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What is a University Blue?
Sportsmen and women at the University of Cambridge may be awarded a Full Blue (or simply a Blue), Half Blue or Second Team Colours for competing at the highest level of university sport, which must include being in a Varsity match or race against the University of Oxford. A Full Blue is the highest honour that may be bestowed on a Cambridge sportsman or woman, and is a much-coveted and prestigious prize. In general, the Full Blue standard is approximately that of being successful at a national level of student competition, and the Half Blue standard is that of being successful at county or regional level.
The criteria for awarding blues are different for men and women. Awards are made the discretion of the men's and women's Blues Committees. The Men's Blues Committee is formed from one representative of each of the Full Blue sports, and the Women's from one representative of each of the Full Blue and Half Blue sports. Each committee meets frequently to discuss issues relating to Cambridge sport.
The awarding of a Full Blue often requires a person to fulfil a number of requirements in the same academic year, particularly in sports with Discretionary Full Blue status. In some sports with Full Blue status, the varsity match second team is awarded Second Team Colours. Each sport has specific criteria for each award.
Regalia and Clubs
The winner of a Blue or Half Blue is entitled to wear a blues blazer, which is one of the most recognisable and distinctive garments associated with Cambridge University. Full Blue blazers are completely coloured Cambridge Blue. Half Blue blazers have a number of different designs, depending on the wearer's sport; a typical design is an off-white blazer with Cambridge blue lapels and trimmings. There is a variety of other Blue and Half Blue paraphernalia, including scarves, ties, pullovers, bow ties, caps and squares. Such items are worn with pride. Men holding Blues, Half Blues or Second Team Colours in a Full Blue sport are eligible to join the Hawks' Club. Women holding any of these awards are eligible to join the Ospreys.
Men's Volleyball Blues
The current status of Men's Volleyball is a University Half Blue sport. The Club can submit applications to the Men's Blues Committee for up to eight men's Half Blues in a season. A player must have played in the Varsity match, but does not have to be in the starting six line-up.
Women's Volleyball Blues
The current status of Women's Volleyball is a Discretionary Full Blue sport. Nine Full Blues (six players, two substitutes and a libero from the first team squad) can be nominated to the Women's Blues Committee. Awarding of Full Blues will be
conditional on the team finishing in the top four of the BUCS Championship. The same number of Half Blues can be awarded if the BUCS condition is not met. Additionally, players need to demonstrate 50% attendance of BUCS qualification (league) matches, 50% attendance of County League matches (where the team is entered into this league), and must play in the Varsity match (although does not have to be in the starting six).
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