The place for fans of Canadian University Football

A Brief Introduction

Origins of the Game

Central Canada
- CIRFU 1898-1914
- Post WWI 1919-39
- Post WWII 1946-54
- A New Era 1955-66
- Ontario & Quebec 1967-79
- Ontario & Quebec 1980-

Western Canada
- WIRFU 1927-58
- WIFL 1959-1971
- CWUAA 1972-1998
- CW 1999-Present

Atlantic Canada
- Nova Scotia 1940-57
- NB and PEI 1948-57
- Atlantic Canada 1958-73
- AUFC 1974-Present

National and Regional Championships
- Introduction
- Churchill Bowl 1953-1964
- Churchill Bowl 1965-2002
- Atlantic Bowl 1959-2001
- Mitchell Bowl 2002-Present
- Uteck Bowl 2003-Present
- Vanier Cup 1965-Present

Conference Membership
- Atlantic
- Ontario
- Quebec
- West


A History of Canadian University Football
By Robert E. Watkins, B.A., M.Sc., Ph.D. - revised May 2006

University Football in Atlantic Canada 1958-1973

  • 1958 - the junior Maritime Intercollegiate Football League (MIFL) was formed; the new league had participants from universities located in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island:
    • Teams from Nova Scotia: Acadia and Saint Mary's University (SMU)
    • Teams from New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island: Mount Allison University, UNB, STU and St. Dunstan's.

  • 1958 - UNB won the inaugural junior MIFL championship with a 36 to 3 win over SMU

  • 1959 - the Atlantic bowl, which was inaugurated in 1956 for competition between the winner of the NSCFL football conference and championship intermediate teams from Central Canada became restricted to competition between the NSCFL champions and teams from the Ontario Intercollegiate Football Conference (OIFC) (generally, but not always, the OIFC conference champion) in Central Canada; StFX, the NSCFL champion, hosted the Ontario Agricultural College (OAC), champion of the OIFC; this game was the first non-exhibition game involving a university opponent from another region of the country and an MIAA school; score, OAC 14, StFX 26

  • 1960 - the two-tier Atlantic Football Conference (AFC) was formed replacing the NSJCFL, the MIFL and the intermediate NSCFL, it consisted of the following teams:
    • "A" Section: Dalhousie, Mount Allison, UNB, StFX and two Armed Forces teams;
    • "B" Section: Acadia, St. Dunstan's, SMU, StFX (Juniors), STU and one Armed Forces team.

  • 1960 - the Jewett Trophy (the MIAA championship trophy) was first awarded, the trophy was named in honour of Dr. Jewett, University of New Brunswick (UNB) Red Bombers' team doctor, it is awarded to the Atlantic conference champion each year

  • 1961 - formation of the Canadian Interuniversity Athletic Union (CIAU), a truly national university sport governing body whose membership consisted of the various regional intercollegiate athletics associations across the country; university football, of course, was included as one of the sports governed by this body

  • 1962 - Acadia, St. Dunstan's and SMU were promoted from the "B" Section of the AFC to the "A" Section:
    • "A" (or Senior) Section: Acadia, Dalhousie, Mount Allison, UNB, SMU, St. Dunstan's, StFX, and two Armed Forces teams;
    • "B" Section: became a junior varsity league.

  • 1965 - amidst some controversy, league composition became limited to varsity teams which were members of the MIAA partly in response to the creation of a national intercollegiate football championship (the Canadian College Bowl, later to become the Vanier Cup), the desire of MIAA members to compete for it, and the consequent requirement for them to conform to the regulations of the national governing body of intercollegiate athletics--the Canadian Intercollegiate Athletic Union (CIAU)--which frowned upon league play with non-CIAU members (in this case the Armed Services teams)

  • 1965 - consequently, the Bluenose (Senior) Football Conference was formed consisting of the following teams:
    • Acadia, Dalhousie, St. Dunstan's, Mount Allison, UNB, SMU and StFX

  • 1966 - the league's name was changed to the Maritime Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) football conference

  • 1969 - another league/athletic association name change--the MIAA became the Atlantic Intercollegiate Athletic Association (AIAA), this latter change in recognition of the addition of Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN) as a member of the Association; the football conference therefore became the AIAA football conference (Note: to avoid any confusion it should be noted that, despite the football association name change, Memorial has never mounted a Canadian-rules football program)

  • 1970 - St. Dunstan's University amalgamated with the Prince of Wales College of Charlottetown to become the University of Prince Edward Island (UPEI)

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