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London, Ont. to host 2022 Vanier Cup at Western Alumni Stadium

London, Ont., will have its first crack at hosting the Vanier Cup when the 57th edition of the U Sports football championship is held at Western University’s Alumni Stadium on Nov. 26, 2022.

Officials announced the move Thursday morning, which gives the reigning Western Mustangs their first chance ever to defend their Vanier crown in front of a home crowd.

“Western has been so successful at football, Greg Marshall runs just a professional club, and Western was very interested in hosting,” said U Sports chief sport officer Lisette Johnson-Stapley.

For London Mayor Ed Holder, the move was a long time coming, especially after Toronto had so many opportunities to play host.

“I need to ask a question,” Holder told a crowd attending Thursday’s announcement. “So Toronto (41) times hosting the Vanier Cup, this is Western’s first time, what the hell?

“In the spirit of equity, I believe sincerely that the Vanier Cup has to be hosted in London … another 45 more times after this for a little bit of balance because we’re sure as hell a better football team, no offence to disrespect to my friends at U of T, I’m sure they would never take offence to that.”

The hosting gig will also give the university a chance to show off the newly renovated Western Alumni Stadium, which seats more than 10,000 fans.

“We invested a lot of resources, a lot of money in making this facility new for the next generation,” Western president Alan Shepard said about the renovation, which took place last year.

The Mustangs’ road to the Vanier Cup will kick off on Aug. 27 when they host the University of Guelph at Western Alumni Stadium.

The Vanier Cup, which pits the winners of the Mitchell Bowl against the winners of the Uteck Bowl, will take place on Saturday, Nov. 26 at 1 p.m. ET

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