Purpose: The purpose of this project was to map the process by which Division I sports are added at universities and to create a blueprint for any passionate and driven individual who would like to see their sport of choice added at any college.
Methods: Information for this study was gathered through qualitative interviews with sports administrators at eleven of the twelve universities in the PAC-12 conference. This primary research was supplemented with secondary research of media sources and
PAC-12 and NCAA documents.
Results: Four key factors are involved in adding a new Division I sports program at any university. These factors are: funding, Title IX status, conference and sport status, and administrative mindset.
Conclusion: The four factors stated above are critical in the addition of any new sports program, though there will be significant variations from sport to sport and from university to university. In the case of men’s wrestling at USC, the group of advocates needs to demonstrate the significant value adding wrestling will bring to the athletic department and school. They should also follow this up with a clear plan of how they will navigate the funding, Title IX requirements and conference status.