McGill Redmen and Martlets

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McGill Redmen and Martlets
UniversityMcGill University
AssociationU Sports
ConferenceRéseau du sport étudiant du Québec
Athletic directorMarc Gélinas
LocationMontreal, Quebec
Football stadiumPercival Molson Memorial Stadium
MascotMarty the Martlet
ColorsRed, White, and Black[1]

The McGill Redmen and Martlets are the athletic teams that represent McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.


The name Redmen was first published in 1929 as "Red Men" and was used to describe the red uniforms worn by McGill sports teams. Research done by McGill historian Dr. Stanley Frost indicated that the name Redmen derived from ancient times, when Celts were known as the "Red Men" because of their red hair, "our own Red Men were no doubt Celts in honour of James McGill's Scottish descent," notes Frost.[citation needed] It has also been proposed that the name originated as a nickname coined by media outlets in the 1920s based on the official school colours and thus the colour of the jerseys worn by McGill sports teams. These differing claims are called into question by those who point to the fact that McGill team logos did for a time feature elements meant to evoke Aboriginal Canadian groups, as well as reports by news sources in the 1950s which refer to the "McGill Indians" in their sports reporting.[2][3] Furthermore, a McGill women's team was referred to as the "Squaws" in the 1960s. [4]


The mascot for both the Redmen and Martlet teams is Marty the Martlet. The name was chosen in 2005 by students at his first appearance at the Redmen football Homecoming game, where he was presented to the McGill Athletics Department by the Student Organization for Alumni Relations.[citation needed]


Football at McGill, 1946.

The McGill Redmen U Sports football team is one of the oldest in all of Canada, having begun organized competition in 1874. The team has appeared in three Vanier Cup national championships, in 1969, 1973 and 1987, with the Redmen finally winning the title in the 1987 game. McGill plays out of Percival Molson Memorial Stadium, where the Canadian Football League's Montreal Alouettes also play.

After their 2005 suspension, the team struggled with three losing seasons, including two winless seasons in 2007 and 2008. The program showed signs of hope as the Redmen won three games in 2009, but soon sank back down to futility with consecutive winless campaigns in 2010 and 2011.

Ice hockey[edit]

McGill goalie during 2014 Queen's Cup.
Ice hockey at McGill, 1901.

On March 3, 1875 the first organized indoor game was played at Montreal's Victoria Skating Rink by James George Aylwin Creighton and several McGill University students. In 1877, several McGill students, including Creighton, Henry Joseph, Richard F. Smith, W.F. Robertson, and W.L. Murray codified seven ice hockey rules. The McGill University Hockey Club – later re-christened "The Redmen" – was founded in 1877, arguably making the McGill Redmen the first and oldest ice hockey club in the world.

The university operates both men's and women's teams in U Sports. The teams play at McGill's McConnell Arena. The men's team has won championships in 1883, 1903, 1905, 1912, 1918, 1921, 1930, 1931, 1933, 1934, 1935, 1936, 1937, 1938, 1939, 1946, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012,[5] including the 2012 CIS University Cup national championship. The women's team has won championships in 1985, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010.[6]

On November 15, 2003, Kim St. Pierre was the first woman in CIS history to be credited with a win in a men's regular season game. This occurred when the McGill Redmen defeated the Ryerson Rams by a score of 5–2.[7]

Other sports[edit]


Canada's national summer sport of lacrosse was played to a limited extent at McGill as early as 1873. The 15-man McGill Lacrosse Club of 1898 was led by President F.L. Thompson, Vice President, R.H. Craig, and Secretary Treasurer, A.J. Grant. Numerous American clubs, including Brooklyn, Staten Island, Yale, and Harvard, challenged that McGill lacrosse club, but it was impossible to accept on account of approaching exams [source: McGill Year Book, 1898).

McGill's lacrosse tradition was not re-established until 2001, when McGill freshman, Sachin Anand, organized a student lacrosse club. In 2002 the team gained Level-3 varsity club status at McGill, and joined the Canadian University Field Lacrosse Association (CUFLA), Canada's premier league founded in 1985. In 2007 the team's status was elevated to a Level-2 varsity team by McGill Athletics. McGill has twice won Canada's national championship, the Baggataway Cup, in 2012 and 2015. McGill competes in the CUFLA East versus Bishop's, Carleton, Nipissing, Ottawa, Trent and Queen's Universities. The CUFLA West features Brock, Guelph, Laurentian, Laurier, McMaster, University of Toronto and Western Ontario.

Four-time recipient of the Harry Griffith's Award in 2007, 2008, 2012 and 2015, the Redmen have won eight CUFLA East conference titles in 2007, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017. The team has achieved a record of 97–11–1 since 2011 versus Canadian opponents. The hybrid Canadian-box-American-field lacrosse program is geographically diverse with student-athletes recruited from across Canada and the US. The team plays home games in McGill's Percival Molson Memorial Stadium.

Since 2003 the Redmen have been coached by Tim Murdoch, a former NCAA Div-I lacrosse player at Princeton, and since 2007 with support from assistant coach, Sean Steinwald, a two-time All-American and MVP at Cornell. Murdoch and Steinwald were named CUFLA's 'Coaching Staff of the Year' in 2008 along with Brendan Simeson (McGill '09). McGill's all-volunteer staff includes Scott Bailey (Limestone/McGill'09), Simon Hudson (McGill'13), and Nick Soubry (Sacred Heart'14/McGill). Prior volunteer coaches have included Kevin Donovan, Jr. (Lehigh'12), Mike O'Donnell (Penn State '10), John Threshie (UNC-Chapel Hill'78), and Trevor Tierney (Princeton'02).


The soccer program at McGill operates for a big part of the school year. On top of the regular U Sports fall season there is a Quebec indoor season, which runs from January to mid March. Preparation for the U Sports season starts with try-outs in mid-August and several preseason games against NCAA teams.


McGill's sailing program was founded in 1949, and the first regattas took place in Northern New England. Today, the team competes in the New England Intercollegiate Sailing Association (NEISA), which itself is a part of the Intercollegiate Sailing Association (ICSA) and in the Canadian Intercollegiate Sailing Association. The team trains out of the Royal St. Lawrence Yacht Club (RStLYC) throughout the fall and competes in dinghies such as the collegiate 420 (dinghy) and the Flying Junior.


The baseball team plays in the Canadian Collegiate Baseball Association (CCBA). They have won seven national championships (2006 and 2010 under the old CIBA banner and 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018 under the new CCBA banner), and have appeared in two national finals (2005 and 2008). In the 2016 CCBA National Tournament, held at Ahuntsic Park in Montreal, the Redmen went 2–1 in pool play, advancing to the semi-finals where they defeated the Saint Mary's Huskies by a score of 21–0, and then defeated the Montreal Carabins in the national championship game 3–2 on a walk-off home run by catcher Christopher Stanford. This victory marked a three-peat for the Redmen as Canadian National Champions, a streak which has now been extended to five straight national championships. The team plays out of Trudeau Park in Côte-Saint-Luc.

Public image[edit]

2005 hazing scandal[edit]

In October 2005, the McGill administration cancelled the last three games of football team's season after confirmed reports of hazing involving sexual abuse.[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ McGill University Brand Guide (PDF). Retrieved September 11, 2016.
  2. ^ "The Cougars? The Redmen? Oh, how offensive! -". 25 January 2012.
  3. ^ "Redskins, Redmen, racism? - The McGill Daily".
  4. ^ McGill Daily. 1961. "Squaws Take On Georgians Today In Hockey Match" McGill Daily. 50 (5). February 24. Accessed 17 October 2018. Published at:
  5. ^ "Team History". Retrieved February 21, 2012.
  6. ^ "Team History". Retrieved February 21, 2012.
  7. ^ "Notable Women's Hockey Players". Hockey Hall of Fame. Archived from the original on 6 July 2010. Retrieved 9 April 2010.
  8. ^ "Hazing probe prompts McGill to cancel football". CTV News. October 19, 2005. Retrieved February 21, 2012.

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