University of California at Berkeley Athletics Program


Since the year 2000, the University of California at Berkeley Athletics program has transferred from being a secondary thought of the institution to going hand in hand with the colleges overall academic excellence. With the help of coach Jeff Tedford who has put the California football team back on the map, to coach Ben Braun’s unwavering consistently, and the California Rugby’s teams unbelievable run of excellence (a ridiculous fifteen national championships in sixteen years!). As a result, Berkeley has gone from an institution that’s celebrated purely for academic reasons to one that is sought after by the nations top recruits in various sports. The importance of the California Athletic Department has become ever prevalent with so much riding on various sports these days that our group thought it would be best to analyze how such an organization functions and some of the obstacles it faces.


Back in 1991, the department was divided between women’s collegiate sports, mens division, and the intramural division, but since that year the men and women’s sectors have fused together and intramural sports remained a separate division. With over eight hundred student-athletes and twenty seven varsity sports and corporate sponsors riding on every contest as well as the security of coaches, its imperative for obvious reasons that catering to the student athlete has become quite a challenge yet the number one goal.

Enter new athletic director, Ms. Sandy Barbour who’s three years at Berkeley have brought about unprecedented success both on and off the field. Student-athletes have been generating huge amounts of buzz with each year bringing about more and more individual titles and impressive graduating rates as well as all time highs in athletes grade point averages. Possibly most important being the only tangible measure of the overall success of the athletic department, Barbour has managed to bring Berkeley into the forefront of the Director’s Cup competition with an impressive four top 10 finishes in the past five years. The Director’s cup measures a college’s efficiency with regards to every sport (giving more emphasis to more prominent sports, with lesser value given to individual sports), and his highly sought after by the nations most prestigious of programs.

With not a lot of history of success on the athletic field, the athletic department is really entering new territory. There has never been so much emphasis on ensuring healthy relationships with the multitude of stakeholders that the organization encounters. Due to the vastly changing landscape of athletics and no experience of success to fall back upon, each day presents a new challenge for the University of California at Berkeley Athletic Department.

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