CIF SOUTHERN SECTION BADMINTON HISTORY
In 1972 the CIF Southern Section added the sport of girls badminton as part of their mission to increase the number of sports and opportunities for girls in high school sports. Badminton became the first, and still only, truly Co-Ed CIF sport in 1980. CIF Southern Section badminton maintained about 100 schools participating through the 1990s, when the numbers began to drop. Universities eliminated the sport and the opportunities for post high school play diminished.
Nonetheless, participation in badminton in California grew with the diversification of our population through migration from Asian countries. Even so, the Southern Section considered dropping badminton altogether. The sport thrived however in other sections throughout the state of California. One by one, other CIF Sections added the sport. Appealing to "a population that does not commonly receive CIF Championship opportunities," CIF State added badminton as a State Conference Championship sport in 2016. Qualifying players from the Southern Section play in the Southern California Regional Championships against players from as far south as San Diego and as far north as Fresno.
As a result, the number of high schools participating in CIF badminton competition in the Southern Section has been increasing, with a number of schools reviving old programs and others joining for the first time. Universities and Colleges have also increased their offering of the sport through organized clubs and club teams. The CCCAA (State of California Community Colleges) offer badminton as a Varsity Sport in the spring each year.
Over the years, the Southern Section has produced many USA junior and adult national champions and even a couple of Olympic Games participants. We look forward to this new era of growth and participation.