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Varsity Sports

Washington University has a long and rich tradition of athletic achievement. Throughout its athletic history, WashU has continued to establish itself as both a leader and pioneer in the world of student athletics.

For WashU student-athletes, however, it's about more than winning national championships and awards. Student athletes successfully combine athletic achievement with an excellent educational experience.

Student athletes are given the tools and resources necessary to seamlessly balance participating in a storied and successful sports program with achieving academic success at one of the top research institutions in the country.

Coaches understand that students have course work that must be completed at a high level. They take the “student-athlete” label seriously and are concerned that athletes are able to attend all their classes, participate fully in the academic offerings of the university, and achieve success in the classroom and on the field.

WashU is an NCAA Division III school and a founding member of the University Athletic Association (UAA). Our varsity athletes compete against other NCAA Division III teams from some of the nation’s best universities. We believe in the UAA premise that academic excellence and athletic excellence are not mutually exclusive, but that academic excellence comes first. Even so, our teams provide plenty of excitement.

Varsity teams include:

  • Baseball (men only)
  • Basketball
  • Cross country
  • Football (men only)
  • Golf (women only)
  • Soccer
  • Softball (women only)
  • Swimming and diving
  • Tennis
  • Indoor track and field
  • Outdoor track and field
  • Volleyball (women only)

In all, Washington University has won 19 NCAA national championships and 169 UAA titles.


From intramural and club sports to BearFit exercise classes, the WashU Office of Recreation offers facilities and programming to fit a variety of fitness and wellness pursuits.


WashU Rec oversees several on-campus facilities where students can work out, play sports and run or swim for leisure. The on-campus recreational facilities include a three-court gymnasium, an 8-lane, 25-yard pool, racquetball and squash courts and two separate fitness centers outfitted with cardio and strength equipment. Outdoors, students have use of WashU's tennis courts, a 400-meter track and a turf field.

In October 2016, WashU will hold the grand opening for the Gary M. Sumers Recreation Center — a state-of-the-art facility completely dedicated to recreation. Sumers Rec will house a three-court gymnasium, an indoor running track, three group exercise studios and a fitness floor outfitted with cardio and strength training equipment.

Group Exercise

For those looking for a more structured workout, WashU Rec offers roughly 30 BearFit exercise classes per week during the school year. Classes include cycling, yoga, Pilates, Zumba, kickboxing and more.

Intramural Sports

WashU offers a variety of leagues, including all-male, all-female, and coed teams that are open to students, faculty, and staff and sorted into divisions by competition level to ensure that everyone who wants to play has the opportunity. The Intramural Sports Department offers more than 25 teams and individual and special events throughout the academic year for all members of the WashU community.

Sport Clubs

The Sport Club Board, one of WashU's largest student groups, oversees 36 different sport club teams, each of which is student-run. Sport clubs are more competitive than intramural sports, but require less of a commitment than varsity sports. Sports range from badminton to crew, equestrian to rock climbing, tae kwon do to ultimate Frisbee, and more.

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