|Highest governing body||Shaelic Football Championship|
|Nickname(s)||Football, Gridiron football|
|First played||Sept. 16, 1911|
|Team members||12 at a time|
Shaelic Football (known locally as Sobreiléca, literally "field prize" or "land exchange") is a form of gridiron football played in Shaelia in which two teams of 12 players each compete for territorial control of a field of play 125 yards (114 m) long and 55 yards (50 m) wide attempting to advance a pointed prolate spheroid ball into the opposing team’s scoring area (end zone). The sport is commonly known outside of the country as Shaelic football. The term football (Shaelic: futbala) usually refers to Shaelic football, Canadian football and American football collectively, or any of the sports specifically, depending on the context. The three sports have shared origins and are closely related, but share a variety of differences making them each a distinct version of gridiron football.
The Shaelic Football Championship, commonly known as AVSO, is the highest level of Shaelic football played in the country, consisting of 14 professional teams, organized into two 7-team divisions. Its championship game, known as the Shaelia Bowl, is the biggest sporting event in the country.
There are two AVSO-sanctioned developmental leagues:
- National Shaelic Football Development League - 12 teams
- Western Shaelic Football Development League - 9 teams
Both leagues receive financial and organizational support from AVSO. Players under contract do receive a salary for their services.
Organized by the Senior Level Shaelic Football Association (Shaelic: Zélskapreda Raza Sobrilécara), commonly known as ZÉRASO. There are two levels of competition: Senior High (five leagues, 50 teams) and Senior Low (6 leagues, 58 teams), with a system of promotion and relegation between the two levels. Players are paid a small amount on a per game basis.
There are numerous adult men's and women's recreational leagues operating around the country. Many have received official AVSO Council certification. The oldest men's recreational league in the country is the Jaska Valley Shaelic Football League, which played its first season in 1961.
As of 2017, Shaelic football is sponsored by 215 universities and XX colleges around the country. At many institutions, it is the principle revenue-generating sport, with several of the larger universities averaging more than 5-10,000 spectators for games during the season. University-level Shaelic football is organized by the Dosisada Namiðu Zétru, commonly known as DONAZ, which is comparable to the NCAA in the United States or the CIS in Canada.
University Shaelic football is organized into four levels of competition, known as Tiers (Shaelic: Skaprem). The tiers are designated as 1, 2A, 2B, and 3. Universities sponsoring Shaelic football are members of each tier. College-level Shaelic football comprises the bottom tier, Tier 3.
|Tier 1||Tier 2A||Tier 2B||Tier 3|
|Zone 1 (6 schools)||Great Northern Conference||Western Football Conference*|
|Zone 2 (6 schools)||Cenedlyser Conference||Central Shaelia Football League*|
|Zone 3 (6 schools)||Nation of Shaelia Conference||Super Eight Football*|
|Zone 4 (6 schools)||Southern Athletic Conference||Vesaza Conference|
|Zone 5 (6 schools)||Western Conference||Pacific West Conference|
|Zone 6 (6 schools)||Western Pacific Conference||Southeastern Conference|
|Zone 7 (6 schools)||National Athletic Conference||Pacific East Conference|
|Zone 8 (6 schools)||Premier Eastern Football League*||Eastern Slope Athletic Conference|
|Zone 9 (6 schools)||Northern Universities Athletic Conference|
|Zone 10 (6 schools)|
* – Shaelic football only league