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05-13-2013, 12:23 AM
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Hollywood3
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Off-Ice Stuff

While there has been no Bison-specific news, there have been some off-ice developments which may end up affecting men's hockey.

C.W. EXPANSION


The CW has announced that the UBCO Heat now have full member status and that the MacEwan University Griffons (formerly MacEwan College) now have probationary status.

Once a school has probationary status it can be taken as "just a matter of time" before they get full status. So the CW now has 17 schools. Debate rages as to whether this is too many. I suspect that in basketball at least there may be a need for two levels. But football has just 6, hockey 8, and most of those with volleyball teams are legitimate national contenders.

From the press release:

Quote:
The UBC Okanagan Heat were originally granted probationary status at a vote held in May 2010 and began participation with Canada West in the sports of men’s and women’s basketball and volleyball in September 2011 and will be adding soccer in time for the 2014-15 season. For the MacEwan University Griffins, league play will begin in September 2014 in the sports of men’s and women’s basketball, volleyball, soccer and cross country.
UBCO do not have a hockey team, even in the BCIHL. FWIW, I would sooner see places like this get into the BCIHL and develop that as a second tier college/university league, alongside the ACAC. That way hockey's u-brand gets a boost, and the CW level of play is not diluted.

Will MacEwan one day aspire to leave the ACAC for the CW in hockey? On the one hand, it would give the Evil Monkeys a cross-town rival. But MacEwan has never been one of the ACAC's powerhouse teams. When Mount Royal College morphed into Mount Royal University and moved from the ACAC to the CW they at least had a hockey team with a track record of success at the ACAC level. MacEwan is coming off consecutive 6th place finishes, and those were an improvement over the 8th place finishes which preceded. The Alberta hockey market is crowded with 4 CW teams and (with Red Deer coming back) 9 ACAC teams (albeit Briercrest is located in Saskatchewan).

On balance, I would much prefer that MacEwan stay put (in hockey, that is). If they could consistently challenge NAIT and SAIT and be a good pre-season opponent that would be good enough for me.

Links:
|> [CW announcement re UBCO and MacEwan]
|> [Edmonton Journal]
|> [ACAC LeagueStat Standings]


CIS/SPORTSNET TV DEAL



First, Rogers' acquisition of The Score was just confirmed a couple weeks ago. Therefore, Sportsnet and The Score will gradually become more of a combo deal.

Here's the gist of the deal:

Quote:
Canadian Interuniversity Sport and Sportsnet announced Wednesday a six-year agreement for the multiplatform rights to an all-encompassing portfolio of university sports across television, online and mobile.

The agreement, which begins this season and runs through the 2018-19 academic year, features expanded coverage of men’s and women’s CIS sport, headlined by the Vanier Cup and also including the following marquee events: Football national semifinals (Mitchell Bowl and Uteck Bowl), women’s and men’s hockey championships, women’s and men’s basketball championships, and much more.

Sportsnet’s The Score will be one of the main hubs of CIS coverage, continuing its strong tradition of broadcasting university sports and amateur athletics, which began in 2002. Coverage for the 2013-14 season features 13 events, beginning with football this fall. Broadcast details will be announced in the coming weeks.
What will this mean to men's hockey? My hope is that there will be increased coverage of the regional championships, and maybe even regular season play. Could a Saturday afternoon game of the week on The Score happen?

If this were to happen, there would be demand for format changes. It is hard to sell rights to game 3 of a series which may well end with game 2. The Score showed the OUA basketball final four. IMO, if u-hockey wants to make a dent they need to be able to sell similar events from all regions. The CW already has a "final four" format tournament in basketball and volleyball. IMO, hockey will have to follow suit if it wants enhanced TV coverage.

And what about the on-line and mobile options mentioned in the press release? Could those somehow be dovetailed with the CW and AUS on-line video services? And could it pull together the various services used in Ontario and Quebec?

Links:
|> [CIS announcement] : reposted at [CW Site] and [U of M Site]
|> [Yahoo Story]


Last edited by Hollywood3: 08-25-2013 at 10:22 AM.
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