Men's basketball game between Carleton and UOttawa
The Carleton Ravens are the athletic teams that represent Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. The most notable sports team for Carleton is the men's basketball team. In men's basketball, the Ravens have won nine of the last eleven national men's championships, and went on an 87-game winning streak from 2003 to 2006. They also had a 54 game home winning streak. The Ravens finished 2nd in the World University Basketball Championships in 2004.
They are also current nordic skiing provincial champions in both men's and women's events (2 time defending men's champion). Carleton is located in the OUA Conference.
Carleton's biggest rivals are the Ottawa Gee-Gees of the University of Ottawa. When Carleton had a football team, the annual match between the cross-town rivals was known as the "Panda Game." The Panda Game originated in 1955 and over the course of history, Carleton has won 13 games to Ottawa's 31. 20,000 people attended the game in 1987 at Frank Clair Stadium. With the return of Carleton's football team in 2013, the Panda game is expected to be revived.
Today, the rivalry is heated between the schools' basketball teams, as both universities have men's and women's teams that finish near the top of the standings. On January 23, 2007, the two men's basketball teams faced off at Scotiabank Place in front of nearly 9,720 spectators, which was a record crowd for a regular season CIS basketball game. The Ottawa Gee-Gees won the inaugural event 64-62. This event, now known as the "MBNA Capital Hoops Classic," has been expanded to include the women's teams as well, with the Classic featuring a doubleheader of both teams. The January 28, 2009 edition of the game broke the 2007 record with 10,523 fans attending the two games, with both of Carleton's teams posting victories over Ottawa.
Historically, the Ravens football team first began play just after the Second World War in 1945 and was in continuous operation until the program was dropped in 1998. While the team had some success in the mid-1980s, poor performances and a plan by the Carleton Athletic department to invest more funds in other sports led to the sport being cut after the 1998 season. In their history, the Ravens won one Dunsmore Cup conference championship in 1985, but lost in the following Western Bowl to the Calgary Dinos 56 to 14.
For a number of years, there had been movements to revive the team, but there was no real interest from the university. However, on June 25, 2009, an announcement was made that the Lansdowne Live group, which owns the conditional Ottawa Canadian Football League team, was in negotiations with the university to bring back the football program and play at a rebuilt Frank Clair Stadium to be shared with the CFL team and the Ottawa Gee-Gees. Lansdowne Live partner and Ravens alumnus John Ruddy has pledged $2.5 million to provide funding for the program and it would follow the private partnership model that has proved successful both financially and on the field with the Regina Rams and Laval Rouge et Or teams. The program needed to raise a minimum of $5 million in pledge commitments in order to secure final approvals, and establish Old Crows Football Inc. by May 2011 for the team to start play in time for the 2012 season.
While the group closely missed the May deadline, Old Crows Football Inc. and Carleton University announced on July 6, 2011 that the program will return in 2013. The $5 million was successfully raised and the team will be operated independently by Old Crows Football Inc. as a non-profit corporate entity that will fund and market the program. Renovations to the locker rooms, coaches' offices and Keith Harris Stadium will be paid for by the Old Crows. On January 16, 2012, Steve Sumarah was named the team's head coach.
Carleton also has a very a successful soccer team. In 2002, the team lost the finals 1–0 in OT to the Brock Badgers. They were OUA champions again in 2005, but lost in the quarter-finals of the national championships. In 2012, the Ravens men's soccer team advanced to CIS Nationals and finished in 6th place at the CIS Championship Finals.