SFU Clan vs. UBC Thunderbirds
Shrum Bowl series history
First Meeting October 16, 1967
First Result SFU 32, UBC 13
Last Meeting October 8, 2010
Last Result SFU 27, UBC 20
Next Meeting TBD
Number of Meetings 33
All-Time Series SFU: 17–15–1

SFU, 5–4–1 @ Empire Stadium
SFU, 7–4 @ SFU
UBC, 7–5 @ UBC

Largest victory SFU: 61–6 (1970)
Smallest victory UBC: 4–3 (1979)

SFU: 20–19 (2008)

Current Streak SFU: Won 3
Longest SFU Win Streak 3 (1989–1991), (2001–2003), (2008–2010)
Longest UBC Win Streak 4 (1981–1988), (2004–2007)

The Shrum Bowl is a university rivalry game played between the gridiron football teams of the University of British Columbia (UBC) Thunderbirds and the Simon Fraser University (SFU) Clan. The game is named after Gordon Shrum who was a professor and later a dean at UBC from 1925 to 1961 and served as the first chancellor of SFU from 1964 to 1968.[1] It is a cross-town rivalry with UBC being located in Vancouver, British Columbia, and SFU located approximately 30 kilometres away in Burnaby, British Columbia.

The Simon Fraser Clan are the current champions and also lead in the series with an all-time record of 17–15–1. In the 44-year history of the game, the Shrum Bowl has been played 33 times.


The first-ever Shrum Bowl game was played on October 16, 1967, at Empire Stadium and it was also the first-ever football game to be played between the two schools.[2] The UBC Thunderbirds played in the Canadian Intercollegiate Athletic Union (CIAU) while SFU played against American colleges until formally joining the American-based National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) in 1969, meaning that Shrum Bowls were played as exhibition games.[1] In the first five years it was played, SFU typically dominated the games, posting a 4–0–1 record and outscoring UBC 168–32. While all games were played on neutral ground at Empire stadium, home to the BC Lions, the games were played with American rules when UBC was used to playing Canadian rules. Because of the heavily skewed losses, declining fan interest, and the CWUAA's objections to SFU granting aid to student athletes, the games were temporarily discontinued.[3][4]

The game was revived in 1978 after both schools issued a joint statement on October 27 of that year that the game would be played after the CIAU season with all proceeds going to the United Way of Canada and drew a record 14,600. Shrum Bowl VI was played at Empire Stadium and under Canadian rules for the first time, after UBC argued that since the game was to be played on Canadian soil, it should be played as such.[4] With the Thunderbirds as national championship contenders and games being played under their rules, the Shrum Bowl became tilted in UBC's favour. UBC would win four of the next five games, including the 1982 game that was played following the program's first Vanier Cup victory.[5] Despite the popularity of the games, which had 9000 fans witness the 1982 edition, the Shrum Bowl was again put on hiatus due to scheduling difficulties between the schools' respective leagues.[3]

On January 13, 1987, history repeated itself as UBC and SFU jointly announced that the Shrum Bowl would be revived with a five-year commitment from the CIAU. The agreement would see UBC having a bye-week on the second weekend of September for five years, ensuring that scheduling the game could be easily accomplished year-to-year.[3] The 11th Shrum Bowl would be played at a team's home stadium for the first time in the game's history, at Swangard Stadium in Burnaby and once again under American rules. In 1985, Dr. Gordon Shrum died during the game's second hiatus, but his son spoke at the January press conference stating that nothing would have made his father happier than to have this game revived.[6] UBC won the 1987 and 1988 games en route to their first ever lead in the series, 6–5–1, including a four-game winning streak, which has proved to be the longest in the history of the game. The games were now being played at alternating locations as the 1988 game was played at UBC's Thunderbird Stadium with 8,600 in attendance. The 1991 game drew the largest crowd of that era with an estimated 10,500 showing up to a temporarily expanded Swangard Stadium.

The Shrum Bowl was played on the second weekend of September from 1987 to 1993 as was originally intended, but the game ran into problems in 1994. In 1993, UBC played two opponents in one week, which proved to be extremely strenuous on the players and coaches. Since the team was not prepared to do that again, the September 10, 1994 match-up was cancelled.[7] The Shrum Bowl resumed play in 1995 under a new stipulation: every time UBC hosts, the game would be played under Canadian rules and every time SFU hosts, it would be played under American rules.[8] While SFU opposed the new rule, since the game was their first of the season and had to practice with different rules, both schools were simply satisfied that the game was back.

The format of alternating venues and rules was kept until 2001, which would be SFU's last in the NAIA. In 2002, SFU made the switch to the Canadian Interuniversity Sport league (formerly CIAU), which meant that they would not only be playing Canadian rules, but they would also be in the same conference as UBC.[9] This also meant that the Shrum Bowl would count for two points in the standings as opposed to being an exhibition game and the teams would be playing two games against each other each year instead of one.[9] From 2002 to 2006, the Shrum Bowl was the first match-up of the season between the two teams while the second was typically played midweek following Thanksgiving.[10] Since this was often strenuous on the teams having such short weeks, the CIS moved the other regular season match-up to the beginning of the season in 2007 with the Shrum Bowl becoming the second game played between UBC and SFU.[11]

The 2009 season marked the last game to be played while the two teams were both in the CIS. In 2010, SFU made the successful transfer to the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division II's Great Northwest Athletic Conference.[12] Once again, the game would be played with alternating rules. The Shrum Bowl was played at Thunderbird Stadium in 2010, but could not be played in 2011 due to scheduling conflicts for both teams. SFU had no mid-season byes and UBC was reluctant to play at the beginning or end of the season.[13]

Attempted revivals

2012 attempt

After 2011 resulted in no game being played between the two schools, representatives from both UBC and SFU had stated that they would make greater efforts to have a Shrum Bowl match played in 2012, but there was no result. Simon Fraser had no mid-season bye weeks, while UBC was reluctant to play at the end of their season because it would conflict with possible playoff games.[14]

UBC's director of athletics and recreation at the time, Bob Philip, suggested that the Thunderbirds could request to move a CIS game to their bye week in order to align their schedule with SFU's. He further acknowledged that SFU would have less bargaining power in the NCAA after having been full-time members for only two years. It was also suggested that the game could be played in January like American college bowl games, but the focus is on playing during the regular football season.[13] While former SFU head coach Dave Johnson suggested that they could play in a non-conference game at the beginning of the season, (former) UBC head coach Shawn Olson was against the idea because it would be treated like a preseason game with many non-starters playing.[15]

2014, 2015 attempts

In the summer of 2014, an unofficial agreement on a framework that would have allowed the game to be played every season was reported on in The Province.[16] UBC would require their Canada West schedule to begin the first weekend after Labour Day, allowing the Shrum Bowl to function as the season-opener for both teams over the Labour Day weekend.

“I would be very surprised that, if UBC has an opening on the Labour Day weekend, that we don’t play the game,” (now former) Simon Fraser athletic director Milt Richards told The Province. Looking ahead to 2015 Richards said, “I think we have an agreement in principle to play the game. We’ve agreed that if the stars align, we’re going to do this thing.”

With new head coaches Kelly Bates and Blake Nill, the opportunity for a 2016 Shrum Bowl seemed promising. However, scheduling challenges remained. For Simon Fraser to play a U Sports team, they would need to apply for a waiver from the NCAA to play for a special post-season bowl game. By doing so, SFU would relinquish participation in the D2 playoffs, should they qualify. The earliest UBC could play would be the first week of December, which is the week after Vanier Cup. Ultimately, a game was not scheduled.

2020 Discussion

In the spring of 2020, there was reportedly renewed interest in reviving the Shrum Bowl game.[17][18][19] The athletic directors for both universities, Kavie Toor of UBC and Theresa Hanson of SFU, were both in favour of reinstating the game to invigorate the student body and promote their athletics' brands.[17] Initially, the discussion was for the 2020 season, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada, both programs had their 2020 seasons cancelled.[20][21] While the scheduling restrictions remain, the cancellation of league games had generated the renewed interest in scheduling another Shrum Bowl game in the future.[17][19]

Game results

The following is a list of results[22] from all Shrum Bowl meetings between the Simon Fraser Clan and UBC Thunderbirds from their first meeting on October 16, 1967, to the present:

Game Date Winner Result Loser Location Rules Record
1 October 16, 1967 Simon Fraser Clan 32–13 UBC Thunderbirds Empire Stadium American SFU 1–0
2 October 21, 1968 Simon Fraser Clan 27–7 UBC Thunderbirds Empire Stadium American SFU 2–0
3 October 20, 1969 Simon Fraser Clan 6–6 UBC Thunderbirds Empire Stadium American SFU 2–0–1
4 October 31, 1970 Simon Fraser Clan 61–6 UBC Thunderbirds Empire Stadium American SFU 3–0–1
5 November 13, 1971 Simon Fraser Clan 42–0 UBC Thunderbirds Empire Stadium Canadian SFU 4–0–1
6 November 25, 1978 UBC Thunderbirds 22–14 Simon Fraser Clan Empire Stadium Canadian SFU 4–1–1
7 October 19, 1979 UBC Thunderbirds 4–3 Simon Fraser Clan Empire Stadium Canadian SFU 4–2–1
8 October 17, 1980 Simon Fraser Clan 30–3 UBC Thunderbirds Empire Stadium Canadian SFU 5–2–1
9 November 28, 1981 UBC Thunderbirds 33–1 Simon Fraser Clan Empire Stadium Canadian SFU 5–3–1
10 November 27, 1982 UBC Thunderbirds 19–8 Simon Fraser Clan Empire Stadium Canadian SFU 5–4–1
11 September 12, 1987 UBC Thunderbirds 14–0 Simon Fraser Clan Swangard Stadium American Tie 5–5–1
12 September 10, 1988 UBC Thunderbirds 25–16 Simon Fraser Clan Thunderbird Stadium American UBC 6–5–1
13 September 9, 1989 Simon Fraser Clan 41–27 UBC Thunderbirds Swangard Stadium American Tie 6–6–1
14 September 8, 1990 Simon Fraser Clan 36–13 UBC Thunderbirds Thunderbird Stadium American SFU 7–6–1
15 September 15, 1991 Simon Fraser Clan 20–17 UBC Thunderbirds Swangard Stadium American SFU 8–6–1
16 September 12, 1992 UBC Thunderbirds 39–20 Simon Fraser Clan Thunderbird Stadium American SFU 8–7–1
17 September 12, 1993 UBC Thunderbirds 20–17 Simon Fraser Clan Swangard Stadium American Tie 8–8–1
September 10, 1994 UBC Thunderbirds Cancelled Simon Fraser Clan Thunderbird Stadium American Tie 8–8–1
18 September 9, 1995 UBC Thunderbirds 29–7 Simon Fraser Clan Thunderbird Stadium American UBC 9–8–1
19 September 13, 1996 Simon Fraser Clan 25–15 UBC Thunderbirds Thunderbird Stadium Canadian Tie 9–9–1
20 October 4, 1997 Simon Fraser Clan 17–6 UBC Thunderbirds Swangard Stadium American SFU 10–9–1
21 September 25, 1998 UBC Thunderbirds 11–9 Simon Fraser Clan Thunderbird Stadium Canadian Tie 10–10–1
22 October 2, 1999 Simon Fraser Clan 41–14 UBC Thunderbirds Swangard Stadium American SFU 11–10–1
23 October 6, 2000 UBC Thunderbirds 41–28 Simon Fraser Clan Thunderbird Stadium Canadian Tie 11–11–1
24 October 4, 2001 Simon Fraser Clan 38–13 UBC Thunderbirds Swangard Stadium American SFU 12–11–1
25 October 4, 2002 Simon Fraser Clan 22–12 UBC Thunderbirds Thunderbird Stadium Canadian SFU 13–11–1
26 October 3, 2003 Simon Fraser Clan 38–12 UBC Thunderbirds Swangard Stadium Canadian SFU 14–11–1
27 October 8, 2004 UBC Thunderbirds 42–24 Simon Fraser Clan Thunderbird Stadium Canadian SFU 14–12–1
28 October 6, 2005 UBC Thunderbirds 40–33 (OT) Simon Fraser Clan Swangard Stadium Canadian SFU 14–13–1
29 October 7, 2006 UBC Thunderbirds 41–6 Simon Fraser Clan Thunderbird Stadium Canadian Tie 14–14–1
30 October 6, 2007 UBC Thunderbirds 31–2 Simon Fraser Clan Terry Fox Field Canadian UBC 15–14–1
31 October 9, 2008 Simon Fraser Clan 20–19 UBC Thunderbirds Thunderbird Stadium Canadian Tie 15–15–1
32 October 17, 2009 Simon Fraser Clan 30–1 UBC Thunderbirds Terry Fox Field Canadian SFU 16–15–1
33 October 8, 2010 Simon Fraser Clan 27–20 UBC Thunderbirds Thunderbird Stadium Canadian SFU 17–15–1


  1. ^ a b John Oswald (1996-09-09). "Shrum Bowl History". The Peak. Retrieved 2012-01-12.
  2. ^ Unknown (1967-08-25). "SFU Gridders Ignore UBC". The Vancouver Sun. Retrieved 2012-01-12.
  3. ^ a b c Dan Stinson (1987-01-14). "Lobbying league helped get Bowl". The Vancouver Sun. Retrieved 2012-01-12.
  4. ^ a b Mike Beamish (1978-10-28). "Clan, 'Birds approve charity football game". The Vancouver Sun. Retrieved 2012-01-12.
  5. ^ Unknown (1982-11-29). "Thunderbirds win Shrum Bowl". The Leader-Post. Retrieved 2012-01-12.
  6. ^ Archie MacDonald (1987-01-14). "Dr. Shrum would like resumption of game". The Vancouver Sun. Retrieved 2012-01-12.
  7. ^ The Vancouver Sun (1994-04-29). "BRIEFLY: Schedule conflict cancels shrum bowl". The Vancouver Sun. ProQuest 243196315.
  8. ^ Dan Stinson (1996-09-11). "Canadian rules boost T-birds shrum bowl chances". The Vancouver Sun. ProQuest 243047345.
  9. ^ a b Lyndon Little (2002-10-02). "Two teams – two points: It will be a whole new ball game for SFU and UBC in the 25th shrum bowl friday". The Vancouver Sun. ProQuest 242440534.
  10. ^ Bob Adams. "CIS Football 2006". IExplorer. Retrieved 2012-01-12.
  11. ^ Canada West Universities Athletics Association. "Football History". Canada West. Archived from the original on 2011-12-31. Retrieved 2012-01-12.
  12. ^ Simon Fraser University (July 10, 2009). "SFU first Canadian school in NCAA". Simon Fraser University. Retrieved 2012-01-12.
  13. ^ a b Andrew Bates (2011-08-30). "Shrum Bowl called off for 2011 season". The Ubyssey. Archived from the original on 2012-03-03. Retrieved 2012-01-12.
  14. ^ Tom Berridge (2011-09-02). "Shrum Bowl game cancelled". Burnaby Now. Archived from the original on 2012-07-30. Retrieved 2012-01-12.
  15. ^ Andrew Bates (2011-09-16). "Players, coaches lament lack of 2011 Shrum Bowl". The Ubyssey. Retrieved 2012-01-12.
  16. ^ Howard Tsumura, The Province. (2014-08-21), "Shrum Bowl’s return at hand after SFU, UBC arrive at new framework" - https://theprovince.com/sports/university/shrum-bowls-return-at-hand-after-sfu-ubc-arrive-at-new-framework
  17. ^ a b c Steve Ewen (April 17, 2020). "Shrum Bowl revival could spark interest for SFU, UBC football programs". The Province. Retrieved July 19, 2020.
  18. ^ Howard Tsumura (June 9, 2020). "UBC football 2020: In wake of first cancelled season in 76 years, 'Birds HC Blake Nill's hopeful 'redshirt season' wish list includes the return of Shrum Bowl!". Varsity Letters. Retrieved July 19, 2020.
  19. ^ a b J.J. Adams (June 11, 2020). "Border closure may complicate SFU's role in NCAA Div. 2 sports". The Province. Retrieved July 19, 2020.
  20. ^ "GNAC CEO Board Suspends Fall Athletic Competition". Great Northwest Athletic Conference. July 17, 2020. Retrieved July 19, 2020.
  21. ^ "Canada West cancels 2020-21 first term team competitions". Canada West. June 8, 2020. Retrieved July 19, 2020.
  22. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-05-27. Retrieved 2012-01-12.((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Shrum Bowl History