Judge rules whether AUS football game will go ahead
Saint Mary's University practices despite eligibility issue.
The Canadian Press
Published Sunday, November 12, 2017 12:47PM AST
Last Updated Sunday, November 12, 2017 7:25PM AST
HALIFAX -- A judge will decide this afternoon whether a Halifax university football team should be allowed to play in the Loney Bowl.
Saint Mary's University was put on the sidelines last week when a player's eligibility was called into question.
The Saint Mary's Huskies were supposed to take on the Acadia Axeman in Wolfville, N.S., on Saturday.
Instead, the governing body for university athletics in the region, Atlantic University Sport (AUS), cancelled the game over the eligibility issue and awarded the title to Acadia.
Saint Mary's decided to go to court and challenge the decision.
All parties agree that if the game goes forward, it will be played on Tuesday.
Acadia lawyer John Keith told reporters outside the courtroom that the university is an "innocent party" in the complex legal dispute, which has spanned two provinces.
Keith said if Tuesday's game would be played in a "haphazard" manner if it were to go forward, and wouldn't give players adequate time to recover before the Uteck bowl next weekend.
"It would be a game that would do a disservice to the town, to the university, to the fans of Acadia," he said. "The asterisk in the footnotes of history should not be beside Acadia's name."
Saint Mary's Associate Vice-President Margaret Murphy said the university is pleased the court has dealt with the issue in such a timely manner.
"We can certainly see that our coaches and our players are ready to play," Murphy said. "It would be very safe to assume that the other coaches players have the same attitude and determination to take the field as well."
Justice Deborah Smith says she'll deliver her decision at 5 p.m.
Acadia is scheduled to host Western in next weekend's Uteck Bowl, and Calgary welcomes Laval in the Mitchell Bowl for a rematch of last year's Vanier Cup.