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Going, Going, Gone! Athletics Teams with Yahoo! to Raise Funds

By Cathy Cockrell, Public Affairs
Posted March 8, 2000

Football enthusiasts, art lovers and vintage car enthusiasts will all turn up at the same address, in cyberspace, when the online giant Yahoo! hosts a jumbo auction in early May to benefit Cal athletes.

The Cal CyBear Auction -- with an anticipated $200,000 in proceeds -- promises to be the largest charity auction Yahoo! has ever hosted. The auction begins May 7 and continues through May 13, just before Mother's Day. Funds raised will finance scholarships for athletes in Berekeley's intercollegiate program, which includes 14 women's and 13 men's sports.


To kick off the Cal CyBear Auction, Intercollegiate Athletics will hold a Gold Medal Evening in Haas Pavilion, Saturday, May 6. The event will highlight Cal's Olympic tradition with live appearances by past and future Cal Olympians. For information, call (650) 854-7887.


Currently a team of volunteers is working with leaders of the local sports industry -- including Berkeley alumni Amy Trask, chief executive of the Oakland Raiders; San Francisco Giants Executive Vice President Larry Baer; and Tom Ross of Octagon Sports -- to line up a wide range of auction items.

The stash already includes everything from auto racing passes at Sear's Point and the Atlanta NASCAR event to two original oil paintings by artist Don Hatfield to an erudite dinner with Political Science Professors Jack Citrin and Bruce Cain, who have offered to discuss election-year issues.

Auction participants may vie for a 1964 Mercedes; luxury box passes to the U.S. Open Tennis Championships in Flushing Meadows, NY; vacations packages; a game of golf with Phoenix Suns star Jason Kidd; dinner for 40 at Mudd's restaurant in Danville; and a motivational/celebrity speech by sports attorney and Boalt School of Law alum Leigh Steinberg. Steinberg has also donated passes to his exclusive Superbowl parties, where the lucky winner can rub elbows with sports and movie celebrities.

Cal sports die-hards can bid on a 1982 Big Game program, signed by participants in the famous "play," or a plane trip to an away game with Golden Bears athletes.

But Midwesterners who have never heard a note from the Cal Band can bid on tickets to the Kansas City Chiefs, whose roster includes Cal alumnus Tony Gonzalez.

"The geographic boundaries change dramatically with this type of auction," says Associate Athletic Director Kevin Reneau. "The whole idea is to extend beyond our traditional donor base, who always are so generous, and reach new constitutencies who have specific interests."

Reneau says that Cal Athletics plans to use banner ads on the Web, and other marketing strategies, to advertise the CyBear auction to a variety of audiences before the opening gavel on Yahoo! May 7.

A listing of Cal CyBear Auction items can be accessed on the Web from or



March 8-12, 2000 (Volume 28, Number 24)
Copyright 2000, The Regents of the University of California.
Produced and maintained by the
Office of Public Affairs at UC Berkeley.
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