The University of British Columbia has officially announced the results of the sport review of the 29 Vancouver campus varsity teams. Following a two-stage assessment, 24 teams have retained varsity status and fall into three groups:
- those most ready to excel
- ongoing varsity
- teams that need more time to develop new models of community support.
The remaining five teams will become UBC competitive clubs and will receive support that includes honorariums for coaches, access to training facilities and support for skill development. The University has also begun assessing AMS club teams for the competitive club grouping, allowing more students to participate in competitive sport.
Among confirmed varsity teams, UBC will focus enhanced resources (specifically sport science and medicine, management and marketing) on teams that have been assessed most ready to achieve excellence across the criteria.
Teams to receive enhanced support (seven)
- Basketball: men and women
- Football: men
- Swimming: men and women
- Volleyball: men and women
Teams to receive current support with some limited enhancements (thirteen)
- Cross country: men and women
- Field hockey: women
- Golf: men and women
- Ice hockey: women
- Rowing: men and women
- Rugby: men
- Soccer: men and women
- Track and field: men and women
Teams, each in unique situations, given more time to pursue hybrid funding (four)
- Baseball: men
- Field hockey: men
- Ice hockey: men
- Rugby: women
Teams realigned to competitive club* (five)
- Alpine skiing: men and women
- Nordic skiing: men and women
- Softball: women
- *Varsity teams realigned to competitive clubs will have permission to continue to compete with the Thunderbird name. The branding for other clubs joining the competitive club strand will be determined for 2015-16.
Additional competitive clubs:
In order to achieve its goal for more student participation in competitive sports, UBC Athletics will assess and decide on new competitive club teams in March 2014, pilot these clubs in September 2014, and launch the program in summer 2015.
“This review has re-energized support for UBC’s teams,” said President Stephen Toope. “Our community has told us they want as many varsity teams as possible, and they want the opportunity to help us achieve our vision. We’ve heard them, and we look forward to seeing this translated into solid action in the months ahead.”
During the course of the review, fans and community supporters pledged a total of $4.8 million to help strengthen teams.
“We now have a strong new model that sharpens our focus on excellence,” said Louise Cowin, VP Students. “While keeping 24 teams, our approach will concentrate resources where teams are demonstrating success in achieving our vision.”
The review confirmed five groups of criteria by which to evaluate varsity teams. The University is moving forward with a new sport model that will focus enhanced resources – specifically sport science and medicine, management and marketing — on those varsity teams most ready to achieve excellence across all the criteria.
Evaluation criteria for team assessments included five categories:
- Competitive success, competition and progression
- Supports for competitive success
- Community support and tradition
- Fit with UBC mission