Rugby club hits big on campus

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(PHOTO/ Chris Wallace)

Oluwaseun Omotayo

Contributor

There may be end zones, a ball and some field goals, but it isn’t football.

The sport is rugby, and several Troy students have formed a club.

It is akin to American football; but, there are some major differences, like the scoring method.

“There are three major differences between rugby and American football,” said Hill Beedy, a Junior accounting major from Fairhope, Alabama. “There is minimum protective wear, passing the ball forward is not allowed and play does not stop during a tackle. Unlike American football, players are not allowed to hold the ball during a tackle.”

Rugby is a sport that started at rugby school in Warwickshire, England, in 1823.

The games can be grouped into two types: the 7s games and the 15s games. This classification is based on the number of players per team.

The goal of the games is to score as many points as possible. The 15s games have a combined time of 80 minutes with a five-minute half-time. The games begin with a kick-off, and players cannot pass forward. One can only pass the ball back as they move forward.

Players score by touching the ball to the ground inside the end zone, known as a “try.” After scoring a try, players of the scoring team kick a field goal, similar to football.

Unlike in football, certain penalties can result in a penalty kick. The team on the receiving end of the foul can attempt a field goal from the spot of the foul.

Trys are worth 5 points, extra-point kicks are worth two additional points and penalty kicks are worth 3 points.

Beedy, who was elected at the end of the Spring 2019 semester, is currently the president of the Troy Rugby Men’s Club. A women’s club started in 2018, and currently has seven members.

Club practice is at the band field on John M. Long Drive on Mondays and Wednesdays. It starts at 5:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. for the women’s and men’s clubs, respectively.

“Troy Rugby is a part of the Deep South College rugby conference; therefore, we usually play against schools in the Southeast,” Beedy explained. “Division 1 schools in Florida and Alabama, including schools like Auburn University, Jacksonville State University, and University of Alabama, Birmingham.

The spring semester is when conference play starts. The 7s games are popular during the spring semester. T

hey have a combined time of 14 minutes, but that can be more exhausting when compared to 15s games.

“Scouts usually come to the games and there have been cases where people get recruited,” Beedy said. A Troy University graduate currently plays for the Montgomery Yellowhammers.

One can join the rugby club by attending practice. Club dues are paid annually. The first payment is $100 because it covers a club uniform. After that, annual dues are $65.

The Troy Rugby Men’s team has 17 members and everyone is welcome to join.

“It is a great place to start if looking for friends,” said Jordan Montgomery, a freshman exercise science major from Hampton, Georgia. “I have found my brotherhood and all the guys are usually nice.”

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