OTTAWA — Thanks to the tireless efforts of Ravens alumni, varsity football is returning to Carleton University in fall 2013.
“The enthusiasm and energy of our alumni reflect the level of commitment and care that Carleton fosters in all who have been educated here,” said Roseann O’Reilly Runte, president and vice-chancellor, Carleton University. “I am looking forward to kickoff and yet another outstanding celebration of Carleton spirit.”
The football program is made possible primarily by the financial support of Carleton graduates, led by a donation of more than $2.5 million from Ottawa entrepreneur John Ruddy. A total of $5 million has been raised and these founding pledges will be supplemented by operating revenues from sponsorship proceeds, gate receipts and ongoing fundraising activities to ensure the program flourishes.
“We didn’t want to just bring football back—we want to bring it back under the conditions required for it to succeed over the long term,” said Ruddy, who played defensive back for the Ravens from 1970 to 1975. “We are proud of our school and we are proud of what this team has done for us. We look forward to the sense of spirit and commitment a renewed football program will do for future generations of Carleton students.”
The program will be operated based on a business model unique to Carleton. The team will be 100 per cent financed by Old Crows Football Inc., which will be led by a community-based board of directors in partnership with the university administration. Old Crows Football Inc. will assist the university in the operation of the club and be involved in activities such as the selection and evaluation of the head coach, setting and reviewing the budget, marketing and game-day event planning.
“Great teams are built on great partnerships,” said Jennifer Brenning, director of Carleton’s Department of Recreation and Athletics. “We look forward to working with Old Crows Football Inc. and our dedicated alumni to make this team, and this sport, a great success at Carleton.”
First steps for the football program include hiring a manager of football operations, followed by a national competition for a head coach. The university will also begin the construction and refurbishment of football facilities on campus, including upgraded stadium seating and press box, a new locker room for the team and fitness facilities.