All of the current members are private, faith-based institutions. Seven members are Catholic Church affiliates, with four of these schools being Jesuit institutions. Pepperdine is an affiliate of the Churches of Christ. Brigham Young University is an affiliate of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS). The conference's newest member, the University of the Pacific (which re-joined in 2013 after a 42-year absence), is affiliated with the United Methodist Church, although it has been financially independent of the church since 1969.
|West Coast Conference|
|Region||Western United States|
|Former names||West Coast Athletic Conference (1956–1989)|
California Basketball Association (1952–1956)
|Headquarters||San Bruno, California|
|Commissioner||Gloria Nevarez (since 2018)|
During the massive upheaval of conference affiliations in the 1990s, the WCC remained very stable. Before the 2010 realignment that eventually led to Brigham Young joining the conference, the last change of membership was in 1980, when Seattle University left the conference. At the time, only the Ivy League and Pac-10 (now Pac-12) had remained unchanged for a longer period.
The league was chartered by five northern California institutions, four from the Bay Area (San Francisco, Saint Mary's, Santa Clara, San Jose State) and one, Pacific, from Stockton. It began as the California Basketball Association, playing its first game on January 2, 1953. After two seasons under that name, the conference expanded to include Los Angeles-area schools Loyola (now Loyola Marymount) and Pepperdine in 1955 and became the "West Coast Athletic Conference" in 1956. After more than three decades as the WCAC, the name was shortened in the summer of 1989, dropping the word "Athletic."
The WCC participates at the NCAA Division I level and is considered to be a mid-major athletic conference. The conference sponsors 15 sports but does not include football as one of them. San Diego (Pioneer Football League) and Brigham Young (FBS independent) are the only schools fielding a football team. The rest have all dropped the sport, some as early as the 1940s, before the conference existed (Gonzaga and Portland), and one as late as 2003 (Saint Mary's).
Historically, the WCC's strongest sports have been soccer (nine national champions, including back-to-back women's soccer titles in 2001 and 2002) and tennis (five individual champions and one team champion). The conference has also made its presence felt nationally in men's basketball. San Francisco won two consecutive national titles in the 1950s with all-time great Bill Russell. Although the WCAC's stature declined in the 1960s, San Francisco was reckoned as a "major" basketball power until the early 1980s. Also of note was Loyola Marymount's inspired run to the Elite Eight in 1990 following the death of Hank Gathers during that season's WCC championship tournament.
More recently, Gonzaga's rise to national prominence after being invited to the NCAA Tournament every year since their Cinderella run to the "Elite Eight" in 1999 has helped make the WCC a household name. As San Francisco was from the 1940s to the early 1980s, Gonzaga has gained recognition as a major basketball power, despite the WCC being a mid-major conference. Gonzaga has been to 19 consecutive NCAA Tournaments--the longest streak for any school in the Western United States, tied for the fourth longest active streak, and the seventh longest streak in history. They have also been to all but one WCC Tournament final since 1995, and have played for the conference title every year since 1998. In 2016–17, the Bulldogs advanced all the way to the national championship game—the deepest run by a WC(A)C team since San Francisco went to three consecutive Final Fours from 1955 to 1957.
Saint Mary's has also made marks for the conference as the Gaels appeared in the NCAA Tournament in 2005, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2017, and 2019 (making the "Sweet Sixteen" in 2010).
Eventually, with the 2010 realignment opening up new avenues for expansion, the WCC decided to revisit expansion plans. The conference decided that it would only seek out private schools, but would not limit its search to faith-based institutions. Even so, the two additions, Brigham Young University and University of the Pacific are both faith based institutions, although Pacific has not been financially sponsored by the United Methodist Church since 1969.
On August 31, 2010, Brigham Young University (BYU) announced plans to join the WCC for the 2011–12 season in all sports the conference offers. BYU joined the conference on July 1, 2011. BYU's arrival gave the WCC another school with a rich basketball tradition. The Cougars made the NCAA Tournament six straight times before failing to do so in 2013, and had made 26 NCAA Tournament appearances before joining the conference.
On March 27, 2012, the University of the Pacific (UOP), a charter member of the conference in 1952, announced that it accepted an invitation to re-join the WCC on July 1, 2013. The move removed Pacific from the Big West Conference back to the WCC, which Pacific left in 1971 in order to pursue its interests in football, which it later abandoned in 1995.
|Brigham Young University||Provo, Utah||1875||Private
|Gonzaga University||Spokane, Washington||1887||Private
|Loyola Marymount University||Los Angeles, California||1865||Private
|University of the Pacific||Stockton, California||1851||Private
United Methodist Church
|Pepperdine University||Malibu, California||1937||Private
Churches of Christ
|University of Portland||Portland, Oregon||1901||Private
|Saint Mary's College||Moraga, California||1863||Private
De La Salle Brothers
|University of San Diego||San Diego, California||1949||Private
|University of San Francisco||San Francisco, California||1855||Private
|Santa Clara University||Santa Clara, California||1851||Private
* – Pacific previously withdrew from the WCC from 1971–72 to 2012–13.
|Creighton University||Bluejays||Omaha, Nebraska||1878||Private
|7,730||2010||Big East||women's rowing|
|San Jose State University
|Spartans||San Jose, California||1857||Public||30,448||1952||1969||Mountain West|
|California State University, Fresno
|Bulldogs||Fresno, California||1911||Public||22,565||1955||1957||Mountain West|
|University of California, Santa Barbara
|Gauchos||Santa Barbara, California||1891||Public||21,927||1964||1969||Big West|
|University of Nevada, Reno
|Wolf Pack||Reno, Nevada||1874||Public||18,227||1969||1979||Mountain West|
|University of Nevada, Las Vegas
|Rebels||Paradise, Nevada||1957||Public||28,203||1969||1975||Mountain West|
|Seattle University||Redhawks||Seattle, Washington||1891||Private
|California State University, Bakersfield
|Roadrunners||Bakersfield, California||1965||Public||8,317||2012-13||2012-13||WAC||women's golf|
|California State University, Los Angeles
|Golden Eagles||Los Angeles, California||1947||Public||23,258||1975-76||1975-76||CCAA
(NCAA Division II)
|University of Nevada, Reno
|Wolf Pack||Reno, Nevada||1874||Public||18,227||1984-85,
|United States International University
|Gulls||San Diego, California||2001||Private||3,871||1985-86,||1986-87,all||n/a^||women's basketball,|
^ - U.S.I.U. dropped athletics program following the end of the 1990-91 season.
Full members Other Conference Other Conference
The West Coast Conference sponsors championship competition in six men's and nine women's NCAA sanctioned sports, with the newest addition being softball in 2013-14.
|Track & Field
|Track & Field
|Brigham Young||FBS independent||No||MPSF||MPSF||IC4A||MPSF||No|
|San Diego||Pioneer League||WIRA||No||No||No||No||No|
|Track & Field
|Track & Field
|Brigham Young||No||Mountain Rim||No||MPSF||MPSF||ECAC||No|
|Loyola Marymount||No||No||No||PCS&DC||Independent||Independent||Golden Coast|
|Pacific||America East||No||No||MPSF||No||Independent||Golden Coast|
|Santa Clara||No||No||No||No||Independent||Independent||Golden Coast|
|School||Basketball Arena||Capacity||Baseball Stadium||Capacity||Soccer Stadium||Capacity|
|Brigham Young||Marriott Center||19,000||Larry H. Miller Field||2,710||South Stadium||3,800|
|Gonzaga||McCarthey Athletic Center||6,000||Washington Trust Field||1,500||Luger Field||2,000|
|Loyola Marymount||Gersten Pavilion||4,156||George C. Page Stadium||1,200||Sullivan Field||2,000|
|Pacific||Alex G. Spanos Center||6,150||Klein Family Field||2,500||Knoles Field||600|
|Pepperdine||Firestone Fieldhouse||3,104||Eddy D. Field Stadium||1,800||Tari Frahm Rokus Field||1,000|
|Portland||Chiles Center||4,852||Joe Etzel Field||1,000||Merlo Field||4,892|
|Saint Mary's||McKeon Pavilion||3,500||Louis Guisto Field||1,000||Saint Mary's Stadium||5,500|
|San Diego||Jenny Craig Pavilion||5,100||Fowler Park||1,700||Torero Stadium||6,000|
|San Francisco||War Memorial Gymnasium||5,300||Dante Benedetti Diamond||2,000||Negoesco Stadium||3,000|
|Santa Clara||Leavey Center||4,500||Stephen Schott Stadium||1,500||Buck Shaw Stadium||10,300|
Some of the famous athletes who played collegiately for WCC schools and coaches and executives that attended WCC schools, include:
The 2007 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament took place March 2–5, 2007 at the Chiles Center on the campus of the University of Portland in Portland, Oregon. The semifinals were televised by ESPN2, and the championship game was televised by ESPN.
The top seed, Gonzaga, won the tournament for the fourth straight season, and advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the 9th straight time.2011 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament
The 2011 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament was held March 4–7 at the Orleans Arena in the Las Vegas-area community of Paradise, Nevada to crown a champion of the West Coast Conference. In the third consecutive final that involved Gonzaga and Saint Mary's, Gonzaga won to secure its 13th consecutive appearance in the NCAA Tournament.2014 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament
The 2014 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament was held March 6–11, 2014 at the Orleans Arena in Paradise, Nevada. This was the sixth consecutive year the WCC Tournament took place in Vegas after the WCC and the Orleans reached a 3-year extension to keep the tournament in Vegas through 2016.2015 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament
The 2015 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament was held March 6–10, 2015 at the Orleans Arena in Paradise, Nevada. The winner of the tournament received the conference's automatic bid into the 2015 NCAA Tournament.2016 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament
The 2016 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament was the postseason men's basketball tournament for the West Coast Conference and was held March 3–8, 2016 at the Orleans Arena in Paradise, Nevada. The winner of the tournament, Gonzaga, received the conference's automatic bid into the 2016 NCAA Tournament.2017 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament
The 2017 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament was a postseason men's basketball tournament for the West Coast Conference held March 3–7, 2017 at the Orleans Arena in Paradise, Nevada. Regular-season champion Gonzaga also won the WCC tournament, and with it the conference's automatic bid into the 2017 NCAA Tournament with a 74-56 win over Saint Mary's in the finals.
The WCC's eight-year tournament contract with Orleans Arena expired after the 2016 WCC Tournament, with the WCC looking to potentially moving the tournament to a different Las Vegas-area venue (the MGM Grand Garden Arena or the T-Mobile Arena), keep it at the Orleans Arena, or move it elsewhere. In May 2016, the WCC announced that it reached an agreement on a new three-year contract with the Orleans Arena, which will run through the 2019 WCC year-end tournament.2018 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament
The 2018 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament was the postseason men's basketball tournament for the West Coast Conference for the 2017–18 season. All tournament games were played at the Orleans Arena in Paradise, Nevada, from March 2–6, 2018. Regular-season champion Gonzaga won the tournament and with it the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.2018–19 West Coast Conference men's basketball season
The 2018–19 West Coast Conference men's basketball season began with practices in September 2018 and will end with the 2019 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament March 2019. This is the 68th season for WCC men's basketball, and the 30th under its current name of "West Coast Conference". The conference was founded in 1952 as the California Basketball Association, became the West Coast Athletic Conference in 1956, and dropped the word "Athletic" in 1989.2019 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament
The 2019 West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament was the postseason men's basketball tournament for the West Coast Conference during the 2018–19 NCAA Division I men's basketball season. The tournament was held from March 7 through March 12, 2019 at the Orleans Arena in Paradise, Nevada. Saint Mary's upset top-seeded Gonzaga 60–47 in the championship game to win the tournament, and received the conference's automatic bid to the 2019 NCAA Tournament. It was the fourth championship for Saint Mary's, their first since 2012.Gonzaga Bulldogs
The Gonzaga Bulldogs (also known unofficially as the Zags) are the intercollegiate athletic teams representing Gonzaga University, located in Spokane, Washington, United States. Gonzaga competes in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I as a member of the West Coast Conference.Loyola Marymount Lions baseball
The Loyola Marymount Lions baseball team represents Loyola Marymount University, in Los Angeles, CA in college baseball. The program is classified in the NCAA Division I, and the team competes in the West Coast Conference. The team is coached by Jason Gill.
The Lions have been to the College World Series once, in 1986, and also recorded 8 NCAA appearances, and 9 West Coast Conference Championships (two Championship Series and seven regular season).Pacific Tigers
The Pacific Tigers represent the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California in intercollegiate athletics. The Tigers compete in NCAA Division I, and are currently in their second stint as members of the West Coast Conference (WCC).Pacific Tigers men's basketball
The Pacific Tigers men's basketball team represents the University of the Pacific. They are an NCAA Division I member, part of the West Coast Conference. The team is based in Stockton, California. They play their home games at the Alex G. Spanos Center and are led by head coach Damon Stoudamire.
On July 15, 2013, Pacific left the Big West Conference to rejoin the West Coast Conference. It had been a charter member of the WCC since 1952, but left in 1971 to join the Pacific Coast Athletic Association, later renamed to the Big West Conference.
In late 2015, investigations into improper academic benefits being provided to basketball players began. On December 11, the school placed head coach Ron Verlin and assistant coach Dwight Young on suspension. On December 18, the school self imposed a postseason ban for 2016 and a reduction in scholarships due to the pending academic fraud investigations. On March 3, 2016, the school revealed that Verlin and Young were no longer employed by the university.On March 15, 2016, Pacific hired 13-year NBA veteran and 1996 NBA Rookie of the Year Damon Stoudamire as head coach.Pepperdine Waves baseball
The Pepperdine Waves baseball team represents Pepperdine University in the sport of baseball. The Pepperdine Waves compete in Division I of the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) and in the West Coast Conference. They are currently led by head coach Rick Hirtensteiner.The Waves have been to the College World Series twice, winning the national championship in 1992 under head coach Andy Lopez with a win over Cal State Fullerton.Santa Clara Broncos
The Santa Clara Broncos are athletic teams that represent Santa Clara University. The school colors are red and white. The mascot is a bucking bronco and the fans are referred to as the "Ruff Riders". The Broncos compete in the NCAA Division I (NCAA) as members of the West Coast Conference of which Santa Clara is a charter member.West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Year
The West Coast Conference (WCC) Men's Basketball Player of the Year is a basketball award given to the most outstanding men's basketball player in the West Coast Conference. The award was first given following the conference's inaugural 1952–53 season, when it was known as the California Basketball Association. The only season in which the award was not presented was the conference's second season of 1953–54. There have been four ties in the award's history, most recently in 2006–07 between Sean Denison of Santa Clara and Derek Raivio of Gonzaga. There have also been 13 repeat winners, but only one—Bill Cartwright of San Francisco—has been Player of the Year three times.
Four schools in the West Coast Conference have dominated the total awards distribution. Before 2000, Pepperdine, San Francisco and Santa Clara had earned the bulk of the awards. Since then, Gonzaga has claimed a near-monopoly on it. In the 16 seasons from 2000–01 to the present, coinciding with the Bulldogs' rise to national prominence, Gonzaga players have won the award outright 12 times and shared the award once. Gonzaga now claims the most winners with 15, while each of the three other schools are tied for the second most with 11 winners apiece. The next closest school, Saint Mary's, has eight. One current member has yet to have a winner (Portland).West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament
The West Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament is the annual concluding tournament for the NCAA college basketball in the West Coast Conference. The winner of the tournament each year is guaranteed a place in the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament for that season. Through 2008, the tournament was played on a rotating basis at the home courts of member teams. The 2009 edition was the first played at a neutral site, namely Orleans Arena in Paradise, Nevada, just outside Las Vegas. The semifinals are broadcast nationally on ESPN2 and the championship is broadcast nationally on ESPN.
The tournament has used several formats in its history, though seeding in all formats has been based strictly on conference record (with tiebreakers used as needed). When the tournament began in 1987, when the conference had eight members, it used a standard single-elimination bracket that was reseeded after the first round so that the highest and lowest remaining seeds played one another in the semifinals. Beginning in 2003, the bottom four seeds played first-round games (5 vs. 8, 6 vs. 7), with the 3 and 4 seeds receiving byes to the quarterfinals and the top two seeds receiving byes to the semifinals. For the 2012 tournament, the first after the 2011 arrival of BYU in the WCC, this format was adjusted so that the 8 and 9 seeds played in the first round, with the winner joining the 5 through 7 seeds in the second round, and the top four seeds continuing to receive byes into the quarterfinals (3 and 4) or semifinals (1 and 2). In addition, reseeding was abolished, with the top seed automatically playing the winner of the quarterfinal game featuring the 4 seed and the 2 seed automatically playing the winner of the quarterfinal game featuring the 3 seed.
Beginning in 2014, the WCC adopted a new format to incorporate a tenth team (Pacific). The new format is a traditional 10-team tournament. Seeds 1-6 received a bye into the quarterfinals while 7 played 10 and 8 played 9 in the first round. The second round featured the winner of the 7/10 match playing the 2-seed while the winner of the 8/9 match played the 1 seed. The 3 seed played the 6 seed and the 4 seed played the 5 seed. In 2014, the first-round games aired on BYUtv Sports. The afternoon quarterfinal games aired on BYUtv, and the evening quarterfinals were on ESPN2. One semifinal aired on ESPN and the other on ESPN2, and the championship game was carried by ESPN.
For 2019 and beyond, the tournament will return to a format similar to that used from 2003–2011, with slight changes to the terminology used for the rounds prior to the semifinals. The 7 through 10 seeds will play in what is now called the "opening round", the 5 and 6 seeds will start play in the "second round", and the 3 and 4 seeds will start in the "third round". The top two seeds will receive byes into the semifinals. According to media reports, the major impetus for this and other changes to WCC basketball was the potential loss of Gonzaga to the Mountain West Conference after the 2017–18 season, which in the end did not happen.West Coast Conference Women's Basketball Tournament
The West Coast Conference Women's Basketball Tournament is the annual concluding tournament for the NCAA college basketball in the West Coast Conference. The winner receives an automatic berth into the NCAA Women's Basketball Championship. The championship is broadcast nationally on ESPNU.
Games were at campus sites from 1992-1994, then were played at the same location as the men's tournament, beginning in 1995.
Beginning in 2012, the WCC adopted a new format to incorporate a ninth team (BYU). In 2012 and 2013, the tournament started on Wednesday instead of Friday, and a first round 8 vs. 9 game was added. The winner of the 8/9 game played the 5 seed on Day 2 of the Tournament (Thursday). The 6 vs. 7 match took place that same day. Day 3, or the Quarterfinals (Friday), featured the winner of the 5/8/9 game playing the 4 seed and the winner of the 6/7 game playing the 3 seed. The top two seeds entered in the semifinals on Saturday. All teams were off on Sunday (all WCC members are private, faith-based schools, and BYU has a strict policy against Sunday play), and the championship game was played Monday on ESPNU. BYUtv Sports showed all games on the women's side except for the championship.
The format changed to a traditional 10-team tournament with the addition of Pacific for the 2013–14 season.
At the end of each tournament, an all-tournament team is named, with one individual selected as Most Valuable Player. Three players have earned MVP honors more than once—Valerie Gillom of San Francisco and Jill Barta of Gonzaga twice, and Gonzaga's Courtney Vandersloot three times.
West Coast Conference