BUSA and UCS, the two former organisations governing University sport will be officially merged into one governing body this week.
The new organisation, named British University and College Sport (BUCS) will take control of organising the 4,500 sports teams within the 151 member Universities across the country as well as controlling funding and sponsorship.
BUCS will be led by Chief Executive Karen Rothery, former Commercial Director of England Netball and Board Chair Ed Smith, current Chairman of WWF-UK and former senior partner at PriceWaterhouse Coopers.
Speaking about the primary focus of the group, Smith told Nouse: “In terms of my intentions, it is early days and of course we will develop plans in consultation with a range of stakeholders. That said I think the UK model of intramural sport is a good one and we have a fine foundation and tradition on which we should build. We will however, have three main areas of focus. We aim to clearly drive the elite sport in universities to a higher level as we move toward the 2012 Olympics, create a greater engagement of sport between universities and leverage the facilities available in universities to engage the wider communities in which universities are located”.
As part of the merger, all University teams competing in BUCS Leagues next year will have Nike available as their official kit supplier after a sponsorship deal was reached on May 20.
When asked about the merger, AU President Jo Carter was positive: “I think it can only be a good thing. It will give a level of unity throughout the national system and could bring better funding for sport at York in the future”. She added: “ The current system is seen to spend too much money at the lower level with national travel and fixtures. In the new system, there will be more focus on regional championships.” BUCS will officially be launched on October 20 at the House of Lords.