It was an idea hatched 11 years ago, in the summer of 2006, and it’s one that will continue here at Varsity Letters as we get set to complete our coverage of the 2016-17 B.C. high school and university sports season.
In my former life at The Province newspaper, I began the habit of collecting the names of as many B.C. high school student-athletes continuing their careers at the post-secondary level as I could gather. As well, I wanted the names of all of those student-athletes — from the rest of Canada, the U.S. and the world — who were coming to this province to continue their pursuit of academic and athletic excellence.
Beginning Tuesday, the tradition will continue for the first time right here at Varsity Letters, Canada’s only website dedicated solely to provincial high school and university sports.
Our 11th annual edition, however, will come with a twist.
We will unveil the list, for the first four days beginning Tuesday, one sport at a time, working our way to the end of the week when we publish the entire list.
Tuesday, July 4 — Soccer
Wednesday, July 5 — Football
Thursday, July 6 — Volleyball
Friday, July 7 — Basketball
Saturday, July 8 — The entire list, including baseball, cross-country, field hockey, golf, hockey, lacrosse, rowing, rugby, swimming, track and field, and wrestling.
We put the call out two months ago for candidates, and if you sent something, trust us, we’ve got it. But it’s still not too late.
If you are or know of a graduating B.C. high school student-athlete who will be playing at a university or college next season, reply to us with the name, high school, sport, height, position and university or college they will be attending.
We need all of the information to be able to include it.
The university or college can be in Canada (U Sports, CCAA, CEGEP), the U.S. (NAIA, NCAA, junior college) or anywhere else in the world.
We would also like the names of student-athletes (from anywhere) who are transferring to Canadian post-secondary institutions (tell us from where), or former B.C. high school student-athletes who are transferring to any Canadian, U.S. or global school (again, also tell us where). We need the same information — name, high school, sport, height, position and university or college they will be attending — in every instance.
All responses can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
And we’re especially proud to say that the names of the Class of 2017 high school seniors, whose names you will read between now and Saturday, were all just finishing Grade 1 when we published our first list way back in the summer of 2006.
Putting together a list this large would be impossible without my loyal audience lending a helping hand, so thank you for all your assistance.
As well, sports information experts, as they usually do, played a huge role in this project.
So my thanks to Wilson Wong (UBC), Steve Frost (Simon Fraser), Graham Matthews (Camosun), Ali Baggott (Victoria), CJ Pentland (Capilano), Mark Janzen and Scott Stewart (TWU), Dylan Thompson (College of the Rockies), Cary Mellon (UBC Okanagan), Matt Kaminski (Columbia Bible College), Larry Read (Thompson Rivers), Brent Dunlop (Vancouver Island), Dan Kinvig (Fraser Valley), Mollie Stelmack (Quest), Rich Abney (UNBC), Carly Scarr (Langara) and Sean Velasco (Douglas College).
Locally, high school sports coaches and athletic directors polled their student bodies, while community sports association directors did likewise.
Ryan Clark, as usual, went beyond the call to supply names across a number of different sports.
In addition, university sports information directors from throughout the Canada West, OUA, RSEQ and AUS continue to perform the vital service of scanning their incoming recruits for B.C. student-athletes.
It has been a huge team effort and we hope it all shows throughout this week.