The Manitoba Underwater Council held their 37th Annual Underwater Football National Championship Mar. 18-19 in wonderfully windy Winnipeg. Although a national championship with four teams is as qualified as the World Series of baseball, Calgary still sent a team--dubbed the Calgary Coroners--to run the "nation."
Underwater football is no spectator sport--even the referee must don a speedo and dive to the depths. Luckily, this reporter along with University of Calgary students James Hawkins and Kendra Perry were on the traveling Calgary team.
For the naÃ¯ve and ignorant, underwater football is played with five players per side, completely underwater--using snorkeling equipment of course--and is usually played co-ed due to the lack of players available. Points are gained by placing a football shaped brick onto your opponent's goal at the opposite end of the pool.
The Coroners met the Regina Manginas in Saturday's semi-final and didn't disappoint. Although the Manginas managed many mysteriously miraculous morale maximizers, it was the Coroners careening closer to the crown as the clock clicked cautiously.
The Coroners, after a last-minute safety, were up 12-11 at the half and hung on to win 20-16. Hawkins scored 28 points, 10 of which were revoked for bad sportsmanship, in the effort.
The win pitted the Coroners against the St. John's Sailors. Unfortunately, the snapback of the Sailors' team drowned of alcohol poisoning in what was later found to be AIDs infested water. He also had a brain tumor and suffered from internal bleeding.
The loss of human life meant the Sailors were one man short of a full deck and the Coroners took the win and championship. Yay us.
Despite how ridiculous it sounds, underwater football is as real as yo mamma's uterus. Check online and you'll see the shit's legit.
It began as practice for scuba divers in Manitoba in 1969. Apparently, Manitoba has scuba divers. It took 13 years for the game to reach Calgary, when a tournament was held right here at the U of C Mar. 13-14, 1982. So play it.