David Johnston University Cup
The original U Sports University Cup, with 11 of Alberta Golden Bears‘ 16 U Sports-leading championship medallions shown
First awarded1963
Most recently played2019
Current championsUNB Reds
Current runners-upAlberta Golden Bears
Most titlesAlberta Golden Bears (16)
Websiteusports.ca/en/championships/hockey/m/history

The David Johnston University Cup is a national collegiate sports award, presented annually to the champion of a season-ending tournament played by U Sports men's ice hockey teams in Canada. The UNB Reds are the current champions for the 2018–2019 season. The Alberta Golden Bears have won the most championships with 16.

Originally called the CIAU University Cup in 1962, with minor changes through the decades when Canada's national university sports organization changed its own name, the cup's name was changed on March 13, 2018, to honour David Johnston, a few months after he served as Governor General of Canada.[1]

The 2020 championship tournament was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic after two quarter-final games had already been played.[2] On October 15, 2020, the 2021 national championship was also cancelled.[3] The 2022 University Cup tournament will be held March 31–April 3 at Acadia University in Wolfville, Nova Scotia.[4]

History

The trophy was presented to U Sports, then known as the Canadian Intercollegiate Athletic Union (CIAU), for presentation to a national champion starting with the 1962–63 season, by Queen's University and the Royal Military College of Canada. These two schools, located in Kingston, Ontario, had been the participants in the first organized interuniversity hockey game, played in Kingston in 1885.[5] The cup is meant to recognize the overall contribution made to the game of hockey by outstanding university players.

The CIAU changed its name to Canadian Interuniversity Sport (renaming the trophy the CIS University Cup) in 2001, and in October 2016 to U Sports (renaming the trophy the U Sports University Cup).

On March 13, 2018, U Sports renamed the cup the David Johnston University Cup in honour of David Johnston, former Governor General of Canada.[1]

The original University Cup is located at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto and does not travel publicly. A replica was created with a less ornate cup in 2006. Between 2006 and 2015, the trophy has been modified after several repairs - the metal bowl is now of simpler design, and mounts more flush to the main wooden portion. The two handles that used to be attached to the bowl, and frequently broke off, were removed. An additional black wooden ring was added to the bottom of the trophy in order to incorporate more school shields, as an engraved metal shield, with diagonal stripes in the winning school's colours, is added to the trophy every year.

With the completion of the 2018–19 championship, 27 different teams have played in the national championship final (however Sir George Williams University merged with Loyola College in 1974 to create Concordia University, so it could be described as 26 different teams). In all, 17 different teams have won the national championship.

The Alberta Golden Bears hold the record of 16 championship wins, as well as the record of 22 championship final appearances. The Toronto Varsity Blues hold the record of 5 consecutive championship trophy wins, from 1969 through 1973, but have not returned to the tournament since 1993, when they suffered the second most lopsided loss in a UCup final, 12–1; during their power years, winning 9 UCups in the 1960s and 1970s, the Blues were the victors in the overall most lopsided final, winning 16–2 in 1967. In the last seven years from 2013 through 2019, only the Alberta Golden Bears (3 wins) or the UNB Reds (4 wins) have won the championship.

The winningest coach is Tom Watt, who at the helm as the Toronto Varsity Blues won nine University Cup championships between 1966 and 1977. Second is current UNB Reds coach Gardiner MacDougall with seven UCup wins between 2007 and 2019, while Clare Drake is third, behind the bench as the Alberta Golden Bears won six University Cup championships between 1964 and 1986.

Tournament Formats

Pre 1998

A varying number of tournament formats had been used prior to 1998. Towards the end of this era, the common format was a 4-team single elimination event between the four conference champions: AUS (called the AUAA at the time - Atlantic University Athletic Association), CW (called the CWUAA at the time - Canada West Universities Athletic Association) and OUA East & West (called the OUAA at the time - Ontario Universities Athletics Association), with the Top 10 ranking determining the opponents in the semi-finals (1v4 and 2v3). In most cases, the semi-finals were on Saturday with the championship game on Sunday. Games were hosted at Varsity Arena in Toronto. In some events, the finals were at Maple Leaf Gardens[6]

1998 to 2014

Starting in 1998, the CIS changed the format of the University Cup tournament to a six-team/two-pool tournament that would be hosted by a CIS member institution/team rather than in Toronto at Varsity Arena. The host would automatically be included in the tournament leaving five spots for regional representatives. The three conference champions and OUA Queen's Cup Runner-up would automatically be included with the fifth spot as a rotating 'wild-card' team. The University of Saskatchewan Huskies won the bid to host the first three(3) tournaments; 1998, 1999 and 2000.

The wild-card selection was initially chosen based on a static rotation through each conference starting with the AUS in 1998 followed by the OUA and CW, repeating on a tri-year cycle. Due to the random nature of the host bidding process, some tournaments saw more local teams then expected when the host advanced as a conference champion. It was possible for CW or AUS hosts to have 3 teams from their conference or 4 teams in the case of an OUA host who was also a champion. To reduce the local bias, the rotation selection rule was changed prior to the 2009 season - the wild-card would now only come from a non-host conference while maintaining the rotation. In 2009 the OUA was the host conference (Lakehead University) and should have also been the original wild-card conference, instead the AUS provided the wild-card. This rule remained in effect until the format changed in 2015 to 8-teams.

2015 to present day

Starting in 2015, the U Sports Hockey championship tournament expanded from six to eight teams and moved from a two-pool format to a single-elimination competition (quarter-finals, semifinals and final with a bronze medal game).

The eight teams competing include the four regional conference champions: AUS, Canada West, OUA West & OUA East (where the three hockey teams from the RSEQ compete). The remaining four teams are: the host, the Canada West runner-up, the AUS runner-up and the OUA 3rd-place finisher (Bronze medalist). The 'natural' conference champions would be seeded 1–3; AUS, CW and OUA Queen's Cup Champion. The OUA Queen's Cup Finalist is always seed #4. The remaining teams would be seeded 5–8, all based on the pre-tournament Top 10 Ranking Poll.[7]

A joint bid from St. Francis Xavier University and Saint Mary's University was selected to host the first two events using this format; 2015 (St. FX as the host) and 2016 (SMU as the host). U Sports evaluated these two events and continues to promote this tournament format.

Champions

Year Location Host University Champion Score Runner Up
1963 Ontario Kingston, Ontario Queen's & RMC McMaster Marlins 3-2 UBC Thunderbirds
1964 Ontario Kingston, Ontario Queen's & RMC Alberta Golden Bears 9-1 Sir George Williams Georgians
1965 Manitoba Winnipeg, Manitoba Manitoba Manitoba Bisons 9-2 St. Dunstan's Saints
1966 Ontario Sudbury, Ontario Laurentian Toronto Varsity Blues 8-1 Alberta Golden Bears
1967 Alberta Calgary, Alberta Calgary & Alberta Toronto Varsity Blues 16-2 Laurentian Voyageurs
1968 Quebec Montreal, Quebec Sir George Williams,
Loyola & MacDonald
Alberta Golden Bears 5-4 Loyola Warriors
1969 Alberta Edmonton, Alberta Alberta Toronto Varsity Blues 4-2 Sir George Williams Georgians
1970 Prince Edward Island Charlottetown, PEI UPEI Toronto Varsity Blues 3-2 Saint Mary's Huskies
1971 Ontario Sudbury, Ontario Laurentian Toronto Varsity Blues 5-4 Saint Mary's Huskies
1972 Quebec Sherbrooke, Quebec Bishops's & Sherbrooke Toronto Varsity Blues 5-0 Saint Mary's Huskies
1973 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto Toronto Varsity Blues 3-2 Saint Mary's Huskies
1974 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto Waterloo Warriors 6-5 Sir George Williams Georgians
1975 Alberta Edmonton, Alberta Alberta Alberta Golden Bears 5-2 Toronto Varsity Blues
1976 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto Toronto Varsity Blues 7-2 Guelph Gryphons
1977 Alberta Edmonton, Alberta Alberta Toronto Varsity Blues 4-1 Alberta Golden Bears
1978 New Brunswick Moncton, New Brunswick Moncton Alberta Golden Bears 6-5 Toronto Varsity Blues
1979 Quebec Montreal, Quebec Concordia Alberta Golden Bears 5-1 Dalhousie Tigers
1980 Saskatchewan Regina, Saskatchewan Regina Alberta Golden Bears 7-3 Regina Cougars
1981 Alberta Calgary, Alberta Calgary Moncton Aigles Bleus 4-2 Saskatchewan Huskies
1982 New Brunswick Moncton, New Brunswick Moncton Moncton Aigles Bleus 3-2 Saskatchewan Huskies
1983 New Brunswick Moncton, New Brunswick Moncton Saskatchewan Huskies 6-2 Concordia Stingers
1984 Quebec Trois-Rivières, Quebec UQTR Toronto Varsity Blues 9-1 Concordia Stingers
1985 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto York Yeomen 3-2 Alberta Golden Bears
1986 Alberta Edmonton, Alberta Alberta Alberta Golden Bears 5-2 UQTR Patriotes
1987 Alberta Edmonton, Alberta Alberta UQTR Patriotes 6-3 Saskatchewan Huskies
1988 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto York Yeomen 5-3 Western Ontario Mustangs
1989 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto York Yeomen 5-2 Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks
1990 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto Moncton Aigles Bleus 2-1 Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks
1991 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto UQTR Patriotes 7-2 Alberta Golden Bears
1992 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto Alberta Golden Bears 5-2 Acadia Axemen
1993 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto Acadia Axemen 12-1 Toronto Varsity Blues
1994 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto Lethbridge Pronghorns 5-2 Guelph Gryphons
1995 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto Moncton Aigles Bleus 5-1 Guelph Gryphons
1996 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto Acadia Axemen 3-2 Waterloo Warriors
1997 Ontario Toronto, Ontario Toronto Guelph Gryphons 4-3 UNB Varsity Reds
1998 Saskatchewan Saskatoon, Saskatchewan Saskatchewan UNB Varsity Reds 6-3 Acadia Axemen
1999 Saskatchewan Saskatoon, Saskatchewan Saskatchewan Alberta Golden Bears 6-2 Moncton Aigles Bleus
2000 Saskatchewan Saskatoon, Saskatchewan Saskatchewan Alberta Golden Bears 5-4 (2 OT) UNB Varsity Reds
2001 Ontario Waterloo, Ontario Guelph, Laurier & Waterloo UQTR Patriotes 5-4 St. Francis Xavier X-Men
2002 Ontario Waterloo, Ontario Guelph, Laurier & Waterloo Western Ontario Mustangs 4-3 (3 OT) UQTR Patriotes
2003 New Brunswick Fredericton, New Brunswick UNB UQTR Patriotes 3-0 St. Francis Xavier X-Men
2004 New Brunswick Fredericton, New Brunswick UNB St. Francis Xavier X-Men 3-2 (2 OT) UNB Varsity Reds
2005 Alberta Edmonton, Alberta Alberta Alberta Golden Bears 4-3 (OT) Saskatchewan Huskies
2006 Alberta Edmonton, Alberta Alberta Alberta Golden Bears 3-2 Lakehead Thunderwolves
2007 New Brunswick Moncton, New Brunswick Moncton UNB Varsity Reds 3-2 (2OT) Moncton Aigles Bleus
2008 New Brunswick Moncton, New Brunswick Moncton Alberta Golden Bears 3-2 UNB Varsity Reds
2009 Ontario Thunder Bay, Ontario Lakehead UNB Varsity Reds 4-2 Western Ontario Mustangs
2010 Ontario Thunder Bay, Ontario Lakehead Saint Mary's Huskies 3-2 (OT) Alberta Golden Bears
2011 New Brunswick Fredericton, New Brunswick UNB UNB Varsity Reds 4-0 McGill Redmen
2012 New Brunswick Fredericton, New Brunswick UNB McGill Redmen 4–3 (OT) Western Ontario Mustangs
2013 Saskatchewan Saskatoon, Saskatchewan Saskatchewan UNB Varsity Reds 2-0 Saint Mary's Huskies
2014 Saskatchewan Saskatoon, Saskatchewan Saskatchewan Alberta Golden Bears 3-1 Saskatchewan Huskies
2015 Nova Scotia Halifax, Nova Scotia StFX Alberta Golden Bears 6-3 UNB Varsity Reds
2016 Nova Scotia Halifax, Nova Scotia Saint Mary's UNB Varsity Reds 3-1 St. Francis Xavier X-Men
2017 New Brunswick Fredericton, New Brunswick UNB UNB Varsity Reds 5-3 Saskatchewan Huskies
2018 New Brunswick Fredericton, New Brunswick UNB Alberta Golden Bears 4-2 St. Francis Xavier X-Men
2019 Alberta Lethbridge, Alberta Lethbridge UNB Reds[a] 4-2 Alberta Golden Bears
2020 Nova Scotia Halifax, Nova Scotia Acadia Cancelled after first two (of eight) games due to COVID-19 pandemic[2]
2021 Prince Edward Island Charlottetown, PEI UPEI Cancelled due to COVID-19 pandemic[3]
2022 Nova Scotia Wolfville, Nova Scotia Acadia
2023 Prince Edward Island Charlottetown, PEI UPEI
  1. ^ UNB Reds shortened their name from UNB Varsity Reds as of 2018

University Cup Final appearances

These tables rank appearances in the final championship game.

UNB Varsity Reds celebrate after winning the University Cup, March 19, 2017
UNB Varsity Reds celebrate after winning the University Cup, March 19, 2017

By team

Appearances Team Wins Losses Win %
22 Alberta Golden Bears 16 6 .727
13 Toronto Varsity Blues 10 3 .769
13 UNB Reds[a] 8 5 .615
7 Saskatchewan Huskies 1 6 .142
6 Moncton Aigles Bleus 4 2 .666
6 UQTR Patriotes 4 2 .666
6 Saint Mary's Huskies 1 5 .167
5 St. Francis Xavier X-Men 1 4 .200
4 Acadia Axemen 2 2 .500
4 Guelph Gryphons 1 3 .250
4 Western Mustangs 1 3 .250
3 York Lions 3 0 1.000
3 Sir George Williams Georgians[b] 0 3 .000
2 McGill Team 1 1 .500
2 Waterloo Warriors 1 1 .500
2 Concordia Stingers[b] 0 2 .000
2 Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks 0 2 .000
1 Lethbridge Pronghorns 1 0 1.000
1 Manitoba Bisons 1 0 1.000
1 McMaster Marauders 1 0 1.000
1 Dalhousie Tigers 0 1 .000
1 Lakehead Thunderwolves 0 1 .000
1 Laurentian Voyageurs 0 1 .000
1 Loyola Warriors[b] 0 1 .000
1 Regina Cougars 0 1 .000
1 St. Dunstan's Saints[c] 0 1 .000
1 UBC Thunderbirds 0 1 .000
114 Total for 27 teams 57 57
  1. ^ UNB Reds shortened their name from UNB Varsity Reds as of 2018
  2. ^ a b c Sir George Williams University merged with Loyola College in 1974 to create Concordia University.
  3. ^ St. Dunstan's University merged with Prince of Wales College in 1969 to form the University of Prince Edward Island.

By team's province

Appearances Province Teams Wins Losses Win %
31 Ontario 9 17 14 .548
21 Alberta 2 17 6 .739
19 New Brunswick 2 12 7 .632
16 Nova Scotia 4 4 12 .250
14 Quebec 5 5 9 .357
8 Saskatchewan 2 1 7 .125
1 Manitoba 1 1 0 1.000
1 British Columbia 1 0 1 .000
1 Prince Edward Island 1 0 1 .000
114 Total for 9 provinces 27 57 57

The only province missing from this list, Newfoundland and Labrador, has only one U Sports member, Memorial University of Newfoundland. Memorial dropped their varsity men's hockey team after the 1981–82 season.

Tournament location

By city

City Hosted Most Recent
Ontario Toronto, Ontario 14 1997
Alberta Edmonton, Alberta 7 2006
New Brunswick Fredericton, New Brunswick 6 2018
New Brunswick Moncton, New Brunswick 5 2008
Saskatchewan Saskatoon, Saskatchewan 5 2014
Nova Scotia Halifax, Nova Scotia 4[a] 2020
Alberta Calgary, Alberta 2 1981
Ontario Kingston, Ontario 2 1964
Quebec Montreal, Quebec 2 1979
Ontario Sudbury, Ontario 2 1971
Ontario Thunder Bay, Ontario 2 2010
Ontario Waterloo, Ontario 2 2002
Prince Edward Island Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island 1[b] 1970
Alberta Lethbridge, Alberta 1 2019
Saskatchewan Regina, Saskatchewan 1 1980
Quebec Sherbrooke, Quebec 1 1972
Quebec Trois-Rivières, Quebec 1 1984
Manitoba Winnipeg, Manitoba 1 1965
Total for 18 Cities 58 2020
  1. ^ Halifax includes 2020, as it did host the teams and the first two (of eight) games before the tournament was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic[2]
  2. ^ Charlottetown does not include 2021, as the tournament was cancelled in its entirety, five months before its scheduled start, due to the COVID-19 pandemic[3]

By province

Province Hosted Most Recent
Ontario Ontario 22 2010
New Brunswick New Brunswick 11 2018
Alberta Alberta 10 2019
Saskatchewan Saskatchewan 6 2014
Quebec Quebec 4 1984
Nova Scotia Nova Scotia 4 2022
Manitoba Manitoba 1 1965
Prince Edward Island Prince Edward Island 1 1970
Total for 8 Provinces 58 2020

British Columbia is the only province to have a team play in the championship final (UBC Thunderbirds were runners-up in the original 1963 competition, nothing else since then), but to never host the championships. The other province missing from this list, Newfoundland and Labrador, had not yet hosted yet when it withdrew from varsity men's hockey after the 1981–82 season.

Major W.J. "Danny" McLeod Award

In addition to the University Cup, the Major W.J. "Danny" McLeod Award is presented at the end of each year's championship, to the University Cup's Most Valuable Player.

Major McLeod was the overall athletic director at the Royal Military College of Canada (RMC), was the coach of RMC's ice hockey team, and simultaneously coached two Kingston teams in the Ontario Hockey Association – the Kingston Frontenacs (Junior B) and the Kingston Aces (Senior A).[8] McLeod was instrumental in establishing the Canadian Intercollegiate Athletic Union (CIAU) in 1961, operating the CIAU from his office at RMC as the first CIAU Secretary-Treasurer.[9] He helped create the national university ice hockey championship tournament, which was hosted by RMC for its first two years (1963, 1964).

The Major W.J. "Danny" McLeod Award winners:[10]

Year Player Position Team
1963 Bill Mahoney Forward McMaster Marlins
1964 Dave Dies Defenceman Sir George Williams Georgians[a]
1965 no MVP selected
1966 Tom Purser Goaltender St. Francis Xavier X-Men[a]
1967 (data, if any, unavailable)
1968 Ron Cebryk Forward Alberta Golden Bears
1969 John Wright[b] Forward Toronto Varsity Blues
1970 Chuck Goddard Goaltender Saint Mary's Huskies[a]
1971 Ron Hindson Forward Saint Mary's Huskies[a]
1972 John Wright[b] Forward Toronto Varsity Blues
1973 Gord Davies Forward Toronto Varsity Blues
1974 Bernie Wolfe Goaltender Sir George Williams Georgians[a]
1975 Dale Henwood Goaltender Alberta Golden Bears
1976 Kent Ruhnke Forward Toronto Varsity Blues
1977 Rocci Pagnello Defenceman Toronto Varsity Blues
1978 Kevin Primeau Forward Alberta Golden Bears
1979 David Hindmarch Forward Alberta Golden Bears
1980 Chris Helland Forward Alberta Golden Bears
1981 Benoit Fortier Goaltender Moncton Aigles Bleus
1982 Alain Grenier Forward Moncton Aigles Bleus
1983 Willie Desjardins Forward Saskatchewan Huskies
1984 André Hidi Forward Toronto Varsity Blues
1985 Don McLaren Forward York Yeomen
1986 Dennis Cranston Forward Alberta Golden Bears
1987 Marc Gervais Forward UQTR Patriotes
1988 Brian Gray Forward York Yeomen
1989 Mark Applewhaite Goaltender York Yeomen
1990 Rob Dopson Goaltender Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks[a]
1991 Denis Desbiens Goaltender UQTR Patriotes
1992 Garth Premak Defenceman Alberta Golden Bears
1993 George Dupont Forward Acadia Axemen
1994 Trevor Ellerman Forward Lethbridge Pronghorns
1995 Dominic Rhéaume Forward Moncton Aigles Bleus
1996 Greg Clancy Forward Acadia Axemen
1997 Matt Mullin Goaltender Guelph Gryphons
1998 Chris Zanutto Defenceman UNB Varsity Reds
1999 Cam Danyluk Forward Alberta Golden Bears
2000 Kevin Marsh Forward Alberta Golden Bears
2001 Alexandre Tremblay Forward UQTR Patriotes
2002 Mike D'Alessandro Goaltender Western Ontario Mustangs
2003 Éric Desjardins Goaltender UQTR Patriotes
2004 Mike Mole Goaltender St. Francis Xavier X-Men
2005 Ben Thomson Forward Alberta Golden Bears
2006 Harlan Anderson Defenceman Alberta Golden Bears
2007 Yvan Busque Forward Moncton Aigles Bleus[a]
2008 Ian McDonald Forward Alberta Golden Bears
2009 Lachlan MacIntosh Forward UNB Varsity Reds
2010 Andrew Hotham Defenceman Saint Mary's Huskies
2011 Luke Gallant Defenceman UNB Varsity Reds
2012 Francis Verreault-Paul Forward McGill Redmen
2013 Tyler Carroll Forward UNB Varsity Reds
2014 Derek Hulak Forward Saskatchewan Huskies[a]
2015 Kruise Reddick Forward Alberta Golden Bears
2016 Philippe Halley Forward UNB Varsity Reds
2017 Philippe Maillet Forward UNB Varsity Reds
2018 Stephane Legault Forward Alberta Golden Bears
2019 Alex Dubeau Goaltender UNB Reds[c]
2020 Not awarded, only two (of 8) games played due to COVID-19 pandemic[2]
2021 No tournament due to COVID-19 pandemic[2]
  1. ^ a b c d e f g h The Award winner was not from that year's Cup-winning champion
  2. ^ a b John Wright is the only multiple-time winner of the Award (1969, 1972)
  3. ^ UNB Reds shortened their name from UNB Varsity Reds as of 2018

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "U Sports men's hockey trophy named after former Governor-General David Johnston". Retrieved March 13, 2018 – via The Globe and Mail.
  2. ^ a b c d e "U Sports hockey championships cancelled due to COVID-19 outbreak". Sportsnet. March 12, 2020.
  3. ^ a b c "U Sports unable to offer national championships in winter 2021". usports.ca. U Sports. October 15, 2020. Retrieved October 15, 2020.
  4. ^ "U SPORTS announces updated Winter 2022 Championship Schedule-Men's Hockey". USports.ca. February 2, 2022. Retrieved February 20, 2022.
  5. ^ "History". U SPORTS. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  6. ^ "1996-97 Guelph Men's Hockey". Guelph University Athletics. Retrieved April 16, 2020.
  7. ^ "U Sports Playing Regulations: Men's Ice Hockey" (PDF). U Sports. September 2021.
  8. ^ RMC Club staff writers (March 12, 2017). "Wall of Distinction: Tony Golab & Danny McLeod". e-VERITAS. Royal Military College of Canada Alumni Club. Retrieved March 18, 2019.
  9. ^ Cates, Darren (June 12, 2011). "'The Major' – A Founding Father – Receives Standing "O" at CIS Banquet". e-VERITAS. Royal Military College of Canada Alumni Club. Retrieved March 18, 2019.
  10. ^ "Major W.J. 'Danny' McLeod Award (University Cup Tournament MVP)" (PDF). U Sports. Retrieved March 18, 2019.