a. Divisional games will be played from September through November of the Fall Season with the schedule provided by the Conference Commissioner. The Conference Commissioner may request team rosters at any time.
b. Conference play requires:
- players must be C.I.P.P. compliant;
- a permanent club/team mailing address;
- an advisor from the college faculty or administration;
- authorization to participate from the college administration;
- conference dues paid in full;
- medical box at the field, and a properly marked out field;
- proof of insurance;
- the goal posts must be padded;
- there must be a restraining barrier/rope between spectators and the field. Failure to comply may result in a referee refusing to oversee a game;
- Each club must have a USA Rugby Level 1 Certified Coach by Fall 2013;
- there must be access to medical help;
a. Divisional points will be awarded as follows:
- 4 points for a win;
- 2 points for a tie;
- 1 bonus point for scoring four or more tries in a match;
- 1 bonus point for losing by seven points or fewer;
- No points for a loss by eight points or more;
- A forfeited game will earn 4 points for a win and a bonus point;
- If a regular season game is tied at the end of play there is no overtime;
a. If at the conclusion of regular season league play, two teams are tied with the same number of league points, the first tie breaker will be the result of the head-to-head game.*
b. If this game was tied, then the side with the better points differential ** in all of the regular season games will earn the higher position. Forfeited games will be recorded as a 20-0 win (4 unconverted tries). If the points differential is tied then it will be the side that scored the most tries. If the teams are still tied then it will be the most total points scored in all regular season games, and if still tied a playoff game will be arranged.
In the event of three or more teams being tied, the best points differential between the teams tied will determine the order of finish. If the teams are still tied then points differential in all regular season games will determine the order, and if still tied then most tries scored in all regular season games will determine the standings. The regular season top 4 will playoff for the Division Championship - 1 v 4 & 2 v 3.***
* In cases where 2 regular season games are played if each team has a win and a loss in head-to-head competition the tie breaker shall be the points differential and subsequent tie breakers as outlined in this section.
** Points differential is determined by taking the points scored and deducting the points conceded. The higher the score the better the points differential.
*** See Item 12.
Conference Championship Game Tie-Breaker Rules
For the Finals, if teams are tied at full-time, then the winner shall be determined through the following sequential criteria:
(i) Overtime is 2 x 10 mins periods;
(ii) Sudden Death / Extra Time - following an interval of 5 minutes, extra time of 10 minutes shall be played. During the extra time period the first Team to score any points (a try, a successful penalty kick or a drop goal) shall be declared the winner.
(iii) Kicking competition - if after the extra time periods, no winner can be declared, a kicking competition will be organized between the two Teams. The winner of that competition shall be declared the winner of the match.
The kicking competition shall take place as follows:
(i) All players and match officials will remain on the playing enclosure. The referee will call the captains of the two teams to the center of the pitch and will conduct a coin toss. The winner of the coin toss then may either choose which team kicks first (in which case the loser chooses the end at which all kicks will be taken) or choose the end at which all kicks will be taken (in which case the loser chooses which Team kicks first).
(ii) Each team captain must nominate 5 players to participate in the kicking competition. Only the 5 players nominated by the Captain’s and present on the playing enclosure at the time of the completion of the extra time may take part in the kicking competition. No injured, substituted or dismissed player may take part at any time. The order in which the players kick does not have to be predetermined.
(iii) The match officials and team members will assemble on the halfway line. Team members must remain behind the halfway line in the side of the playing area not used for the kicking competition. No one except the referee, two touch judges and two ball boys are allowed in the part of the playing area being used for the competition.
(iv) The five players from each Team will place kick from three different points, all on the 22 metre line, as follows:
First point: directly in front of the posts
Second point: on the 15 metres line on the left hand side facing the posts
Third point: on the 15 metres line on the right hand side facing the posts.
(v) The referee will start the competition by calling the first player selected from the Team kicking first to the first kicking point. Once the player has taken the kick, the referee calls a player from the opposing Team to kick from the same point.
(vi) The next two players (one from each Team) will kick from the second point in turn. This will continue until all five players from each Team have kicked (the next players kicking respectively from the third point, first area and finally the second point), or until one Team is unable to equal the score of the other Team within the remaining number of kicks.
(vii) If there are an equal number of successful kicks once each Team has completed its five kicks, the competition continues on a "sudden death” basis, following the same order of kickers used in the first five kicks.
(viii) The competition will continue two kicks at a time (one from each side), going progressively through the three kicking areas stated above (and repeating the process if necessary) until one player succeeds with a kick and the player from the other side taking the same kick misses it. Once this occurs, the Team of the player who succeeded with the kick will be declared the winner. Each of these additional kicks shall be taken by the same 5 players in rotation.
Throughout the kicking competition:
a) Once a player has been handed the ball by the referee on the kicking point, she/he must take the kick within one minute. Should she/he take longer, the referee shall declare the kick void and therefore a miss.
b) After each kick, the referee records the number of the player and whether or not the attempt was successful. The Match Commissioner will record the same details on the official Match Report.
c) Whether or not a goal is scored from each attempt is the sole decision of the referee, who may at his sole discretion rely on the assistance of his touch judges. The referee’s decision shall be final and binding.
d) Once a player has completed their kick, they shall return to stand with their Team behind the halfway line in the side of the playing area not used.
a. Fields and games played must adhere to the following:
- Teams should have a cell phone at every game in the event that they need to call 911 for emergency medical care.
- The field should be 75 yards wide (touchline to touchline) x 110 yards long (try line to try line), and an end zone minimum of 8 yards in length; Minimum width is to conform with the RRSNY rules 60 meters (66 yards). Minimum length should be 100 yards.
- Lines should be as set forth in "The Laws of the Game" - USARFU;
- All conference games shall be 2 forty minute halves;
a. Both teams must conform with all USARFU uniform requirements. In addition:
- Team uniform must match and be clean - no tears in shorts, socks or jerseys;
- If sleeves are cut they must be hemmed and at least cover the bicep;
- No clothing may show below the rugby shorts eg: boxer shorts;
- If spandex shorts are worn their color must completely match the rugby shorts or jersey;
- Numbers on jerseys are mandatory;
- In the event of a clash between opposing team jerseys the home team is responsible for providing alternative jerseys;
a. Each team must report scores Sunday evening to the Conference Commissioner. Failure to report the score by the Monday following the game will result in no points being awarded for the game in question.
a. The USARFU eligibility rules will be in effect for all league competition. Only full time undergraduate students in good standing may compete in league games.
b. USARFU has a five year eligibility rule that states students playing rugby in a competition leading to a national championship must be undergraduates working towards a bachelor's degree and have first enrolled at any college or university (including junior or community colleges) no sooner than 5 years before the beginning of the competition.
c. A college photo I.D. card is required.
a. The team captain must advise the referee BEFORE KICK-OFF that his or her team wishes to register a protest and give the reason. The referee must notify the opposing team captain that the game is going to be played "under protest" and state the reason. The referee should give the suspected offending team a reasonable time to correct the matter. If the circumstances are not corrected, the referee and the protesting team must notify the Conference Commissioner and the Conference Administrators IN WRITING within 48 hours of the circumstances of the protest. The conference administrators will review the protest and the teams notified of the decision.
b. In the event of a Society Referee not being present to referee a game the coaches of the teams should discuss a mutually agreeable alternative official, preferably the best qualified to referee the game, and the game shall be played. If neither team registers a protest PRIOR to the kickoff with the opposing coach and/or the appointed referee then the result shall stand. Team coaches may referee their own games. In the event that there is no consensus as to who the referee should be, the best qualified official shall be used with the game played under protest. (In the event of 2 equally qualified officials the away team should have the choice of official.)
a. If any team fails to honor a league game for any reason the club may be liable for a fine of $100.
b. Failure by the home team to notify the referee of a cancellation may result in a $100 fine.
c. In the event of a game not being played the conference commissioner may, at his or her discretion after consultation with the conference administrators: 1. award points to either side, 2. divide the points equally, 3. decide that no points be awarded, or 4. order a replay.
a. The Conference Commissioner, with the agreement of the administrators, reserve the right to add new teams and to adjust the conference structure and these regulations as may become necessary.
b. Seedings - In the event of a team dropping out of the Met NY Championship playoffs the seedings will be adjusted to reflect the regular season standings without that team, and the playoff will be adjusted accordingly. If there is insufficient time to do this, as determined by the commissioner, then the seedings shall remain as originally earned and a bye awarded to the team without a game or the top seeded team.
a. The schedule is compiled by the commissioner and distributed to the colleges, the and the referee's society. Every attempt is made to be fair and equitable with regard to when and where teams play. Where possible the venue is switched from the year before, however, this is not always the case. An attempt is made to schedule colleges that have one coach for their men's and women's programs so that the coach can see both teams.
Special circumstances are also considered, for example, in the past USMMA Men were not allowed off campus prior to third week in September and have a special leave Columbus Day weekend for their student body, so accommodation was made where possible. Clubs may request special circumstances to be taken into consideration. There is no guarantee that the request will be honored but an effort will be made on a first come first served basis.
b. Please review your schedule and if you want changes try to make them prior to the summer vacation. All colleges have the right to request a change to their schedule to suit their own situation. They must realize that a change must be mutual and a RRSNY referee must be scheduled.
c. All clubs should try to provide 2 sides.*
*A club may declare an exclusion and thus field just 1 team. This should be done at the start of the season. Communication early and often is essential. If in doubt call your opponent and reach a consensus.
a. At the conclusion regular season games in the Fall the top 4 teams will advance to the conference championship.
a. It is to be expected that the conference winner will advance to the regional playoffs with an opportunity to compete in the USA Rugby National Championship.
a. A roster of 30 players must be submitted to the Event Coordinator prior to the competition with their Name, College ID numbers, CIPP #, Date first enrolled in any college or university. The roster must be sealed, (with institutional seal), by the University or College Registrar. The document must certifying that each and every individual listed on the playing roster is a full-time undergraduate student pursuing a first degree at their university or college.
b. An affidavit must be signed by each player that they have the required health and medical insurance as required by USARFU. In addition, the team must submit for inspection proof of health and medical insurance, e.g., clear photocopy of medical insurance card (both sides).
c. Each player must have a valid Identity Card with a photograph from the college or university and present it for inspection at the eligibility clearance and prior to the matches.
d. Each player must have a valid CIPP card from USARFU and present it for inspection at the eligibility clearance and prior to the matches. No exceptions!
a. All participating clubs and players must already conform to the USARFU Collegiate Eligibility requirements. During the screening prior to the competition, each club and each player will present documentation certifying his eligibility.
b. Participants are forewarned that all players over 23 years of age will be asked to present evidence that less than five years have elapsed since they first enrolled at any college or university. Sufficient documentation is no less than a complete transcript.
a. Each team must have matching jerseys numbered 1 through 15 with numbers worn by players according to position.
b. Jerseys, shorts and socks must be clean and free from tears, rips, and holes. If sleeves are cut, they must be hemmed and must at least cover the biceps. Boxer shorts must not show below rugby shorts. Spandex shorts may be worn under rugby shorts only if they are a matching color.
c. Each participating team is expected to have a medical kit and at least paramedical assistance available.
a. The university or college club must be authorized and recognized by the administration of the college or university it represents and be CIPP registered.
b. The club must have a faculty member who serves as an adviser to the club.
c. The club must have a permanent mailing address (N.B. This address should not be that of a student officer, but a permanent P.O. Box or address at which members can be contacted regardless of changes in administration.
d. The club must have an appointed coach.
e. The club must be a full member of a conference recognized by the USARFU.
f. The club must follow all USARFU directives regarding player eligibility and competition.
a. Championship Participation
- Only FULL-TIME, UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS IN GOOD STANDING, playing for the rugby club at his/her university or college, may compete in matches leading to a national championship. The definitions of full-time equivalency and good standing are standards set by each institution of higher education. The university or college club must be a full member of a local area union within USARFU.
- Students, playing rugby in a competition leading to a national championship, must be undergraduates working towards a first bachelor’s degree and have first enrolled at a college or university (including junior or community colleges) which has a rugby program no sooner than 5 years before the beginning of the competition. As an example, if the national championship ends in the spring of 1997, to compete in the championship final, the student must have enrolled no sooner than the summer of 1992.- authorization to participate from the college administration;
- There are no restrictions regarding the number of alien students. Any alien who is full-time undergraduate student in good standing may play for his/her college or university and is subject to the same regulations as any other student.
b. All-Star Participation
- Only FULL-TIME, UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS IN GOOD STANDING playing for the rugby club at his/her university or college may compete in matches in the competition leading to USARFU Collegiate All-Star Team. The definitions of full-time equivalency and good standing are standards set by each institution of higher education. The university or college club must be a full member of a local area union within USARFU.
- Students, playing rugby in a competition leading to the selection of the USARFU Collegiate All-Star Team must be undergraduates working towards a first bachelor’s degree and have first enrolled at any college or university (including junior or community colleges) no sooner than 5 years before the beginning of the competition. As an example, if the competition ends in the summer of 1995, the student must have enrolled no sooner than the fall of 1990. Only alien students with a "green card” (immigrant status) and satisfying all other criteria for eligibility may be considered as eligible for All-Star competition.
c. Appeal Process
Appeal for a waiver of the eligibility regulations must be filed prior to the start of the conference competition. The procedure for the appeal is as follows:
-A letter of appeal and the appropriate documentation for the appeal must be filed with the Chair of the USARFU Eligibility by 15 September.
- Notification of the decision regarding the appeal within 10 days.
Every collegiate coach is required to abide by the Coaches Code of Conduct. It is hoped that by creating a positive and respectful atmosphere each program will raise their standards of play and in the process improve the image of the sport while also making the experience enjoyable for all participants.
The coach/athlete relationship is a privileged one. Coaches play a critical role in the personal as well as athletic development of their athletes. They must understand and respect the inherent power imbalance that exists in this relationship and must be extremely careful not to abuse it. Coaches must also recognize that they are conduits through which the values and goals of a sport organization are channeled. Thus, how an athlete regards his/her sport is often dependent on the behavior of the coach. The following Code of Conduct has been developed to aid coaches in achieving a level of behavior that will allow them to assist their athletes in becoming well-rounded, self-confident, and productive human beings.
• Treat everyone fairly within the context of his or her activity, regardless of gender, place of origin, color, sexual orientation, religion, political belief, or economic status.
• Direct comments or criticism at the performance rather than the athlete.
• Consistently display high personal standards and project a favorable image of their sport and of coaching:
(a) Refrain from public criticism of fellow coaches.
(b) Abstain from the use of tobacco products while in the presence of his/her
athletes and discourage their use by athletes.
(c) Abstain from drinking alcoholic beverages when working with athletes.
(d) Discourage the use of alcohol in conjunction with athletic events.
(e) Refrain from the use of profane, insulting, harassing, or otherwise offensive
language in the conduct of his/her duties.
• Ensure that the activity being undertaken is suitable for the age, experience, ability, and fitness level of the athletes, and educate athletes as to their responsibilities in contributing to a safe environment.
• Communicate and co-operate with registered medical practitioners in the diagnosis, treatment, and management of their athletes' medical and psychological problems. Consider an athlete's future health and well being as foremost when making decisions regarding an injured athlete's ability to continue playing or training.
• Recognize and accept when to refer athletes to their doctor or sport specialists. Allow athletes' goals to take precedence over their own.
• Regularly seek ways of increasing professional development and awareness.
• Treat opponents and officials with due respect, both in victory and defeat, and encourage athletes to act accordingly. Actively encourage athletes to uphold the rules of their sport and the spirit of such rules.
• Be aware of the academic pressures placed on student-athletes and conduct practices and games in a manner so as to allow academic success.
• Ensure the safety of the athletes with whom they work.
• At no time become intimately and/or sexually involved with their athletes.
• Respect athletes’ dignity; verbal or physical behaviors that constitute harassment or abuse are unacceptable.
• Never advocate or condone the use of drugs or other banned performance enhancing substances.
Rugby is a strenuous physical contact game incorporating running, handling, kicking and contact. Basic safety precautions and preparations should be considered to ensure adequate protection for all participants. Responsibility for being prepared to play is shared among the administrators, coaches, referees, and most important, the participant.
All head and spinal/neck‑related injuries are to be reported within 24 hours to the Conference Commissioner by both the referee and team captain. The information provided is to include the player's name, phone number, injury description and the current status and location of the player. Furthermore and in accordance with the USARFU Directive found in The Laws of the Game, "A player suffering a definite concussion should not participate in any match or training session for a period of at least 3 weeks from the time of injury, and then only subject to being cleared by a proper neurological examination." This written clearance is to be submitted to the Collegiate Coordinator for review and approval prior to the player resuming training or match play.
Any player with more than two definite concussions in a single playing season should not be allowed to return to playing that season. Return to play in the following season should be allowed only with a typed clearance letter from a physician. This written clearance is to be submitted to the Collegiate Coordinator for review and approval prior to the player resuming training or match play.
If a medically-trained person is not available to assess a player with a head injury, then the coach may try three simple tests to see if a player sustained a brain injury (i.e., concussion) are:
(1) Mental Status Exam: Ask the player to do a slightly complicated mental task. For example ask him/her to count backwards from 100 by twos.
(2) Memory Exam: Test the player's ability to form NEW memories. Tell him/her to remember three random words. Then five minutes later ask the player what the three words were that he/she was supposed to remember.
(3) Exercise Test: Once the player says he/she feels okay ask him/her to do some moderate exercise (e.g., 5 pushups). Check if doing the exercise brings back symptoms like headache or wooziness.
If the player fails any of the three tests he/she should be sidelined for the rest of the match.
There is No Such Thing as a Minor Concussion
from ‘The Concussion in Sports Public Education Campaign’
The pressure to win can cause an athlete -- amateur or professional -- to forsake personal safety. Too often, coaches, owners, fans and family expect, and sometimes demand, that an injured player "tough it out” and play through the pain, perpetuating the notion that an athlete who sits out to nurse wounds is weak, selfish and unwilling to sacrifice for the team. This attitude may be fine for superficial bumps and bruises, but it is not appropriate when brain injury is involved. Concussion -- the most common form of brain damage -- has become one of the most serious health problems facing both amateur and professional athletes. Tragically, concussion is often overlooked and misdiagnosed by athletes, athletic trainers, coaches and physicians in the sports arena.
Expressions like "getting dinged” and "having your bell rung” downplay the severity of Grade 1 concussions. There is no such thing as a minor concussion. An athlete who suffers a Grade 1 concussion should not be told to just "shake it off”; close monitoring of the player is a requirement. Even more important, those supervising the athletes need to recognize the potentially life-threatening damage that can be inflicted when a second concussion is incurred before the athlete has recovered completely from the first concussion. A 3.5” x 7” palm card has been designed for sideline evaluation of concussion by a coach or an athletic trainer. The card, which was created by neurologists James P. Kelly, MD and Jay H. Rosenberg, MD, was produced by the American Academy of Neurology and the Brain Injury Association in conjunction with the Management of Concussion in Sports Public Education Campaign. It describes the three grades of concussion, offers management recommendations, establishes guidelines on returning to play, explains features of concussion frequently observed, and provides a sideline evaluation for determining if an athlete has sustained a concussion. For more information or to request copies of the card, please call the American Academy of Neurology at 612-623-8115 or the Brain Injury Association at 202-296-6443.
"No player shall be permitted to play with any skin lesions without a doctor's statement that said skin lesions are not contagious." It will be the responsibility of the player with lesions to prove to the satisfaction of the referee (and possibly other players) that he or she is not contagious. Clubs should also police their own players.
The potential for the spread of infection (e.g. "scrumpox”) in "contact” and "collision” sports such as rugby union, has been widely recognized for many years. As a consequence of heightened public awareness and anxieties, increasing attention has been given in recent years to the possible risks of acquiring hepatitis B (HBV) or HIV infection in sports where the spillage of blood may occur.
The risk of acquiring HIV or hepatitis B through playing rugby is minimal. Several instances of direct bloodborne person-to-person spread of HIV infection within families have been reported in the USA, but with the notable exception attributed to the clashing of heads during a soccer match in Italy in 1990, there is no evidence worldwide of the transmission of their HIV or HBV infection while participating in sport. Nevertheless, the potential for spread in rugby, however minimal compared with other risk factors, is accepted and the following recommendations have been prepared by the IRFB Medical Advisory Committee for the guidance of rugby players, team attendants and officials.
i.It is the responsibility of all players to maintain strict personal hygiene by covering any cuts or abrasions (grazes) with an impermeable waterproof dressing.
ii.Open cuts and abrasions occurring during a match or training must be reported and treated immediately.
iii.Players should avoid unnecessary contact with the blood of other players.
iv.All blood-soaked jerseys, shorts etc., should where possible be removed and replaced by fresh clean clothing as soon as possible. Blood-contaminated clothing should be put through a hot detergent wash.
v.All players with a recent history of evidence of infectious disease should discuss the potential hazards of participation in sport with a doctor. Chronic carriers of bloodborne diseases, who are otherwise fit, need not categorically be excluded from participating in contact sports.
vi.Players and officials should be strongly encouraged to obtain immunization against hepatitis B infection.
Referees, Match Officials and Team Attendants
i.Under Law 6A(8)(d), a player who has an open or bleeding wound (including nose bleeds) must leave the playing area until the bleeding is controlled and the wound covered or dressed.
ii.When bleeding cannot be controlled, the player must not be permitted to return to the game.
iii.Clothing and equipment contaminated with fresh blood should be replaced prior to the player returning to the field of play.
iv.Team attendants and other persons attending to bleeding players preferably should wear disposable gloves. Disposable mouth-to-mouth resuscitation devices should also be available.
Team Preparation Areas
It is the responsibility of all clubs to ensure that dressing rooms, "warm-up” areas etc., be kept clean and tidy. Particular attention should be paid to hand-basins, toilets and showers. Adequate soap, paper hand-towels and disinfectants should always be available. Household bleach (diluted 1 part in 10) should be used to clean up any blood spills.
Bleeding Players must be removed immediately from the field of play until the bleeding is controlled and the wound covered with an impermeable waterproof dressing.
Individual Disposable Wipes (or disposable sponges) should always be used in preference to the communal sponge.
Blood-Soaked Equipment (jerseys, shorts etc.,) should be replaced by fresh clean equipment, and put through a hot detergent wash.
Fresh Blood Spills should be cleaned up using a 1 in 10 solution of household bleach.
First Aid Kits should include disposable gloves.
Players with a recent history or who are known carriers of infectious disease should discuss the potential hazards of participation in contact sport with a doctor.
Showering is preferable to the communal bath
"Safety Precaution Recommendations” dated 9/19/96. Please copy it from the EPRU web site at URL: http://www.libertynet.org/~djrugby/index.html
The American Orthopedic Rugby Football Association (AORFA) is a grassroots organization whose membership consists of orthopedic surgeons, residents, physical therapists and other related sports medicine professionals. AORFA's mission and goal is to create an awareness of the orthopedic and medical aspects of rugby and promote competitive rugby in North America. AORFA wants to make rugby safer without changing the spirit of the game. AORFA believes that this can be accomplished through research, education and medical coverage on the individual and team level. Contact AORFA at infoAORFA@aol.com, as well as visit their web site at URL: http://www.sechrest.com/ortho/aorfa/
AORFA has set up their web page to disseminate information on Sports Medicine and orthopedics that would be pertinent and valuable to rugby players and health care professionals. There are links to other organizations interested in rugby and sports medicine. At the web site you will find medical and safety information on specific topics, such as: Cervical Spine Injuries, Concussions, Fluid & Dehydration, Cuts and Abrasions, Thigh Contusions, Knee Injuries, Shoulder Injuries, Hand Injuries, etc.
Trainer Services - AORFA and NovaCare Outpatient Rehabilitation have joined forces to provide athletic trainer services along with medical coverage for rugby teams and players. Both organizations are closely involved in the care of athletes. AORFA routinely provides medical support to local, regional, national and international rugby teams and events. NovaCare is a leading provider of Athletic Training, Physical & Occupational Therapy and Rehab services to high school, collegiate, amateur and professional athletes nationwide.
AORFA believes that every team should have an athletic trainer on the sideline for every game. The trainer provides a high level of care as well as preventive treatment and taping before and after games. Any team that is interested in athletic trainer services may acquire such services by contacting Linda Fabrizio at (610) 586-7000 and mentioning the AORFA partnership. Cost should be about $15 per hour. Please call at least two week in advance. There is a nominal fee for the trainer services. In addition, if you would like a trainer for your entire season, submit your schedule at the beginning of the season. If physician coverage for a tournament is needed please call AORFA at (215) 493-0743 and they will put you in touch with a doctor in your area that understands that rugby…and without cost.
"Preventing Rugby Injuries”. Proceedings of the International Conference on Rugby Injuries - 1988. Available from Steve Cohen (609-983-1094).