The University of Ottawa has excelled in the sports department throughout the years. This section will go over interesting facts from the University’s extended sports history.
A History Of Sports
Why the GeeGee's?
The University of Ottawa were originally referred to as the “Grey and Garnet” which are the two official colours of the University. Eventually the media started to abbreviate this to the “GG’s” which also works with the french translation of Grenat et Gris. Finally this was adapted into the Gee-Gee’s which signifies the horse racing term where a Gee-Gee is the first horse out of the starting gate. This eventually made for the horse mascot.
The evolution of the Gee-Gee
The Gee-Gee mascot has gone under many updates over the years:
Minto Sports Arena
The football teams used to play at Lansdowne, under to coaching of Matt Anthony who had a very successful coaching and playing career from 1954-1968. In 2000 after his death, the university turned the land into Minto Sports Complex which featured a field named after Matt Anthony. In 2011 it was renovated into a turf field to FieldTurf revolution which is made out of recycled goods which was the first of its kind in canada being only the second field with the artificial turf in north america. The facility holds a FIFA-recommended 2-Star designation, the highest synthetic turf rating possible. It is one of only approximately 20 FIFA 2-star fields in Canada.
In 1885 students and the university created an Athletic Club for sports, run by the students. This was run by the students for a long time until in 1961 the Athletic club became the sports department. In 1969 the sports department merged with the school of physical education and recreation, to become sports services and recreation, with a budget of 1 million. Often times, the varsity or clubs teams derived from intramural teams or recreation clubs. Today sports services offers sports facilities and recreational activities to students and families.
The membership for non-students ranges from $35.00-$80.00 students also must be a member of sports services to participate which was $20-$25. Additionally the activities costed $10-$15 to participate in. Many of the classes/clubs are allowed for women and men, only water-polo, and handball was co-ed. Only leagues offered for women were basketball, hockey, volleyball.
Sports offered were: Aiki-do, badminton, basketball, boxing, breathing gymnastics, classical ballet, cross-country skiing, diving, fencing, gymnastics, handball, hockey, jazz balet, jogging, judo, karate, physical fitness, racquetball, squash, scuba diving, skating, soccer, swimming, swimnastics, synchronized swimming, tennis, volleyball, waterpolo, weight training, winter camping, yoga
Many sporting activities were available now. Sports services fees were part of tuition, but each additional activity was $10-20 for students and $20-$30 for non-students. Now basketball and volleyball, co-ed is available. Women’s soccer, is available as a league format.
Sports offered were: Aerobic dance, Aikido, Aquafitness, Badminton, Ballet, Basketball, CPR, Fencing, first aid, hockey, indoor cycling, jazz and competitive jazz, karate, kayak, nordic ski, outdoor activities, pre and post natal aquatics, safari/alpine ski club, scuba diving, skating, self defence, soccer, squash-Racquetball, swimming, synchronized swimming, taekwondo, tennis,video dancing, volleyball, weight training.
Almost all intramurals are available in mens, women and co-ed however there are still certain rules and restrictions for women and men within the co-ed leagues. (ex: Every running and receiving touchdown scored is worth 6 points. Touchdowns scored by self-identified females are worth the 9 points.). Teams cost from $40-$80 for students and staff members. Non students can buy a membership card for approximately $150-300.
Activities offered are: Basketball, Dodgeball, Flag Football, Ultimate, Hockey, Soccer, Volleyball, Badminton, swimming, material arts, pickleball, skating, ballet, contemporary dance, dancehall/reggae. Hiphop, jazz, lyrical, desk jockey training camp, spinning, womens weight training, kickboxing, pilates, personal training, running, triathlon, yoga, outdoor activities, rafting, dog sledding and snowmobile and squash
The Panda game is an annual football game against Carelton University. The rivalry between the two Ottawa schools to prove who has the best team that year. It is called the Panda came because of the original panda trophy.
Pedro the panda was the original “trophy” and was presented to the winners of the annual Panda Game between U Ottawa and carleton. After 25 years Pedro was retired into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame in Hamilton. The new trophy was made to be passed back and forth which weighs close to 70 pounds.
uOttawa Gee-Gees competed against Carleton Ravens in the premiere regular season university basketball event in Canada. The event started in 2007 and since has been growing in popularity. In 2018 there were 8,579 fans in attendance.
The Ottawa-Carleton rivalry took to the ice in 2016 in the inaugural Colonel By Classic. Over 3,000 fans attended the 2017 edition at TD Place with the uOttawa men’s team taking home the Colonel By Classic Banner.
Gee Gee Anthem
GeeGee Fight Song “On the field, on the floor, We know we will always score As the Gee-Gees keep rolling along.
A touchdown here, a basket there, Goals scoring everywhere As the Gee-Gees keep rolling along.
For it’s the garnet and grey On the field of play, And win or lose we’ll break out the booze As the Gee-Gees keep rolling along.
Gee-Gees here, Gee-Gees there, Gee-Gees scoring everywhere As the Gee-Gees keep rolling along.”
(Sung to the tune of ‘When the Caissons Go Rolling Along’ By Bob O’Billovich)