has suspended all university sport programming until further notice. However, an official cancelation has not been made.
“The suspension of all activities of RSEQ university sport programming takes effect immediately and is maintained at least until January 15, 2021,” read the press release.
U of O teams affected include: women’s hockey, women’s volleyball, men’s and women’s swimming, and alpine skiing.
RSEQ maintains they will meet regularly with the public health of Quebec, Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Higher Education.