Due to a planned shift in UC Berkeley‘s Title IX policy compliance, there will be a likely reduction in roster spots for men’s sports by 2021.
Chancellor Carol Christ made the announcement in an email to the Cal campus this past Thursday, based on a decision made following a Collegiate Sports Associates (CSA) report on the athletic department. The CSA is a sports consulting and executive search firm, and their 2017 report found considerable desire to consider changes to Cal‘s current sponsorship of 30 sports– 86% of 367 individuals surveyed felt that there needed to be changes made.
Cal is compliant to Title IX by way of Prong 3, which means schools are required to add sports for the underrepresented gender, when possible, to ensure gender equity. Christ says that continuing to comply with Prong 3 “seems unwise” and has decided to shift to Prong 1 of Title IX compliance.
Prong 1 is met when there are proportionate opportunities for athletic participation for both male and female student-athletes. If Cal is to make this prong shift, and if they don’t want to add more sports, men’s roster spots will probably need to be decreased.
Cal men’s head coach Dave Durden tells SwimSwam that this policy change shouldn’t impact their team. According to him, recruiting classes are traditionally comprised of 6-8 athletes, meaning they typically field a team of 24-32– below roster management numbers.
Christ noted that Cal already has difficulty sustaining its 30 Division 1 sports, but cutting sports will be a “last resort.”