I count playing BYU Rugby as one of my choicest experiences. Coach Smyth is a
no-nonsense Irishman who, just seems to draw out a players' best effort. The
caliber of team members was also unmatched. on a squad of 25, 24 were returned
missionaries, 17-ish were Eagle Scouts, 14 were married, and several had
children. A large number of the guys were grad school bound, and Rich Kafusi
was in grad school.We had to train around our other commitments.
Marlin Green and I got up every day at 5am to train before work and school.
Most of our road trips involved flying down the highway with everyone in back
studying.We all took turns imposing on family and friends for a
place to crash and eat while on road trips. In fact, some of our loudest
supporters attended away games.I am glad to see the development of
the program and the relatively huge commitment BYU is making to Rugby. Unlike
many traditional intercollegiate sports, Rugby has a active world-wide reach.
It is awesome to see guys coming from all over the world to play rugby for, and
study at BYU!Don Crawford, BS '94
I love watching Rugby---great sport!!!
Play for the love of it. He and other rugby lads are The Men.
I love it how BYU and Cal are on a different level than the rest of the league
Rugby has got to be the toughest, craziest, manliest game invented. I'm super
impressed with these guys. Keep up the good work!
Here we have real sport, what "sports" are meant to be, according to
the dictionary."Physical activity that is governed by a set of
rules or customs and often engaged in competitively.A particular form of
this activity.An activity involving physical exertion and skill that is
governed by a set of rules or customs and often undertaken competitively.An active pastime; recreation."Notice, not a single word
about fame or money--common contaminants of sport.
Wait a minute - School first, then rugby? I thought there were supposed to be 4
other things in front of rugby. You mean you can put your sport higher up on
the list without compromising your morals or your religion? Strange. Love the news about BYU Rugby. Becoming a fan of the game.
What a great article! I especially loved re-reading the scores, especially the
40-22 score! I wonder how the decision was made to have the title game in Utah?
the state of utah is a great rugby power. i'm not sure how national rankings
work all around the country, but one publication i looked up once a while back
had the formula they used to determine national rankings. they had each region
of the country and a number from 1-5 given to that region based on rugby
strength and the state of utah was actually it's very own region and received a
rating of 5.byu is the flagship rugby program in the state, but my
utes are no slouches either. byu did dominate them this year though. utah has
great athletes but byu just has a better team and it showed at rio tinto this
year. utah's lost twice this year, to the Y and cal.did anyone
watch the collegiate 7's tournament last year? it was an exciting tournament
and it was an awesome finals match where the utes beat heavily favored ca to
bring home the 7's championship. it's too bad that the tournament is a
saturday-sunday deal because i think we all know the cougars would have an
amazing showing there.
Love it! Cougs are a well rounded program, striving for excellence in all they
do. I haven't heard much about Utah's Rugby team. Maybe hedgehog
will give us an update.
Please stop referring to Highland Rugby as having anything to do with Highland
High School - the two used to be affiliated but have had no affiliation with
each other for over 8 years. Highland is a U-19 club team, just like United.
More of a question than a comment.....I was wondering if any other schools offer
scholarships to rugby players? Amazing we can compete and win the championship
and not have this be a scholarship recognized sport. I love playing rugby, but
it is a serious sport that needs to be recognized.
@seerI would love to see BYU make rugby a scholarship sport but they
cannot due to title 9 restrictions. To do it they would also have to add another
womans sport to equalize the scholarships between men and women. My guess is
that they don't think they can afford to support two more scholarship athletic
sports which is what they would have to do. So while the rugby team
is obviously deserving of being elevated to a scholarship sport it will not
happen until they can also afford to add another womens sport at the same
time.That is just a reality of how our country is run these days.
Rio Tinto, that was a surprise to have it in Utah. The championship games
usually held in Stanford just like College World Series in Ohmaha, Neb. How will
Cal fare in high altitude?For Women Rugby, will they play
Friday/Saturday format this time around?
i thought byu did have a women's rugby team. didn't they make headlines last
year for not playing in the ncaa rugby tournament because of a sunday game or
was it another team sport? they were seeded pretty high and were a favorite to
win the nc too if i remember correctly.
@Dew CougarsIs the BYU womens rugby team similarly successful? If
they play both championships here is there a chance both could be playing for
Cal was just downgraded from a Varisty sport back to club, so I don't know if
they can still give money or not. Utah has out-of-state tuition waivers to
offer (out of state players pay in-state cost). Kutztown, who has a pretty good
rugby team, does have some rugby scholarships to give, and I think maybe Life
University on Georgia (also a very good team) can give some money. But
Duckhunter is right, Title IX keeps rugby from being a scholarship sport for the
Nothing but respect for these guys! Studs one and all!
Woman's Rugby is also a club sport--not NCAA. If it had been an NCAA tournament
they would have had to change it to a Saturday game for the (BYU Rule). Since
it is under USA Rugby they didn't have to change it for them. The women are
also on track to win a NC this year with a promise made that the tournament will
work with them.
Love and miss my rugby playing days at BYU. In fact, now as an alum I can't
recall much what was taught to me in my classes but I do remember vividly all
the fun trips, games, dinners, hang-outs, church, team devotionals, singing, etc
with my team mates as a player. I met some of the finest exemplary men in my
life through BYU Rugby. I don't miss running and training till I died, however I
miss the faces of all the players, coaches, trainers, and all those who
supported us. Those experiences will live with me forever.It taught
me that even though I'm from the islands with my own culture but that at BYU
there's one culture that stands supreme which bonded us together in that of the
"gospel culture". BYU Rugby Forever! BYU BS 2007, MPA 2010
Liberal Democrats have done their best to destroy college sports. Wrestling,
which was once a very successful sport at BYU, is long gone. Rugby clearly
deserves to be a varsity sport as does hockey, but then the school would have to
add more women's sports to keep balance. Women's sports, while very nice and
worthwhile, produce no revenue for the school. Maybe the school needs to have a
special fund raising effort to establish a financial base to support men's
rugby, wrestling, and hockey while adding women's sports such as rifle or some
winter sports? The men on the Rugby team deserve a lot of credit for what they
I love rugby and have been a big fan since living in Australia. I would love for
it to become more mainstream in the states. One way I think to do that is rugby
league. I would much rather watch a league game then the union version that is
played by the allblacks and in the colleges. The down system in league makes it
a little more easier for the common football fan to understand it and personally
more enjoyable and faster paced. I do wish the scrums were a little more
important in league but am willing to sacrafice that for the rest of the game.
When I went back to Australia last year I made it to 2 NRL games. For
those who are familiar with it you cant beat the Origin series. GO BLUES!!!!
Some of my best memories are of playing for the Cougars in the late 70s and
early 80s. The movie Invictus referred to Rugby as a hooligan's game played by
gentleman. So true. Especially at BYU. Amazing group of guys, from all over
the world, just like nowadays. 30 years ago we lost to Cal in quarter finals,
and they went on to win the championship - thanks mostly to a kicker who went on
to play in the NFL. (If a try a been worth 5 pts like it is now we would have
won that game!) Thankfully BYU finally got the monkey off their back and beat
Cal for the championship in 2009. Let's do it again this year Cougars!!
I played Rugby in high school and loved it. It was the first year there was a
team in my high school and and we weren't great but it was so much fun. I
remember watching Highland BEAT BYU in a scrimmage that year. I'm glad to see
that the sport has progressed in Utah.
This is the kind of thing that I want to see more of on BYU TV. I know they will
show baseball and other sports on BYU TV. It seems like they will show one game
but how about the whole season of Rugby. Throw in Lacrosse also. I want to see
all of these sports that aren't shown very often.
mkSdd3I was thinking the exact same thing! Let's see some Rugby.
(But please have commentators explaining things along the way).
Just out of curiosity, how much is each athletic scholarship at BYU? (I know
that to endow one costs $250,000). Also, does anyone know how many endowment
scholarships the Y currently has?Incidentally, the women's rugby
team is a club sport, so let's not use my question as a Title IX soap box
Fun to read all the comments and know that there are BYU Rugby fans all around
the nation!FYI, the Women's Cougar Rugby team is currently #2 in the
nation and won their Sweet 16 match of the D-1 National Championship today,
beating UCLA 31-10!!!Women's College Div. 1 Rugby has had a similar
BYU-Cal match-up in the form of Stanford & Penn State for the past several
years. This year the BYU Women beat Stanford to advance to the Sweet 16 and now
look to have their best shot at getting to the Final ...My friends,
we have a BYU Rugby Dynasty in the making ... not only for the men, as the
record states, but also for the women who are improving as a team with each
progressive season. I invite Cougar fans near and far to heed the
call of "BYU Rugby Forever"!!!
If the mission of BYU sports is to reach millions and elevate the awareness of
the church, rugby might have a better chance of doing that than football or
@cactusflatsThat is a really good point. Rugby is an international
sport and the opportunity to play it should attract both men and women to BYU,
especially considering the quality of both programs. The games would also
attract viewers to BYUtv internationally which of course would make them aware
of the station and more likely to check back in to see other sports broadcast on
the channel as well as some of its standard programming.That would
seem to fit in perfectly with the stated goals of the program, the school, and
Let's not get to excited about pushing rugby into a mainstream varsity sport.
They have a little more independence as clubs, and it keeps the game
pure...players play because they want to, although some players do get their
tuition paid for (don't believe the headline; there are players on the BYU squad
who are getting scholarships in other areas that wouldn't if they weren't rugby
players). But all in all, club keeps Rugby from becoming what's wrong with
college sports. It's a wonderful, violent, athletic game...and the players share
a great camaraderie. They're not playing to get pro offers, they are playing
because they love it. Best game in college sports.
Can not wait for the Rugby World Cup to start this year! Dangerous, yes.. but
definitely not an unglamorous and obscure sport.
Rugger... now we are talking about a real sport.