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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2017 1:18 am 
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McGinty #12 having a rough day. Not ready for prime time.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2017 1:54 am 
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Old Man by the Sea wrote:
McGinty #12 having a rough day. Not ready for prime time.


Never seen him have a game this bad. Definitely his worst in a USA jersey.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2017 5:33 am 
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so didn't miss much?


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2017 9:45 am 
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Georgia won 21 - 17 without playing at all well, it seems. Were 21 - 3 up before conceding two tries.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:30 pm 
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tabascoboy wrote:
Georgia won 21 - 17 without playing at all well, it seems. Were 21 - 3 up before conceding two tries.


Neither team played well. Eagle handling was among the worst I've ever seen in good conditions. Even reliable players like MacGinty were dropping balls left and right. And of course, any knock on was basically an instant penalty to Georgia as they'd mash us in the scrum. Beyond the scrum and handling, probably the biggest frustration was kicking. Pretty much every Georgian kick to our back 3 was contested, while pretty much every kick to their back 3 was uncontested.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 6:16 pm 
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...and the Canadians lost to the Romanians 25-9.

We're in for an EPIC qualifier series! :lol:


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 7:41 pm 
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So I just got back from a week in Park City, Utah, where I watched some of the 10's tournament on 4th of July. I was pleasantly surprised at the level of it, some good skills on show and some very large Polynesian looking chaps.

I must check out my local team in Jacksonville Florida and see what they're all about.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 7:53 pm 
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Stevus55 wrote:
So I just got back from a week in Park City, Utah, where I watched some of the 10's tournament on 4th of July. I was pleasantly surprised at the level of it, some good skills on show and some very large Polynesian looking chaps.

I must check out my local team in Jacksonville Florida and see what they're all about.


Rugby in Utah is kinda weird. They have a very strong, by American standards, youth and high school scene and they have one of the top college teams in the nation. But their club scene has been beset with poor organization and poor discipline. Recently they've taken some very good steps at club level. They've created a short premier league that feeds into a representative Utah side. That Utah rep side will morph into a pro team in the newly formed Major League Rugby next year, so it's not surprising the standard would be going up rapidly as local players have contracts to strive for.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 8:13 pm 
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Makes sense, I think I saw a couple of the guys with premier league patches on their sleeves.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2017 7:51 am 
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Little Rocky Junior Stormers scrumhalf and High School All-American Ruben de Haas has signed with the Cheetahs of Super Rugby on an academy contract.

De Haas, now that he has finished his commitments with the USA U20 team, will complete the South African season with the Cheetahs program, where he will be training with current South Africa U20 scrumhalf Revan Kruger.

This is the first big step toward a pro contract for de Haas, who has been eyeing a contract in France as well as opportunities in South Africa. His father, Pieter, has been his coach with the Junior Stormers and was a professional rugby player there before moving to Arkansas. De Haas has said repeatedly that his plan is to represent the USA in rugby, and he has already done that on all age-grade levels, serving in leadership roles at every step.

http://www.florugby.com/article/58557-de-haas-to-cheetahs-academy-in-south-africa


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:57 pm 
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Jensrsa wrote:
Quote:
Little Rocky Junior Stormers scrumhalf and High School All-American Ruben de Haas has signed with the Cheetahs of Super Rugby on an academy contract.

De Haas, now that he has finished his commitments with the USA U20 team, will complete the South African season with the Cheetahs program, where he will be training with current South Africa U20 scrumhalf Revan Kruger.

This is the first big step toward a pro contract for de Haas, who has been eyeing a contract in France as well as opportunities in South Africa. His father, Pieter, has been his coach with the Junior Stormers and was a professional rugby player there before moving to Arkansas. De Haas has said repeatedly that his plan is to represent the USA in rugby, and he has already done that on all age-grade levels, serving in leadership roles at every step.

http://www.florugby.com/article/58557-de-haas-to-cheetahs-academy-in-south-africa


Looking forward to seeing his continued development. Quality 9s are in extremely short supply here.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 23, 2017 8:02 pm 
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oxxnyTJpFWI

Anyone follow this podcast at all?

Seems pretty decent.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:56 am 
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For the first time since 1986, the U.S. men won't play in the Soccer World Cup.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:34 am 
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Flyin Ryan wrote:
For the first time since 1986, the U.S. men won't play in the Soccer World Cup.


Weak.

Ah well. Go Iceland.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 11, 2017 5:00 am 
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Geez, they lost to Trinidad ...

Mind you, the Aussies now have to play Honduras.

I'm sure they're an okay-ish team, but if we can't beat them the boys don't deserve to keep playing on.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 15, 2017 8:12 pm 
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The Varsity Cup is dead and college rugby is basically re-unified. Cal, BYU, St Mary's, Life and anyone any good except for Kutztown will be in the playoffs. Should be the best and most competitive playoff in the history of American rugby.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 15, 2017 10:01 pm 
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goeagles wrote:
The Varsity Cup is dead and college rugby is basically re-unified. Cal, BYU, St Mary's, Life and anyone any good except for Kutztown will be in the playoffs. Should be the best and most competitive playoff in the history of American rugby.

:thumbup:

What's the story on Kutztown?


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 15, 2017 10:14 pm 
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Was looking for a story on he Varsity Cup, couldn't find it, but found this. What do we make of this?

http://www.mercurynews.com/2017/10/02/v ... ating-hit/


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 12:35 am 
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goeagles wrote:
The Varsity Cup is dead and college rugby is basically re-unified. Cal, BYU, St Mary's, Life and anyone any good except for Kutztown will be in the playoffs. Should be the best and most competitive playoff in the history of American rugby.


GOE, do you have the announcement where Cal is out of VC ?
I like the teams you listed as a final four. Watch out for Navy, Hickey is an excellent coach. Went by the Navy-AF game in Annapolis.
Tremendous facility to say the least.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 2:42 am 
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appears to be this article https://www.florugby.com/articles/60143 ... ig-changes

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Today, October 15, is the deadline for D1A college teams to declare their intention to participate in the spring playoffs.

If any team makes that declaration and backs out of the playoffs, it faces serious penalties going forward. Regardless, declaring for the postseason doesn't mean you get to play in the postseason. You've still got to win games and qualify, either by winning your conference, or being ranked highly enough to get an at-large bid.

Why Do Some Teams Not Declare?

The biggest reason is 7s. With there being 7s series and 7s championships in the spring, some teams, and entire conferences, like to play their 15s in the fall and 7s in the spring and don't like the interruption.

But there has also been that little thing called the Varsity Cup. A few teams have tried to play in both the VC and D1A, but for the most part college rugby programs have decided on one or the other.

But ... About the Varsity Cup

The Varsity Cup lost its partnership with United World Sports and with NBC, and then various coaches who were in leadership roles within the Varsity Cup group have stepped away, or stepped down, or moved their teams to D1A.

The upshot? The Varsity Cup is basically no more. The teams you expect to see participate aren't going to participate. Most are looking to be in the D1A postseason. Dartmouth is going to declare D1AA and look to be in the D1AA spring playoffs. Even more telling, Navy has declared for D1A inclusion, and Navy was a Varsity Cup stalwart for years. Even more telling than that, Cal has declared for the D1A postseason. No Cal, no Varsity Cup.

So Who Has Declared?

As of last count, for the 16-team playoff, 44 teams have declared their intention to play in the spring D1A postseason. This list includes exactly zero Liberty teams (as expected, the Liberty teams said they would only want to play in a fall league season).

The list includes everyone in the Rugby East except Kutztown (which loves its 7s), everyone in the Mid-South (including 2016-17 Varsity Cup finalists Arkansas State), everyone in the PAC (including Cal), and everyone in the Red River and the Rocky Mountain. Four teams from the Big 10 (Indiana, Ohio State, Wisconsin, Michigan State) have declared, and four teams from the California, including defending D1A champion Saint Mary's.

There are five independent D1A teams, including BYU and Utah Valley, which are listed as affiliates to the Rocky Mountain, and Navy, which is now listed as an affiliate to the Rugby East. Those three, plus the other two, Central Washington and Grand Canyon, all have said they will play in the postseason.

The Upshot

No more Varsity Cup. D1A is basically unified. The 16 best rugby programs (with perhaps the odd exception) will play off over four weeks for a national title. Today is the last day to say you're in for the postseason.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 4:32 pm 
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Old Man by the Sea wrote:
goeagles wrote:
The Varsity Cup is dead and college rugby is basically re-unified. Cal, BYU, St Mary's, Life and anyone any good except for Kutztown will be in the playoffs. Should be the best and most competitive playoff in the history of American rugby.


GOE, do you have the announcement where Cal is out of VC ?
I like the teams you listed as a final four. Watch out for Navy, Hickey is an excellent coach. Went by the Navy-AF game in Annapolis.
Tremendous facility to say the least.


My source was the FloRugby (aka Goff) article Ryan posted. Hickey is a good coach. Lindenwood, Penn State, Arkansas State and Central Washington also all have good programs that could surprise one of those top 4.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 4:42 pm 
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Flyin Ryan wrote:
goeagles wrote:
The Varsity Cup is dead and college rugby is basically re-unified. Cal, BYU, St Mary's, Life and anyone any good except for Kutztown will be in the playoffs. Should be the best and most competitive playoff in the history of American rugby.

:thumbup:

What's the story on Kutztown?


I guess they focus on 7s in the spring. They're a good program but wouldn't be a real contender for the national championship in 15s, anyway. They lost to Penn St by 30 a couple weeks ago.

Flyin Ryan wrote:
Was looking for a story on he Varsity Cup, couldn't find it, but found this. What do we make of this?

http://www.mercurynews.com/2017/10/02/v ... ating-hit/


No strong opinion from me on it. It's a terrible situation and a tragedy. I do think it's pretty shitty if neither the coach at the time or the player have reached out to him or Cal. What do you think?


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 5:13 pm 
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Agree on that. The parents and Clark are upset there was no further disciplinary action against the Arkansas State player. I'm looking at the still shot and video they posted, and while it is illegal play, it's on the level of referee handling it in the game, not the union need to suspend him for months. Was a freak accident, the guy didn't intend to paralyze him or do something like throwing him in the air and driving his head into the ground.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 9:58 pm 
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Sorry if this has been covered elsewhere in the thread: how does everyone watch games? I'm generally ruling out streams because I find them so unreliable, often don't work on an ipad etc. I want to watch english premiership, Rugby Champions cup, AIs, summer tours, and 6N. As far as I can tell, my options are:

(1) annual subscription to Rugby Pass for $159 (but it worries me to commit that long; I've already had a couple issues connecting through a VPN, and don't want to pay that and then a couple of weeks later find I can't use it any longer)

(2) Or a combination of
- NBC Gold rugby pass for prem and 6N
- ESPN for RC (though they only show 1-3 games a weekend
- not sure about summer tours and AIs - I think ESPN show some, I might get a month pass to the other Rugby Pass
and I think this is marginally cheaper than option 1

Am I missing any easy way to get all of these that doesn't carry the risk of my VPN getting cut off?

cheers


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:42 am 
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Houston SaberCats
October 17 2017


Houston SaberCats - MLR League
©
Three BC Premier League Teams to Challenge MLR League Houston SaberCats in January

Three BC Premier League sides will visit Houston in January for matches with the MLR team Houston SaberCats (formerly Strikers). The Houston Strikers have relabelled themselves as the Sabercats, there was an original Houston Strikers rugby club formed in 1974 and facebook searches went to that club which may have caused some confusion. No confusion now as the SaberCats announced the name change and their schedule and a new website.

The Seattle Saracens, UBCOB Ravens and James Bay will make the trip on consecutive weekends in January.

HOUSTON SCHEDULE (as of Oct 17th 2017)
Jan 6th Seattle Saracens
Jan 13th UBCOB Ravens
Jan 20th James Bay
Feb 3rd Capital Selects
Feb 10th Chicago Lions
Feb 24th New Orleans Gold
Mar 3rd Ontario Arrows

All matches are to be played at the Constellation Field in Sugar Land, Texas. The stadium has a capacity of 7,500 and is home to the Sugar Land Skeeters, who play in the Atlantic Baseball League. Former Seattle Saracens head coach Justin Fitzpatrick is head coach of the Houston Sabercats, Matt Trouville a standout for the Saracens also went south and is their Academy Director.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 25, 2017 2:39 am 
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DT, I'm thinking of submitting an article of all the amateur hour bullshit and general cheating of player registration rules my club has dealt with this fall being in the Division 4 Buckeye League from all the teams we've played.

By the way, on the list of idiotic things you can do on a Facebook page, don't advertise and put up a picture of your club's president who is a registered player for you played for another club when they won a game that counts in standings in a romp. And that's not the worst thing from this season in a longshot.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 05, 2017 7:30 pm 
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Anyone get the AEG survey? Thought it was well done with respect to places they are considering and international teams we would like to see.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 06, 2017 8:09 pm 
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Balls Out! wrote:
Sorry if this has been covered elsewhere in the thread: how does everyone watch games? I'm generally ruling out streams because I find them so unreliable, often don't work on an ipad etc. I want to watch english premiership, Rugby Champions cup, AIs, summer tours, and 6N. As far as I can tell, my options are:

(1) annual subscription to Rugby Pass for $159 (but it worries me to commit that long; I've already had a couple issues connecting through a VPN, and don't want to pay that and then a couple of weeks later find I can't use it any longer)

(2) Or a combination of
- NBC Gold rugby pass for prem and 6N
- ESPN for RC (though they only show 1-3 games a weekend
- not sure about summer tours and AIs - I think ESPN show some, I might get a month pass to the other Rugby Pass
and I think this is marginally cheaper than option 1

Am I missing any easy way to get all of these that doesn't carry the risk of my VPN getting cut off?

cheers
anyone? anyone? Bueller? anyone?


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 12:55 am 
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Support my club as we qualified for the Midwest Championship Final.

http://www.news-sentinel.com/sports/top ... ips-match/


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2017 2:22 am 
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Fort Wayne 25, Iowa City Ducks 22.

We're Midwest Division III champions and will be in the national quarterfinals next May.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2017 4:36 am 
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Balls Out! wrote:
Balls Out! wrote:
Sorry if this has been covered elsewhere in the thread: how does everyone watch games? I'm generally ruling out streams because I find them so unreliable, often don't work on an ipad etc. I want to watch english premiership, Rugby Champions cup, AIs, summer tours, and 6N. As far as I can tell, my options are:

(1) annual subscription to Rugby Pass for $159 (but it worries me to commit that long; I've already had a couple issues connecting through a VPN, and don't want to pay that and then a couple of weeks later find I can't use it any longer)

(2) Or a combination of
- NBC Gold rugby pass for prem and 6N
- ESPN for RC (though they only show 1-3 games a weekend
- not sure about summer tours and AIs - I think ESPN show some, I might get a month pass to the other Rugby Pass
and I think this is marginally cheaper than option 1

Am I missing any easy way to get all of these that doesn't carry the risk of my VPN getting cut off?

cheers
anyone? anyone? Bueller? anyone?


Apparently RugbyPass is pretty solid, great quality, reliable, etc., and I think they have the comps you’re interested in. I avoid European rugby like the plague (6N aside) so WatchESPN does it for me, though I think they do carry whatever they call the Heineken Cup now. They also have pretty much all tour matches live, or at least all the ones featuring the home nations (however I did see Fiji-Italy on it yesterday).

Try Vipbox.me for streams though. Usually very good quality streams nowadays and I have no trouble with it on my iPhone. Gonna be hit and miss for Prem matches I imagine but you’ll find every international there for sure.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 7:31 pm 
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More shameless self-promotion. We made the morning news!

http://wane.com/2017/11/16/fort-wayne-r ... pionshiop/

Pretty much riding this championship for all its worth as far as club exposure, sponsor exposure. We're going to take a tour of it around to various places including our sponsors. One thing for other clubs is it pays to build relationships with individuals or companies so when you accomplish something, you already have that groundwork complete. Through some player connections we've had some companies congratulate us on their digital billboards. A club supporter got the mayor of the city to record a short video pre-championship match.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 7:49 pm 
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Nice work FR and congrats.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 11:07 pm 
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Flyin Ryan wrote:
More shameless self-promotion. We made the morning news!

http://wane.com/2017/11/16/fort-wayne-r ... pionshiop/

Pretty much riding this championship for all its worth as far as club exposure, sponsor exposure. We're going to take a tour of it around to various places including our sponsors. One thing for other clubs is it pays to build relationships with individuals or companies so when you accomplish something, you already have that groundwork complete. Through some player connections we've had some companies congratulate us on their digital billboards. A club supporter got the mayor of the city to record a short video pre-championship match.


:thumbup:


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2017 6:26 am 
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https://assets.usarugby.org/docs/minute ... 10-nyc.pdf

Minutes from last month's USA Rugby Board of Directors meeting.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2018 2:53 am 
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Watched Division IA semifinal from CBS Sports this weekend. Saw Life destroy Penn State 69-12, with 5 of those 12 the very end of the game.

How did Penn State beat BYU in Provo?


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2018 3:38 am 
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Flyin Ryan wrote:
Watched Division IA semifinal from CBS Sports this weekend. Saw Life destroy Penn State 69-12, with 5 of those 12 the very end of the game.

How did Penn State beat BYU in Provo?


BYU is down a little bit this year and Penn State is good enough to pull an upset on their day. Have also heard that BYU's program may be getting a little less school support than it previously did.


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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2018 3:19 am 
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http://www.rugbytoday.com/college/cliff ... -manifesto

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Cliff Notes: College Rugby Manifesto

By Pat Clifton | 04.30.18

What a wild few weeks that’s been. Hashtag campaigns were formed, conspiracy plots cooked up, and lots and lots of discussion about what happened, why it happened, and whether or not it should have happened.

I am going to weigh in on all of the above, and I have new information and insight to bring to the discussion. More importantly, though, we’re going to get past the symptoms of the issue at hand and attack the core ailment.

Iowa Central and the CRC

Iowa Central Community College participated in and won the Heart of America Classic, a tournament I ran (and broke my leg running, slipping in rare April snow after day one. This accident, and the metal plates, wire and 14 screws required to surgically repair the injury, are largely why you haven’t heard from me on these topics until now).

The Tritons are really good. If you’re surprised a community college team in its third year of existence was able to beat Clemson, Davenport, AIC, etc. en route to the title, it’s only because you haven’t been paying attention.

A year after mowing through the competition all the way to the NSCRO Challenge Cup final, where it lost to another scholarship-toting, coach-paying, varsity program in Bethel, ICCC moved to the NSCRO Champions Cup division. This season, the Tritons have hung 100-plus points on seven different NSCRO opponents, including against three of their four playoff foes. Sunday, they won the NSCRO 15s title 64-11.

They stepped out against really good DI competition three times, beating Lindenwood-Belleville (the team I used to coach). They also played the other Lindenwood, yeah, that one that hung more than 80 on Red River champ Texas A&M in the D1A round of 16, to a 31-point game. That's only 10 points worse than the Lions beat St. Mary's by in the quarterfinals.

It's a better score line than the following D1 programs were able to notch against the Lions this year – Texas A&M, LSU, Lindenwood-Belleville, Delaware, Clemson and Davenport. And they played Arkansas State to within 20… in Jonesboro… twenty!

No, Iowa Central isn’t the little team that could. It isn’t some miraculous Cinderella story. It’s the same story that was told at Life, Davenport, Lindenwood, AIC, Wheeling Jesuit, Notre Dame College, etc. – put resources like scholarships, access to facilities, paid coaching and full-time training into a program, and have it play against a whole bunch of teams who don’t enjoy the same frills, and the cream will rise quickly. It’s a proven template.

That’s not taking anything away from what head coach Brent Nelson has done at ICCC. In fact, if anything, what he’s accomplished has been more impressive. It wasn’t the school that decided it needed a rugby program to boost enrollment and sought out a coach to run it. It was Nelson, who played basketball at ICCC and was employed on campus already, who convinced administration to go down that road. Kudos.

ICCC’s rise is also an example of another story we’ve heard before – get a whole bunch of players from tier-one countries who have been playing since they were tykes, and pit them against teams largely made up of American kids who have no more than a couple of years of experience. Worked for Arkansas State. Worked for Lindenwood. Worked for UCLA. Worked for Mary Washington. Works for virtually everyone.

Yes, the majority of Iowa Central’s overall roster is from Iowa. On game day, though, the starting 15 usually isn’t. If you’re reading this and you’ve watched more film on Iowa Central this season than me, chances are you either attend ICCC, live in or near Ft. Dodge, or you’re related to someone that does.

So, either take my word for it or sort through the tapes and rosters yourselves, but when the Tritons play someone they might lose to, like a Lindenwood or Arkansas State, you could use one hand to count the American starters and often be left with spare fingers. When they line up against a team they have to work hard to only hang 60 points on, as opposed to 160, there will be a much more American side on the field.

This is not an insult. It is not an attack. It is just the truth.

Back to the story. Before the tournament, heck, before Iowa Central loaded its bus for the four-hour trip (a light commute for Midwestern collegiate rugby) to the tournament, I personally called and made Nelson aware that executives of United World Sports, owners and operators of the CRC, deemed the team ineligible for the CRC because it was a two-year school. Nelson was obviously chaffed, but understood.

ICCC was allowed to come play in the Heart of America knowing that if it won, it wouldn’t qualify. The rest is history, and now the Tritons will continue steamrolling their way toward an NSCRO 7s championship this spring after slaughtering everyone en route to a 15s crown.

The D1A Bracket

What you already know: semifinal and final venues were set way in advance for broadcast purposes. The campuses of St. Mary’s and Life, who have met in every D1A final since the inception of the Varsity Cup, were chosen, as the Gaels and Running Eagles were favored to return to at least the semis, assuring some kind of crowd for the broadcasted matches.

Lindenwood upset St. Mary’s, and that would have sent Cal to Life, leaving LU and Penn State to meet in a presumably empty stadium really close to Cal. We can squabble about the rank of the reasons, but money and concerns over empty seats for a broadcasted final led D1A’s executive committee to switch the pairings in the hopes that Cal would be able to draw some paying fans to the Moraga semifinal. (Nevermind the fact that the Bears didn’t have a great draw in a similar NorCal neutral venue a year ago for the Varsity Cup final, prompting NBC to drop the competition.)

What you may or may not know, though, is this – part of the financial burden for the D1A’s final three games is a knock-on from the downfall of Rugby International Marketing, USA Rugby’s subsidiary which has seen its CEO and numerous USA Rugby and RIM board members resign in embarrassment.

RIM signed an agreement with D1A and was charged with putting on its postseason for 2018 and 2019. The Rugby Channel, one of RIM’s failing properties which will either be bought by Flo (negotiations currently ongoing) or close its doors, would air the first two rounds, and RIM would pay for CBS Sports Network to air the semis and final, as well as sell sponsorship for the broadcasts to help cover the costs.

RIM failed to do the latter and is in danger of not being able to fulfill its promise on the former. So saying every penny is paramount for D1A right now, as it might have to foot the production of the last two rounds largely on its own, is an understatement.

Should things happen like this?

Of course not. No one is arguing brackets ought to be reworked mid-competition for any reason. But this is how things currently work in college rugby. These are not isolated incidents. And the decision makers in these incidents, the D1A executive committee and United World Sports’ current executives, aren’t alone.

The CRC has changed its bracket, too. It was a handful of years ago. The exact particulars escape me, but the gist is this – Cal and either Life or Kutztown were to be on one side of the bracket, and UCLA and either Life or Kutztown were to be on the other side. This meant a potential final of Life versus Kutztown – two very good rugby programs from schools virtually anonymous to the casual sports fan NBC and UWS were hoping might be channel surfing that day.

Dan Lyle, the head of UWS’ competitions at the time, made the decision to switch things around to all-but-assure Cal or UCLA, at least one marketable brand, was in the final. Lyle is no longer with UWS – he now runs AEG Rugby.

What’s worse than changing a bracket mid-competition or telling a team before it competes in a qualifier that it isn’t eligible? How about staging a 7s national championship by publishing a whole list of “potential qualifiers”, allowing the entire season to play out without actually acknowledging which tournaments were qualifiers, seeding the tournament, playing it to its completion, and still never divulging publicly which teams qualified automatically and which were invited on an at-large basis, leaving everyone (including those who were selected and those who weren’t) scratching their heads. That was how USA Rugby ran its D1 men’s 7s championship last year.

Another potential example of “worse” is seating the committee which will choose the four at-large bids to the playoffs with conference reps from the four leagues who stand to benefit by having their runners-up receive bids, then having that exact scenario play out. Literally, one of the conference representatives was sitting on the small committee deciding whether the team he coached would get a bid, and they got the bid. This is exactly what happened with USA Rugby’s fall D1AA playoffs this season.

The Root Issue

All of the aforementioned are symptoms. The real problem is this – there’s very little money in college rugby. We all want robust, democratic, united knockout championships played in successive weeks. We don’t want to go back to two matches in a weekend. We want travel to be sensible, and when it’s not, to be subsidized. No team should not be able to participate in a postseason because it’s too expensive. And we want to be able to watch it all on our computers, phones or televisions, but preferably televisions, without paying extra for it.

Simply put – that’s impossible. We can’t afford it. USA Rugby can’t afford it. Individual teams can’t afford it. The events themselves don’t turn enough profit (insert crying-while-laughing emoji) to make it work. The only way it becomes a realistic possibility is if commercial sponsors swoop in to subsidize costs, or a wealthy individual or commercial third-party opens its checkbook. Really, you need at least two of the three.

USA Rugby has never been the answer, isn’t currently the answer, and never will be the answer. Not by any name – DI, College Premier Division, D1A, RIM or The Rugby Channel. USA Rugby has too many mouths to feed – high performance, member services, governance, youth, etc. – to ever give college rugby the attention it needs. USA Rugby [read RIM for as long as that’s a thing] has to go out and find sponsors for all of the national teams, events and other programs. The colleges are an afterthought.

College rugby, if it’s ever going to realize its potential, if we’re ever going to really know whether we can leverage college brands to drive the game to the masses and the bank, needs to be selfish. It needs to worry first and foremost about itself. It needs someone, or something employing multiple someones, to act solely on its behalf.

And, as we’ve learned, it can’t be simply thrown to the coaches to figure out. Who made all the decisions for the now-defunct Varsity Cup? The coaches, and ultimately, it was certain coaches who couldn’t play nice with other coaches that led to the competition’s demise. Who populates the D1A executive committee which signed a deal with RIM, is left holding the bag after RIM (predictably?) couldn’t hold up its end of the bargain, and ended up changing its final four around? Coaches. Who populated that self-serving D1AA committee? Coaches.

This isn’t an indictment on coaches. It’s just an acknowledgment that their expertise is just that – coaching. It’s also a nod to the fact that because of the very nature of their role as coaches, they will always carry an inherent bias. Coaches should be valuable resources, they should have the head seat at the table, but they can’t occupy every seat.

What college rugby needs is its own governing body whose mission is to grow, govern, administrate and commercialize college rugby. It needs to be run by people who don’t have a stake in the wins and losses. Those people and that organization need to have laser-focus on the college game, and the college game alone. Until then, and only then, can we expect to move out of the muck and into the sun.


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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2018 11:06 pm 
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Ryan, I read that article and Clifton makes some very good points. Just shows you how bad of shape USA Rugby must be in.


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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2018 12:13 am 
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goeagles wrote:
Flyin Ryan wrote:
Watched Division IA semifinal from CBS Sports this weekend. Saw Life destroy Penn State 69-12, with 5 of those 12 the very end of the game.

How did Penn State beat BYU in Provo?


BYU is down a little bit this year and Penn State is good enough to pull an upset on their day. Have also heard that BYU's program may be getting a little less school support than it previously did.

Islanders converting in lower numbers now that DNA testing swows the Lamanite trope to be utter hogwash?


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