South Carolina Out To Prove They Too Are A Rugby Powerhouse – Collegiate Rugby Championship
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South Carolina Out To Prove They Too Are A Rugby Powerhouse
Like many powerful athletic universities in the Southeast, the South Carolina gamecocks are seeing the value of having a quality rugby program as a way to enhance both the student experience and raise the profile of the University with a new generation of fans looking for more than the gridiron, and their work to get the CRC in 2016 mirrors that commitment and level of excellence that is rinsing in their play both at the 15’s and now in the Olympic sport of sevens.
Under coach Steve Darnell, USC has had to overcome the loss of some of its leaders, including team captain Tim Hamill who has had to overcome a series of groin injuries and then a broken arm on the first play of the SCRC Championship game this spring. However one player both healthy and ready for the challenge is fellow senior Dana Corcoran, who returned to school this spring after losing  his girlfriend and future  fiancé to brain cancer last fall. “The most exciting aspect of playing in the Collegiate Rugby Championship this summer is that it will be last game playing for USC,” Corcoran said. “This team has given me a lot and there’s nothing I’d like to do more than give back by playing my heart out on the biggest stage of my rugby career.”
In 2015, the Gamecocks established themselves as a premier sevens program in the Southeast, finishing with a record of 21-3, building upon their appearance at the Penn Mutual CRC’s in 2014 and their Shield Championship at the USA Rugby 7’s Nationals in 2013. With three SCRC 7’s series titles, South Carolina advanced to the Top-25 in all three national polls, aided by victories over Tennessee, Louisiana State, Florida, Alabama, & Virginia Tech, all of which are previous CRC participants. This year, the Gamecocks finished with a record of 20-7, winning the SCRC 7’s Championship and advancing to the USA Rugby Collegiate 7’s National Championship and the Penn Mutual CRC’s, both for a second time.
The South rising in rugby? Sure thing, and South Carolina is one to watch.

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