Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners
UniversityCSU Bakersfield
ConferenceBig West Conference (primary)
Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (swimming & diving)
Pac-12 (wrestling)
Independent (women's indoor track & field)
Athletic directorZiggy Siegfried[1]
LocationBakersfield, California
Varsity teams16 (6 men's, 10 women's)
Basketball arenaIcardo Center (3,800)
Baseball stadiumHardt Field (2,000)
Softball stadiumCSUB Softball Complex
Soccer stadiumMain Soccer Field (2,000)
Other venuesBarnes Beach Volleyball Complex
Hillman Memorial Aquatic Center
Mechanics Bank Arena
MascotRowdy the Roadrunner
ColorsBlue and gold[2]

The Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners (also known as CSUB Roadrunners, and now in the process of being rebranded as the Bakersfield Roadrunners) are the intercollegiate athletic teams representing California State University, Bakersfield, located in Bakersfield, California. The Roadrunners compete at the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I level as a member of the Big West Conference.


Bakersfield's official team nickname is the "Roadrunners".[3] In November 1970, thirty-three nicknames were put to a student vote.[3] The final vote was between Roadrunners and El Cid with "Roadrunners" winning.[3]


The university is currently an NCAA Division I school, after previously competing at the Division II level and in the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA). The Roadrunners began the transition process in 2006 and became a full Division I member in July 2010.[4] Following a period as one of a tiny number of Division I independents, CSU Bakersfield joined the Western Athletic Conference in July 2013 for most sports.[5] On November 27, 2017, CSUB announced that it would leave the WAC and join the Big West Conference on July 1, 2020.[6]

The university began rebranding its athletic program as "Bakersfield" in the 2023–24 school year.[7]

Sports sponsored

Men's sports Women's sports
Baseball Basketball
Basketball Beach volleyball
Soccer Cross country
Swimming and diving Golf
Outdoor track and field Soccer
Wrestling Softball
Swimming and diving
Track and field
† – Women's track and field includes both indoor and outdoor
Big West Conference in Cal State Bakersfield's colors

Most varsity teams representing California State University, Bakersfield compete in the Big West Conference. The wrestling team is in the Pac-12 Conference, the swimming and diving teams are in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation, and the women's indoor track and field team competes as an independent. The swimming & diving teams will move to the Big West when it begins sponsoring the sport for both sexes in 2024–25.


Main article: Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners baseball

On May 17, 2007, CSUB announced that Bill Kernen would be the school's first baseball coach,[8] with the school's first official season beginning in Spring of 2009.[9] The Roadrunners played their first baseball game on February 20, 2009 against Saint Louis University in an 8-7 loss,[10] and recorded the first win in program history on February 21 with a 4-2 win against the Billikens.[11] On September 20, 2011, the Roadrunners were invited to join the Western Athletic Conference as an affiliate member in baseball.[12] On October 5, 2012 the Western Athletic Conference extended an invitation to the Roadrunners to join on July 1, 2013 as full members.

The Roadrunners won the 2015 WAC Baseball Tournament Championship in Mesa, Arizona and earned their first bid to the NCAA Regionals. The Roadrunners were placed in the Los Angeles Regional hosted by UCLA. CSUB lost twice to the host Bruins but managed to win the program's first postseason game when they defeated 2014 College World Series participant Ole Miss 2-1.

Bill Kernen retired following the 2015 season. Assistant coach Bob Macaluso was promoted to head coach in August 2015.


Men's basketball

Main article: Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners men's basketball

The Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners men's basketball team represents California State University, Bakersfield.[13] The team plays its home games at the Icardo Center.

Women's basketball

Main article: Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners women's basketball

The Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners men's basketball team represents California State University, Bakersfield.[14] The team plays its home games at the Icardo Center.

Men's soccer

The Roadrunner men's soccer program won the 1997 Division II National Championship and has provided several MLS and international professionals to various rosters. Men's soccer was the first team to appear in a Division I postseason match when they earned an at-large spot in the 2011 NCAA Men's Soccer Tournament. The most notable soccer alumnus is Los Angeles Galaxy star and US Men's National Team striker Gyasi Zardes. Zardes competed for the Roadrunners from 2010-2012. He signed a MLS homegrown contract with the Galaxy in 2012.

The Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners men's soccer team have an NCAA Division I Tournament record of 0–1 through one appearance.[15]


The CSUB softball team has reached the NCAA tournament once during the program's Division I tenure, in 2016. That year, the Roadrunners won the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) postseason tournament and earned the conference's automatic berth into the NCAA tournament.[16] The Roadrunners are coached by Crissy Buck-Ziegler, who will enter the eighth year of her tenure with the 2019 season.

The Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners softball team has an NCAA Division I Tournament record of 9-3.

Women's volleyball

The CSUB Roadrunners enjoyed a successful NCAA Division II history including a 1989 National Championship. Following the Division I reclassification and the hiring of Giovana Melo as head coach, the Roadrunners won the Western Athletic Conference Tournament Championship in 2014 with a 3-0 victory over Seattle U in a tournament hosted in Bakersfield. The Roadrunners drew top-ranked Stanford and fell in the first round 25-21, 25-21 and 25-18. CSUB has appeared in three-straight WAC Tournament championship matches dating back to the 2013 season.

The Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners women's volleyball team have an NCAA Division I Tournament record of 0–2 through two appearances.[17]


An outdoor wrestling match between Bakersfield and Oregon State at the Main Soccer Field in 2022

CSUB Wrestling has competed in the Pac-12 conference since the beginning of the 1987–88 season. CSUB wrestling is the institution's original Division I sport and has placed as high as 3rd (1996) and 8th (1997 & 1999) in the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships.[18][19] The Roadrunner Wrestling team has produced 9 individual NCAA DI Champions beginning in 1980. Stephen Neal (156, 1996-99) is the all-time winningest wrestler at CSU Bakersfield, with a record of 156-10 (the most wins of any CSUB wrestler), the most pins with 71 total, only 1 of 5 Roadrunner Wrestlers to be a 4-time All-American, as well as being a 2-time Division-I Champion in 1998 & 1999.[20] CSUB alum Mike Mendoza served as the head coach until 2016. Current head coach Manny Rivera began his first year in the 2016–17 season. He is a former All-American at the University of Minnesota and was a member of their National Championship team. The wrestling team practices on campus in the John B. Antonino Sports Center (specifically for wrestling) and competes at the Icardo Center also on campus. For the past two years they have also held an annual match on the Main Soccer Field dubbing it the "Feud on the Field".[21] Former Roadrunner wrestler and former UFC Champion Tito Ortiz set multiple UFC Light Heavyweight records.[22]

The Cal State Bakersfield men's wrestling team appeared in the NCAA Division I Tournament thirty times, with their highest finish being 3rd place in the 1995–96 school year.[23] Prior to Division I, the Roadrunners wrestling team won eight Division II titles, including five consecutive from 1979 to 1983.



The CSU Bakersfield Roadrunners competed in the NCAA Tournament across 7 active sports (5 men's and 2 women's) 38 times at the Division I level.[24]


CSU Bakersfield has never won a national championship at the NCAA Division I level.[25]

CSUB won 30 national championships and received the Sears Directors Cup in 1998 at the NCAA Division II level.[26]


CSU Bakersfield had 9 Roadrunners win NCAA individual championships at the Division I level.[25]

NCAA individual championships
Order School year Athlete(s) Sport Source
1 1979–80 John Azevedo Wrestling [27]
2 1979–80 Joe Gonzales Wrestling [27]
3 1980–81 Dan Cuestas Wrestling [27]
4 1981–82 Dan Cuestas Wrestling [27]
5 1982–83 Adam Cuestas Wrestling [27]
6 1983–84 Jesse Reyes Wrestling [27]
7 1990–91 Paul Keysaw Wrestling [27]
8 1997–98 Stephen Neal Wrestling [27]
9 1998–99 Stephen Neal Wrestling [27]

At the NCAA Division II level, CSU Bakersfield garnered 209 individual championships, where the Roadrunners are No. 4 in total NCAA Division II championships after the 2017–18 school year.[25]

Conference championships

Western Athletic Conference Championships


  1. ^ "Siegfried Named Athletics Director at CSUB". (Press release). August 20, 2015. Retrieved July 15, 2020.
  2. ^ "CSUB Visual Identity: Colors". Retrieved December 5, 2022.
  3. ^ a b c "Rowdy History". August 29, 2017. Retrieved July 15, 2020.
  4. ^ "The Move To NCAA Division I". Cal State Bakersfield. Archived from the original on March 2, 2012. Retrieved June 4, 2011.
  5. ^ "Western Athletic Conference adds Cal State-Bakersfield, Utah Valley". October 9, 2012.
  6. ^ "CSU Bakersfield Accepts Invitation To Join Big West Conference". Cal State Bakersfield. November 27, 2017. Retrieved November 28, 2017.
  7. ^ See "Brand Guidelines" (PDF). Bakersfield Roadrunners. September 11, 2023. Retrieved November 28, 2023.
  8. ^ "Bill Kernen Bio". Retrieved March 21, 2008.
  9. ^ Kelly, Mason (August 6, 2007). "New CSUB baseball coach building foundation, future schedule". Bakersfield Californian. Retrieved June 4, 2011.
  10. ^ "CSUB Baseball: St. Louis University at CSU Bakersfield (Game 1)". CSU Bakersfield. February 20, 2009. Retrieved June 4, 2011.
  11. ^ "Billikens Drop Both Games of Doubleheader at CSU Bakersfield". St. Louis University. February 21, 2009. Retrieved June 4, 2011.[permanent dead link]
  12. ^ "WAC adds Bakersfield and Dallas Baptist as Baseball schools". Las Cruces Sun-News. September 20, 2011. Retrieved September 21, 2011.
  13. ^ "Men's Basketball History and Record Book" (PDF). Retrieved May 27, 2019.
  14. ^ "Women's Basketball Record Book" (PDF). Retrieved May 27, 2019.
  15. ^ "Division I Men's Soccer Championships Records Book" (PDF). National Collegiate Athletic Association. Retrieved July 22, 2018.
  16. ^ "'Runners Defeat No. 1 NMSU To Win WAC Tournament". May 14, 2016. Retrieved November 29, 2018.
  17. ^ "Division I Women's Volleyball Championship Records Book" (PDF). National Collegiate Athletic Association. Retrieved August 6, 2018.
  18. ^[bare URL PDF]
  19. ^[bare URL PDF]
  20. ^ "History and Records Handbook" (PDF). CSUB Wrestling. Retrieved May 7, 2017.
  21. ^ "CSUB Athletics Facilities". CSUB Wrestling. October 8, 2006. Retrieved May 7, 2017.
  22. ^ "Tito Ortiz Cal State Bakersfield". Bleacher Report. Retrieved May 7, 2017.
  23. ^ "Division I Wrestling Championships Records Book" (PDF). National Collegiate Athletic Association. Retrieved August 11, 2018.
  24. ^ "NCAA Championships Statistics". National Collegiate Athletic Association. Retrieved April 10, 2022.
  25. ^ a b c "Championships Summary" (PDF). National Collegiate Athletic Association. Retrieved May 20, 2018.
  26. ^ Loveless, Jaclyn. "AD is 4th CSUB Wang winner". Cal State Today. Archived from the original on September 30, 2007. Retrieved March 21, 2008.
  27. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Division I Wrestling Championships Records Book" (PDF). National Collegiate Athletic Association. Retrieved July 1, 2018.