Oakville, Ont. – Golf Canada is pleased to announce the creation of the Canadian Collegiate Invitational tournament that will take place at ÖviinbyrdGolf Club in MacTier, Ont. from September 15 – 17, 2024.
The tournament will be conducted by Golf Canada and co-hosted by Kent State University and Penn State University who are both led by Canadian head coaches, Jon Mills (Kent State) and Mark Leon (Penn State). The tournament will feature NCAA Division I men’s golf teams with prominent Canadian ties along with the team champions of the 2024 Canadian University/College Championship.
Joining the co-hosts from Kent State and Penn State will be Miami University (Ohio), University of Michigan, Michigan State University, University of Missouri, University of Notre Dame, Rutgers University, and Washington State University. Also competing will be the 2024 Canadian University/College Men’s Team champions crowned next spring at Idylwylde Golf & Country Club in Sudbury, Ont.
The inaugural Canadian Collegiate Invitational marks the first time that an NCAA Division I men’s golf tournament will be played in Canada.
In addition, the selection camp tournament for the Team Canada – NextGen boys squad will be contested concurrently with the Canadian Collegiate Invitational at Öviinbyrd Golf Club as Canada’s best junior boys look to qualify for the 2025 Team Canada – NextGen squad. Invitation criteria for the selection camp will be made available early in the new year.
“We are excited to add a new tournament to our Amateur Championship schedule and we thank Kent State and Penn State for co-hosting this invitational as we welcome some of the top Division I NCAA collegiate programs to compete in Canada for the first time,” said Mary Beth McKenna, Director, Amateur Championships and Rules, Golf Canada. “We also extend our thanks to Öviinbyrd Golf Club and the partners Paul McLean, Peter Schwartz and Rob Fraser for their gracious support in hosting this inaugural invitational at their golf course. We are also excited to concurrently run our Team Canada – NextGen selection camp tournament, which will provide high-level junior players the opportunity to compare themselves with top-tier NCAA competition.”
Öviinbyrd Golf Club is one of Canada’s premier golf courses, designed by Thomas McBroom and opened in 2004 in Muskoka, Ont. The 7,118-yard layout is set amongst the forests and exposed granite of the Canadian shield in Ontario’s famous cottage country and will create a challenging and memorable experience for the players. Öviinbyrd’s recently renovated practice facility features world class training conditions and state-of-the-art technology and will benefit players participating in both the NCAA event and the Team Canada – NextGen selection camp.
“The Öviinbyrd members and management team look forward to sharing our unique club culture with some of the best NCAA college players and top Canadian junior boys in the fall of 2024,” said Lindsay Franklin, General Manager, Öviinbyrd Golf Club. “With Muskoka as the backdrop to this inaugural event, we are excited to give back to Canadian golf, while creating memorable experiences for the players and helping to advance Canada as a world-class golf country.”
The inaugural championship will be contested over 54 holes in two days, with 36 holes played in the opening round and 18 holes in the final round. The team component will feature five members per team with the top four scores for the day counting to the overall team score. The individual competition will be stroke-play with the winner receiving an exemption into the 2025 RBC Canadian Open and the top-five receiving exemptions into the 2025 Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship, presented by BDO.
Consideration is on-going for the addition of a women’s NCAA Division I tournament in parallel with additional opportunities to expand the women’s competitive golf schedule in Canada. The full 2024 Amateur Championship schedule including the Team Canada – NextGen Girls selection camp tournament will be announced in the new year.