The S.I. writer, Joe Lemire, showed more respect for Canadian university hoops in one article than most of the country has in their entire lives:
"Most coaches and athletic directors consider Canada's best teams to be the equivalent of low- to mid-level Division I schools, an evaluation supported by the recent track record of international exhibition games. Carleton, which has won six of the past seven CIS national titles, went 4-3 against U.S. competition last fall, beating such schools as Buffalo and Northeastern, while losing to Kansas by one and Cincinnati by 10. St. Francis Xavier, which won CIS titles in 2000 and '01, defeated Bryant and trailed Boston College by only three at halftime, before getting blown out in the second half.The entire article is worth a read. Here are some quotes strip-mined from the column:
- St. FX men's coach Steve Konchalski: "For schools that want to be progressive and want to emphasize excellence in our programs, sometimes the CIS can be frustrating because they won't let you take that next step, to take your entire program to the next competitive level ... Some of this looking to the U.S. is a backlash of frustration from schools that want to have high-profile athletic programs but feel restricted by the CIS."
- SFU athletic director David Murphy: "We're doing more to promote Canada by playing in the United States than we ever do up here."
- UBC athletic director Bob Philip: "We'd like to give Canadian student-athletes the NCAA experience but have them stay at a Canadian school."
- UVic athletic director and CIS president Clint Hamilton: "We want to be the destination of choice for top Canadian student-athletes ... The NCAA decision is an important catalyst for us."
- Konchalski: "Frankly I'm a little puzzled by it, by (Simon Fraser) entering Division II ... Are they entering Division II with the intention of eventually moving to Division I? Speaking from a perspective of basketball, our top 15 schools in the country can pretty much play at a low Division I level, so why would you want to sell the farm, so to speak, to go play Division II?"
It's a thorny issue, let's try to be rational!
Canadian school's admittance to NCAA may change rules up north (Joe Lemire, Sports Illustrated; via cishoops.ca and basketballbuzz.ca)
O Canada? (Rush The Court)