Wasatch Cup Scrapped, Utah Rugby Suspended, Cougars to Hold Clinic

April 2, 2013 by  
Filed under Featured, News & PR


Provo, UT–The biggest game on the rugby calendar in the state of Utah has been canceled today due to university violations by the University of Utah rugby team.

No specific details have been released as to what violations were made by the Utah rugby program, but University of Utah officials have suspended the rugby team from playing the 2013-14 season and reportedly put the program under long term suspension as well.

BYU head coach David Smyth said he was disappointed at hearing the news directly from the University of Utah administrators who informed him that this Friday’s Wasatch Cup match could not take place under any set of circumstances.

“The timing of the news is obviously not good,” Smyth said emphatically, “Our boys are definitely disappointed at not being able to play against our rivals, the University of Utah. The Wasatch Cup is a big deal here in our state and it not only hurts both of our programs to not play this game, but it hurts rugby in general here in Utah.  It’s a sore and sad day for both programs.”

Given the effect on the local rugby community that the Wasatch Cup had, Smyth said it’s imperative that the BYU Rugby program do its part to support youth, high school and collegiate rugby in other ways.

“We hope our fans and alumni will see that this unfortunate turn of events can be used as a positive and not a negative,” Smyth said, “Our program hopes to help grow the game not only nationally, but also here in Utah and now that we have a little more free time on our hands this week we’ll be focusing our efforts to do just that.”

Smyth said his team and coaching staff will be involved as support staff with the upcoming Utah Collegiate Rugby Conference Division II playoffs, despite not having a team present on account of the Cougars’ Varsity Cup post-season commitments.

He also pointed out that BYU rugby players and staff will be in attendance of numerous local high school and youth rugby matches over the coming weekend and beyond to help show support to the teams and players within the local Utah area.

Finally, Smyth said that in lieu of having Friday night’s Wasatch Cup match for the local rugby community to participate in, the Cougars would offer a free clinic to all youth and high school rugby players on April 12th on BYU’s Helaman Field. Players will be asked to bring their own rugby ball and cleats and to dress weather appropriate.

At the clinic BYU players and coaches will help all of the players continue their rugby development through games and drills. The clinic will start at 4pm MT and run until 6pm MT on April 12th.

With the cancellation of Friday’s Wasatch Cup match the Cougars will now turn their attention towards their postseason championship efforts in the Varsity Cup National Collegiate Rugby Championship.

BYU will open in the quarterfinal round of the Varsity Cup at UCLA where the Bruins will host the Western Super-Regional that will feature Air Force taking on a yet-to-be-named team that will replace the Utah rugby team, while UCLA hosts the Cougars.

The Varsity Cup Western Super-Regional is slated for April 20th on UCLA’s picturesque North Athletic Field. Air Force and the yet-to-be-named team kick off at 2pm PT with UCLA taking on BYU at 4pm PT.

The Varsity Cup Easter Super-Regional is slated for April 20th as well at the Naval Academy’s Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. There Cal will take on Notre Dame at 1.30pm ET while the hosts will square off with Dartmouth at 3.30pm ET.

Should the Cougars win their quarterfinal match they will return to Provo to host the winner of the Air Force vs. TBD quarterfinal on April 27th on South Field.

The two winning semi-finalists will play for the Varsity Cup National Collegiate Rugby Championship at South Field Stadium May 4th at 1pm MT.

For more details on the Varsity Cup go to www.VarsityCup.US.


14 Responses to “Wasatch Cup Scrapped, Utah Rugby Suspended, Cougars to Hold Clinic”
  1. SadDadBadHad says:

    You think Utah Rugby would refund my tickets and hotel? Bush leaguers.

  2. Y4LYFE says:

    Not surprised by this, but very saddened for the economic loss Utah has caused. Thousands of disappointed Y fans for sure. While Utah is turning swim-gates into profit, using local media as shields, and failing to maintain codes of conduct, BYU turns this lame news into a positive…holding a free clinic for youth.

    BYU could NOT be more opposite than Utah. Proud to be a Cougar.

  3. SadDadBadHad says:

    BYU is the best college team BYU has played all year. Why not have a black and blue scrimmage on Friday night? I’d still pay to see that, wouldn’t you?

  4. KiwiCharlee says:

    Why not set up the stadium to watch some European Rugby or better still, Super 15 (NZ, Australia, South Africa) competition matches which are in full swing at the moment? True Rugby fans would pay a gold coin for an evening of that, wouldn’t they? LOL!

  5. Josh says:

    That is to bad. I had to make sure this story came out on the 2nd of April for I totally thought when I saw it that it was an April fools joke.

  6. Dwight Cornell says:

    will someone please lend me a shoulder to cry on, I am very sad and very disappointed about this, of course I put full blame on the team up north for all of this.
    My wife was actually planning on going to this game with me, Y4life I agree with you, I am proud to be a Cougar, both of Rugby and I am also proud of our men’s basketball team for the way they played hard even in loss.

  7. Nug in the Rug says:

    How about a hand of friendship – BYU Captain calls Utah captain and expresses respect and hope that the two teams can soon compete again. Some of these players I would guess were former high school or club teammates. Invite them for an evening of an arm wrestling competition, a huge feed and then attend a local high school game together . . . . or am I just nuts and should just spit on them.

  8. BYU Rugby Forever says:

    Super shocked at the news … I’m especially saddened for the fans that would have come to see rugby for the first time, not to mention all those who have already spent time and money in preparation for this event.

    I hope Utah can work out their issues, get past this blemish on their program, and return to the premier level of collegiate rugby sooner rather than later. This is a huge blow to college rugby in the US, and I only hope that it gets diffused quickly.

    Good luck to the Utes in getting it all sorted out, and push on Mighty Cougars regardless!!!

  9. I am quiet sad to hear that.But BYU must move on.With or without the the Utes no worries.Good luck Blues and win another one champion.See you in Provo.

  10. S says:

    Some of these comments are ridiculous. Sounds like the U suspended their own team, showing that they have the moral courage to do what’s right when even when it’s not popular. Most cougars are alright, but some really need to get over themselves.

  11. Dwight Cornell says:

    I do not put the blame on the Utah Players, Utah does have a very good Rugby team, and I have always enjoyed watching the Wasatch Cup the last couple of years.
    I hope they are able to get this mess worked out and that they can bring back their Rugby program.

  12. Carolina Kid says:

    Really bummed. I too hope Utah can get its act in order. Wonder if a Canadian team could come down ?

  13. Drew Allred says:

    Universty of Victoria would be a great game.

  14. Carolina Kid says:

    BYU has excellent leadership and are to be commended for starting the Varsity Cup. USA Rugby played virtually no role in promoting the Cal BYU match and walked away with the money. USA Rugby is a poorly run group whse only goal is to get big and bloated. The Varsity Cup venues are head and shoulds better then the high school fields usa rugby gets. Long live the Varsity Cup !!!!


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