2015 Central Region Playoffs - Wisconsin-River Falls vs Wayne State
The 2018-19 NSCRO 15s Club Playoffs begin on Nov. 3. There are more than 200 men's and 125 women's teams in the hunt for the Small College National Championship. The Women's National Championship continues to be hosted by the Life University Women's Rugby Club at their outstanding rugby facility in Marietta, Georgia on Dec.1-2.
Continue to check back at our website for the latest scores, stats and news for all playoff action. We will also post any videos on our YouTube site, as well as images in our photo gallery. If you have any video or images of any NSCRO games that you'd like to share, please click here to submit.
NSCRO reserves the right to reject and remove any images or video that is deemed as "not appropriate" or offensive.
Introduced in 2018 to great success, the Women's 7s All-Star Championship was held in mid-January at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida with 8 Conference-based teams competing. On January 19-20, Eckerd College will again host this event but with 12 All-Star teams competing. We are told...if you build it, they will come. That is true for NSCRO!
Similarly we began a Men's 15s All-Star Championship. It was held in late June at the outstanding Round Rock Complex, the home of the Austin Elite MLR team. 5 Region-based teams competed with the Pacific Coast taking home the Championship trophy. For 2019, the teams has selected Memorial Day weekend for the event. Negotiations are underway for a suitable host. Stay tuned!
Click here for more All-Star News!
About the Playoffs
NSCRO provides 5 different national club playoff systems, complete with Qualifying and Regional Championship events, which lead to the Small College National Championships for both men and women that help inspire players to achieve greatness.
The men's Challenge Cup National Championship - now in its 5th year - continues to be a major success. With the impetus from this major accomplishment. Salem State is now competing in the NERFU Champions Cup Division this Fall. For 2018-19, participation in the Challenge Cup continues to be strong with more than 110 small colleges participating. The Challenge Cup gives teams that may not have yet been able to successfully move into the Champions Cup another avenue to compete in a national playoff series leading to a National Championship. Read more about the Challenge Cup here.
For 15s, NSCRO holds the Men's Champions Cup as well as the Challenge Cup along with the Women's National Championships. For 7s, NSCRO holds both the Men's and Women's National Championship.
The NSCRO playoffs have been described by many coaches, players and fans as the "best organized and best run collegiate event they've ever attended". These playoffs, along with NSCRO's leadership, have given collegiate club rugby credibility in the eyes of school administrators, club alumni and parents where there was little if any previously. As a result NSCRO has helped collegiate rugby clubs gain increased school and alumni support, as well as popularity and interest among students who want to give rugby a try.
Now that a champion has been crowned, the tournament file has been set aside for a few weeks and the college rugby season has ended, it is time to reflect on the experience.
I had a front row seat at the Penn Mutual CRCs. Arguably the best college rugby experience for these true student-athletes. The CRCs provides those in our sport an opportunity to share the rugby culture and play our misunderstood game in front of the nation on ESPN and in front of the largest crowds these athletes have ever played rugby in front of.
Helping with the NSCRO Men’s National 7s Championship Tournament, I had the opportunity to meet the 120+ coaches and players who came to Philly to compete for the opportunity to play for the National Championship in a professional team stadium on ESPN.
I could tell that these student-athletes were having an experience that would be part of their storytelling for many many years to come. “Remember that time in Philly when we were playing for the National Championship....”
That was very satisfying to me. Rugby is alive and well on the college side. The athletes I met were respectful, played hard and totally embodied the college rugby spirit.
College rugby has come a long way since those days in the 70s playing on fields of broken glass and rocks and when line outs were wars. If you don’t believe me about the fields I can show you the scars to prove it. Unfortunately, colleges have been slow to help the club sport.
The college rugby experience is a time in your life that stays with you forever. You form friendships that last a lifetime. Ask any old boy. Many play those four years of college and then rugby ends. Some go on and play club rugby, but for most rugby ends upon graduation, but that experience is with you forever. Everyone who played this game has a rugby story. It doesn’t have to end.
Today more college rugby alumni groups are forming and raising money to help their college rugby club. This is a good thing and I hope trends upward.
The one thing that was missing at the CRCs was alumni. I expected to see more college rugby alumni there supporting their schools like alumni support football and basketball. That was disappointing.
Being involved in the NSCRO tournament I saw the support for each of the teams. The support came from parents and some fellow students. I didn’t see college rugby alumni from the school supporting their old college rugby club who was playing for the National Championship. You would know college rugby alumni if you saw them. It would be a group of 15-20 guys standing together with a beverage, laughing and engaging everyone around them cheering on their school and creating a new college rugby experience. The one after graduation. That was missing from the CRCs.
Giving back to sports is something we all should do. After all, every sport you played as a kid through adulthood was through a nonprofit organization or club with a volunteer coach giving of their time so you could play organized sports. Volunteering or donating is a way to give back. It is time for alumni to give back. Support the college rugby experience.
Playing college rugby today costs more than those days on broken glass fields. There are club dues, conference fees, registration fees, referee fees, equipment, travel, in some cases facility rental and social fees. The days of fundraising through parties are gone.
NSCRO holds championships in 15s and 7s for men and women. Providing that college experience takes time and costs money. It is a college experience these students are appreciative of and enjoy the path leading to it. That experience stays with them for a lifetime. Imagine how you will feel when you say to your friends my old college rugby club is playing for the National Championship or made it to the finals of a regional qualifying tournament. It’s a win-win.
I am asking those who had the college rugby experience to help the next generation of college rugby players have that experience. First, donate to NSCRO to help us grow college rugby and keep this experience moving forward. Next reconnect with your old college rugby brothers and sisters and form a college rugby alumni group to raise money and give back to your college rugby club and to keep supporting NSCRO.
So, next year, I expect to see the college rugby alumni in Philly at the CRCs cheering for your school in the NSCRO Men’s 7s National Championship made better because of you giving back and helping provide for a better college rugby future for your school.
NSCRO and your school’s rugby club will be very appreciative of your support!
Latest Championship News
Click on image for a larger view