Forest City: a tale of two sports teams
Having covered Falcons athletics all term for the paper, and also by working for UWO athletics, I have noticed that this sense of community doesn't co-exist between the two schools.
The UWO Mustangs compete in Ontario University Athletics (OUA) and the Fanshawe Falcons in the Ontario Colleges Athletic Association (OCAA), two levels of competition that are very similar in terms of talent.
The opportunity for rivalries is very clear, and the battle for London athletic supremacy could become an annual event for both schools to enjoy.
Although UWO and Fanshawe have came together for various exhibition match-ups throughout the years in both basketball and volleyball, the bond between London's two most prominent post-secondary institutions is not where it should be.
Look at the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) in the United States and the rivalries between local institutions. The Michigan Wolverines and the Michigan State Spartans, the Duke Blue Devils and North Carolina Tar Heels, the Florida Gators and the Florida State Seminoles. All these schools have enjoyed heated rivalries in various sports over the years. I think UWO and Fanshawe could enjoy similar rivalries.
Imagine an event where UWO and Fanshawe play for a single prize, and are given the bragging rights as London Athletic Cup Champions.
I made that up; you can fill in a catchier title if you'd like.
Exhibitions could be set up with the soccer teams, basketball teams, badminton teams, cross country teams, and volleyball teams and whatever school has the better record at the end of year will be crowned as the champions.
The interest level amongst fans would likely increase, as neither school would want to lose to the other. Promotions and competitions could be set up with the fans as well, to also display what school has the wildest, craziest, and most dedicated sports fans at their respected institutions.
Expanding from just the local London area, tournaments could be arranged with the OUA and OCAA, placing the top teams in each conference against each other.
The opportunity is there for the taking, and the possibilities are endless in terms of competitions between UWO and Fanshawe. The combination of both schools in athletics would be an excellent way to continue with the sense that London is a growing, innovative, and united city.
What Fanshawe/Western match-up do you want to see the most? Email Aaron at firstname.lastname@example.org