Kingston, Ontario. – The Vanier Cup will head to Saskatchewan for the first time.
U Sports announced Saturday that the 25th Vanier Cup will be held in Regina. The 60th edition of Canada’s college football championship game will go to Mosaic Stadium and coincide with the University of Regina’s 50th anniversary.
This will be only the third time the Vanier Cup has been held in Western Canada.
Laval defeated the Saskatchewan Huskies 13-8 in 2006 in Saskatoon. Five years later, the McMaster Marauders beat Rouge et Or 41-38 in double overtime in Vancouver.
U Sports also announced that Quebec City will host the 26th Vanier Cup. It has staged the game seven times.
The ’25 game will also commemorate the 25th anniversary of Regina’s only Vanier Cup appearance, the Ottawa Gee-Gees beating the Rams 42-39 in 2000 in Toronto.
Slotback Jason Clermont — a Gray Cup champion, CFL Rookie of the Year and two-time Outstanding Canadian — played for the Rams, both in the Canadian Junior Football League and at the collegiate level. The 45-year-old Regina native suited up for the 2000 Vanier Cup, scoring a TD.
“We had every intention of coming back and doing it again, but it didn’t work out for us,” he said. “But (playing in the Vanier Cup) was definitely one of the highlights of my college career.
“People (attending the 25th Vanier Cup) can expect great hospitality. We would love to see representation from Saskatchewan at that game but regardless, the community will definitely come out in full force to support the game and create a great atmosphere.”
Lisette Johnson-Stapley, chief sports officer at U Sports, agreed.
“If you look at past national events that have been held in Regina like the Memorial Cup and the Gray Cup, they’ve always had tremendous success,” she said. “It’s the wilderness, and the hospitality is always great.
“It has been 13 years since the Vanier Cup was last held in the West, and Regina is a vibrant community with an unwavering commitment to excellence in athletics, especially with two universities. For the student-athlete experience and for the fans, Mosaic is a great venue.”
Dr. Jeff Keshen, Regina’s president and vice-chancellor, credited Saskatoon with helping with the school’s winning bid.
“We are very happy,” he said. “It goes back to what I consider to be the epicenter of soccer in Canada.
“I’m originally from Toronto and I used to go watch the Argos play all the time at the old CNE Stadium, but man, what used to be Taylor Field is now Mosaic, it’s a rocking place. To say we’re happy would be an understatement but to say we’re on a high Being happy about that would be more accurate.”
Johnson-Stabley also hailed the game’s return to Université Laval in 2026. The school has won the Vanier Cup a record 11 times.
She said: “The decision was clear given Laval’s proven superiority in organizing U Sports tournaments.” “We have no doubt that Quebec City soccer fans will provide unwavering support, creating another great event in 2026,” he added.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 25, 2023.