The College Cup: Revealed

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For weeks The Tab has been calculating which is Cambridge's sportiest college. The results are now in. Click here for the definitive table...

Two days ago we announced The Tab‘s College Cup. Since then, we’ve been busy tweaking it and getting it ready for public viewing. We’re finally there.

Now, for the first time, we can exclusively reveal the results of our pain-staking analysis and settle the debate about which college was Michaelmas’ sportiest.


So, without further ado, here are the top 5:


Rank College Rowing Rugby Football Netball Hockey Total
1 Downing 198 48 60 90 60 456
2 Trinity 173 36 51 24 30 314
3 Jesus 66 48 37 42 57 250
4 John’s 74 72 24 24 54 248
5 Queens’ 120 42 18 36 30 246


For the full table, along with an explanation of how the points were allocated, click here.

5 of the best:

Michaelmas Term’s table-toppers Downing led the pack by a country mile. This will come as no surprise to anyone who followed college sport last term. Downing teams sat astride Division 1 of Football and Netball, their rowers excelled and they fielded successful Division 1 teams in Rugby and Hockey. Downing JCR President Katie Marshall was delighted with her college’s latest accolade, commenting “Downing domination. What more did you expect?“.

Trinity reap the rewards of having a successful Boat Club, taking more than half of their points from their performances on the river. First and Third put in an excellent showing at Fairbairn’s; their W1, in particular, was outstanding on the river. Their first XI football also performed well, finishing the term just behind Downing in Division 1.

Only four points separate the remaining 3 colleges in the top 5:

Jesus come out narrowly on top, boosted by a strong showing across the board – other than Downing, they are the only college to field Division 1 teams in all the league sports counted. Jesus’ usually reliable Boat Club flopped in Michaelmas; only their Novice W1 emerging with any real credit.

John’s take a disappointing fourth place, proving that the Red Boys alone do not a sporting college make, irrespective of what the members of SJCRUFC might claim. An outraged Johnian Rugby player had this to say “this is an absolute farce. Rugby’s the only sport anyone gives a toss about“. Good effort from the LMBC novices though.

Queens’ fifth-place position is built on a superb term for their M1, whose wins in Fairbairn’s and Uni IV’s (tied with Downing) mask a generally average showing from their students, Division 2 leaders QCRUFC excepted.

5 of the rest:

Murray Edwards – The college formerly known as New Hall comes in at a brilliant 16th place, putting the 15 colleges beneath them to shame. Even though they can’t compete in Rugby, Football or half of the Rowing competitions in Michaelmas term, the strength of their Hockey team somehow still places them higher than mixed colleges like Magdalene and Clare. Samuel Pepys is probably turning in his grave.

King’s – Great for choral scholars, pretty budget for sportspeople. Unless you’re a boatie.

Homerton – Despite having the largest student population of any of the Cambridge colleges and counting a Luxembourg Rugby International among its sporting stars, Homerton still fails to make it into The Tab’s top 20. Poor effort.

Peterhouse – Pathetic Peterhouse are the lowest-placed undergraduate college. Despite being the University’s oldest collegiate institution, Peterhouse can hardly field a full side in any team sport – their first XI doesn’t even make it into Division 3. Perhaps they should spend less time at candlelit dinnersand more time outdoors…

Clare Hall – Nul points. Oh dear.

For those of you who feel your college has been unfairly treated or were banking on a win or two in Cuppers to boost you up the table, never fear. The College Cup will be returning at the end of Lent Term, when the colleges supplying the university teams with talent last term will be boosted by the return of their Blues heroes…

  • Arthur J

    is there no pints category?

  • Wordtoyourmother

    this is the biggest bag of balls I have ever seen. downing are shit at everything except netball. Just wait until next term.

    And why the fuck does rowing get so many points? What is this?

    Never mind the list of sports being too limited.

    • yourmothersgotapenis

      you're a moron.

      1) downing have first division teams in all the sports used.

      2) what other sports would you include? badminton? table tennis? who really gives a shit about sports like that?

      3) rowing probably has too many points but michaelmas term rowing is the highest participation college sport BY FAR. Most colleges have several novice boats (men's and women's).

      • wordtoyourmother

        1. So what. It would be embarrasing if you didn't.

        2. Brilliant. You put accross a strong case. However, assuming you know fuck all…..
        Badminton, Lacrosse, Ultimate Frisbee, Athletics, Cross Country, Womens Rugby, Womens Football (they might be included, though can't be certain, it looks like they aren't) for starters.

        Would be good to see the number of Blues and Half Blues players put on there as well.

        3. The points are far too much in favour of rowing. The points should be converted to percentages of possible points gained, thus giving each sport an equal standing.

        • Ultimate fun

          This is a pretty serious issue. Ultimate frisbee has long been struggling for equal recognition. It is, after all, clearly not a sport played only by lonely engineers with too little coordination to join the boat club, but a true display of physical and technical skill.

          • fred

            Rowing is the only sport in which the top college crews can compete against (and beat) other University 1st VIIIs. For example, Trinity last year beat Loughborough, UCL, Dublin, Exeter and Manchester to name but a few. They also comfortably beat the Army, the RAF and the Navy (NB the army being the next fixture for the Blues rugby team.) This is a college crew we are talking about here…
            The standard is relatively very high in comparison to other college sports. It's only because CUBC are ridiculously good (because of all the internationals) that college rowers aren't getting to represent CU at their sport.

  • anon

    its only because rowing requires no skill and you can take it up as a novice that people do it, if some beginner strutted on to the football pitch he would be laughed off!

  • The Dean

    Successive promotions for Queens' football club in the last two years, not so average.

    • Grad Griffin

      yeah – well when your 1sts are in the fourth division, what do you expect? I'd hope you'd win promotion to at least the top two tiers at some point. It must be tough against those 2nd and 3rds down there

  • wordtoyourmother

    Ever noticed how all the people who row beyond novice term are the ones who have never played sport before. They row simply because it is the only physical movement their dyspraxic limbs can master.

    Nor have they been seen outdoors before. Nor will they be, other than by their other 7 pathetic little friends.

  • suroosh

    this is a joke. what about darts?

  • Wtf

    Rowing Has 60 points for coming 1st because races are pretty much 1 a term whereas rugby etc. matches are 1 a week, so overall giving rugby a much higher points potential
    Work it out muppet.

    Secondly rowing is actually undervalued in this as I can't see how they've included bumps, the only race that rowers actually giver a toss about.


    • yourmothersgotapenis

      bumps isn't until lent term, this is only for michaelmas.

    • testicles

      Rugby has no higher points potential as otherwise Johns would have it….

  • r.bennet


    • Bennetisacunt

      Try playing it then, cockface. See how you manage.

  • Paddy

    :( Peterhouse came third (men and womens) in the track and field cuppers at the start of michaelmas, and we won the mens' IVs division in Fairbairns.

    Also we have pool to fall back on as the 'sport' we're really good at. :)

    …so I'm not really sure how we came last out of the undergraduate colleges, even with our disadvantage in terms of numbers (speaking of which, I think places should be adjusted based on number of people at the college… it does make sense to!). I suspect that Trinity and Johns would be slightly annoyed though…

  • Paddy

    Wait, hang on, rowing is 60 points for a senior boat coming first? So Peterhouse has ten points how exactly?

    • Pranav Sood

      We didn’t count IVs at Fairbairns. Only University IVs held in October and then VIIIs at Fairbairns.

      • Paddy

        Fair enough, although I wish you had! :)

  • McDougal

    PHouse only won the IVs because their competition were all tired from their VIIIs race – they couldn't field an VIII. There were several IVs that would have destroyed them had their crews not raced earlier in the day

  • iloveali

    Katie Marshall is not Downing JCR pres – it's Ali McWhirter. Just saying…

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