Berkeley, Calif. - The University of California's rugby program was honored for its 2011 national collegiate championship during Cal's National Championship Week Oct. 17-22, capped by the Golden Bears' recognition on the field Saturday during halftime of Cal's Pac-12 football game against Utah at AT&T Park.
The Rugby Bears participated for the fifth time in the events' six-year history, which included an unveiling of a National Championship Display Case and highlight video Oct. 18 in Haas Pavilion, an all-staff luncheon on Oct. 19 and a celebratory reception hosted by Chancellor Robert Birgeneau and Mary Catherine Birgeneau on Oct. 21 at their home, University House, on campus.
"This was really a rewarding experience for our players and a significant opportunity to showcase our team and sport," said head coach Jack Clark. "Any time rugby can enjoy this type of visibility, it helps to grow our game as well as build our Cal rugby brand."
The Bears were honored for their 21-14 national collegiate championship victory over BYU last May 21 alongside Cal's additional national championships, which included NCAA team titles in men's swimming and women's swimming, along with individual NCAA champions in women's tennis, the decathlon and several relays. Nine Rugby Bears also received All-America honors.
The rugby team has claimed 26 of the 32 national collegiate titles awarded by USA Rugby since 1980, a major contribution to Cal's 82 national team titles in 14 different sports along with the Bears' 147 individual national titles.