Edmonton Elks, U of A Golden Bears to play doubleheader this fall

For the first time, the Edmonton Elks and U of A Golden Bears will play a doubleheader at Commonwealth Stadium. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Amber Bracken/U of A/Don Voaklander

The Edmonton Elks and the University of Alberta Golden Bears will both take to the field at Commonwealth Stadium in October for a green and gold doubleheader.

“As part of the Edmonton Elks’ ongoing commitment to showcasing amateur football, the club is proud to announce a partnership with the University of Alberta Golden Bears that will bring the Bears to The Brick Field for their Canada West conference home game on Oct. 15,” the Elks said in a news release Tuesday.

The Golden Bears will play first at noon and then the Elks will take to the field at 5 p.m. as they host the Toronto Argonauts.

The Golden Bears’ schedule has not been released yet, so their opponent isn’t yet known.

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Rodeem Brown, U of A Golden Bears offensive lineman, Chris Morris, U of A Golden Bears head football coach, Ian Reade, U of A director of Athletics, Victor Cui, Edmonton Elks president and CEO, Mark Korte, Edmonton Elks offensive lineman and Rowan Ley, U of A Students’ Union president pose for a photo at Commonwealth Stadium on Feb. 15, 2022. Morley Scott/630 CHED

Golden Bears head coach Chris Morris is a three-time Grey Cup champion who played Edmonton football from 1992 to 2005 and was inducted onto the Wall of Honour in 2008.

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“Having spent 13 years playing in that stadium, I know how important it will be for our players to experience something similar this fall,” Morris said.

“This gesture is yet another example of the Elks’ tremendous support of not just Golden Bears Football, but their overall commitment to all levels of amateur football in the Edmonton area.”

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The Elks new president and CEO Victor Cui is a U of A graduate and was student union executive. He said giving the Golden Bears a first-class experience is an important priority.

“I believe in sports as a great foundation in leadership which is all the clichés around sports that happen,” Cui said. “I know that everyone involved in university in any student organization whether it’s the drama club, to the football team, to the swim team, or to anything.

“They are becoming the future leaders for our society and our community. The better we are as a professional team to embrace the community and let them take advantage of this magnificent megaphone to talk to the public, the better it is.”

Elks offensvie lineman Mark Korte played for the Bears from 2014 to 2017.  He’s back in the colours of green and gold and says he’s pleased to see the U of A’s version of the green and gold getting a high profile.

“It’s certainly the attention that university football deserves in this community and it’s done a great job of growing itself,” Korte said. “I think this initiative is only going to take the university one step further for sure.”

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The games will mark the first time the two green and gold squads have played a doubleheader and the first time since 1999 the Golden Bears will play at Commonwealth Stadium.

– With files from Dave Campbell, 630 CHED

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