• 2022-05-24
  • NUGA Media

The most exciting football competition in the Nigerian collegiate space, the Higher Institutions Football League (HIFL), is set to feature more than 60 Nigerian University teams in the 2022 edition of the HiFL Men Football championship. HiFL, an asset of PACE Sports and Entertainment Marketing in partnership with NUGA, is an annual football competition between higher institutions in Nigeria. The league has enhanced the sports culture of the Nigerian collegiate space by presenting a platform for the best young footballing talent in the country to display and improve their skills since its inception in 2018. Universities evenly distributed between the Coastal and Sahel regions of Nigeria have declared their intentions to go through the pre-league qualifying rounds to secure a slot in the round of 16 that would begin later this year. The pre-league qualifying games played across all zones will determine the schools to join the super four (UNN Lions, FUTMINNA Transformers, AAUA Luminaries, and UNIMAID Desert Warriors) from the 2021 season in the round of 16. Schools will play one another according to their zone at least once to advance to the round of 16. University of Ilorin (UNILORIN), Ahmadu Bello University, Federal University of Petroleum Resources, Effurun (FUPRE), Kogi State University (KSU), Benue State University, The University of Ibadan (UI), the University of Port Harcourt (UNIPORT), Lead City University, and the University of Nigeria (UNN) are some of the higher institutions to have submitted their forms of participation for the upcoming season of the HiFL. Al-Hikmah University, Ilorin, Akwa Ibom University, Summit University, Offa, Tai Solarin University of Education, Ijebu-Ode, and the Nigerian Army University, Biu are likely to make their HiFL debut in the 2022 season as no higher institution in Nigeria wants to miss out on the chance to establish their football supremacy as the best team in the Nigerian collegiate space. UAM Tillers of the University of Agriculture, Maiduguri, emerged winners of the first season of the HiFL Men Championship in 2018. UNICAL Malabites from the University of Calabar claimed the 2019 title, and UNIMAID Desert Warriors from the University of Maiduguri emerged champions of the 2021 season after beating AAUA Luminaries from the Adekunle Ajasin University in a thrilling final in Lagos. Chairman of the HiFL Dr. Kachi Onubogu said “The HiFL has become the biggest collegiate sports platforms in Nigeria and we aim to work harder to make it bigger, better, more engaging and importantly to help us deliver on our aspiration in contributing to sports and sports development in Nigeria” On the importancce of partnerships in University sports, Outgoing NUGA president Prof. Stephen Hamafyelto said “With partnership and sponsorship coming to sports today in our universities through the this tournament, the motivation is changing and we are bringing in more interests in sports. The students are now aware that their is more to gain in taking part in University sports. If we do not focus in our universities sports will not grow in Nigeria”. HiFL and NUGA are fully committed to their mandate of creating sporting opportunities for students in Nigerian universities to excel even as they conveniently combine sports and academics with the support of the University management.