National Collegiate Rugby has announced that the Rugby East Conference will join its men’s competition in 2021.
Rugby East is one of the premier Division 1 rugby conferences in the nation and consistently produces nationally ranked teams. The conference has a long and proud history in collegiate rugby and has recently grown to include Navy.
Tui Osborne, Head Coach of St. Bonaventure and Assistant Commissioner of Rugby East said, “We are impressed with NCR’s vision and membership focused approach. NCR provides a platform for the Rugby East Conference to remain unified and continue a meaningful conference competition in a manner that supports all our member teams.”
The conference includes the following six schools:
- U.S. Military Academy
- Kutztown University
- U.S. Naval Academy
- Notre Dame College
- Penn State University
- St. Bonaventure University
Commenting on the new partnership, NCR CEO Jeremy Treece said “We are pleased to add Rugby East and further strengthen NCR’s premier level competition. Rugby East has a legacy of producing high quality student-athletes both on and off the pitch, and brings a strong culture of sportsmanship that we seek in all NCR members.”
Heading into the 2020-21 season, NCR expanded its championship offerings and has grown to over 600 schools. With the addition of Rugby East, NCR further extends its premier championship programs in both 15s and 7s, which already include conferences such as The Liberty, Chesapeake and Mid-Atlantic.
NCR’s seasonal Fall 15s and Spring 7s approach will enable Rugby East teams to now complete their Fall 15s season with a Fall championship that they have not been able to previously pursue. “We’re happy that our members can conclude the Fall with a proper Championship experience. Furthermore, we’re pleased that NCR supports any of our teams who may choose to additionally pursue a 15s pathway in the Spring along with other parts of the country.” added Osborne.
Consistent with health guidelines and university policies, NCR has suspended all Fall competitions. NCR continues to work closely with its conference leaders to determine an appropriate return-to-play timeline. If the pandemic conditions improve, NCR stands ready to offer an abbreviated 15s slate and full 7s competition this coming Spring