The Miami University Rugby Football Club Team

The Miami University Rugby Football Club Team is classified as a "club sport", whereas we are not a varsity sport, but we offer a pay-to-play style rugby program, which is supervised by our coach, and run by our student-athletes who also utilize our rugby alumni support. In 2009 and 2010, our club was named the top performing and respected club in all of Miami’s club sports.

2010 Miami Rugby Spring Final 4 Playoffs

Our team consists of student athletes of many skill sets and athletic backgrounds. Historically, our club has consisted of players with experience in football, wrestling, soccer, basketball, hockey, and a number of other popular sports. Every year we have a number of players who have come to Miami University specifically because they wanted to play rugby with our level of experience and reputation as a tough collegiate team.

Many players who participate in our club start off with very little knowledge of the laws of the game of rugby, and many of them become stars on the team as they draw upon their skills in the previous sports they played in. They also find a great amount of comraderie in the desire to learn the game and support their fellow athletes on the field.

Miami University Rugby Football Club History

The Miami University Rugby Football Club was established in 1968 by Lionel Young... The first practice produced 10 players. The second practice produced 16 players, and the club team was officially on its way to becoming a major club sport at Miami University. Without the initial efforts of Lionel to create a club, it may have been a while longer before Miami U. would produce a team. Many of the players from the first club year and several years afterwords continue to show at our annual "Miami Old Boys" event in the fall. Lionel Young MiamiU


The 1970’s

Lionel passed on his coaching legacy to the club’’s second coach, Bill Cotton, who ran with the club from 1976 to 1979.

Doug Edwards MiamiU One of the original players of the club from the 1972 team, Doug Edwards, became coach of the club and continued to coach until the year 2000. His influence among players has produced a legacy of coaches and excellent men’’s club players over the years.

The 1980’s

Doug Edwards continued to coach the club throughout the 1980’’s. Several years of the club produced teams which had higher achievements beyond the midwest level, including having the opportunity to compete for the national championship in California in 1984. This same team has produced players which have started and run men’’s rugby clubs across the country.

The 1990’s

The Miami U. Rugby Club continued to evolve in the 1990’s as the rugby scene started to become an even more recognized sport on the national level as international rugby turned from an amateur / semi-professional sport to full professional. Players in the United States were finding they could travel abroad to play, and the competition and laws of the game began to change to an even more competitive level.

The 2000’s

The passing of Doug Edwards brought a pivotal change to Miami University Rugby. The club alumni had already began embracing the use of the internet as a communication tool in the late 90’s, and it became apparent the alumni would need to step forward an assist in the support of a new coach to fill the void left by Doug. Kevin Kittridge, a faculty member of Miami U. stepped forward to lead the team over several years from Fall 2003 through Spring 2006.

Kevin’’s departure from the university brought about a leadership void in the club, and it became apparent to the rugby alumni to bring about a support system for coaching the club. The Miami University Men’s Rugby Football Club Alumni Association (MUMRFCAA) was established to help provide resources and support to both the coach and the players. With this support system in place, former Miami U. rugby alumni and 1997 graduate, Jared Moore, took the helm of coaching the club in 2005.

The 2010’s

Jared has continued coaching the club and has been recognized for his efforts in bringing the club to the national playoff scene several times in 2009 and 2010. He has also been instrumental in setting in motion the Miami U. Rugby 7’s program as well.

Our Competition

The Miami Rugby Football Club has traditionally competed on the Division I collegiate level in the Midwest division of USA Rugby. Our team competes in the Ohio Union under "Rugby Union" style of play in the fall and spring 15’s season. In recent years, Miami Rugby also competes in Rugby 7’s during the spring semester.

Rugby 15’s

Traditionally, our 15’s team consists of an A-side, and a B-side, both of which compete on the same day in the same location, with the A-side being the premiere match, followed by the B-side. The B-side is considered the development squad of the team.

Our fall competitive and spring seasons are derived from a selection of neighboring Midwest Division I colleges and universities, such as:
Ohio State University, Bowling Green University, Purdue University, Indiana University, Ball State, University of Cincinnati, Xavier U., Michigan

Our team has taken winter / spring trips to play against competition outside of our division, either as a social competition or playoffs, which includes these notable clubs:
Penn State, University of Tennessee, Vanderbuilt, University of Kentucky, Eastern Kentucky, University of Florida, and more...

On occasionally, our club also has competes against local Ohio and Indiana men’s clubs, such as:
Cincinnati Wolfhounds RFC, Cincinnati Kelts RFC, Indianapolis Impalas RFC, Scioto Valley RFC (Columbus), Cleveland Rovers RFC, and Cleveland Eastern Suburbs

Rugby 7’s

2011 Miami 7s Collegiate Champions Team.jpg Our Rugby 7’s team has competed in Las Vegas and other notable collegiate 7’s tournaments, working hard to gain attention on the national level of play to try and earn our spot in the yearly national "Collegiate 7’s tournament in June.

Typically, our team competes among the best in all of collegiate 7’s rugby. Our local Midwest 7’s competition includes: Ohio State University, Bowling Green, and Michigan. Many collegiate 7’s programs are being touted across the country as the United States plans to prepare its best 7’s competitive side for the future Summer Olympics rugby tournaments.

In December 2011, the Miami Rugby 7’s team won the national collegiate bowl championship.
Miami 22 vs UVA 7
Miami 19 vs Texas A&M 12
Miami 17 vs Colorado 24

Bowl Round
Miami 22 vs Western Wash.U 7
Miami 26 vs Aggies 5
Miami 26 vs UC-Davis 5

Rugby 101

What is Rugby?

Rugby is often compared to football when describing its style of play. American football was derived from rugby, but there are some major differences. The big differences with rugby are there is no forward-passing and blocking of any sort. Rugby players do not wear protective equipment such as a helmet and the game clock is always running like in soccer. When advancing/running with the ball, rugby players are concerned more about retaining ball possession than gaining yardage. Possession in rugby is not related to gaining a certain amount of yardage in a certain amount of time. Moving the ball forward can be done by kicking the ball ahead (open possession, like in soccer), running with the ball in hand, or passing the ball (laterally or behind) to another player who is running into an open space on the field.

Rugby Practices

1. Boots: Rubber soled softball or soccer cleats can be worn as long as the toe-cleat is removed
(cut off the toe cleat and make sure the remaining surface is smooth).
2. Shirt: You will need a T-shirt for the non-contact drills and a heavier rugby jersey or nylon-style shirt for contact drills.
You will not need a jersey right away; the club will provide jerseys for matches.
3. Shorts: the stronger shorts you have, the better (longer shorts, not so good)
4. Water: you should bring 2-4 quarts of water

Rugby Matches

The club will provide jerseys for all club matches.
In addition, you should have the following:
1. Boots: as described above. Toe-cleats MUST be removed prior to your first match.
2. Shorts & Socks: Before your first game, you must purchase a set of shorts and socks from the team.
3. Mouthguard: the club STRONGLY recommends that you use a mouthguard.
Mouthguards reduce the chance of concussion by 90%. er