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06 February 2013


The CRC is w/e of 31 May - 2 June.

Lots of people are going to regret getting staking everything on Sevens. When the USA doesn't qualify for Rio (even if the women do) the USOC and NBC will leave rugby sevens hanging in the wind.

The college breakup and away from USAr continues. Soon USAr will own nothing, not a single meaningful college championship.

USAR are quite happy right now - less work same taxation

Agree that USAR Rugby is reducing their expenses by reducing the number of national championships while continuing to charge dues from a growing membership base. Sucks for Rugby but the members keep paying and taking whatever crap USAR dishes out.

Seriously. Do you think NBC will abandon the CRC if we fail to qualify for the Olympics?

Yeah absolutely!
Handball is an Olympic sport that we suck at - do you see much handball action on NBC?

NBC Universal showed some of the world handball championships a couple of weeks ago and the US wasn't even playing in it.

7s has already raised the profile of rugby in this country more in the last 3 years than 15s had in the previous century. Even if the US fails to qualify for the Olympics, which I concede is a very very real possibility (the Falcons, ostensibly our 13-24th best players, couldn't beat Chile today at the LVI), I don't see the 7s game ever taking a back seat to 15s again. Even if the US doesn't qualify, it is still going to continue to be an Olympic sport, the USOC will continue to support the sport (which therefore means it will continue to get more finaincial support than 15s, which support appears to be limited to CIPP monies) and it is still going to be a sport that appeals more to the average American sports fan. And other than Jon Prusmack, who can afford any losses he might take, who else is "staking everything" on 7s? Hell, the NCAA has specifically told the women's emerging sports initiative that they have no current interest in 7s as an NCAA sport and are only interested in 15s-they will not count a varsity 7s programs towards the number of varsity programs needed for an emerging sport to reach the level at which the NCAA will sponsor a championship.

7s is infinitely more tv and more importantly web friendly than XV's although I am not a 7's player. There is no way for a commerical sponsor to work out an ad contract for a game that is 90 minutes long and no breaks - 10 minute long commercial breaks at halftime?? Unwatchable and unsellable. 7 minute fast paced games with contact? Make the fields 10m narrower and you have MMA with wings. Separate the teams more at scrums and more open field contact and you'll have the return of NFL Jacked Up - and that is what sells clicks - they are more valuable than TV eyeballs, you can track purchases from clicks.

You are dead right about saying Sevens has raised the profile. For sure it has, and USA Sevens are at the forefront of that movement. Watching rugby on NBC this weekend is proof.

But is it sustainable and will NBC be there if the men fail to qualify?

Well, the jury is out on that one!

At times it seems like the men's 7s program is riding the 2016 Olympic Cycle just to prep for 2020. I know that is not what is intended, but it seems as if we began the ODP a year (or 2) too late to make a 2016 bid meaningful.

I WANT all of this to work out . The ODP is a really good idea that needs talent and opportunity to prove it's mettle. Somewhere in the mix of 100-150 athletes immersed in high-level 7s play (improving fitness & rugby IQ, increasing game time, etc), 12-15 should emerge that awaken "the sleeping giant" once and for all.

If we want NBC (and later, other networks) to continue rugby coverage, we need to let them know we're watching.

Make sure you set your DVR or watch...


Organizational growth and PR wins aside -NSCRO is a continuation of the America’s everybody deserves a ribbon mentality. It’s an invitational that encourages medium sizes schools to play down and plugs a hole for USAR because it would rather not deal with 40% of its college clubs.

NSCRO/Steve Cohen (the L. Ron Hubbard of the group) says to small colleges we’ll dignify your existence by creating a make believe championship because the folks at the national level can’t be bothered. And I’ll also line up television to broadcast your 7s and 15s championships because we all know rugby on your level is very entertaining to watch (pub darts not in season?) and always played at the highest level, as NBC finds out each June now. Who doesn’t want to watch knock-ons, collapsed scrums and the College of Nowhere State versus Self Loathing Catholic U? This strategy plays right into the tagline “inspiring America to fall in Love with Rugby” because what’s not to love? You get to watch our best … um small colleges…umm uncompetitive universities … play for the title of tallest midget? Now where’s my ribbon for participation?

What a dick - go back to your stamp collection you turd!

Turd? Stamp collection? Nice. You recalling your childhood? Must be one of those small college educations at work.

I don't understand rugby people who get so bitter about lower level national championships. No one, and I mean literally no one, bitches about the fact that the NCAA does exactly the same thing.

The people who should be bitter are the non-NSCRO colleges who can't get USAR to get their championships on TV or their 7s championship on anything other than a flag football field in College Station, while L. Ron Hubbard is getting Salve Regina vs. Fransiscan on TV and in a stadium and the NSCRO 7s championship at PPL Park.

^^^ This guy nailed it. ^^^

Other than the level of play, the NSCRO is better than USAR in every way.

But it would be fun to see St. Mary's (4000 undergrads) or even St. Bonaventure (2000 undergrads) tune up the NRCRO champ.

Anyone know if the first games of the IRB Series are being broadcast on TV or internet?

The IRB website says NBC and NBC Sports are broadcasting all 3 days, but I don't seem to be able to find Fridays games anywhere.

WTF is Dave Sitton doing commenting again? He is doing the NZ v France match with Nigel the regular IRB 7s announcer. It is hilarious because Dave will make an observation and Nigel will say Um...and then move on to something else because Dave's comment didn't make sense. Dave said something about France "taking space" from NZ by going into contact. WTF? Nigel - like a pro - just moved on to something else like dealing with a child or retard.

oh yeah...great having the 7s in the USA, but put it on a proper sized pitch. Smashmouth 7s with regular restarts going out of bounds is boring. Get a clue organizers.

Big moment for that ref from the USA in the Spain vs. Samoa match and he blew a call that possibly would have given Spain the win. He missed an offside call when the Spaniard kicked ahead and it came off a Samoan player forward to another Samoan player who played the ball and lead to a Samoan try that closed out the game. Pathetic.

No one will ever take rugby seriously if they see unsatisfactory refereeing, hear bad announcers, and the playing surface is substandard.

#JeromeBoger #PhilSimms #RGIIIsKnee

Eagles 7s program is a joke. Embarrassed by Australia in front of their home crowd. Their fastest man in rugby scored, but who cares when you look at the scoreboard.

USOC should pull the plug on funding these jokers. Poor skills, bad decisions, not committed to tackles and mentally soft.

WTF was Sitton talking about with the "That's what your mother told you to do" comment when the Aussie lineout was called for not going 5 meters?

The shitty ref is Canadian.

Last 3-4 matches, stadium looked like a DivIII collegiate football game between 2 losing teams. 2000max maybe. Doesn't help that Sitton keeps promising that it will be packed tomorrow - sponsors gotta love hearing that. LVI is taking too many butts in seats away from Friday stadium matches. Having played in it every year but this one, the LVI consumer experience doesn't match the hype it gets and it is simultaneously hurting the on-camera product. USA match looked poorly attended. Call me crazy, but last game featuring home team should be scheduled well after LVI play completed to achieve max audience. We all know how rugby time works....

Won't comment much on USA play - but as usual they gave away a "won" match via simple unforced errors. Carlin looks very vulnerable at the breakdown and in open play defense when runners go straight at him. He needs to watch hours of Cecil Afrika video.

Reports indicate that the Eagles are trying to play smash mouth 7s to control possession but their greatest weakness thus far has been controlling possession.

Maybe the system doesnt match the player skill set despite the lineup efforts to beef up.

It worked at D'mouth but the system isnt translating to the IRB circuit. Maybe they need more time or maybe they need to reconsider the system of play.

Where were you able to watch it and hear Sitton commentate?

Universal Sports had 5 hours of live coverage last night.

Nice job USA Sevens for letting everyone know ahead of time?
I didn't that advertised anywhere!

every new championship which is created outside of the Blundering Boulder Fools is a step in the right direction.

with each new championship college rugby is a step closer to ridding themselves of taxation.

the BBF add no value to college rugby they need to focus on getting those national teams right and leave college rugby to itself, free of dues for nothing in return.

for the BBF to tax hs and college kids merely for the right to PLAY rugby is a crime.

So word I'm getting from the LVI is that the best American team there is the Northeast Legends who are some no-names from Boston and NY coached by a prison guard. They are annihilating everyone in the ACES division. Makes me wonder if we have the right coaches and players in the ODP setup. Granted the program is brand new, but the players identified as future Eagles shouldn't be outperformed by an old-fashioned TU side from the Northeast of all places.

Only asking here and not being critical... Which of the teams the Aces divisions here is a future Eagles side? The Falcons are in the Elite division as are the Tigers, Serevi, and the two Service Academy teams (USAF & Army):

1.Oceanside Men’s Rugby Club
2.Ft. Worth Bonobos
3.NorthEast Legends
4.Chicago Lions
5.Okanagan Heat
6.Nesbian Tribe
7.US Army Cannibals
9.University of Victoria
10.Tiger Cubs
11.Austin Blacks
12.Palmer College of Chiropractic
13.Denver Barbarians
14.Laie Lions RFC
15.OUA Barbarians

List came from: http://www.usasevens.com/las-vegas/las-vegas-invitational/2013-registered-teams/

Tiger Cubs are one of the ODP program teams coached by Paul Holmes and Chris Ryan. Lost in semifinals of Aces. Young guys, no doubt. But Northeast has rolled to the final of this division out scoring teams over 5 games 188-29. I'm not there, so am only reporting what ive heard secondhand, but allegedly some of the Aces teams looked better than the Elite teams, so pumping this division is nothng to sneeze at for a bunch of American guys who apparently aren't on the radar (yet). Would be interesting to see them play Tigers or Falcons.

Just saw replay of Eagles vs AUS first half. What a mess.

When is an ODP program going to be established in the East?

Portugal has 5 law students on their Sevens team which is a few places higher in the series standings than the US. I wonder if on gainline.por people whinge about the need for better leadership and support from the national governing body.

NBC couldn't have scripted that any better.

Yeah dude, that was a pretty sick finish. And Isles getting two tries, with the second being off a play that was properly defended and probably no other player could have scored on. Yep, NBC must have loved it.

Per Mags on NBC Sports, Matt Hawkins out of the Fiji game due to being cited for his dump tackle vs. Spain.

Hawkins is a tool.

My Sevens Drinking Game for Sunday:

Drink every time the NBC commentator says "downward pressure"

Scull your pint if the comment had nothing to do with the replay in question.

This replaces the "Peter Tiberio" drinking game from last June.

Eagles are a joke. Missed conversion in front of the posts? Who took that conversion? Looked like Hume, but he wasn't taking the kicks in the 1st half.

RE Canada match

Nigel all over Twitter blaming the loss on the ref. WTF?

Hume took the conversion in front of the posts. Just grabbed the ball and took it before Niua, the normal kicker, got to the ball to make the conversion. The guy is an idiot.

The Hard Men of Rugby, co-starring Matt Hawkins.


I think there is some merit with regards to the officiating of the Canada game but really the Eagles decision making was the prime culprit. Hume should be dropped for his foolishness for taking the convert. That is amateurish.

Canada played on the edge with regards to aggression and testing the officials patience - the continued infringements were designed to through the Eagles off the game and went unpunished for too long but with all that said .. the game was there for the Eagles on more than one occasion so therein lies the responsibility.

Some exciting stuff on the field though - great advertisement for the game.

that is throw .... friggin auto spell check gets me all the time

Seems obvious to me that Alex is not in charge of this team. Hawkins and the frat boy crew of Test, Hume, Scully, Hawley and a few others have control of the team.

Whoaa -- NBC - what is with the camera from the obstructed view seats?

Please NBC -- no more Referee Cam.

It's not only ineffective, but it's also derivative.

You should know, Letterman was doing it on your network back in the 1980s..


Speaking of amateurish, pretty massive fuck-up by the USA 7s event people to not delay the championship game ball skydiver.

Nothing is more amateur than the commentary by Dave Sitton. I can't tell if his comments are for rugby fans or his granddaughter. The guy is just inane.

Interesting..just heard (had to DVR it) the announcers refer to the plate final as the third-place match.

Dave Sitton is a very accomplished broadcaster. Like him or not, he has a good voice, knows rugby, and is a respected sports broadcaster at the highest level of collegiate athletics.

I'm not going to get into it but any broadcaster can be criticized. Rugby is tough because there are experienced people and people who've never seen it.

My sister in law is Wellington Mara's daughter and part owner of the NYG and is very wary of announcers and she loves Sitton and finds him very informative to non initiated fans.

horses for courses.

Sitton was not commentating that I heard ...

Sitton might be good when he is doing a UofA basketball game and is throwing red meat to the UA fans, but as a rugby commentator he sucks. You just have to listen to the awkward pauses after Dave makes one of his "observations" and he throws it back to Nigel or one of the other regular commentators who just switch gears to another subject. I don't know what the broadcast on NBC was like, but I watched an international feed and he was embarrassing.

Now Bruce, I know you're a homer for all things that get you some "credibility" in the rugby community, but come on. Don't jump on the Dave Sitton grenade to try to promote yourself.

I remember when the NHL experimented with the laser puck -- looked like a Falcon Punch actually.

That was for the purpose of making the puck easier to follow to the uninitiated. However, the purists rightly threw up their arms in protest at the red laser puck show.

But until rugby gets a critical mass of purists, the Least Common Denominator broadcasting will be the norm.

Or, to put it in NBC parlance, we are subject to the "downward pressure" of the novice fan.

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