OUA announces approved structures for 2021-22 season
The following announcement is courtesy of the OUA June 23, 2021: https://oua.ca/news/2021/6/21/general-oua-announces-approved-structures-for-2021-22-season.aspx
Burlington, Ont. – Following the recent announcement from Ontario University Athletics (OUA) outlining the Board of Directors’ approval of 2021-22 league-based sport plans, the conference is pleased to provide further details on the adjusted structures.
In addition to these league-based formats, the OUA is also pleased to announce updates regarding G2/G3 open championships, as recently approved by the Board of Directors.
The approved league and championship formats in place for the 2021-22 season have been developed with key principles that keep the health and safety of all OUA participants at the forefront. Included among these scheduling principles are a reduction in scheduled league competition, a greater emphasis on regional competition, game caps on exhibition play, and training camp alterations to align with semester start dates.
Additionally, the OUA continues to recommend that student-athletes, coaches, and all OUA stakeholders receive their vaccines when able to do so to assist in creating a safe return to competition this season.
Key takeaways from the 2021-22 league-based structures are:
- Football will feature a reduced regular season schedule, going from eight games to a six-game slate, amidst a transition to a two-division set-up (East, West) with partial interlock among divisions.
- Basketball will transition from three divisions (East, West, Central) to two (East, West), with each consisting of nine teams. A reduced 16-game schedule will see each team play their divisional rivals twice during the regular season.
- Both women’s and men’s hockey will feature a 20-game regular season schedule for the 2021-22 campaign, with the former being broken down into two divisions (East, West) and the latter temporarily transitioning to four (Far East, East, West, Far West).
- A third division will be added for the 2021-22 soccer season, as the sport’s structure temporarily switches to an East, Central, and West Division. The schedule will also be reduced to 10 games.
- Volleyball will maintain a two-division set-up (East, West), with teams set to compete in a reduced 14-game regular season schedule.
- The format for women’s rugby remains unchanged, maintaining the standard split between the Shiels and Russell Divisions, respectively, while competing in a four-game regular season. On the men’s side, the division breakdown is the same (East, West); however, the regular season schedule sees a reduction from six games to four games, all being played within each team’s respective division.
- Chief among the changes to the field hockey slate is a new eight-team makeup, which will be broken down into two divisions (East, West) for the 2021-22 campaign, with each team playing eight regular season games.
Among the key considerations for the 2021-22 open championship structures are:
- Regional qualifiers will take place across several G2/G3 sports (cross country, wrestling, baseball, curling, golf, lacrosse, tennis, water polo) ahead of the championship(s), with the number of teams/student-athletes advancing to the championship(s) dependent on the respective sport. Such championships will then take place as single day events whenever possible.
- Championship structures will remain status quo for several G2/G3 sports, including rowing, swimming, track and field, badminton, fencing, figure skating, Nordic skiing, and squash, pending further evaluation in the fall.
- The Rowing Championships will transition from a two-day event to a one-day event.
- Where applicable, bronze medal games will be played should teams already be at the championship and the game does not extend the length/schedule of the championship.
All above structures remain subject to change based on regional health guidelines, as well as provincial sport organization return-to-play guidelines, to best maintain the health and safety of all OUA participants in the conference’s return to competition.
The OUA will provide further details on specific sport schedules as the province of Ontario continues to progress through the three-step reopening plan.