Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship Division, a CRC Qualifier

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Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship Division, a CRC Qualifier

Las Vegas Invitational

Doug Coil, Journalist & Richard Portale – Real-time Sports

Feb 7 2015

Las Vegas – 2/3/15 The Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship has emerged as one of the premier events in the promotion of rugby in the United States. The “CRC” began in 2010 and receives tremendous publicity, with most of the matches broadcast on NBC and achieving startling viewership numbers.

The talent level increases vigorously every year and this year should be no different, with the tournament going off on May 29-31, 2015 at PPL Park, in greater Philadelphia, PA.

Currently, 15 clubs have accepted the highly sought after invitations from event powerhouse United World Sports. Invites have yet to be awarded to Conference Champions from the Big Ten, Atlantic Coast and Southeastern Rugby Conferences, as well as the Champion of the LVI CRC Qualifier Division. Finally, A mysterious Wild Card invitation will be also extended to another top team.

LVI Director and rugby tournament savant – Jon Hinkin clarified a number of questions about the CRCs and the LVI – CRC qualifier Division. One question still remains: What happens if one of the Conference Champion(s) listed above, or the LVI CRC Qualifier Champion has already confirmed participation in the CRCs – For example, say Kutztown wins the CRC Qualifier in Vegas in 2 weeks. Former International Donal Walsh, Penn Mutual College Rugby Championship Tournament Director and Operations Manager has the answers to these critical question and how the CRC Wild Card spot will be determined, but he’s not telling…

Stay on top of all the action from the CRC qualifier Division and see what happens!

Tournament Results & Real-time Rugby Smartphone App

Technology has made it easier to follow your favorite teams, not only for the CRC Qualifier, but for the Men’s Elite Division. Real-time Sports Inc. has teamed up with United World Sports so that fans everywhere may view results as they come in. Please see Rugby Today Article, Jan 26, 2015. You can now also find results much more handily on the USA Sevens website – just click on the LVI landing page. http://www.usasevens.com/las-vegas/las-vegas-invitational/

Download Real-time Rugby on IOS or Android. Real-time Rugby has integrated Facebook and Twitter to improve the overall intuitiveness of the App. Users will enjoy actively following their teams and having instant access to results. It is a great way to follow and promote your favorite teams and Maximize your Rugby.

LVI – CRC Qualifier (See Pools below)

There are 24 Colleges competing for this Division title, Feb 12-14th, and an invitation to the CRCs. Four of these teams, Saint Joseph’s University, Kutztown University, Dartmouth College and Notre Dame University have already accepted invites to the CRCs.

According to Jon Hinkin, seedings and pools were selected as follows: Initially, teams were grouped into 4 tiers of seeds based on the perceived talent and the past team performance. For this latter area, consideration was factored for players who have graduated and would not be competing when accessing talent. Even though this is a rugby 7s tournament, performance during the Fall 15s season was also considered. Please see Pools and seeding at the end of the article.

Advancement after Pool Rounds

The 6 pool winners and the top 2 second-place teams will advance according to the following criteria:

  1. Head to Head
  2. Point Differential
  3. Tries scored
  4. Total points scored.

The criteria will be used to determine Seeds 1-6 for the Pool winners with the 7-8th seeds representing the top second place teams. Cup, Plate, Bowl and Shield rounds will then continue.

The Teams

The Colleges participating in this year’s event represent a cross section of all College Divisions, D1A, D1-AA, DII and NSCRO. They have come to Las Vegas with different goals, but all having a common purpose of performing well and maybe, just maybe, securing a spot on NBC in National Prime Time! Not many of us Old Boys can say they have ever had that opportunity.

With the USA Sevens being the only World Rugby 7s stop in the United States (Feb 13-15), the LVI has provided an attractive destination for playing in a major, early season rugby tournament, where teams can evaluate and gain invaluable experience and cohesion. In addition to the CRC Qualifier, Men’s and Women’s Elite (an absolute cracker of a standard), College, Club and Youth Divisions add to the excitement (See Divisions/Teams).

With the exception of Claremont College, the CRC Qualifier teams tend to be from colder climate areas where the Fall season is devoted to rugby 15s and the Spring to 7s. The LVI thus, also provides challenges of match fitness with most or all lead up practices having been limited to indoor facilities and can be an early barometer for the state of programs. However, the exciting atmosphere that Las Vegas provides must not be overlooked.

Teams participating in the CRC Qualifier range from large Universities (Oklahoma, Notre Dame, Pitt, Utah & Buffalo) to small Colleges (Lewis and Clark, Wittenberg). They represent programs with wide disparities in funding. This includes Varsity programs (AIC, Notre Dame College, Lindenwood & Wheeling Jesuit) and College/Alumni Supported Programs (Air Force, Dartmouth, & Arkansas State). Student run Programs (Wittenberg) also exist, as they are experiencing a coaching change.

Whatever the case, teams entered will do their best to represent their College in a positive way. You don’t want to miss the most exciting bracket in years, the CRC Qualifier.

CRC Qualifier Pools

Pool A

  1. Saint Joseph’s U
  2. James Madison U
  3. Creighton U
  4. Lewis and Clark

Pool B

  1. Kutztown U
  2. Miami U (OH)
  3. Columbia U
  4. U of Buffalo

Pool C

  1. Air Force Academy
  2. Georgetown U
  3. Dartmouth College
  4. Pittsburgh U

Pool D

  1. Lindenwood U
  2. Bowling Green State U
  3. Notre Dame College
  4. Oklahoma U

Pool E

  1. University of Utah
  2. American International College
  3. Point Loma Nazarene
  4. Wheeling Jesuit U

Pool F

  1. Arkansas State U
  2. Stony Brook U
  3. Notre Dame U
  4. Wittenberg U

Tournament Schedule

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North American Rugby News With A USA Slant