Coach Profile

Head Coach - Women's Crew
Cal Crew Coach Acosta

Al Acosta

Acosta, who grew up in Berkeley, attended Berkeley High School and graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Cal with a degree in fine arts in 1993, started the Stanford lightweight program in 2001 and guided the Cardinal for 13 consecutive years. He led the squad to four straight IRA national titles from 2010-13 before the school posted a runner-up finish this past spring. Acosta was honored as the National Lightweight Coach of the Year for the first time in 2008 when Stanford earned a bronze medal at the national regatta, as well as for each of the team’s national championships.

In 2013, Rowing Magazine named Stanford as the “Crew of the Year” as the top collegiate rowing program in the country. In addition to on-the-water success, Acosta’s student-athletes have achieved a 100 percent graduation rate during his tenure.

Prior to accepting his role at Stanford, Acosta worked with the country’s top junior programs, the Oakland Strokes rowing program, for eight years. He served as head girls’ coach from 1994-96 and as head boys’ coach from 1997-2001. His boys’ varsity eight captured California state titles in 1998 and ’99 and finished among the nation’s top three in 1997, ’98 and ’99. In addition, Acosta was the head men’s master’s coach for the Lake Merritt Rowing Club in Oakland from 1997-2001.

On the national level, Acosta served as chair of the Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association Lightweight Committee from 2007-09. He has also been a head coach and associate head coach at national team development camps for both high school boys and college women.

Acosta and his wife, Linda, have two children and reside in San Francisco.

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