Football Canada is the National Governing Body of Canadian Amateur Football, with an estimated participation of 400,000, which represents the tackle, touch and flag components, including players, coaches, officials, administrators, men, women, girls and boys.
Through the guidance of a volunteer Board of Directors and a full time office staff of five people, Football Canada's mission is 'to initiate, sustain, and encourage programs, services and activities targeted at all levels, from the novice to the elite, which foster safe and ethical participation in amateur football.'
Canada can arguably claim to be a founder of the game of football played in North America and now around the world. The first documented football game was played at the University of Toronto on the present site of University College on November 9, 1861.
Football Canada was initially established in 1884 and was known as the Canadian Rugby Football Union (CRFU) with the specific purpose of organizing play-off games between various union champions. From this modest beginning, the role and associated objectives of the CRFU grew and changed significantly as it developed into the National Governing Body of all Canadian amateur football.
In 1909, Lord Earl Grey, then Governor-General of Canada, entrusted a trophy to be awarded for the Rugby Football Championships of Canada – The Grey Cup. In 1966, the trusteeship of the Grey Cup was turned over by the CRU to the CFL.
In 1967 the Canadian Amateur Football Association (CAFA) became the successor to the CRU and in 1986 adopted the marketing name Football Canada and in 2004 became a full member of the International Federation of American Football (IFAF).
The first Canadian junior football team was established in 1999 by the Canadian excellence program, with the goal of competing in the NFL Global Junior Championship). From 2000 to 2007, Team Canada had the opportunity to play against national teams from Japan, Russia, France, Mexico, Panama, Germany and the United States.
Team Canada has been coached by Danny Maciocia, the head coach and GM of the CFL Edmonton Eskimos, who succeeded three-year coach Ian Breck in 2004, and by Glen Constantin who was named the third head coach of the Canadian national team in 2007. Previously, under his supervision as defensive coordinator, the Canadian defense gave up only 4.2 points per games (55 points in 13 games). In Canada from 2003 to 2006, Constantin won three national titles in four years as head coach of Laval University.
One of the excellence program objectives has always been to help Canadian players reach the university level, and 164 members of Team Canada have since played either the NCAA or Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) football. In 2008, 12 players were active in the CFL and many have attended NFL training camps.
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