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An interesting look into Rugby's recent rapid growth in the United States

There's a bit of on-field thinking on the American football field, but very little. Every offensive passing play allows for the quarterback to have options as to whom to throw the ball, or to take off and run if need be.
I will say that Americans seem to be fixated on equipment. La crosse required a helmet, shoulder pads, the stick. Football has all sorts of equipment. Basketball hardly any, though. Baseball has gear, more so than cricket really. Rugby has very litte, but other than some youth leagues for those not quite high school age, it really isn't growing. In California, la crosse leap-frogged rugby as a popular alternative high school sport a good fifteen years ago!

3 Weeks, 2 Days ago

An interesting look into Rugby's recent rapid growth in the United States

To both guys who commented above. 7s seems to be the future, but I'd also like to say that 10s would be an even more entertaining form of the sport for the Olympics. In my opinion 7s seems just a tad too wide open a sport, too much like basketball with all the scoring that takes place. 10s would also allow those with less speed to contribute.
I'm only familiar with British Columbia rugby, having been up there and played up there in the past. There are some well established clubs in Vancouver and the surrounding area, so I hope there isn't a problem with numbers there.
The fact is every five years or so there's some article, such as this one, saying that rugby is the fastest growing sport in America. I just don't see it. Actually that might have been true in the 70's and 80's, and then things leveled off.

3 Weeks, 2 Days ago

An interesting look into Rugby's recent rapid growth in the United States

To both guys who commented above. 7s seems to be the future, but I'd also like to say that 10s would be an even more entertaining form of the sport for the Olympics. In my opinion 7s seems just a tad too wide open a sport, too much like basketball with all the scoring that takes place. 10s would also allow those with less speed to contribute.
I'm only familiar with British Columbia rugby, having been up there and played up there in the past. There are some well established clubs in Vancouver and the surrounding area, so I hope there isn't a problem with numbers there.
The fact is every five years or so there's some article, such as this one, saying that rugby is the fastest growing sport in America. I just don't see it. Actually that might have been true in the 70's and 80's, and then things leveled off.

3 Weeks, 2 Days ago

An interesting look into Rugby's recent rapid growth in the United States

I'd have to disagree, as an American and Californian, that the game of rugby is becoming more popular here. Actually, the truth of the matter is that the Aviva Premiership has had few of its games telecast on regular cable NBC sports. Other games have been, on NBC Gold or some other subscription channel in which one pays more than the regular sub rates for cable TV. Some games are telecast a week or so after they've been played. I believe that the American football authorities do not want much exposure of rugby, and either do soccer people.
In my own area, Monterey Bay, there is no high school rugby programs currently in existence. There used to be. Unfortunately, the sport has not grown in high schools in the northern half of California, but la crosse has. Few high schools have teams, and there are far more clubs that have students from three or four surrounding schools. La crosse has basically a team in every single high school.
I referee mostly the second division university teams of the Northern California Rugby Union. Several of the schools are having a hard time putting 15 players out on the pitch for a match. One school, unfortunately my alma mater, forfeited a playoff match last weekend, as some season-ending injuries for several players early on meant the school only had 15 or 14 to start games for a good part of the season. A few years ago there were plenty of young women at these schools ready to play, with rosters of at least 20, and every game I'd referee had numbers on the field and on the touchline. Two women's clubs did not play this year for the same reason: lack of numbers. One men's club folded and amalgamated with a bigger club, making that club much stronger.
When I think back to the 1980's, in the men's first division, with half a dozen clubs, every one of them had three sides. Now many clubs have just one side to field, and even some of the top division clubs stuggle to put out two sides per weekend.

3 Weeks, 5 Days ago

TEN reset scrums in ten minutes leads to Tigers try

Well, lineouts within the five meter zone might be allowed again. A good kicker kicking to touch after his team has been awarded a penalty for another collapsed scrum could mean a cheap try with a lineout within a meter or two of the goal line. Think about that! What prop wants to be responsible for giving up a penalty for collapsing a scrum that leads to a cheap try from a lineout near his own goal, nearer than five meters?

1 Month, 1 Week ago

TEN reset scrums in ten minutes leads to Tigers try

Good look at the problem, as usual. What to do? It would fundamentally change the game to
do away with scrums. Teams have that option, if a penalty is given, to take another scrum. Make them play the ball? Have lineouts again within five meters of the goal line? I mean, if that old law came back, and a team was defensively collapsing, it would mean a kick to touch
to near the goal line would allow for a lineout near the goal line again. So, that might mean a cheap try given away. That might make a prop think twice about causing a collapse to mess
up the attacking side's put in!

1 Month, 1 Week ago

TEN reset scrums in ten minutes leads to Tigers try

The issue of scrums seems to exist only at the top levels of the game. I've seen plenty of rugby games at lower levels, and the hijinks between front rows don't occur. The less likely one is being paid to play, or the less one is being paid to play, the less likely scrum collapses, resets, etc.
I played at a time when referees didn't set scrums. Funny, but it seems less crap went on then. Scrums set up, met head on, and the game went on. Sure, there were collapses now and then, but it seems the intent to fix scrums with the referee setting them has only made things worse, at the top levels of the game.

1 Month, 1 Week ago

Friday Funnies: After a powerful maul, he had just one job

In American rugby right now, as 15s is being played in many of the states, there's this new mandate to either rope off or chalk off what are called 'tech zones.' They start at the 22s on one side of the pitch only, and go to the halfway line, and are two meters from the touch line, and basically are boxed off areas of touch for players and coaches to stand or sit in. They are five meters deep. It's best to rope off these areas for obvious reasons. I touch judged a game this past weekend, and a wing from Cal Poly's frosh/soph team ran past the touch line straight at me, knocking me over, as I was running in his direction to mark where he ran into touch. He mistook the tech line, between the 10 meter and 22, as the touch line. Of course a report went to the Northern California Referee Society about this! White was the color of both lines, but I think even different colo(u)rs will not work as well as ropes!

4 Months, 3 Days ago

Friday Funnies: After a powerful maul, he had just one job

That happens whenever the pitch is lined with too many dashes for the 5 meter line, and the dashes aren't all that far apart.

4 Months, 3 Days ago

Friday Funnies: After a powerful maul, he had just one job

It looks like this pitch could have deeper in goals. Why is it that in goal areas are so short now, even when they do not have to be, as in some venues they need to be short (Bath)? Another fad, like shirt tails not tucked in.

4 Months, 3 Days ago