Schools Speak About Value of 2015 Penn Mutual CRC – Collegiate Rugby Championship

Schools Speak About Value of 2015 Penn Mutual CRC

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Philadelphia, Penn. — April 29, 2015 —Men’s and women’s collegiate and high school teams will come from across the country to compete in the 2015 Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championships. This year teams will travel from California, Texas, Virginia, etc. Some new changes for the event this year include the addition of two more playing fields, and four more women’s collegiate teams for a total of 12. We spoke with some of the program’s administrators to find out why our event is worth the long travel, and what they hope to achieve.

Bill Whalen, Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University’s Men’s Rugby Manager

We see the Penn Mutual CRC as being the highest caliber collegiate 7s tournament that the country has to offer. That combined with the exposure n NBC Sports makes it an easy choice to accept when we received our third invitation in its many years. The fact that the tournament is a bit far from home means nothing when considering the benefits of competing in such a prestigious event.”

Virginia Tech 1

Justin Oxford, University of Texas’ Men’s Rugby Assistant Coach

“This will be the fifth year that Texas Rugby will journey to the Penn Mutual CRC. Very few CRC teams have been invited five times, and we continue to participate because it presents Texas with a unique opportunity, that is lacking in the majority of collegiate rugby. It gives the players a chance to run out of the tunnel into a crowd-filled stadium, cheering them on as their names are announced over the loudspeakers. It gives us the true college athlete experience, and we get to wear the Longhorn on our chest with pride as we represent our university on national television. It gives our players a chance to experience such a phenomenal feeling.”

Brian Smith, University of California Los Angeles’ Program Director of Competitive Sports & Martial Arts

“Obviously the goal at the start is to win the whole thing. It would be a great honor and instill a sense of pride for our team to return to Westwood with the championship. With that said it is extremely important for us to take it one game at a time with a common goal of improving every day and working as a team. We look forward to the hospitality that the Penn Mutual CRC provides the teams each year and the ability for our team to showcase their talent. These kids work hard all year, and most either have to fundraise or pay dues in order to be on the team and travel to events like this. So, for it all to culminate in an event of this magnitude, it is truly a blessing.”

Joe Muehlbauer, United States Air Force Academy’s Men’s Rugby Head Coach

“We here at USAFA feel it is an honor to play in the Penn Mutual CRC. We have wanted to participate since its inception and are very excited to finally be in the competition. I feel that it’s important for us to play against the best in the country and the best are playing 7s in the CRC. Our down time here at the Academy is very limited, but we are more than happy to use that time to get ready to compete. We are very much looking forward to the journey to and the participation in the tournament.”

Nicholas Hildebidle, Boston University’s Women’s Rugby Head Coach

“Initially BU was interested in the Penn Mutual CRC because it was an opportunity for us to play 7s. I had a number of players who were playing 7s during the summer for various club teams, but there wasn’t anywhere accessible for us to play in the spring or fall. As our program, and the women’s game in general, has devoted more time towards 7s, we’ve seen the CRC as a chance to test ourselves against quality teams that we don’t normally see. The past two years we’ve been a little disappointed with our performance at the CRC, so this year we’d really like to show what we’re capable of.”

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