Simon Fraser University, the only NCAA football team in Canada, will disband its program, the university announced Tuesday.
SFU found itself in a difficult spot after the Great Northwest Athletic Conference stopped sponsoring football after the 2021 season, forcing the Red Leafs to become a football-only member of the Lone Star Conference in 2022. The conference, which is made up primarily of teams from Texas, announced in February it did not renew the relationship with SFU, which is located about 140 miles north of Seattle.
"This is a difficult decision, and not one taken lightly," SFU president Joy Johnson said in a statement. "With the recent announcement that the team has not been invited to continue in the Lone Star Conference, we do not have a conference to play in beginning in 2024. The ongoing uncertainty creates an unacceptable experience for students.
"The university has carefully considered all available options and as a leadership team we concluded that football is no longer a feasible sport for SFU."
SFU launched its football program in 1965 and competed at the NAIA level until 2001, when it transitioned from American football to Canadian football. After eight years, the school switched back to the American version and became an NCAA Division II program. It compiled an 18-99 record as an NCAA school and failed to win more than one game in any of its final six seasons.
SFU will continue to sponsor 18 NCAA Division II sports, Johnson said.