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11 November 2011


It is an invitational and not a championship. They should name it accordingly and not try to defraud the television audience new to the game of rugby. It is an insult to the rugby programs around the country that have built a competitive program, but don't fit the marketing plan of the organizers. It's pathetic.

Blah, blah, blah...
You're pathetic, not the people spending millions trying to get a wider audience to watch our sport.

Instead of being so parochial and inbred in your mickey mouse university or trade school, try seeing it from a programs standpoint that is in the shadow of football.

Try as they might, some teams cannot ever get into a position that they will ever be able to compete with an academy side like Davenport, Life or even ASU. Academic standards, lack of facilities and time with their kids are always going to hamstring these coaches.

But if they can get on NBC at the CRC, then there is just an small chance that the AD or school might just take them as seriously as one of the smaller NCAA sports. Long shot, but just maybe.

Those 'golden spoon' schools have all the advantage and good for them I say. But do you honestly feel that having a Davenport versus Life final at the CRC is going to help promote the sport?

I have no quibble with the CRC as an invitational. Heck, they could invite any team composed of students from one college, wherever it is (like Oxford, or Cambridge, for example). What chaps my hide is the blatant use of the word "championship". I know it's a small thing to some, but not to me. Pat Clifton even went so far to say that the CRC had NEVER claimed to be a national championship. Hmmm. But then what does the second "C" in "CRC" signify? I went to the usasevens.com Web site and the promo clearly says Collegiate Rugby CHAMPIONSHIP, Philadelphia. Is it then the championship of metropolitan Philadelphia? Of the state of Pennsylvania. Of the confines of the stadium? Of what is it the championship? Inquiring minds want to know.

Just change the name to CRI and I'm happy. Such a simple word, invitational. Just say it out loud, you can do it. It won't hurt. Collegiate Rugby Invitational. From now on, that's how I'm going to refer to it, even if no one else does.

My college side is one of the sixteen in the CRC. But I have no problem calling it an invitational. That's fair and accurate.

The production quality of UFC on Fox is infinitely better than anything that has been done for Rugby in the US.

Yea mate, I don't like the use of "championship" term in the marketing cuz we can't play for it. Doesn't seem right.

We don't mind not being able to play in this tournament, but we take offense at it being called the college championship because all the best teams aren't there.

Classic "Fake It Till You Make It" strategy they are taking with their collegiate sevens tourney. Try to make the match ups local and look like NCAA football rivalries is probably the right tactic now, but down the road it is a recipe for failure. Look at hockey and lacrosse and they never tried to fake it and only put the best teams in the spotlight. My guess is that the USA Rugby national championship and the LVI tourney to decide the 16th spot in the CRC will be more compelling and better athleticism than the CRC. That is reason enough to scrutinize the CRC.

Everyone agrees that college players need exposure more elite level competition to improve the national player pool. While not perfect, the new USAR Sevens comp will provide better competiton than teams will find locally and it will increase exposure for the game across the country. So now we will have three national Sevens comps for college players that did not exist five years ago: CRC, LVI, and the new USAR comp. More competitions is a good thing.

Lax let ND in for many years while most lax people knew it was a joke. ND and others eventually got up to standard. lax needed to get off east coast only so found a way.

Put the best on TV and let the rest rise to that level. CRC is a made for TV show to fool a non rugby audience that collegiate rugby is the same big brands they recognize from football and basketball. It is a fraud.

UFC's relauch years ago focused on athltetes who where not the best in the US or the world. As the UFC TV market grew better athelete were added. UFC is now a business worth over $2 billion with a seven year contract with Fox Sports. The CRC marketing strategy is not a fraud.

The most important aspect of this post is this will all soon come to college XV's.

The best teams might rather play in a well organized invitational post season than pay their way though the USAR championship. Maybe it will be bowl games, but USAR is being passed by in the only thing they truly own, their national championships.

@ CrapRugbyComp

There will never be TV or sponsorship interest for schools like Life, Davenport, KTown, Ark St. There isn't interest in their own backyard, much less on a regional or national basis. If these types of teams are the better teams in your competition, which they are, there is nothing to promote.

Stating that other teams need to come up to their standard might be true, but is also waving the white flag on US college rugby ever making it. Invitationals make sense. There needs to be room for both types of competitions. One type to grow the game and one to allow everybody something to play for.

I like the strategy. I think they should do the same thing for collegiate 15s. Why not put University or Southern California vs. Notre Dame on NBC in a 15s match? People would watch and who gives a crap about Cal vs. BYU or St. Mary's vs. Ark State?

I mean if the NCAA had half a brain they would put a Texas vs. Oklahoma hockey match on TV instead of Minnesota Duluth vs. North Dakota. WTF? Who cares? Give me a Florida vs. Florida State match up in hockey! F-YEAH!!

Yes, we couldn't possibly have anything to learn from other sports that are trying to get public attention and market share (and have succeeded to some extent).

Geez, you sound as ridiculous as some PETA or ALF member who claims that humans have nothing in common with cats and mice and thus testing on these animals should have nothing to do with the drug discovery process.

Mr. Will not watch or attend
Don't let the door slam you in the a$$ on your way out, now will yer?
Your empty seat in Philly will be missed.
Best stay at home watch re-runs of the Waltons or something!

Hey "Will Not",

Not a bad idea. USC v ND!

However you mistakenly made the counterpoint when mentioning Cal v BYU. This match sells out whenever it is played. The 12,000 fans last year would have been there even if it wasn't a national championship. These are two good teams, that are well branded with large a following.

So the question becomes if Ohio State decides to play Arizona in a bowl game is this a better experience than playing in the USAR post season? Maybe. This holds true for all the brand name schools.

An 8 team invitational might be far more attractive than the USAR premier post season.

Off topic but...

Anyone know what happened to http://www.americanrugbynews.com

The site has been taken over by a make-up site!

The poorly branded teams, Life being the poster child, need the better branded teams more than the other way around. The reason ASU protested not being allowed in the SEC was because playing big named schools is what they need for validation. It isn't the competition, it is the fact ASU is playing against Tennessee. The problem is this validation doesn't work in reverse for the big name school.

Big name school + mediocre rugby = success?

You guys are idiots.

Rugby will benefit from both the new USAR comp and CRC.

College basketball's NIT invites teams based on strength of TV audience, not rankings or league standing. NIT succeeds with big name schools who are not top ranked (aka mediocre).

The NCAA basketball tournament in March is mostly a play-in structure but also involves all sorts of subjective invitations based on polls and other inputs.

College Football does not have a national playoff and relies an invitation structure based on polls and other inputs.

So maybe there is something to be said for the made-for-TV approach.

Compare collegiate rugby to basketball and football all you want, but those arguements don't hold up. Apples and oranges.

@will be there

The 8 team invitational championship would be a great idea. Maybe someone should float this idea to USA7s LLC. They have the connections and business structures to be able to mange something like this.

@lv rugger

Its administrator started another site and left it to die. He's started another about Rugby League where he continually derides Rugby.

I can understand having a couple teams that are local to sell tickets (Delaware, Temple, Penn State) and I can understand having a couple teams in for brand name (Texas, NBC's baby Notre Dame), but Mr. Goff please don't act like you did last year on your show as if the only thing constraining teams from playing in Philadelphia is they're not willing to blow a significant amount of their annual rugby team budget to go play a 2-day tournament in Las Vegas when only the winner gets anything out of it. It's greatly insulting to the national rugby community, especially schools east of the Mississippi River. It's not like rugby is a rich sport here, it's incredibly cash-poor. And these are schoolkids traveling to play, they're not adults with jobs like exists at senior club level.

There is a minimum standard of level of play that should be expected in order for it to be a TV-quality product, that's why I'll bet any amount of money that Cal plays every year, because the organizers know they have to if they wish to be taken seriously. (I thought Utah was one of those types of teams although I guess I was wrong.) Although I really don't get the logic of inviting a nothing school both in terms of rugby and in terms of fanbase and is not close to Philadelphia like Boston College was last year.

All that said, I hope Life wins in Las Vegas and then wins in Philadelphia to piss off the organizers. :D

"The poorly branded teams, Life being the poster child, need the better branded teams more than the other way around."

Life doesn't need anyone. From what I understand the Life rugby community provides plenty of money to the rugby program and it covers their costs, provides a good field, the players have scholarships, they recruit the best rugby players from Atlanta and Charlotte, etc. Not the case for the rugby program at the University of Georgia in contrast.

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