The CIS announced some big news for Varsity Reds hockey fans and the city of Fredericton today - the University of New Brunswick have been named the host of the 2017 and 2018 men's hockey championship.
We learned in September that UNB, along with the University of Toronto, had placed bids on the tournament and today it was confirmed that the University Cup would be returning to Fredericton for a 3rd time. This news is both surprising and not surprising. It is surprising in the sense that this will be UNB's 5th and 6th times hosting the tournament since 2003, as well as the 9th and 10th time the AUS has hosted it in the last 16 years (Alberta in 2005 and 2006, Lakehead in 2009 and 2010, and Saskatoon in 2013 and 2014 being the others), so it was thought that maybe the CIS would lean towards Toronto in an effort to "spread the wealth" so to speak. On the other hand, it isn't surprising given both UNB's success of hosting this event in the past along with their year in and year out competitiveness on the ice, something Toronto couldn't match. It is apparent the CIS, and possibly Rogers Sportsnet, who stated that they wanted to hold championships in locations that looked good on television, weighed the latter more heavily than the former when making their decision.
This is an exciting time for the Varsity Reds and their fans and there is no doubt the planning is well underway. The exact dates have not been released yet but we will do our best to keep you up to date on everything leading up to the event.