@SandyclawsSay what you want about USA Rugby. I agree that USAR
could do a better job with college rugby and many other aspects of the American
game. They aren't even close to perfect. To improve the governing body of
American rugby we all need to work together. USA Rugby belongs to us, the
players, coaches and fans of American rugby. Just keep this in
mind, if it wasn't for the work that USA Rugby has done over the decades we
probably wouldn't be having this discussion today. They have, at the very
least, gotten us to the point where we have tens of thousands of kids playing
rugby. Thousands of high school and U-19 teams playing, hundreds of colleges
and universities and hundreds of clubs. We don't need to recreate the
wheel, we just need to improve the wheel.
Well, if that's the case, BYU and Cal can both just declare themselves
National Champions every year without playing a game. They aren't the only
elite college teams in America anymore. In sports, you have to prove yourself
every game, every season. You don't get to be the National Champion by
simply saying you are. If you believe that your team is the best in America
then you should make sure that your coach and your administration know that you
want them to compete with all the best teams in America so your championship is
meaningful. I'm not saying that Cal or BYU couldn't win
the National Championship this year. They both are elite. The problem is that
BYU and Cal chose not to compete with the other top teams this year. The top
teams need to be reunified in one competition. Cal beat St. Mary's this
spring by 10 points and St. Mary's beat Cal in the fall. That's
hardly a dominating performance. Cal, BYU, St. Mary's, Life, and Arkansas
State are very competitive and would make interesting pairings. The Varsity Cup
is harming college rugby.
Propblast 1 - Going to a National Championship Rugby match with Cal and BYU but
without USA Rugby is like going hunting with a rifle and a knife but without an
The problems I have with that idea are:1) The issue isn't that
USA Rugby puts on a bad tournament, it's that BYU and Cal wanted a bigger
slice of the revenues from the championship game. If the top 20 or 30 teams
work together and negotiate with USAR they can get the best terms for all
parties involved. The fact is that even the revenue from a National
Championship game is minimal considering that it can cost around $30,000 to fly
a team cross country and house and feed them. I believe that by working
cooperatively we can improve the quality of the college game and generate better
revenues.2) The Varsity Cup final has never been in question. It
was always going to be Cal v BYU. The other "top quality" teams
didn't even present a threat to beat either of them. No team, group of 8
teams, or rugby blog has the authority to claim a National Championship. It has
to be won on the field. The Championships that Cal and BYU are always crowing
about are the USA Rugby National Championship. Nothing has changed about that.
May 18th will determine who wins it.
Won't argue with Propblast that having all the best teams play in the same
tournament is the best result, but don't understand why that needs to be in
USA Rugby's tournament. If USA Rugby can't put on a tournament that
appeals to the top teams (and is financially unsound) and the Varsity Cup can,
what's wrong with expanding the Varsity Cup field expand to 16 teams and
make it the national championship tournament.If Propblast can't
agree to that proposal, I'll have to agree there's some ulterior
motive to his/her comments.The way the field stand now, the Varsity
Cup certainly has as good a claim of crowning the National Champion as any BCS
football championship game.
The argument is a valid one and is very similar to the BCS which we all know
very well. The best teams may not play against each other each year, and the
fact that a tourney doesn't exist yet,a true champion is still a popularity
vote. It's getting better, but in support of a single group of teams, it
would be nice if the best played the best on both sides.
They left because they wanted a bigger cut of the gate revenue from the 2011 and
2012 national championship game. Did they do anything to negotiate this with
USA Rugby? I don't know, there's never been a report written about
that. I believe that if the top 20 or 30 programs joined together, perhaps as a
unified Division 1-A, they could successfully negotiate with USA Rugby to make
changes that would improve the college game and share any revenues equally. If
USA Rugby doesn't work with them, they could hold the playoffs or national
championship at a venue of their choice and bypass USAR. My point is by working
together a lot more can be accomplished. Twenty or Thirty teams have more power
than 8 or 9 teams. We need to keep the best teams competing with each other.
It will inspire other universities to go with a varsity approach and will allow
USA National Team and All American Selectors to see the top talent play top
talent. It will also improve the marketability of college rugby to attract
sponsors and sport media outlets to cover the game.
Propblast1"I read a lot of rugby news..."Then
you should be well aware of why California left USA Rugby and why BYU followed
their lead this year.Unless USA Rugby starts listening to and
addressing the concerns of top programs like Cal and BYU, expect more top
programs to join Cal and BYU.
@TLHThat's exactly why Cal and BYU should be competing against
the best college teams. There are only a few teams in the elite level and it
would be much more interesting to see them play each other instead of running up
huge scores on teams of lesser ability. Exactly the reason why the Varsity Cup
is bad for American rugby.
I need to correct myself. BYU is just 11-0 vs college teams. Cal is 21-0,
including a 176-0 drubbing of Stanford. OUCH!!
I read a lot of rugby news but I missed any that said the Varsity Cup crowns the
national champion. Just remember, both of the blogs that report on college
rugby have their own motivation and allegiances. Also, both blogs are penned by
only a few people, they don't speak for American rugby. There simply is
nothing that beats head to head competition.
Cal head coach Jack Clark's comments on the Varsity Cup National
Championship:The Varsity Cup is being billed in the rugby press as
the consensus national collegiate championship. Is that a fair description?"Probably fair but we can only speak for ourselves. To us it's
the national championship, nothing more or less. We acknowledge there is a
second championship being contested, but this other competition isn't
comprised of the winners of 31 of the 33 national championships like the Varsity
Cup. I'll let others enjoy the debate, but on the Varsity Cup campuses,
there is no debate."
Whatever the motivation is for propblast, I do agree that things would be better
if all of the top teams were in one play-off. Maybe the two champions could do
an AND-1 game to settle it on the pitch. BYU has played 22 games this year
I believe, undefeated against other collegiate teams. I think Cal is 21-0 this
year. Bottom line, you need BYU vs Cal sometime in the year to know who's
the best, and that wasn't happening after Cal pulled out. My guess is, BYU
wanted to get that game back, so this is what came out of that. Should be
a great game.
The fact that Navy has a sweet rugby pitch has noting to do with the Varsity
Cup. Some of the VC teams have good rugby facilities and some don't.
It's the same for all rugby teams in the US. I'm not a
USA Rugby guy, or an officer of a rugby union. I'm a former player, former
youth and club coach, former SBRO officer. I want rugby to become a popular
sport in the US. I want to see college and pro rugby broadcast on TV. I want
every high school to have varsity rugby. We need to stick together to make that
runnerguy50Propblast1's "facts" are seriously lacking.
Every rugby fan knows that Cal has been the most dominant collegiate rugby team
in the country for years, and BYU is the only team that's been good enough
to challenge that supremacy. Despite USA Rugby's protestations, the winner
of the Varsity Cup championship match between Cal and BYU will be real National
Problast must be typing from USARugby's office. I went to
Varsity Cup match's in Annapolis andvthe venue was far better then typical
USA Rugby fields. Unless of course USA rugby uses Cal's or BYU's
fields. As a college rugby fan I am thrilled that the Varsity Cup has been
formed. Long live the Varsity Cup !!!!!!
Some of you keep referring to the ranking of teams. There are three rankings
out there. Rugby Magazine (blog), This is American Rugby (blog), and D1-A (USA
Rugby). None of them are polls, they are all nothing more than the opinion of a
blogger or administrator. They all have their motivations too. Being
"ranked" is not much to crow about. Rugby isn't played
before judges who lift score cards and grade every game. Rugby is settled on
the pitch. With the college game so torn up by the Varsity Cup and the
emergence of conferences we are going to be left with a D1-A and a Varsity Cup
Champion. Last year, BYU beat Arkansas State to win the D1-A Championship and
the National Title. This year, they chose not to play for it. The winner of
the D1-A National Championship Game will be the USA Rugby National Champion.
The winner of the Varsity Cup Championship will be the Varsity Cup Champion.
It's not a matter of opinion, it's a fact. It would be much more
interesting to see the best 8 teams in the nation duke it out. Maybe next year?
The D1-A Teams out side the top eight who qualified had the option to challenge
for a playoff spot, those games were to be played on April 20th. Only one game
took place that weekend because the teams that qualified to challenged elected
not to. My agenda is, the Varsity Cup was started by the coach of
BYU who decided that his club didn't get enough of the money generated by
the USAR National Championship game in 2012. College Rugby is not popular
enough to generate much income for any team or organization yet. It's
improving and more teams are working hard to become elite. Better quality rugby
will draw fans and media coverage. By unifying the top 20 college teams and
using the power of that unification with USA Rugby, things can be changed for
the better. It weakens college rugby to fracture like this. It serves no
one!To answer your last question, D1-A has over 30 teams in the
tournament, the top teams go into the playoffs after a season of games. Varsity
Cup has 8 teams playing a maximium of 3 and a minumum of 1 Varsity Cup game(s).
That's not many games.
@Propblast1Ok, I'm not sure what your agenda is here other than
to stir the pot, but I have a few questions for you:How is the USA
Rugby playoff more valid than the Varsity cup, when 3 of the AQ teams who should
have been playing in the D1-A playoffs aren't? That means that not every
eligible team will get a shot at the championship, so whoever wins it will have
a won in a watered-down tournament.How can you make a statement like
"Well, Ufan, it's happening as we speak and it's working out
great!" when, as LonestarRunner pointed out, only 9 teams ended up playing
in what should have been a 16-team field?And again, how is a 9-team
tournament so much better and more valid than the 8-team tournament in the
Varsity Cup? Do you have anything factual to back up your statements that the
Varsity Cup is not recognized as a national title (since the title of this
article indicates otherwise)? Or is all of this your opinion?Just
curious. Thanks!Go Cougars!
propblastCal and BYU are the two best collegiate rugby teams. You
sound like a jealous, disgruntled Utah troll who's upset that his team had
to withdraw from the Varsity Cup in disgrace.
SLCWatchBest guess, she's just a jealous, disgruntled trolls
who's frantically and emotionally trying to minimize the Varsity Cup after
the Utes were forced to withdraw in disgrace.The real National
Championship will be decided Saturday, at South Field, between Cal and BYU.The pretenders will play off for a meaningless consolation prize.---------LonestarRunnerArmy is actually ranked
8th, so the real tournament line-ups look like this:Varsity Cup -
#1, #4, #6, #7, #11, #16, #18, #21 (ALL 8 ranked)Rugby USA - #2, #3, #5,
#8, #9, #10, unranked, unranked, unranked (3 of 9 unranked)
@Marked it DownCal and BYU are just two spokes in a big wheel. The
wheel is turning just fine without them. Once their egos deflate, they'll
come back into the National Competition and will help to make it stronger when
they do. Until then, college rugby plays on.
@Propblast1Thank you for responding. But you didn't answer the
question. What motivates you to defend USA Rugby? Who are you backing? I
would guess one of the remaining teams but I'll let you answer.The best teams left the disfunctional organization. Obviously they think the
USA farce is not worthy of being the arbiter of who is champion and so the best
will choose who is without them. One trophy is the same as the other, you get
them for about a dollar at thrift stores. But one will mean the best played off
for the title and one will mean a bunch of nobody's held a tournament and
no one (of consequence) showed up.
Here's what Rugby Magazine had to say about the USA Rugby, which helps
explain why Cal and BYU and several other top collegiate rugby teams left this
dysfunctional organization:"The DI-AA playoffs are a mess.
There’s really no other way to put it. They’re a mess, and the fact
that they’re a mess is holding up the announcement of the Sweet 16 fields
for both DI-AA and DII. The most glaring problem is that the West Regional is
set to be played in Austin, Texas, but the three automatic qualifying teams are
from Southern California (Long Beach), Northern California (Chico State) and
Washington (Western Washington). And USA Rugby is in the process of trying to
make sure all the AQ teams are going to attend the Sweet 16."In
the end, only 9 schools ended up playing in the USA Rugby DI-A
"playoffs":#2 Arkansas St#3 Life#4 Army #5
Saint Mary's#9 Kutztown#10 Cal Poly SLOur Coloradour Colorado StNotice that EVERY team in the Varsity Cup is ranked
in the Top 25.
@Mark it DownIf you want to live in the past, talk about how good we
used to be, and somehow believe that that makes you great today. Rugby
championships aren't judged or given by bloggers, they are won on the
pitch. The teams playing in the Varsity Cup can only win a Varsity Cup trophy.
The National Champion will be crowned on May 18th and you can watch it on ESPNU,
for free. BYU and Cal need to join the national competition if they
want to compete for a national championship. That's the simple reality of
Rugby Magazine All College Divisions Top 25 Rankings as of April 17, 2013Four of the top 7 teams are in the Varsity Cup (VC), including the #1
team, Cal.1 California (VC)2 Arkansas State3 Life4
Brigham Young (VC)5 St. Mary's6 UCLA (VC)7 Central
Washington (VC)8 Army9 Kutztown10 Cal Poly11 Navy
(VC)12 Davenport13 Penn State14 Lindenwood15 Arizona16 Notre Dame (VC)17 Arizona State18 Air Force (VC)19
Bowling Green20 Texas A&M21 Dartmouth (VC)22 Tennessee23 UCF24 Western Washington25 Clemson
Too bad that the U dropped rugby so suddenly. It was fun to have a rivalry that
wasn't canceled for fear of losing to BYU.
Propblast1Without Cal and BYU, the so-called USA Rugby
"competition" is a farce.The real competition for the
collegiate rugby national championship will be held Saturday, August 4th at
South Field between the two best teams in the country.
@SLCWatchIf you repeat a lie enough times it may be accepted as
truth. The Varsity Cup is waste of time. None of the Varsity Cup teams are
competing for a National Championship, they only have a shot at a trophy. Cal
and BYU quit competing, that's true, but the competition goes on
nonetheless. Hopefully, all the Varsity Cup teams will re-enter the competition
in 2014 so another group of graduates won't have to look back on their
final college season and remember it as a season of disappointment and excuses.
@Propblast1 It seems you have a dog in this race you aren't
admitting to. So what is your beef with the top teams taking their ball and
going to play some where else? Your team didn't get invited to play with
the big boys? Or you know the USA Rugby title will be hollow and empty without
Cal or the Cougars? Cal is the top dog and everyone knows it. That BYU and Cal
play each other practically every year for the championship (6 consecutive plus
two by BYU vs other schools after Cal withdrew) I would say the national title
is where they are, not where the also rans are.
I understand, you're upset. I would be too! Who wants to see their
favorite college team waste a full season playing a social schedule and an 8
team tournament? Of course you're going to lash out at the teams that
legitimately are competing for a national title that your team could be in the
mix for. The Varsity Cup is a monumental waste of time for the 8 teams that
joined it. I especially feel for the players who wasted a year of college
eligibility on this farcical season. Particularly the seniors who will graduate
after playing, at most, a 3 game regular season. Sure, the seniors can graduate
on to a club team, but it's not the same. You are right to be angry. You
should write to the schools and coaches and tell them how you feel.
Propblast1"...it's happening as we speak and it's
working out great!"As Ufan said, the USA Rugby tournament
can't really be considered a national championship if the two best teams in
collegiate rugby aren't participating.
Propblast1"Of course, you can also buy the pay per view webcast
of the Varsity Cup final, if you want to."Or, I can watch the
best two college rugby teams play for the national championship live and in
person at South Field.
Well, Ufan, it's happening as we speak and it's working out great!
St. Mary's is playing Cal Poly in one semifinal and Life University is
playing Arkansas State in the other. You can watch the USA Rugby National
Championship on ESPNU on May 18th. Of course, you can also buy the pay per view
webcast of the Varsity Cup final, if you want to.
Having a national championship rugby tournament without Cal and BYU, would be
like having a national championship football tournament without the SEC.
If the Varsity Cup teams are sharing revenue then they'll all owe someone a
lot of money since attendance at the games has been light. If the Varsity Cup
is all about revenue then they are trying to harvest unripe fruit. When college
rugby is more uniformly varsity or varsity like then the quality of the games
will be worth paying for. Clearly, the Varsity Cup is a failing enterprise.
You can pay money to go watch Cal or BYU smash a weaker team or you can purchase
the pay per view webcast. This Cal vs BYU game will be interesting but that
game can be arranged without quitting the national competition or taking the
other 6 teams out of national competition. The winner of the
Varsity Cup game will take home a trophy but St. Mary's, Cal Poly, Arkansas
State, or Life will take home a national championship this year.
Propblast1If USA Rugby had been run better, the two best teams in
the country, Cal and BYU, would still be members. The fact that other teams like
Notre Dame, Air Force, Dartmouth, Central Washington, UCLA, and Navy joined them
in the Varsity Cup is proof of the problems not being addressed by USA Rugby and
proof of where the best teams in college rugby now reside.Regardless, the best team and true collegiate national champion will be
determined in the Varsity Cup championship match on Saturday.
Last year Cal was competing in the 7's (Olympic) competitions as I
understand, therefore they were not in the 15's competition. This year
they are back.Most of the top collegiate rugby schools dropped out
of the DI-A college rugby class to the DI-AA class. This allowed them to join
this Varsity Cup competition for their post-season tourney instead of the
collegiate rugby championships. The Varsity Cup allows the schools
to keep more of the revenue of the tournament instead of giving it up to USA
Rugby. My understanding is that even the most successful college teams like
Cal, BYU, UCLA, and others were losing money, but their pleas to keep more of
the gate receipts fell on USA Rugby's deaf ears.
This is about the Varsity Cup championship not the USA Rugby collegiate national
championship. Unfortunately, BYU and Cal pulled out of the USA Rugby college
competition and started an 8 team college rugby tournament called the Varsity
Cup. The other teams involved are Notre Dame, Air Force, Dartmouth, Central
Washington, UCLA, and Navy. BYU and Cal breezed through their 2 prior Varsity
Cup games and will play each other to determine the Varsity Cup champion. It
really has nothing to do with being the best team in American college rugby. The
USA Rugby competition is in the semi-final stage now and the USA Rugby
Collegiate National Champion will be crowned on May 18th in Greensboro, NC. The
USA Rugby championship has been won by Cal many times in the past and several
times by BYU. Unfortunately, we'll never know how Cal and BYU stack up to
the other college teams this year. Many rugby fans, including me, hope that all
8 of the Varsity Cup teams will return to the USA Rugby competition next year.
My wife made me turn it off. They do it well however, that which I saw. Good
Luck BYU Rugby.
BYU played Arkansas St. for the championship last year (and won). Cal
didn't play in the tournament last year for some reason.
Watched a fun match at Rio Tinto vs. Arkansas State for some Championship. Is
this one different?
Anyone know where this will be broadcast? ESPNU?
Championship game is this Saturday, May 4, BYU's South Field, game starts
at 1 PM.
"I would like to go watch the match. Time, place, and ticket info would be
nice."The BYU men's rugby team will be hosting the Varsity
Cup Championship Match versus California on Sat., May 4, 1:00 p.m. at South
Field. Tickets are $25 for prime reserved chairs, $22 for reserved chairs, $20
for reserved bleachers, and $15 for general admission.See byutickets
to order tickets.
I would like to go watch the match. Time, place, and ticket info would be nice.
What a great year for BYU sports, both rugby and volleyball in the hunt for
national titles! Great sports to watch.