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2021 Top California Men's Basketball Schools

45 Colleges
$41,550 Avg Tuition & Fees*
56% Avg 4-Year Grad Rate*

When pursuing a degree in today's world, student athletes have many different options to choose from. College Factual has developed its Best Colleges for Men's Basketball in California ranking as one item you can use to help make this decision.

We analyzed 45 colleges and universities across California to determine which were the best for Men's Basketball athletes in California. Instead of depending on subjective information, we focus on objective factors to determine this ranking. These factors include such things as the athletic competitiveness of the school and the school's overall quality. This means that a school must provide students with a great education in addition to having a good sports team if it wants to rank well.

Learn more about our ranking methodology.

One Size Does Not Fit All

We know that one set of rankings doesn't always help you determine the best school for you, so we've created the ability to narrow your list by location as well as alternative rankings that prioritize different factors such as those of importance to online students or returning adults or those who value diversity and value for your money.

We've created a tool called College Combat that lets you create your own customized comparisons based on the factors that matter the most to you. We encourage you to try it out and pit your favorite colleges and universities head to head! If you don't have time right now, you can bookmark it for later.

Top Colleges in California for Men's Basketball athletes in California

See which schools came out on top of our ranking:

#1

University of California - Los Angeles

Los Angeles, California

Our analysis found University of California - Los Angeles to be the best school for Men’s Basketball athletes in California in this year’s ranking. UCLA is a public institution located in Los Angeles, California. The school has a large population, and it awarded 9,069 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The Men’s Basketball team at UCLA brought home $11,959,355 in revenue in a single year. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 945.

With a freshman retention rate of 97%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students. UCLA excels when it comes to quality. It’s ranked in the top 10% of all schools on our overall quality list.

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#2

University of Southern California

Los Angeles, California

You’ll join some of the best athletes around if you attend University of Southern California. The school came in at #2 in this year’s ranking. USC is located in Los Angeles, California and, has a large student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 5,337 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergraduates.

The Men’s Basketball team at USC brought home $6,275,440 in revenue in a single year. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 967.

With a freshman retention rate of 96%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students. In addition to its great ranking here, USC is in the top 10% of all schools on our overall quality list.

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#3

Stanford University

Stanford, California

You’ll join some of the best athletes around if you attend Stanford University. The school came in at #3 in this year’s ranking. Stanford University is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in Stanford, California that handed out 1,892 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The Men’s Basketball team at Stanford brought home $6,769,220 in revenue in a single year. The team members aren’t slouches in the classroom either, since the team academic progress rate is an excellent 998.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 98%. In addition to its Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking, and one of the reasons why the school is on the list, Stanford is ranked #2 for overall quality in California.

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#4

University of California - Berkeley

Berkeley, California

You’ll join some of the best athletes around if you attend University of California - Berkeley. The school came in at #4 in this year’s ranking. Located in Berkeley, California, the large public school awarded 9,627 diplomas to qualified bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

The Men’s Basketball team at UC Berkeley made $7,840,731 in revenue, while incurring $6,131,940 in expenses. Happily, this means that the team turned a profit of $1,708,791. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 960.

With a freshman retention rate of 97%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students. On top of its placing in this ranking, UC Berkeley also did well on our overall quality list. It’s in the top 10% of all schools reviewed in this analysis.

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#5

University of California - Davis

Davis, California

Out of the 45 schools in California that were part of this year’s ranking, University of California - Davis landed the #5 spot on the list. UC Davis is a public institution located in Davis, California. The school has a large population, and it awarded 8,711 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The Men’s Basketball team at UC Davis brought home $2,395,167 in revenue in a single year. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 975.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 93%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year. In addition to its great ranking here, UC Davis is in the top 10% of all schools on our overall quality list.

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#6

Santa Clara University

Santa Clara, California

Santa Clara University ranked #6 on this year’s Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California list. Santa Clara, California is the setting for this medium-sized institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 1,495 students in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the Men’s Basketball team at SCU took home $4,445,480 in revenue. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 975.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 94%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year. On top of its placing in this ranking, SCU also did well on our overall quality list. It’s in the top 10% of all schools reviewed in this analysis.

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#7

University of San Francisco

San Francisco, California

University of San Francisco came in at #7 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking. San Francisco, California is the setting for this fairly large institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 1,634 students in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the Men’s Basketball team at USFCA took home $4,071,649 in revenue. The academic progress rate of the team is 957.

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#8

University of California - San Diego

La Jolla, California

With a ranking of #8, University of California - San Diego did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking. UCSD is located in La Jolla, California and, has a large student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 8,037 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergraduates.

The Men’s Basketball team at UCSD brought home $1,336,221 in revenue in a single year.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 94%. In addition to its great ranking here, UCSD is in the top 15% of all schools on our overall quality list.

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#9

San Diego State University

San Diego, California

San Diego State University did quite well in the 2021 Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking, coming in at #9. This large public school is located in San Diego, California, and it awarded 8,159 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The Men’s Basketball team at SDSU made $6,248,159 in revenue, while incurring $5,786,034 in expenses. That boils down to a yearly profit of $462,125 for the sports team. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 975.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 89%.

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#10

Loyola Marymount University

Los Angeles, California

Loyola Marymount University landed the #10 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking. Loyola Marymount is located in Los Angeles, California and, has a medium-sized student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 1,674 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergraduates.

Speaking financially, the Men’s Basketball team at Loyola Marymount took home $4,137,858 in revenue. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 970.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 91%. On top of its placing in this ranking, Loyola Marymount also did well on our overall quality list. It’s in the top 15% of all schools reviewed in this analysis.

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#11

University of California - Irvine

Irvine, California

University of California - Irvine came in at #11 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking. Irvine, California is the setting for this large institution of higher learning. The public school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 8,394 students in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the Men’s Basketball team at UC Irvine took home $2,953,537 in revenue. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 955.

With a freshman retention rate of 94%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students. In addition to its great ranking here, UC Irvine is in the top 15% of all schools on our overall quality list.

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#12

University of San Diego

San Diego, California

University of San Diego landed the #12 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking. USD is a private not-for-profit institution located in San Diego, California. The school has a medium-sized population, and it awarded 1,501 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

On the financial side of things, the Men’s Basketball team at USD made $3,120,907 in revenue. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 975.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 90%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year. In addition to its great ranking here, USD is in the top 20% of all schools on our overall quality list.

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#13

Pepperdine University

Malibu, California

Pepperdine University ranked #13 on this year’s Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California list. Pepperdine is a medium-sized private not-for-profit school situated in Malibu, California. It awarded 943 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the Men’s Basketball team at Pepperdine took home $3,975,688 in revenue. The academic progress rate of the team is 960.

With a freshman retention rate of 90%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students. As a testament to the quality of education it offers, Pepperdine also is in the top 20% of our overall quality ranking.

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#14

University of the Pacific

Stockton, California

University of the Pacific ranked #14 on this year’s Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California list. Stockton, California is the setting for this medium-sized institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 815 students in 2018-2019.

On the financial side of things, the Men’s Basketball team at Pacific made $3,181,522 in revenue. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 945.

On top of its placing in this ranking, Pacific also did well on our overall quality list. It’s in the top 20% of all schools reviewed in this analysis.

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California Polytechnic State University - San Luis Obispo landed the #15 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking. This large public school is located in San Luis Obispo, California, and it awarded 5,185 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The Men’s Basketball team at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo brought home $2,181,492 in revenue in a single year. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 958.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 95%. Cal Poly San Luis Obispo excels when it comes to quality. It’s ranked in the top 20% of all schools on our overall quality list.

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#16

California Baptist University

Riverside, California

California Baptist University came in at #16 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking. Cal Baptist is a fairly large private not-for-profit school situated in Riverside, California. It awarded 1,670 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The team at Cal Baptist took home $2,555,371 in revenue and paid out $2,503,353 in expenses in recent times. So, the team made money for the school, bringing in $52,018 in profit. The academic progress rate of the team is 960.

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#17

Pomona College

Claremont, California

With a ranking of #17, Pomona College did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking. Pomona is a private not-for-profit institution located in Claremont, California. The school has a small population, and it awarded 449 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

Pomona brought in $218,050 while tallying up $217,150 in expenses for its Men’s Basketball team. Happily, this means that the team turned a profit of $900.

With a freshman retention rate of 98%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students. Pomona also took the #3 spot in our overall quality rankings.

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#18

California Lutheran University

Thousand Oaks, California

California Lutheran University did quite well in the 2021 Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking, coming in at #18. California Lutheran University is a small private not-for-profit school located in Thousand Oaks, California that handed out 849 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the Men’s Basketball team at CLU took home $295,435 in revenue.

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#19

California State University - Fullerton

Fullerton, California

California State University - Fullerton did quite well in the 2021 Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking, coming in at #19. This large public school is located in Fullerton, California, and it awarded 9,996 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The Men’s Basketball team at Cal State Fullerton brought home $2,114,807 in revenue in a single year. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 945.

With a freshman retention rate of 87%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students.

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#20

San Jose State University

San Jose, California

San Jose State University ranked #20 on this year’s Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California list. San Jose State is located in San Jose, California and, has a large student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 6,826 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergraduates.

On the financial side of things, the Men’s Basketball team at San Jose State made $2,035,793 in revenue. The team has a great academic progress rate of 980, signifying that team members care about their grades.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 87%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year.

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#21

California State University - Long Beach

Long Beach, California

California State University - Long Beach came in at #21 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking. California State University - Long Beach is a large public school located in Long Beach, California that handed out 8,950 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

On the financial side of things, the Men’s Basketball team at CSULB made $2,412,791 in revenue.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 88%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year.

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#22

University of California - Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara, California

With a ranking of #22, University of California - Santa Barbara did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking. UCSB is a large public school situated in Santa Barbara, California. It awarded 6,327 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The Men’s Basketball team at UCSB brought home $3,202,493 in revenue in a single year. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 952.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 93%. In addition to its great ranking here, UCSB is in the top 15% of all schools on our overall quality list.

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California State University - Fresno landed the #23 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking. Fresno State is a large public school situated in Fresno, California. It awarded 4,921 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

On the financial side of things, the Men’s Basketball team at Fresno State made $3,642,878 in revenue. The academic progress rate of the team is 930.

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#24

Occidental College

Los Angeles, California

Occidental College landed the #24 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California ranking. Los Angeles, California is the setting for this small institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 529 students in 2018-2019.

The Men’s Basketball team at Oxy made $189,412 in revenue, while incurring $178,684 in expenses. So, the team made money for the school, bringing in $10,728 in profit.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 91%. On top of its placing in this ranking, Oxy also did well on our overall quality list. It’s in the top 15% of all schools reviewed in this analysis.

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#25

University of California - Riverside

Riverside, California

University of California - Riverside ranked #25 on this year’s Best Colleges for Men’s Basketball in California list. UCR is a public institution located in Riverside, California. The school has a large population, and it awarded 4,649 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

UCR brought in $2,542,300 while tallying up $2,485,812 in expenses for its Men’s Basketball team. Thus, the team actually made $56,488, which isn’t bad at all. The academic progress rate of the team is 958.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 89%.

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Best Colleges for Men's Basketball in the Far Western US Region

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Notes and References

Footnotes

*Avg Tuition and Fees and Avg 4-Year Grad Rate are for the top 25 schools only.

References

  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of our data about colleges.
  • Revenue and expense information comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s Equity in Athletics Data Analysis (EADA) website.
  • The academic progress rate (APR) of each team was made available by the NCAA.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).
  • Information about the national average student loan default rate is from the U.S. Department of Education and refers to data about the 2016 borrower cohort tracking period for which the cohort default rate (CDR) was 10.1%.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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