California Golden Bears Overview

Fast facts

League: Division I (NCAA)

Head Coach: Mark Madse

Team Mascot: Oski

Year Opened: 1933

Capacity: 11858

City / State: Berkeley / California

Rivalries & Top Games to Attend

California Golden Bears vs Stanford Cardinals

Rival Team: Stanford Cardinals

Cal and Stanford absolutely hate each other and there is no love lost when the two meet on the hardwood. The hatred between these two Bay Area schools runs deep and you won’t want to miss it when they square off. Cal leads the all-time series 146-117, so come on out and support the Golden Bears when Stanford comes to town.

California Golden Bears Stadium Guide

In Game

Berkeley is a beautiful city to visit, and there are few better things to do when visiting than attending a Cal basketball game. Haas Pavilion is one of the most historic venues in college basketball and is home to an incredible atmosphere. The Cal Band is known as one of the best bands in the country, and The Bench loves to heckle and get after opponents, so you’ll be in for a show when attending a Golden Bears basketball game.

Haas Pavilion is also home to lots of fantastic Golden Bears memorabilia. The arena’s concourse is chalk full of newspaper clippings, pictures, pennants, trophies, and other memorabilia from the past. The memorabilia honors the basketball team as well as other Cal athletics teams and former student-athletes. The exhibit dedicated to the 1959 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship is a must-see for any college sports fan, so arrive early and take it all in.

As mentioned above Berkeley is a great city. Here you’ll find numerous excellent bars and restaurants to check out during your trip. There are two craft breweries, Jupiter and Triple Rock, as well as plenty of gastropubs to visit. If you’re looking for vegetarian options, you’ll also find a good selection of those as well including Saturn Cafe. No matter what you have a taste for you’ll find it here in Berkeley where there are more than enough dining and entertainment options.

A trip to Berkeley is an excellent experience for anyone looking to visit the Bay Area, and a Cal basketball game is a great way to spend a day in Berkeley. If you want to experience a fun game day atmosphere in a beautiful city, then you’ll struggle to find a better option than a Cal basketball game.

Things to check out

Concourse Memorabilia

All around the concourse you can spot Cal athletics memorabilia. There are pennants, trophies, newspaper clippings, and much more celebrating Cal athletics, so take a stroll of the concourse before the game.

1959 National Championship Exhibit

One exhibit of particular interest to Cal basketball fans is the 1959 National Championship Exhibit. Here you’ll find a picture of the Golden Bears national championship winning side as well as a statue of legendary Cal basketball head coach Pete Newell. Stop by and get a picture with the statue during your trip to Berkeley.

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Beer Garden

Outside of Haas Pavilion you’ll find a beer garden and kids activity area before the game. It’s a great place to hang out before the game and gives you an excellent chance to try some local craft beers from Black Diamond.

Unique Court Design

The court inside Haas Pavilion features a one of a kind court design. The large wood colored bear gives the Haas Pavilion court a unique feel and look, so snap a pic of the court when attending a Golden Bears basketball game.

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Cal Band

The Cal pep band performs over 20 fight songs at Golden Bears basketball games. The most famous of the fight songs is “Big C,” which has been popular among Cal students and alum for a long time. Enjoy the performance of the pep band who do an excellent job of setting the tone at a Cal basketball game.

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Oski has been the Golden Bears mascot since 1941. He is named after the “Oski Wow-Wow” yell and is prominent in many Cal school songs. During games Oski entertains the fans, so keep your eyes peeled for him as you’ll never know what kind of shenanigans he’ll get into.

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The Bench

The Cal student section, known as The Bench, makes Haas Pavilion a difficult venue for opposing teams to play in. The students really get after opponents. The university even added a row of seats between the students and the court to help protect the players and refs from their abuse. Enjoy the atmosphere created by The Bench when attending a Cal basketball game.

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Fight Songs

  1. “Fight for California”

    Our sturdy Golden Bear,
    Is watching from the skies,
    Looks down upon our colors fair,
    And guards us from his lair.
    Our banner Gold and Blue,
    The symbol on it too,
    Means FIGHT! for California.
    For California through and through!

    Stalwarts girded for the fray,
    Will strive for victory,
    Their all at Mater’s feet will lay,
    That brain and brawn will win the day.
    Our mighty sons and true
    Will strive for us anew,
    And FIGHT! for California,
    For California through and through!

  2. “Big C”

    On our rugged eastern foothills
    Stands our symbol clear and bold
    Big C means to fight and strive
    And win for Blue and Gold
    Golden Bear is ever watching
    Day by day he prowls
    And when he hears the tread
    Of lowly Stanfurd red
    From his lair he fiercely growls

    Grr-ah! Grr-ah! Grrrrr—ah!

    We are sons of California
    Fighting for the Gold and Blue
    Palms of glory we will win
    For Alma Mater true
    Stanfurd’s men will soon be routed
    By our dazzling “C”
    And when we serpentine
    Their red will turn to green
    In our hour of victory!

California Golden Bears Bars & Restaurants

  1. Tupper and Reed

    Tupper And Reed

    Bi-level cocktail bar & lounge with craft drinks, a variety of seating options & vintage-chic decor.

    2271 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704, USA


    Bar website

    american - $$

  2. Bobby G’s Pizzeria

    Bobbys Pizza

    Bobby G’s is a gourmet pizzeria and draft house located in the heart of downtown Berkeley.

    2072 University Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704, USA


    Bar website

    pizza - $$

  3. Jupiter

    Jupiter pizza

    A 2-story venue & beer garden that serves up wood-fired pizzas plus handcrafted beers & ales.

    2181 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704, USA


    Bar website

    american - $$

  4. Triple Rock

    Triple Rock

    Students & professors alike head to this alehouse for its beers brewed on-site & bar food.

    1920 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704, USA


    Bar website

    american - $

  5. Pappy’s Grill & Sports Bar

    Pappys on Telegraph

    Lively sports bar with several TVs & a large projection screen, plus burgers, BBQ food & sandwiches.

    2367 Telegraph Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704, USA


    Bar website

    sportsbar - $

  6. Freehouse

    Free house burger

    Buzzy brewpub serving both housemade & other beers plus a menu of gastropub fare in a slick space.

    2700 Bancroft Way, Berkeley, CA 94704, USA


    Bar website

    american - $$

  7. Brazil Fresh Squeeze Cafe

    green juice

    Salads, sandwiches, hot trays and drinks! Who could ask for more when you come to a classy little café like ours?

    2161 University Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704, USA


    Bar website

    american - $

  8. Eureka!


    Those that truly appreciate great food, craft beer and small-batch spirits are discovering a better restaurant experience and Eureka! has elevated it to an art form.

    2068 Center St, Berkeley, CA 94704, USA


    Bar website

    american - $$

  9. Gypsy’s Trattoria Italiano

    Gypsy pasta spaghetti

    Each plate can be customized by our customers since nothing is pre-made. Everything is made from scratch in the restaurant on a daily basis!

    2519 Durant Ave a, Berkeley, CA 94704, USA


    Bar website

    italian - $

  10. Rivoli Restaurant


    Californian-Mediterranean spot is known for simple cuisine in a romantic space overlooking a garden.

    1539 Solano Ave, Berkeley, CA 94707, USA


    Bar website

    american - european - $$$

  11. Iyasare


    Inventive dishes from northeast Japan pair with classic nigiri & sashimi in a simple Zen-like space.

    1830 Fourth St, Berkeley, CA 94710, USA


    Bar website

    asian - $$

  12. Comal


    The restaurant is housed in a single story building (circa 1927) and features a stunning secluded rear patio with a full bar, covered dining area and al fresco beer garden with fire pit.

    2020 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704, USA


    Bar website

    american - $$

  13. Gather


    Locavores come for creative Californian fare made with seasonal ingredients & West Coast wines.

    2200 Oxford St, Berkeley, CA 94704, USA


    Bar website

    american - $$

  14. Sliver Pizzeria


    Socially conscious pie parlor showcases specialty pizzas, a full bar & live bands in a funky space.

    2468 Telegraph Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704, USA


    Bar website

    pizza - $

  15. Cheese Board

    Cheese Board

    A pizzeria, bakery & cheese shop, this spot serves 1 style of veggie pizza per day & limited seats.

    1512 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA 94709, USA


    Bar website

    pizza - $

  16. Chez Panisse

    J Henrys Restaurant Steak

    Alice Waters' acclaimed flagship downstairs & cafe upstairs offer seasonal fare & a chic, cozy vibe.

    1517 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA 94709, USA


    Bar website

    american - $$$$

  17. Top Dog

    hot dog

    Quick-serve sausages including specialties & veggie options served in a minimalist setting.

    2534 Durant Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704, USA


    Bar website

    american - $