The prospect of a unified national season has receded, though not because of America's intractable geography.
The lightning rise of collegiate 7s, contested in the fall rather than summer, is a significant and perhaps enduring break with the senior schedule. Since the academic calendar governs university competition, reconciling the two would probably require the clubs to shift, an unlikely prospect.
Given impetus by the Olympic Games, college 7s looks to be more evidence of America's frequent variation from overseas norms. Like the US seniors, most countries turn to the abbreviated game in summer.
There is little to suggest the situation results from considered USARFU policy, so the tasks of adapting may fall on team officials. Colleges are mostly governed by self-organizing conferences and clubs by a hodge-podge of regional bodies, while Boulder's priorities often reflect the monetary stimulus of test competition and International Rugby Board subsidies, which take little account of domestic conditions.
The premise of the unified season is that every team, no matter its location, should have an equal run to a national championship. But regional weather patterns historically conspired to shorten someone's buildup to May/June or December tournaments, while more recently international considerations have undermined the ideal.
Club 7s, which gets underway even before representative 15s concludes, can hardly be expected to revamp as the newly revised 15s title chase embraces fall matches, to accommodate regions which cannot stage league games entirely in the spring. Meanwhile, college 7s tournaments have grown so quickly in part because they've been scheduled by the teams themselves, taking account of local conditions.
The bifurcation is not entirely unprecedented. For several seasons the collegiate women's schedule, which is identical to the collegiate men's, has been distinct from the senior slate. USARFU has traditionally allowed the senior women broad latitude in managing the segment's affairs.
The US posted a 1-5 record at the Sevens World Series' season-opening tournament on Australia's Gold Coast, including a 22-21 pool loss to Canada and a 40-5 defeat at the hands of Scotland in the shield final. The 2012-13 campaign marks Alex Magleby's first full year as head coach.
Also last week, Argentina's Jaguars handled USA 'A' 39-3 in Langford, British Columbia. America meets Canada tonight.