Bob Dwyer Clinic – Testimony


First of all I want to thank you for the great opportunity of attending the coaching clinic with Bob Dwyer and Mike Penistone.  The chance to receive coaching advice from a World cup winning coach was truly invaluable.

To have two of the best coaches in the world explaining that the way we are coaching is not only incorrect but detrimental to our chances of winning was a true eye-opener. The session were fun and very informative and the stories about big names failing at simple drills put a lot in perspective.

For the Texas Union to take the initiative and run such a high profile clinic is a testament to you and your Union. For other players and coaches to fail to see the golden opportunity that was given to them is a sad reflection on rugby in the USA.

I don’t really have any negative comments about the weekend, other than what we discussed. The number of players needs to be increased for both the players and coaches benefits. A more precise end time, although I appreciate that it was shortened due to heat and numbers, for those reserving flights etc.

The amount of time and access we had with these coaches was unprecedented and to be able to watch the Australia game with a pint of Guinness and listen to Bob will be a favorite rugby memory for a long time!

Again I hope you continue with these events and allow me the opportunity to attend, so maybe we can meet in the playoffs and have a truly open free flowing game. I also hope the collaborations between our Unions continue, especially with respect to helping fund and offer travel grants to allow coaches of all levels to attend.

Your thankfully,

C. H.

St Louis Rambler Rugby Club

Five Key Areas for RWC Referee’s

The IRB referees’ supremo Paddy O’Brien has read the riot act to his ten referees ahead of the forthcoming World Cup.

Although confident in the ability of his ten selected officials, O’Brien admits that across the board, referees have “let the foot off the throat” in certain facets of the game. Following the introductions of new laws around the breakdown, tournament organisers are impressing their wish for a departure from the games filled with kicking which were prevalent in the 2011 World Cup.

Citing the recent Tri-Nations, northern hemisphere warm-up Tests and Super Rugby, O’Brien outlined certain issues which need to be addressed. “We have been asking our guys to revisit the five key areas,” he said. “We think they started with really good intentions last year, but the foot has come off the throat, especially at the tackle – the tackler rolling away and the entry – and especially the offside line in close.”

“The 20 teams at the World Cup all received the same presentation and they have bought into it. What we’ve got to do as referees is make sure we implement them. While the refs have done some of them very well, we think as an overall picture … we need to reassess them.”

And O’Brien’s five key areas are:

The breakdown – the tackler must roll away and assist tackler must release the player, while arriving players must come through the gate from the back foot.

Foul play – Referees must start at red and work backwards in the instance of high tackles, grabbing and twisting of the head and tip tackles.

Mauls – the ball-carrier must be available to be tackled.

Offsides – consistent and strict policing of offside players around the breakdown area and players in front of kicker must remain stationary onside.

The scrum – Referees must quicken the sequence of the four calls “crouch, touch, pause engage”. O’Brien expressed the need for the loosehead to have his head and shoulders above hips and the tighthead must bind on the body of his opponent rather than the arm.



With the previously announced change of Texas from and LAU to a GU, membership registration with USA Rugby has been delayed one week to 8/22.

This was done so that USA can change/update its CIPP programming to accommodate the new organizational changes and fee structures that are in place as of this weekend by USA Congress.


Get Ready to Ruck! Membership Week Starts Today!

Dear Valued USA Rugby Member,

The time has come to register for the 2011-2012 USA Rugby Membership Season!  We have been hard at work ensuring our members receive the most value for their membership and we’re thrilled to offer exciting new benefits and extended customer service hours in September and October.

We’ll be highlighting membership benefits throughout the week and letting you know about some great new membership features this year!

2010-2011 Memberships expire on August 31, but don’t worry.  Registration for the 2011-2012 season opens TODAY so you can glide seamlessly between seasons!  Become a member or renew your membership today!

Top 10 Reasons Why You Should Be a USA Rugby Member

10) We’ve got you covered if you have a rugby accident.

USA Rugby members registered for the 2011-2012 Membership Season will receive up to $250,000 of accident insurance.  That means if you’re injured playing, refereeing, or even coaching, you’ll have medical coverage.  If you have primary health insurance,  your USA Rugby Accident Insurance coverage could pay the deductible and cover other out-of-pocket expenses.

9) Keep some money in your pocket by getting great discounts from USA Rugby’s partners!

Save money and support the game you love when you use USA Rugby’s corporate partners such as Hilton Worldwide, Enterprise Rent-a-Car, T-Mobile, Bank of America, and many more!  Click here to see a full list of member benefits.

8) Get a shot at glory! USA Rugby Members can compete for National Championships!

In 2010-2011, USA Rugby crowned 21 National Champions.  USA Rugby members get a chance at making American rugby history by becoming a National Champion in 2011-2012!

7) If you’ve got questions, we’ve got answers.

USA Rugby’s Membership Department will have extended service hours in September and October to provide better customer service.  They will be available to answer your questions and help if you should run into any problems with registration.  Business hours for September and October are 7 a.m.-6 p.m. Mountain Time and 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. on Saturdays!

6) Your USA Rugby Liability Insurance can help you find a place to play!

When you register as a USA Rugby member, you automatically receive third party liability insurance.  Most venues, facilities  and sponsors require this form of insurance, so you’ll be covered.  This policy also helps reduce your personal liability.

5) Become a better referee or coach!

Referee and coaching courses are held exclusively for USA Rugby members so you can hone your skills and knowledge to make you a more effective coach or referee!  Attending these courses is a great way to learn more about the game, connect with your local coaching and refereeing communities, and help to improve the quality of American rugby.

4) We keep our members safe!

In the 2011-2012 season, all Rookie Rugby, youth, high school and college coaches will undergo a thorough background screening to ensure members will enjoy a safe environment in which to play the game.

3) It’s REALLY easy to become a member!

Online registration is quick and easy!  If you run into any snags, our friendly Membership Department is ready to help!  Give them a call 303-530-0300!

2) Be the first to know about exclusive discounts and deals from USA Rugby and its partners!

When you register as a member, you will be the first to know about great new deals and discounts from USA Rugby and its partners!

1) Support the game you love and join the fastest-growing team sports in the United States!

Play the game you love and contribute to the growth of rugby in the United States.  YOU will play an important role in expanding the game in America and you will have a great time doing it!  


Become a member today!

TRRA AGM on Sunday, August 14th

The TRRA will be holding its Fall General Meeting on Sunday, August 14th in San Marcos, TX.
Meeting tentatively scheduled from 11am to 4pm.

All TRRA members (in good standing) are invited to attend but need to RSVP in advance to ensure adequate room size and lunch reservations.

Agenda items will be posted to the web accordingly and new business items and/or discussion item requests can be sent to for addition to the meeting agenda.

We have the Multipurpose Room C in the Student Recreation Center here on TXST Campus reserved from 9-5 on August 13th. The Rec Center is right next to our pitch. Directions are below.

Driving Directions to Pitch From Austin / Dallas / Waco, TX: I35 South to San Marcos; Exit Texas State / Aquarena Springs Dr./Loop 82; Follow the access road to the first traffic light; Turn right onto Aquarena Springs Drive/Loop 82; See In-Town Directions below;
Driving Directions to Pitch From San Antonio, TX: I35 North to San Marcos; Exit Aquarena Springs Dr./Loop 82; Follow the access road to the first traffic light; Turn left onto Aquarena Springs Drive/Loop 82; Pass under I-35 and proceed thru next frontage road light; See In-Town Directions below;
Driving Directions to Pitch from Houston, TX: I10 West; exit @ Luling Hwy. 183; proceed into Luling, take a right at Light, cross RR and a left @ next light onto Hwy 80. CAUTION-Speed trap in Martindale (slow down to 50mph). Take a right @ I35, going north on the feeder road to the next intersection (Aquarena Springs Drive) and take a left. See In-Town Directions below;

Once onto Aquarena Springs Dr. from I-35; You will pass two traffic lights and cross over a railroad track. Bobcat Stadium (football) will be on your left just before the tracks. You will pass another traffic light and then over the San Marcos River; At the next light (immediately across the river) turn right onto Sessoms Drive; You will pass a stop light and wind around to the top of a small hill t a stop light; continue on Sessoms Drive up a long curved hill and past another light at the intersection of Comanche and Sessoms; You will then pass the Student Recreation Center as the road makes a sharp right-hand turn/curve; As the road curves right, it becomes Academy Street; You will see & pass the athletics fields (Rugby Field is the second one) on your left and turn left on Speck Street (between field and large parking garage). This leads to the parking lot for the athletics field or park in the covered parking garage on your right as you turn onto Speck. Walk back down Academy to the Student Rec Center at the curve. Ask at the front desk for directions to Multipurpose Room C.

Referee appreciation Tuesday night at the Stags Head (HOU)

Tuesday, July 19 is Referee Appreciation Day in the Houston Area.  Please join Rugby Texas at the Stag’s Head Pub at 6 p.m. to toast all the referees and thank them for all the hard work they put in every year so we can play the great game of Rugby.  There is no door fee, but we do ask that you make sure that no referee is standing around with an empty glass.  The Stag’s Head will be offering special rugby rates on beer and their excellent pub grub.  You will also have the opportunity to win tickets to the Lost Afternoon Rugby Luncheon on August 5 (, so come out and join us Tuesday evening.

Referee Appreciation Event – July 19, 2011 in Houston, TX

As you know, USA Rugby has designated July as Referee Appreciation Month.  In recognition, Rugby Texas would like to invite all referees to attend a reception in their honor at 6 p.m. on July 19th at the Stag’s Head Pub in Houston, 2128 Portsmouth (just north of Hwy. 59, between Shepherd and Greenbriar).
While this will be a very casual, low key affair, please distribute this invitation to all the referees so that Rugby Texas can display our genuine appreciation for everything you all do.  We recognize that not only are you a vital part of the game, but your leadership in showing boys and girls the right way to play the game is invaluable.
We look forward to seeing you on the 19th.Paul Mabry
Executive Director
Rugby Texas
713-502-0282 – cell

To view the most recent Rugby Texas newsletter, click here:

Retractable Sideline Ropes – Please Read

The TRU Board of Directors had a competitions meeting recently and one of the items that came from this was a discussion and policy change as it relates to Field Barriers / Sideline Policy.

The policy has been in place for two season now and it has been deemed that ALL TEAMS (Rugby Texas, SWC, TRU Collegiate and all Senior levels) have had adequate time to find suitable barriers and to have them installed for all league matches with it being strongly recommended for friendlies and Tournaments.  We know that each club has their own unique situations with respect to field / stadium preparation.  However, there has been ample time for compliance and excuses will no longer be accepted.

The fine for failure to have adequate ropes, per published policy has now been raised to $500 per occurrence.

The first fine will be used by the TRU to purchase and ship the Rope / Sideline System (or similar product) detailed below to the offending Club, subsequent fines will continue until such time that the offending clubs can fully require with this two year old policy.  This includes proper field flags (grass or turf venues) that are also required by policy.

TRU Board of Directors


Costs $159.00 PER SIDELINE:

The QuickWinder QuickBee Safety Series is Yellow and Black for Greater Visibility and added Safety.

CORNER FLAGS with INDOOR BASE: The plastic pole measures 60″H x 1″ OD, which slides easily and quickly into the dome base and comes with the high visibility red flag with white border which is the choice for all colleges and universities. The base can be filled with sand if the extra weight is required.

Measurements: Post 60″H x 1/2″ OD – Flag 13″ x 13″

Suggested Manufacturers Retail Price: $125




Lost Afternoon is fast approaching (8/5), sign up now!

Former USA Eagles Captain Brian Vizard will be a featured speaker at the Lost Afternoon Rugby Luncheon on August 5 and the Houston Westchase Marriott.

Vizard, currently the executive director of the U.S. Rugby Football Foundation and a regular commentator on rugby television broadcasts, will share great stories of leading the Eagles before the game became predominantly professional.  Additionally, he will be able to provide interesting perspective on the current squad as it heads off to the Rugby World Cup in September.  His appearance is being generously sponsored by MaxEn Capital and its managing director, Bob Erwin.

Previously announced as the Keynote Speaker is former Springbok legend Rob Louw, no stranger to the World Cup himself.  Not only will Louw enthrall and amuse, but his personal story of overcoming a near-fatal battle with malignant meloma — thanks to aggressive treatment at Houston’s M.D. Anderson Hospital — will inspire.

NOW is the time to make your reservations for what has become the most anticipated annual social event on the Texas rugby calendar.  The great speakers, delicious lunch, raffles for exciting door prizes such as collectible signed jerseys, and the all-afternoon happy hour all combine to make it a memorable day with friends old and new.  Great rates for rooms and suites (perfect for the post-luncheon parties which have become popular) are available — just check the website.

All monies raised go to support locally youth rugby initiatives.  This past January, a highly successful youth camp led by All Blacks great Scott “Razor” Robertson was held in Houston and Dallas thanks to underwriting from the luncheon proceeds.

Remember, tickets can only be purchased on line at  None will be sold at the door.  Also, please consider being a table or corporate sponsor.  Thanks to the Houston Heathens and BARC (Bay Area RFC) for stepping up, among others.  Seats are limited by room size, and — frankly — you would be doing the organizing committee a huge favor by purchasing tickets soon, ensuring a sell-out and letting us focus on staging a great event.  So get your mates together and buy a table … or just make your individual reservation NOW.

NOTE … When making your reservation for the Lost Afternoon luncheon at, be sure to enter your credit card expiration date exactly in the format called for — just a two-digit month/four digit year.  e.g. 04/2014.