Chancellor’s Council on Intercollegiate Athletics Financial Sustainability members refute San Francisco Chronicle editorial error

The San Francisco Chronicle recently (10/2) ran an editorial on the athletics decision that erroneously stated that the UC Berkeley Chancellor’s Council on Intercollegiate Athletics Financial Sustainability recommended team eliminations. The full report speaks for itself. The group did not, in fact, recommend any such action.

The following letter was sent to the SF Chronicle editor from two of the members of the Council:

In your editorial, “A tough call on Cal sports” (October 2), there is a factual error. The editorial states that “In July a study by a panel of alumni and faculty recommended cost savings, tighter management and the nuclear option — elimination of teams that drew few fans, weren’t competitive or imposed hefty costs.”

The fact is that the Council did not recommend “the nuclear option,”‘ nor did we recommend the elimination of any sports. We simply evaluated, as the Chancellor requested, the pros and cons of the possible elimination of teams. As stated in the July report our charge from the Chancellor did not call for us to make a recommendation one way or another on the specific point of team elimination — and we did not.

On page 11 of our report we wrote that “The Council believes that it is far preferable to cut costs without cutting teams, rather than to cut teams.” To state in your editorial that the Council recommended the “nuclear option” is a gross misrepresentation of the truth.

Bill Ausfahl
Bob O’Donnell