from USA Rugby:

Restructuring aimed at providing increased opportunities for development of players, coaches and referees

Boulder, Co (Aug 27, 2012) – Looking to create an environment that promotes a higher level of competition for its members, USA Rugby announced today the framework for the coming restructuring of its women’s and men’s senior club championships (15s and 7s).

“The new structure will increase the number of competitive matches for our membership,” said Alan Sharpley, Chairman of the USA Rugby Club Strategic committee. “The competitions structure will increase the amount of divisional fixtures in preparation for our championships and will provide a more meaningful pathway to Championships.

Play under the new competitions structure will begin in the 2013-2014 competitive cycle. The restructured competition will divide the country in two leagues, each featuring four competitive regions.

Throughout the past two years members of the USA Rugby Senior Club competitions committee audited senior league play at all levels around the county to evaluate and categorize clubs as either participation or performance based. The committee also benchmarked the existing domestic championship pathways against international league structures.

The audit determined that the majority of clubs were performance based and interested in more league play opportunities. It also identified that domestic clubs played fewer competitive matches than their counterparts in other major rugby-playing countries.

The new competitive regions will be governed by appointed committees that will administer league scheduling and provide oversight of a relegation and promotion procedure that is under development and will be released later this year. The new structure also introduces the expansion of the men’s play to include a fourth division and a third for women’s play for emerging and social sides.

Additional details of the restructuring and club participation will be forthcoming from USA Rugby throughout the next six months. “The new competitions model is critical to the sustainability of our clubs and prepares them well for the future growth of the game. Providing a vibrant league plan for all levels of the senior game will ensure increased competitiveness and the framework that may possibly be applied into a commercial endeavor,” added Sharpley. ” We will be continuing to finalize the details of the restructure over the coming weeks in order to provide ample time for clubs and administrators to be fully prepared when the changes are enacted.”

Senior Rugby New Plan 2013

Senior Rugby in USA 2013

A Facebook Group to “discuss” these changes has been created (NOT BY USAR). You can join the group and discussion here.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Women’s Rugby Players…USAR added a women’s sub-committee to compliment the USA Rugby Competitions Committee in January 2012. View this page to see who is on the sub-committee: . If you need contact details, please feel free to reach out to me at

8/29/12 @ 3:15pm: from Tam Breckenridge (not a FB’r) (USA Rugby Club Strategic Committe member) in regards to the women: 

To clarify, each CR will have ability to work out for itself the best schedule, divisionality and competitions issues. Nobody has to play a certain number of games, there will be goals and ideals (home and away for all would be great) but that’s not required. Each region needs to grow and develop across the spectrum to meet these goals, especially for the women’s division.
All aspects of the CR competitions (membership, travel, schedule) does need to be mutually agreed to by the teams. Each CR can choose it’s ‘season’, whether Fall, split, or Spring. Just present it’s champion by early May, however that is determined.

Part of this collections-gathering process is to sort out where we think teams might fit, but allow the teams themselves to confirm. The geographical and competitive divisions are not firm, as Adrian noted it is hard to create on a computer map lines that take into account the actual club placement.

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