Recognising future trends in sports, the World University League is one way FISU keeps innovating. Bringing university sport to more school campuses enhances the student experience. The newest member of FISU events combine the best of games, entertainment and culture.


The League compliments other FISU events like the Universiade and the World University Championships. The League’s mission is to help bring student-athletes into the fold who might not otherwise step onto the international university sports scene. For the first time in FISU history, competitions are organised between university teams rather than having student-athletes compete for national teams.

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A Sports Innovation Partnership

There is perhaps no better legacy than giving young people a chance to take part in sports among an international community.

Through the League, FISU’s aim is to increase sports participation through universities and help student athletes be both today’s stars and tomorrow’s leaders.

This last line is more than the tagline, it’s FISU’s guiding principle: in everything the organisation does, keeping the athlete experience at the heart of university sports is the number one priority.  We live in a fast-changing world and how we all play sports is constantly evolving, especially for university athletes of today and tomorrow. As the home of university sports, FISU employees’ day-to-day lives revolve around collaborating with global partners to keep innovating for the future of sports.

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3x3 Basketball: The Inaugural World University League

With all the sports options out there, why did FISU decide to launch the League with 3x3 basketball? That’s easy: 3x3 basketball is where culture, sport and innovation collide.

The League started in 2015 as a gateway for new sports and formats to make their way into the Universiade. This allows FISU to experiment with international sport federations to enhance sports delivery and innovation. Already, 3x3 basketball is the most popular urban team sport in the world.

3x3 Basketball is a game pretty much everyone can play, anywhere in the world. With teams composed of three players, plus one possible substitute, its easy to field a team. It’s just players playing as no coaching is allowed during a competition.

The simplicity of the 3x3 game stands out: all you need are a hoop, a ball, some teammates, and a little competition. There is not even a mandatory surface; a tournament can take place on concrete, asphalt, existing or temporary courts. Bringing sport into the center of university campus life was the goal FISU set out to achieve with the League. They delivered.

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The League in 2016: Hosted by Huaqiao University in Xiamen in China October 21 to 23

A total of 32 teams - 16 men and 16 women - from 23 countries competed for the medals. When the dust settled on the men’s side, McGill University from Canada beat France's University of Bordeaux. The Canadians defended their League title, also beating the Frenchmen from Bordeaux in 2015.

In the women’s final, another Canadian team, the University of Regina, took the lead early, but the Lithuanian Sports University stormed back. With an efficient offence, Lithuanian Sports University reached the top of the podium by winning 2114.

The League also featured shoot-out and dunk contests, much to the delight of both the crowd and competitors.

The competition had an impressive reach. CCTV broadcast the games daily, while Eurosport also covered the event. Finally, FISU TV live streamed all the games and contests to a global audience. 

Final Standings - Men's Competition

  1. McGill University (CAN)
  2. University of Bordeaux (FRA)
  3. University of Kragujevac (SRB)

Final Standings - Women's Competition

  1. Lithuanian Sport University (LTU)
  2. University of Regina (CAN)
  3. Chinese Cultural University (TPE)

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The League Is Born: 2015 Inauguration at Huaqiao University (Xiamen, CHN)

The women’s final faced-off the University of Chinese Culture versus the University of Economics and Finance of Tianjin. Led by China’s Wu Di, who has the distinction of being the first university player in the national team of China, the University of Chinese Culture won 21-13.

The men’s final between McGill University and the University of Bordeaux from France. It came down to the last play. McGill coming out on top, with a 17-16 win.

Women’s League Final 2015

Men's League Final 2015

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Want to know more about the League? Contact us!

The FISU World University Championship Department  wants to hear from you! Feel free to pepper us with your questions and comments about the League - and where we’re going with it!

Email: [email protected]

Web: fisu.net/events/world-university-championships