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Bisons host the Canada West Men’s Basketball Championships

Bisons will face the best in the west Feb. 21-25 in the Investors Group Athletic Centre

February 16, 2024 — 

The University of Manitoba Bisons are hosting the Canada West Men’s Basketball Championship from Feb. 21-25, which brings the twelve best teams from across the conference to one location for the first time.
The event, hosted in the Investors Group Athletic Centre, is the largest single-elimination event in Canadian university basketball history. Three Manitoba teams qualified for the tournament, including the UM Bisons, Brandon University Bobcats and the UWinnipeg Wesmen.

The Bisons head into the tournament ranked fourth in the conference, and will play their first game on Thursday, Feb. 22 at 8 p.m. Come cheer them on!

“Basketball is thriving in our city, and we can’t wait to see the action of three Manitoba teams competing together,” says Gene Muller, athletics and recreation director at UM. “This is an incredible experience for all the athletes. It’s truly something that’s never been done before.”
Bisons head coach Kirby Schepp says the team is proud to be hosting this first of its kind event and that while the city has hosted other large university tournaments in the past, none have been with the “stakes and pressure this event brings.”

Bisons Women’s Volleyball heats up: Canada West playoffs begin Friday at 7 pm at home, after this year’s team shattered the previous record for most wins in a season. Find out more.

Hosting this championship is only the most recent reflection of the growing depth of basketball skill and interest in the sport across the province. Between the Winnipeg Sea Bears’ breaking the CEBL (Canadian Elite Basketball League) attendance record twice this summer, the Bisons’ 18 conference wins in the 2022-23 season breaking the 53-year-old program record, and the UW Wesmen earning second place at last year’s national championship after not earning a play-off spot for 30 years, basketball is more alive than ever in Winnipeg.
“[Hosting this tournament] is huge for us all personally, as a team, as a program, as a university and as a city,” says Jonam Kazadi, a third-year Bison student-athlete.
“We’ve grown up playing with or against these guys [on the other Manitoba teams],” said Kazadi. “But records and stuff don’t matter between us. It’s always going to be that we want to beat them today.”
The Bisons head into the tournament ranked fourth in the conference, earning them a first-round bye, and will play in session four on Thursday, Feb. 22 at 8:00 p.m. The Wesmen, ranked third, will play in session four at 6:00 p.m. The Bobcats will play in session one on Wednesday, Feb. 21 at 3:00 p.m.
“We are excited for everyone to come and watch elite level, do-or-die playoff basketball,” said Schepp. “Our team is ready for the opportunity and challenge ahead and we hope everyone comes to cheer us on to our goal. ”
Session one of the Canada West Championship starts Wednesday, Feb. 21. The Bisons play Thursday, Feb. 22 at 8:00 p.m. Fans can watch Sunday’s gold medal game on CBC Gem, and the CBC Sports app.

Tournament information

Tickets are on sale for each session ($10-$25/session) or get an all-access tournament pass ($99.93).

Take in an extra dose of entertainment at evening games, with hosts Alex Sannie (Sea Bears in-game host) and Jordan Knight (radio host). Evening games feature half time shows by Manitoba performers and DJs Wanda Guenette and DJ Hunnicut.

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Session 1
Game 1 (1:00 p.m.): University of Alberta (7) vs Mount Royal University (10)
Game 2 (3:00 p.m.): Brandon University (8) vs University of Saskatchewan (9)
Session 2
Game 3 (6:00 p.m.): University of Regina (6) vs University of Fraser Valley (11)

  • Half-time performance: Mini Baller’s Baby Race

Game 4 (8:00 p.m.): University of British Colombia (5) vs University of Northern British Colombia (12)

  • Half-time performance: Sisler’s Most Wanted (dance)


Thursday, February 22, 2024

Session 3
Game 5 (1:00 p.m.): University of Calgary (2) vs Game 1 winner
Game 6 (3:00 p.m.): University of Victoria (1) vs Game 2 winner
Session 4
Game 7 (6:00 p.m.): University of Winnipeg (3) vs Game 3 winner

  • Half-time performance: Sarah Teakle (circus-style performance)

Game 8 (8:00 p.m.): University of Manitoba (4) vs Game 4 winner

  • Half-time performance: Shanley Spence (Indigenous Hoop Dance)

Saturday, February 24, 2024

Session 5
Game 9 (6:00 p.m.): Game 6 winner vs Game 8 winner

  • Half-time performance: Mini Baller’s half court scrimmage

Game 10 (8:00 p.m.): Game 5 winner vs Game 7 winner

Sunday February 25, 2024

Session 6
Bronze medal game (6:00 p.m.): Game 9 loser vs Game 10 loser

  • Half-time performance: Jason Lepine – Métis fiddler accompanied on guitar by Lionel Desjarlais (music)

Gold medal game (8:00 p.m.): Game 9 winner vs Game 10 winner

  • Half-time performance: Hinode Taiko (Japanese drumming)

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