July 25, 2012
With 45 Golden Bears having earned a spot in the Olympic Games, California has more representatives for the 19 days of competition in London than any other public university in the country. The total includes 38 athletes, five coaches, one chief medical officer and one event manager.
Over its history, Cal athletes have captured 159 total medals - 91 gold, 40 silver and 28 bronze - including a school-record 17 medals at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. A total of 46 Bears were at the Games in China, and the 2012 number is second only to USC's 46 among schools nationwide.
This year's contingent features athletes and coaches in 10 different sports - men's basketball, men's and women's rowing, men's and women's swimming, men's and women's track & field, men's and women's water polo and women's soccer.
The largest group of Bears will be in the pool, where 19 athletes will swim for their countries. In addition, Cal women's swimming coach Teri McKeever is the U.S. women's head coach and men's assistant coach Greg Meehan is serving as an assistant for Estonia. Just over half of Cal's 45 Olympians will be wearing the red, white and blue of Team USA.
"The Olympic Games is a prestigious international venue for Cal to continue to showcase the world-class excellence of our Golden Bears and the campus," Director of Athletics Sandy Barbour said. "To return to the Olympics for the second time in a row with at least 45 representatives is a testament to the culture of high performance at Cal and is the result of so much hard work, dedication and sacrifice by our student-athletes, coaches and support staff. The fact that we compete and excel at the highest level helps enable Cal to consistently attract the most talented student-athletes in the world."
Eleven members of the Cal group have already stood upon the Olympic medal stand previously, led by swimming's Natalie Coughlin, who is a two-time champion in the 100-meter backstroke and has collected 11 total medals over the past two Olympiads. Cal's other multiple-medal winner returning from '08 is Heather Petri, who is in her fourth Olympics. She helped the USA to silver in both 2000 and '08 and a bronze medal in 2004.
Coughlin and Petri are just two of eight medalists from 2008 back at the Games, with the others being Elsie Windes (water polo), Erin Cafaro (rowing), Zach Frandsen (rowing), Nathan Adrian (swimming), Milorad Cavic (swimming) and Sara Isakovic (swimming).
After missing out on the '08 Olympics, swimmer Dana Vollmer is back after earning gold in 2004, while sprint freestyle specialist Anthony Ervin qualified for Team USA after picking up a gold and a silver in 2000. One other medal winner present will be Laurel Korholz, who captured silver in 2004 and now serves as an assistant coach for the USA rowing team.
Complete information on Golden Bears at the Olympics, including lists of all-time Olympians and medalists as well as profiles of this year's participants, can be found at CalBears.com. Throughout the Games, look for recaps of Cal athletes in action, in addition to exclusive video features and photos. Cal's Director of Olympic Sports Operations, Jenny Simon-O'Neill, will post a regular blog (Jenny's Journey), and she will be tweeting about her experience @BearsInLondon.
Golden Bears at the 2012 OlympicsMedical Staff
Cindy Chang, MD - USA Chief Medical Officer
Men's Track & Field
Women's Track & Field
Men's Water Polo
Women's Water Polo