NEWS

November 12, 2021

Hello! It is the busy prep season as we move quickly towards Youngers Club and High School play — thank you for your diligence to the details so we can get kids running again!  

KEY DATES:
– Registration Minimums Dec 3  (3 weeks away)
– Schedule Release Dec 10   (4 weeks away)
– First matches January 7/8   (8 weeks away)


REGISTRATION — *MINIMUMS DEADLINE: The minimum registration deadline is just 3 weeks away — December 3. HS Team Minimums: 15 players for 15s, 7 players for 7s. Youngers Club Minimums: 7 players for U8, 10 players for U10, 12 players for U12, 15 players for BU14 Light and Open *COACHES: Coaches, head and assistants, need to be registered and fully credentialed by the December 3 deadline. However, if you have coaches attending the Dec 4 or Dec 5 L200 course, please just let us know. 


REGIONAL REPRESENTATIVES — There were two vacancies on the Board of Directors that were filled via regional nomination and vote.  * Orange County/Inland Rep — Dane Groeneveld of San Clemente Youth Rugby has replaced Jay Rogers, who now holds the President seat. Dane will serve a two-year term. 
* Tri-County – Robert Vincent has garnered a second two-year term.

November 8, 2021

Welcome Justin Holshuh, Club & Competitions Coordinator!


We are thrilled to announce the addition of Justin Holshuh as the new SoCal Youth Rugby Club & Competitions Coordinator. Justin brings extensive rugby administration and coaching experience to this membership.

“Justin fell in love with rugby when he was 13 and his passion has only grown over the last 25 years. Justin previously worked for USA Rugby handling eligibility, competitions, and compliance. Justin earned a degree in Sport Management from Colby-Sawyer College and is in the process of completing his Masters. In addition to Justin’s work with USA Rugby, he was also the co-chairman of the Frontier 7s Region and assisted in organizing the 2018 Rugby 7s World Cup. Justin coached at the University of Colorado, Mount Saint Mary’s University and helped start the University of Rio Grande rugby program. He has spent over two decades working in the sports industry and has a strong foundation in grassroots sports development. Additionally, he has founded multiple youth rugby clubs across the country.”

Justin begins his role today and can be reached at justin@socalyouth.rugby

October 25, 2021

We are opening Sportslomo for Youngers Club and High School registration this week as well as Coaches and Referees.

The new platform noted prior, Fuse, is continuing their testing at the US Youth & HS level, so not quite ready for the State Youth Rugby Organizations. Given our timeframe to practicing and playing, we have decided to move forward with Sportslomo in the interim.  

— I will be making all current clubs/teams in Sportslomo inactive this morning, so I can build our registration system.  I will make you active again once I’ve pushed the registration categories to you — details below:

What are the next steps for your club/hs team? …

* Division Intention forms — I will push the registration categories to your club/hs team based upon your submission of the Youngers Club and High School Intention forms. Both forms are available on the Club Resources page of socalyouth.rugby (orange links).

* Primary Contacts for Clubs and High School Teams — Your registration won’t be live until you’ve signed the Member Contract, which will get pushed to you upon completion of the Primary Contact form. This Primary Contact form link is also in orange on the Club Resources page.  I am a bit behind in pushing contracts, but will get caught up lickety-split. 

* Did you play last Spring or Summer 2021?  — If you played last Spring/Summer, you are already in Sportslomo. However, High School teams won’t be run through the Clubs this time. You will have a separate listing/banking as we always had prior. I will send details on setting up your banking in my next email.  If you didn’t play last Spring, no worries, we will get you set-up in Sportslomo.

We’ll get registration up and running very soon! 

Southern California Youth Rugby Announces New Leadership

Orange County, CA (October 22, 2021) — Southern California Youth Rugby is pleased to announce the appointment of Valory Reed as their new Executive Director. Reed has been with SoCal Youth Rugby since 2018, most recently as Program & Member Relations.

“I look forward to furthering the groundwork laid for SoCal Youth Rugby in recent years. This is an exciting time given our region’s spotlight with the LA 28 Olympic Summer Games, the US World Cup 29/31 bid, and our region’s two Major League Rugby teams, San Diego Legion and LA Giltinis.” Reed said. “With this fervor, we are committed to extending rugby’s reach to new schools, families, and communities.”

The position of Club & Competitions Coordinator is available for application. Resumes and cover letter are being accepted through November 3, 2021. For further details on this role, please view the Job Description.

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About SoCal Youth Rugby

Southern California Youth Rugby is the US Youth & High School’s State Youth Rugby Organization for Southern California spanning nine counties from San Luis Obispo to south San Diego and all areas east. The community spirit of rugby, safety, introduction and development are the pillars for growing the game amongst our thousands of SoCal Youth Rugby athletes, families, clubs and high schools.
SoCal Youth Rugby — the nation’s hotbed of youth rugby.

San Diego Legion and Southern California Youth Rugby Partner to Grow the Youth Game

San Diego, CA (October 20, 2021)- Southern California Youth Rugby and San Diego Legion are excited to announce their collaboration benefitting the rugby community of San Diego and south Orange County.  

​​San Diego Legion and SoCal Youth Rugby will work collaboratively to curate and provide programs for SoCal Youth Rugby member high schools and youth clubs, including referees and coaches. San Diego Legion players will work hand-in-hand with the SoCal Youth Rugby members teaching and sharing firsthand their own rugby insights. Furthering the spotlight, the Legion Academy will host key events and matches with SoCal Youth Rugby. 

As one of the founding teams of Major League Rugby, San Diego Legion has been intent on growing the youth game for many years. “The roots of the game start with the kids on the pitch. Legion Academy is our avenue to assist in growing and developing that rugby passion,” shared San Diego Legion President Ryan Patterson.

“Legion Academy is taking the game of rugby to new levels for thousands of our SoCal Youth Rugby athletes,” said Jay Rogers, SoCal Youth Rugby President. “As the sport grows, this opportunity to bridge the gap from the youth game to the academy and professional level is unprecedented.”

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About SoCal Youth Rugby

Southern California Youth Rugby is the US Youth & High School’s State Youth Rugby Organization for Southern California spanning nine counties from San Luis Obispo to south San Diego and all areas east. The community spirit of rugby, safety, introduction and development are the pillars for growing the game amongst our thousands of SoCal Youth Rugby athletes, families, clubs and high schools. SoCal Youth Rugby — the nation’s hotbed of youth rugby.

About San Diego Legion

Established in 2017, San Diego Legion is part of Major League Rugby (MLR), comprising 13 professional teams, featuring 12 from the United States and one in Canada. A founding team of MLR, SD Legion plays its home matches at Torero Stadium. San Diego Legion Rugby – Just like all the sports you know, only better. Sdlegion.comOur Mission: To make the culture and sport of rugby accessible to the local community, while also providing a conduit for education, inspiration, and leadership through rugby.

October 14, 2021

Hello!  We are excited to be full steam ahead to our 2022 Competitions and have some updates for you:

New SCYR President — Jay Rogers has garnered the President seat for SCYR. Jay has been on the Board of Directors most recently fulfilling the Orange County representative role. As well, Jay is very active in the SOC Raptors organization. Congratulations to Jay on this new endeavor on behalf of our rugby community.

Registration in Fuse — US Youth & HS has completed their testing of the new software Fuse, so it is now available to SYROs (State Youth Rugby Organizations).  All SYROs across the country are migrating to Fuse as affiliated under US Youth & HS. As the SYRO for SoCal, we will now get Fuse set for our own SCYR needs ASAP. Once SCYR is set, we will contact Club Admins so they can prepare Fuse for your club to begin registration for High School, Youngers Club, Referees, and Coaches.

*  Requirements to Open Your Club’s Registration: Primary Contacts form and Member Contract — In order to open registration for your club (Youngers and High School), we need to ensure we have your proper contact.  Please complete the Primary Contact Form.  Once that is complete you will receive the annual Member Contract via email to review and sign electronically.

Division Intention:  Please ensure you have the completed the Division Intention for Younger’s Club and High School.  If you know your division, but are still working on the fields, please go ahead and complete the form.  

2022 Play / Program details refresher available on the Club Resources page.
– 2022 Competition Calendar
– 2022 Policies
– 2022 Referee Program for Clubs
– 2022 High School Structure
– 2022 Youngers Club Age/Weight Program
– Fees
– link to Request a Certificate of Insurance

September 24, 2021

Hello!  Below is the Referee Program for 2022. This outlines the history of bringing allocations in-house, growth and development of the referee pool, available referee courses this fall, and club support/expectations.  You can also find this Referee Program document on the Club Resources page.

REFEREE PROGRAM FOR 2022

History

SCYR took on the responsibility of allocating referees from in-house in 2018. This was in response to a lack of priority placed on the youth game across the board and in particular to the U14 ages and down. The approach taken at this time was to develop a strong base of referees that would be sustainable for the long term benefit of rugby within the region. SCYR was under no illusion that getting out of the referee crisis that existed could occur overnight nor would there be bumps along the way. With over 120 youth games on a given a weekend, the task was no small feat. 

In year one of bringing the referees in-house the goal was to certify enough referees so allocations could occur in BU14 and up. The main goal for the long term success was targeting referee certifications at high school aged players within clubs. This would allow the younger games to be covered more effectively, was a natural fit to persuading individuals to become refs and lastly this would also make better players of those getting certified. This strategy allowed for a base to build upon for subsequent years as 100 referees were certified in the first year of the program under SCYR. 

In year two, the quantity and momentum was rolled over to allow for allocations at U12 and U10 where possible for the first time. In addition, we had the goal of providing assigned ARs to High School age games in the specific High School season and the Club Older season. From this base and wider range of allocations, ref mentors and coaches were assigned to ensure the quality was also progressing at the same time. 

Naturally, attrition rates with referees occur year-over-year for a variety of different reasons. The biggest effect on attrition is referee abuse, particularly abuse towards younger referees. These younger refs were originally keen on being out in the middle, but then shied away after being subject to what can occur on the sidelines from fans and coaches. 

As with all walks of life, the Covid pandemic has been a major contributor to the attrition rate of referees. We have lost around half of the certified referees we had in our pool. However,iIn our post-pandemic Spring and Summer 2021 season, we were still able to assign teams of three to the Varsity/JV games as well as down to U12 and U10 where possible as in the previous years. This was due to careful coordination with scheduling divisions together and working with the hosts to ensure the match day schedules were synced up so we could effectively use the refs that were in the pool for the year. 

With the 2022 season on the horizon and the anticipation that we will be back to full club capacity, the following plan outlines how we can work effectively to have appropriate coverage for our 2022 competitions. We need the buy-in from all clubs in order to successfully execute the 2022 Referee Program. 

This SCYR Fall 2021 Referee Plan covers four areas:

  • SCYR Referee Educators
  • SCYR Ref Coaches 
  • Certification Courses available Fall 2021
  • SCYR Member Club Referee Requirement
  1. SCYR Referee Educators 
  • Currently USA Rugby has two educators in the region. The goal is to work with USAR and World Rugby to increase the number of educators we have in the region. This will allow SCYR to deliver courses more readily and have the courses more specific to youth 
  1. SCYR Ref Coaches 
  • Certifying senior refs as coaches and mentors will allow SCYR to provide support to the 1.) younger refs 2.) the newly certified referees 3.) provide a high standard of refereeing. Everyone will benefit from more mentors as we can potentially cover every hosting location and provide the necessary support in the following ways: 
    • Younger refs can immediately have a sounding board to help them through their development and understanding of areas to improve game management
    • Newly Certified referees will feel more comfortable being out in the middle with the U12 and under games to gain experience. 
    • Mentors/Senior refs can impart a common approach to decision making and thus improving the standard
  1. Certification Courses- Fall 2021

As previously outlined, retention continues to be a constant issue we need to overcome with the referee pool. In order to keep the pool increasing for the present and the future, SCYR is asking clubs to certify a number referees based upon their registration numbers as indicated under Member Club Referee Requirement.

  • Ideally, we would like younger participants from within the club so we can build for the future
  • All participants are welcome as the more we have, the better everyone’s experience will be
  • Clubs will have referees on hand for each hosting day, which means SCYR can focus on sending senior referees to cover the higher level games and using the referee coaches even more effectively as outlined above in SCYR Ref Coaches section.

Current Available Referee Courses

  1. SoCal L1 Ref San Diego, October 16: https://tickets.usarugby.org/event/l1-referee-course-1016–san-diego-ca
  1. Foothills L1 Ref Riverside LA, October 24:

https://tickets.usarugby.org/event/l1-referee-course-1024–los-angeles-ca

  1. SoCal L1 Ref San Diego, November 13: 

https://tickets.usarugby.org/event/l1-referee-course-1113–san-diego-ca

  1. SCYR Member Clubs Referee Requirement:

Based on the total club member registration numbers, all clubs are required to provide certified referees. 

  • Clubs with over 100 registered players must provide 3 certified referees. 
  • Clubs with registered players of 70-100 must provide 2 certified referees
  • Clubs with less than 70 registered players must provide 1 certified referee.

Working in tandem with the clubs we can have a wide selection of youth referees on hand that can be coached using senior/experienced refs. While the senior refs can cover BU14 and up, in turn the younger/newly certified refs from the clubs can cover U12 and down. 

Scheduling Requirements:

Hosting clubs must schedule older games first, which allows certified referees to play in their age group and then upon completion, referee the younger ages. High School and Olders Club team coaches will not allow their players to ref prior to playing in their own divisions, so hosts must schedule Olders first.

Assigned MatchTimes for High School and Youngers Club:

High School 7s and 15s should primarily be played on Friday nights. This frees up Saturday for the Youngers Club play. If this is not viable due to fields, High School games should begin at 9 am on Saturday to then be followed by youth games starting at 11 am. 

BU14- 11 am 

U12 – following U14

U10- to follow U12

U8- to follow U10

With Olders Club/High School games going first, this will free up senior referees to do BU14 games and those newly certified/younger refs to do U12 games after they have played. This ensures coverage for all and helps the SCYR mentorship program as younger refs can be coached while doing U12 and under games. 

Referee Abuse

Referee abuse will not be tolerated at any level and under any circumstance. Referees may leave any match they feel is strife with unwarranted behavior.  This match will be deemed a forfeit by the offending club. Referees will be required to submit complaints if any abuse occurs. First time offence will be an official league warning. The second occurrence will be a fine of $150 that will be used to pay for two new referees certification courses. If there is a third occurrence of abuse by a club, the fine will escalate to $300 which will go towards paying for four new referee certifications. If there is still abuse occurring thereafter, the club will be referred to the Disciplinary Committee for a hearing and further punishment at the discretion of the DC.   Fees for this administrative review will be paid by the offending club.

Referee Continued Education

Continued education will occur in a variety in three different ways: 

  1. Online courses and seminars
  2. In person training
  3. We will ask clubs and High Schools to provide preseason scrimmage dates and preseason inter scrimmage dates where ref crews can be sent in order for the new referees to gain hands-on experience and be coached prior to the season. 

Assignments and Implementation

Assignments for home games will be conducted on a priority basis. Those meeting all scheduling requirements (Minimum two weeks in advance) and have met the required referee certifications within the club will be placed at the top of the list. SCYR will assign down this priority list. SCYR will strive to assign to all games, but if these priorities are not met, there is no guarantee that referees will be assigned as the refs may be assigned to higher priority teams who have met all requirements.

September 23, 2021

Hello!  Below is the age/weight program for the Youngers Club play in 2022.  As well, the Youngers Club Division Intention Form is available for you to designate your teams and fields.

If you are seeking a few other details like the Competition Calendar, how to request a COI, high school details, etc., please visit our Club Resource page.

YOUNGERS AGE/WEIGHT PROGRAM 2022

Implementation
Age and Weight parameters for the youth rugby game in Southern California were implemented in 2020 at the U10 Coed, U12 Coed and BU14 levels and continued as such for 2021.  

U10:  Ages 7-9 as of September 1, 120 lb maximum weight
U12:  Ages 9-11 as of September 1, 145 lb maximum weight
BU14 Light:  Ages 11-13 as of September 1, 180 lb maximum weightEnsuring an inclusive environment, a Maximum Cap Waiver was introduced as well. This waiver was created solely to review athletes with extenuating circumstances. No first year player at an age division would move up two “steps.”  For example, a first year U10 athlete coming out of Flag U8, would not be bumped up to play U12 with a Max Cap Waiver.

Results
Following the 2020 results of a 35% decline in injuries, it was agreed upon to continue the program in 2021 and now for 2022.

Review
Following the Youngers 2021 season, SCYR conducted surveys to continue feedback on the Youngers Age/Weight program.  Questions posed and results:

  • Do you support splitting U10 Coed into Open and Light divisions?
    Result = 71% do not support splitting into Open and Light at U10
  • Do you support splitting U12 Coed into Open and Light divisions?
    Result = 65% do not support splitting into Open and Light at U12
  • Do you support including a specific waiver for girls just aging out of the U12 Coed Division if they fit these three parameters: 1) they are no more than 12 months older than the age cutoff (i.e 1 year additional eligibility)  2) they fit within the weight category for the division 3) they have no other reasonable alternative to play GU15. (i.e their home club or adjacent clubs don’t have GU15)?
    Result = 100% support this waiver for girls aging up
  • Did the Max Cap overage threshold of 10 percent work?
    Result = 47% unsure
  • Do you support continuing to have three approved waivers max per team
    Result = 53% yes

2022 Youngers Age/Weight Program 
For the upcoming 2022 Youngers Season, the following parameters have been agreed upon by the SCYR Board of Directors and with input from participating clubs as noted during the recent survey process. The Youngers will continue with the current weights and competitive structure of max cap limits at the U10 and U12 divisions with BU14 continuing to operate with separate Open and Light divisions. 

While moving through the review process, the policy’s success in 2020 and 2021 has continually been measured against the goals of original implementation: 1. Increasing player safety; 2. Increasing player participation. 

It was evaluated to add Open/Light to other divisions for 2022 beyond BU14. However, the membership has chosen to keep the program as it is with Open and Light solely at the BU14 division. 

2022 Age/Weight Program – Policy Continuation 

  1. 2021 Weight Thresholds – No change.
    The maximum weight at each division will stay the same.  U10=120 lbs, U12=145 lbs, BU14 Light=180 lbs.
  2. Open/Light Divisions – No change.
    BU14 will remain the only division with an Open and Light distinction.
  3. Max Cap Waiver Threshold – No change.
    Athletes applying for a Max Cap Waiver must be within 10% beyond their division’s weight maximum to be eligible. This element will remain for 2022 as it applies an objective barometer in which to evaluate waiver applications.
  4. Number of Max Cap Waivered Athletes Allowed to Play at One Time – No change.
    A maximum of two (2) Max Cap Waived athletes may be in the game/on the pitch at one time.
    • Number of Waivered athletes allowed on the field of play at one time = 2 Max Cap and 2 Older/Lighter

2022 Age/Weight Program – Policy Adjustments

  1. Number of Max Cap Waivers Granted Per Team – Adjustments.
    Max Cap Waivers are limited to three (3) per team per age division.  In other words, one club’s U10 division can have three approved max cap waivers, regardless if there are multiple teams at U10 for that club. This applies to Older/Light waivers as well — 3 approved older/lighter waivers per club per age division.
    • Number of Max Cap Waivers Granted per club per age division = 3
    • Number of Older/Lighter Waivers Granted per Club per age division = 3
    • Number of Waivered athletes allowed on the field of play at one time = 2 Max Cap and 2 Older/Lighter

September 21, 2021

It is with great appreciation that we announce the upcoming departure of SoCal Youth Rugby’s CEO, Giovanni Vaglietti. Giovanni has been with SCYR for three and half years and has moved the organization into the forefront of burgeoning youth sport non-profits in the nation. Where many youth sports faltered financially during the tumultuous Covid-19 months, SCYR was able to keep the doors open and even compete across all ages just one year after the State’s pandemic closing. Giovanni forged numerous programs befitting the growth and safety of the youth game. Marni Vath, SCYR Treasurer and Board Member shared, “Because of Giovanni’s strategic foresight, our thousands of rugby families across Southern California experienced distinct improvements in our organization and the game.”

It is fitting that Giovanni is becoming the Executive Director of US Youth & High School Rugby, the parent non-profit rugby organization for which state youth rugby organizations such as SCYR, fall under. Giovanni will remain with SCYR through September 30, 2021.

A select committee from the SCYR Board of Directors will lead the interview process to fill the vacant CEO position upon Giovanni’s departure. To gain a job description and learn more about this available role, please email info@socalyouthrugby.org. In the interim, all details for 2022 had already been set forth and are in execution by the SCYR staff. For specific member needs, please continue to contact Valory Reed at vreed@socalyouthrugby.org.

September 10, 2021

Hello! Happy new rugby season as September 1 starts the USA Rugby calendar each year. We have a few changes and updates to get our SoCal Youth Rugby year underway:

New Registration Format — US Youth & High School – of which all Youth State Rugby Organizations fall under – is switching software away from Sportlomo to FuseSport. Currently, US Youth is onboarding the State organizations. Once our SCYR structure is ready, which is expected next week, SCYR will work with a small member group to test our own specific needs. Following that, we will roll it out to your Club Admins so you can soon begin your High School and Youngers Club registration. As well, we’ll open Coach and Referee Membership renewal in FuseSport.

In the interim, we are preparing for the upcoming season and have many details ready for you to view and complete. You’ll find all of these items on our Club Resource page.

SCYR 2022 Competition Calendar — The High School, Youngers Club, Olders Club, and Summer 7s seasons are outlined for 2022 including playoffs and tournaments. You’ll also find registration minimum and division intention deadline dates.

Request for Certificate of Insurance (COI)– Clubs secure their fields in the fall and typically need this COI. This is a link to request your COI via USA Rugby. It does take some time (often several weeks), so you may wish to get this under way. Per their requirements, please note your Club Registration Fee is PAID already. SCYR pays this annually for our member organizations.

NEW! Your Club’s Primary Contacts — Please complete this form asap designating your President, Club Admin and Secondary Contact. This will ensure we have the most up-to-date communication to you. Deadline: ASAP

2022 High School Division Intention — The earlier you share with us your high school intent per division, the better our organization opportunity. The High School structure for 2022 has altered as shared a few weeks ago. You’ll find a link to these details also on the Club Resource page.  

What happens next or is still to come?
— New registration software as noted!  We’ll contact your Club Admin very soon (make sure we have the accurate Club Admin on the Primary Contact form).
— Annual Member Organization Contract — The annual member agreement has been updated for your President’s signature
– SCYR Policies — The 2022 Policies will soon be available once the Youngers Club elements are complete.

We are happy to be busy preparing for a full season of rugby across our youth and high school formats!

Best wishes,
SoCal Youth Rugby

September 3, 2021

We are so happy to announce our new official SoCal Youth Rugby travel sponsor–Irish Rugby Tours. For decades, Irish Rugby Tours has been at the forefront of rugby travel across the globe creating a bespoke experience for tour accommodations, match schedule, and area tourist experiences.

As an SCYR member, Irish Rugby Tours gains you direct access to …
– the best rates for your air travel, accommodations, and travel in and around your destination
– the destination’s rugby organizations and clubs for your tour
– all inclusive and customized travel management, planning and execution to Ireland for your rugby tour

Irish Rugby Tours is a well-known, highly trusted name in the rugby business providing an authentic, personable touch to your travel needs all while ensuring your are cared for throughout your travels including 24-hour emergency service.

Many of our SCYR clubs are traveling again for not only matches and tournaments in the US, but with international tours on the horizon. We are proud to partner with Irish Rugby Tours as your go to rugby travel solution.

SCYR’s Irish Rugby Tours Contact:  George Hook, george@irishrugbytours.com

August 17, 2021

2022 HIGH SCHOOL RUGBY PLAYING STRUCTURE

This document outlines the process undertaken over the last year and what changes this process has resulted in for the 2022 high school rugby season. In addition, the document denotes how the structure for 2022 will be a stepping stone to further adjustments post-Covid for 2023 and the desire to gain CIF status for the sport.

Review Process 2020/21 

Following the conclusion of the 2019/20 high school season, SCYR sought feedback and guidance from the community on how the structure of high school rugby can be improved moving forward. The first step in the process was a survey that featured broad questions then narrowed to specific themes from the feedback. 

After the initial survey as noted, SCYR conducted a follow-up relating to these specific issues: 1. Competitive structure (regional based vs strength) 2. Non-core players (% vs specified number) 3. Non-core players (open movement vs restricted). 4. Calendar dates to better transition from football into rugby.  

Thirdly, in August 2020 the high school rugby community had an open meeting and a consensus was achieved in the overall structure of high school moving forward. However, due to the Covid pandemic, another meeting was held in September and the agreed upon changes from the August session were postponed to 2022 implementation. For the 2021 season, an interim structure was created with four divisions that provided teams the flexibility to choose what best fit their needs in the 2021 unique playing year. The four divisions were 1. High School XV’s 2. High School 7’s 3. Open division for High School and Club teams 4. Club XV’s. 

As high schools are reconvening back on campus this fall of 2021, we are keenly aware of the issues that still lay ahead. For example, multiple high school teams missed out entirely on a year’s play and will potentially need to start again with recruitment. The landscape for 2022 high school rugby is a challenge and this was in the forefront of the decision making process to balance the desire for two competitive divisions and the want for restrictions on non-core players. We believe the following structure gives the leeway needed following the pandemic’s shutdown and provides a solid base to build upon for subsequent years to achieve single school division. 

2022 High School Rugby Structure/Changes

From the survey, feedback sessions and open meeting, following are the highlights of the agreed upon changes for 2022:

  • Season start in January, following football’s conclusion
  • Two-tier competition structure in Boys HS XV’s (Division 1 and Division 2)
  • Moving away from non-core percentages and defining a specific non-core number 
  • Limiting the number of non-core players on the pitch at a time
  • Providing Non-Core framework in Girls XV’s and 7’s

Boys High School XV’s

As previously mentioned the Boys XV’s will have two competitive divisions based on strength. Each of the divisions will have different non-core requirements to meet. 

Division 1

  • Maximum of 4 non-core players on the field at a time
  • Maximum of 6 non-core players registered for the season
  • If teams play more than 4 non-core players at a time, the match will result in a forfeit
  • Non-Core must be easily identifiable on roster and jersey numbers of these players must match roster input

Division 2

  • Max of 6 non-core players on the field at a time
  • Maximum of 8 non-core players registered for the season
  • If teams play more than 6 non-core players at a time, the match will result in a forfeit
  • Non-Core must be easily identifiable on roster and jersey numbers of these players must match roster input

Boys High School 7’s

The division has grown exponentially over the years and has seen great success with the current model. Therefore this division remains as a 100% core school league. 

If a current or new program is unable to meet the 100% requirements, they can apply to still play in the division for the year. Any team playing with non-core players, will play as scheduled but all games will be considered non-league and therefore, not count towards season standings. This makes the team ineligible to compete in playoffs. These programs will be afforded a year’s grace in getting themselves back on track following Covid or getting off the ground in the case of new programs. 

Girls High School XV’s

Girls XV’s will remain a singular competitive division. In order to attract more teams to the division, there will be a non-core allowance for 2022 that mirrors Boys D1.

  • Maximum of 4 non-core players on the field at a time
  • Maximum of 6 non-core players registered for the season
  • If teams play more than 4 non-core players at a time, the match will result in a forfeit
  • Non-core must be easily identifiable on roster and jersey numbers of these players must match roster input

Girls High School 7’s

The intent of this division is to remain 100%. However, in order to aid growth and allow new and existing teams to effectively navigate a difficult year we will provide a non-core option. 

If a current or new program is unable to meet the 100% requirements, they can apply to still play in the division for the year. Any team playing with non-core players, will play as scheduled but all games will be considered non-league and therefore, not count towards standings. This makes the team ineligible to compete in playoffs. These programs will be afforded a year’s grace in getting themselves back on track or getting off the ground in the case of new programs. 

2023 and Beyond

We believe that high school rugby teams should be pushing to attain 100% core rosters from their school. The model for 2022 provides a playing structure for teams to regain the pre-pandemic momentum and get back on track for 2023 and beyond. In 2023, SCYR will use the two new divisional structures in Boys XV’s to model its responsibility of pushing growth of new programs along with attaining single school programs. 

Pre-pandemic, SCYR had worked with key stakeholders to develop a roadmap and greater understanding of the detailed steps of gaining CIF recognition for rugby. Subsequently, SCYR enlisted the help and support of key Athletic Directors and important school district contacts for their advice and guidance in SCYR’s movement towards establishing rugby as a CIF sport in SoCal. Along with the formation of a CIF committee in the Fall of 2021 that brings together these stakeholders, we will work with Rugby NorCal and MLR teams to further gain voice and support in this process and benefit high school rugby across the state. 

SoCal Youth Rugby is excited about high school rugby coming back stronger in 2022. As well, we are eager to develop and push the game forward within the region and state bringing rugby the status it deserves. 

May 19, 2021

SCYR Members —

We want to remind you of Game Day requirements and protocols in regards to field set-up and paperwork. It is a USA Rugby and thus SCYR requirement that fields are set with the proper technical zone. You’ll find these specific set-up details here: Technical Zone Set-up
Technical Zone Items of note:
* The “tech zone” is used only for certified coaches. As well, all subs are behind this zone.
* BOTH sides of the playing area have a rope running the length of the pitch no less than 5 meters from each touch line.
* Coaches and spectators are not allowed at the dead ball lines.
* Spectators are ONLY allowed on the player side IF there is a second barrier.   
* Under no circumstances will play commence if exposed or poorly padded steel or other hard surface items are in the field of play. All solid obstacles should be padded if within 2 meters of the field of play. 

Game Day required paperwork:
* Every team will arrive with the proper Team Sheet and photos that was set up for that specific match.  Waivered players are now adding properly to team sheets.
* For Flag U8-U12, the hosts will check in the teams/players via the Team Sheet from each team.
* For BU14-BU18/Varsity, the referee will check in the team/players via the Team Sheet from each team.
* Any discrepancies should be noted on the Team Sheet and signed by both coaches prior to the match.
* Final scores and disciplinary occurences will be noted on the Team Sheet and signed by both coaches following the match.

These policies are not new, but given a year off, we want to remind clubs of these requirements. Any forms of non-compliance will be addressed.  

Thank you for your efforts as we work through our final Spring weeks of play and move into 7s!

May 6, 2021

Summer 7s 2021!

We are so excited to move into our next season of rugby — Summer 7s. While it will look a bit different than in years past due to the pandemic, we will still have the opportunity for kids to compete this summer and grow the game.

WHAT IS DIFFERENT:  We won’t be having a one-host all day tournament with thousands of people/athletes given the restrictions and spacing needs due to Covid-19. You will host 3-4 teams at one location per age division at a time.

WHO: We will have all the normal playing divisions of Flag U8, U10 Coed, U12 Coed, BU14 Open & Light, GU15, BU16, GU18, BU18.  Weights for U10, U12 and BU14 Light will be verified the first week of play in a quick reciprocal team weigh-in.

WHEN:  June 26, July 10, July 17 possibly (this may be CalState Games), July 24, July 31, August 7 (this will be in action if CalState Games are July 17)

WHERE:  Your fields! Please secure your fields asap as you have throughout Spring. Submit your Field details for summer here.

HOW:  Clubs will not pay a tournament fee. Families will register in Sportlomo as either an upgrade (if they played this Spring or didn’t upgrade beyond training) or full registration if they need their USAR CIPP. — Summer 2021 fees. Spring waiver approved athletes may carry over their waiver through Summer 7s. SCYR will schedule the full season of matches per division as we have this Spring.

DEADLINES:
June 4 – Minimum registration of 7 per team met and Division Intention Form and Fields details submitted
June 11 – Summer 7s schedule released
June 26 – First weekend of Play!  Reciprocal weigh-ns for U10, U12 and BU14Light

REGISTRATION:
Valory is getting summer registration set up and divisions pushed to active clubs to sell in Sportlomo. Clubs will have a couple of days to add their own fees (if using Stripe) and waivers before the Summer 7s registration goes live.  The goal is to go live next week.  Valory will communicate details with Club Admins. If your club isn’t live on Sportlomo yet, please email Valory at vreed@socalyouthrugby.org.  

PLAYER SPOTLIGHT!  We have renewed our Player Spotlight on our website and social media.  We ask that you share this opportunity with your families to have their rugby athlete featured  Coaches are welcome to submit players as well.  The submission form is on our website — Player Spotlight page.

December 10, 2020

Hello!  Victory Sports Equipment, who makes sports flags, had this to share with SCYR Members:

“Victory Sports Equipment would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the clubs that used our flag belt system this past year. If there are any clubs that have any damaged equipment, please reach out to us so we can replace it. We have rolled out the next generation of our flag belt system in anticipation of the season ahead, whenever that begins.  We are excited about the future of flag rugby and look forward to working with the SCYR family!

David S. Hastings, Victory Sports Equipment
(949)566-5582, dshastings@sbcglobal.net

We also want to remind you of the U8 Flag Rules of Play and Standards – 2021 Season update. To get a bit of background to these changes, please visit SCYR News.

We hope you are safe and healthy!

October 29, 2020

Hello SCYR Members!

USA Rugby recently outlined for member clubs the many benefits of your USA Rugby membership. They also provided updated details regarding sanctioning.  

USA Rugby Member Club Benefits and Sanctioning Details

As well, we have included this sanctioning verbiage on the Club Admin page of our web site — http://www.socalyouth.rugby.

We also want to remind you that USA Rugby member registration (new or renewal) is open for coaches, referees, and admins in Sportlomo. Athlete registration will open once we have confirmed timing on our 2021 Competition Calendar, which is reliant upon youth sports reopening via the State of California. We continue to expect these details from Governor Newsom soon.

October 27, 2020

In 2020, SCYR introduced the usage of flags in the U8 division. This change from touch was to improve upon safety and ensure no contact in the youngest division of SCYR play. We want our young athletes to connect with the game’s fun, quick style and keep their attention on learning the game of rugby in the safest possible way. 

Following this inaugural introduction in early 2020, we wanted to understand the success of the flag addition and how to improve upon the flow of the game. SCYR engaged with U8 coaches, key stakeholders, and the SCYR Board of Directors evaluating every element of the Rules of Play. The input was gathered via surveys and several Zoom meetings. Many voices contributed to this U8 Flag Rules of Play and Standards – 2021 Season update.

In order for these 2021 U8 Flag updates to work, it is vital that each club review them in detail and share them with your U8 Coaches and volunteers. The U8 matches are refereed by your Club, so a clear understanding of these updated Rules of Play will ensure consistency and a smooth, flowing game. As well, SCYR will host a Zoom meeting prior to the season to review these updated Rules of Play and address any questions. 

Despite the current Pandemic, we are striving to improve the rugby experience for all ages in Southern California. When we do get the green light to play and with specific Covid-19 parameters, we want the experience to be turnkey.  

U8 Flag Rules of Play and Standards – 2021 Season

September 25, 2020

Dear SoCal Youth Rugby Members —

Southern California Youth Rugby has been analyzing the structure, the positives, the challenges, and growth opportunities of SCYR High School Rugby since the close of the 2020 High School season. This review included several surveys as well as multiple Zoom meetings. During this process, the Coronavirus Pandemic ensued curtailing the Olders Club season, which typically launches in March following the conclusion of high school play.

With the many months of Covid-19 lock down and youth sports thus not permitted to play per the State of California, it was necessary to take a hard look at the 2021 High School and Olders Club seasons. The SCYR High School Coaches, Assistant Coaches, Club Presidents, as well as other key contributors were invited to participate in Zoom meetings to review schedule and competition models for 2021. The main challenge in scheduling the 2021 play is the movement of CIF High School sports to differing seasons due to the Coronavirus. The Zoom meeting participants had extensive discussion sharing the pros and cons of specific schedules and competition models, and then placed their vote on a preferred format. This occurred for both the Boys and the Girls High School and Olders Club side rugby.

As well, the SCYR Board of Directors participated on the Zoom calls, reviewed the specific 2021 options in their BOD setting, and ultimately, voted to support the majority vote outcome, which is detailed below. In addition, the SCYR BOD outlined parameters for the Youngers 2021 season — also explained below.

For the Board and all stakeholders, the ultimate goal was to have as many kids playing rugby as possible in 2021. With that said, a certain degree of flexibility is needed by all to execute these altered seasons and competition models.

BOYS HIGH SCHOOL AND OLDERS CLUB
High School and Club rugby will be played concurrently in the Spring of 2021 with a mid-March start date. A new variety of competition models is available as noted below. New for 2021 only, players may choose to play in multiple formats such as 7’s and 15’s as well as High School and Club. Programs should not make minimum registration numbers including these crossover players as schedules may preclude players from playing in both each weekend. Therefore, these players should be additions to rosters as to avoid the possibility of forfeits. SCYR maintains the discretion to monitor all registrations to ensure the integrity of this allowance.
High School 15’s: Depending on the number of teams registering, this may be broken into two competitive divisions, which could have differing non-core allowances.
High School 7’s: 100% core and weekly round robin formats as per normal.
Open Division: This is a new model for 2021 allowing both High School teams and Club teams to compete against one another. The structure will be specifically defined once the number of teams is determined. 
Olders Club Only Division: This the normal Olders Club play, but divisions will be dependent upon the number of teams registered.

GIRLS HIGH SCHOOL AND OLDERS CLUB
High School 15’s – Play will commence in January as per normal. The allowance for non-core players was increased from four to six. A determination as to the viability of this January play will be made by November 13. If January is not feasible, the schedule will pivot.
High School 7’s – Play will commence in January as per normal. 100% core and weekly round robin formats as per normal. A determination as to the viability of this January play will be made by November 13. If January is not feasible, the schedule will pivot.
Olders Club – Play will commence in Spring as per usual. However, the schedule may have to shift a bit due to field availability and activity with the Boys HS/Club and Youngers play.

YOUNGERS
Since counties in the wide SCYR geographic area are at differing Covid activity levels, the SCYR BOD took a pragmatic approach in order to get young ruggers active as soon as possible. Once again, there were multiple options reviewed as the challenges are varied. Spring will be field and resource congested and there will be strong competition with traditional spring sports such as baseball. The winter time may see competition with Pop Warner depending on the area, but field space will be less congested for many areas giving us a better chance for rugby to be played. These challenges will be constantly monitored over the net six weeks and contingency plans ready.
Orange County and San Diego County – Plan to play in mid-January, which is a few weeks later than normal to allow time for practice and preparation. A determination as to the viability of this January play will be made by November 13. If January is not feasible, the schedule will pivot.
Los Angeles and Tri-Counties – Plan to play in March. However, Tri-Counties may be able to play in January with the Orange and San Diego Counties timeframe. This will be determined by November 13.

Allocation of Resources for 2021 Play
With the congestion of fields and resources, particularly in the Spring, SCYR may need to develop an allocation plan for each division defining specific blocks of scheduled play. This will assist with referee and athletic trainer allocations. In addition it may help players competing in both the High School and Club Olders divisions or both 7’s and 15’s..  

We will need all member flexibility and understanding to make these seasons successful. In saying that, we strongly urge programs to have referees on hand and we will work with our senior referees to run courses prior. This will be an all-hands-on-deck approach.

SCYR is very thankful to those who participated in the surveys, Zoom meetings and appreciate their diligence to work effectively towards solutions aimed to help everyone through this tough period. The SoCal rugby community’s strength has been on display more than ever and we are very grateful for this collaborative approach.

SCYR 2021 Schedule — Covid dependent (note Boys and Girls schedule tabs at bottom)

Best wishes, 
Giovanni Vaglietti
SoCal Youth Rugby CEO

September 4, 2020

YOUNGERS AGE/WEIGHT PROGRAM

Inaugural Implementation – Youngers 2020

Age and Weight parameters for the youth rugby game in Southern California were implemented in 2020 at the U10 Coed, U12 Coed and BU14 levels.  After multiple years of research and discussion, the end goal was to maximize safety and minimize injuries.  SCYR Clubs presented their own age/weight research and proposals for the program. The club input alongside the SCYR Board of Directors created the following age/weight thresholds for 2020:

U10:  Ages 7-9 as of August 31st, 120 lb maximum weight

U12:  Ages 9-11 as of August 31st, 145 lb maximum weight

BU14 Light:  Ages 11-13 as of August 31st, 180 lb maximum weight

Ensuring an inclusive environment, a Maximum Cap Waiver was introduced as well. This waiver was created solely to review athletes with extenuating circumstances. No first year player at an age division would move up two “steps.”  For example, a 135 pound 7-year-old playing their first year at U10, would not be bumped up to play U12 with a Max Cap Waiver.

2020 Results

A total of 1,571 youth rugby athletes playing U10, U12, BU14 participated in the 2020 Youngers season and thus weighed in with the new Age/Weight program.

U10:  366 players, average weight of 81 lbs, 15 Max Cap Waivers granted

U12:  552 players, average weight of 103 lbs, 49 Max Cap Waivers granted

BU14:  653 players, average weight of 126 lbs, 11 Max Cap Waivers granted

A total of 19 SCYR Clubs were granted a Max Cap Waiver(s).

SCYR has contracted with InjureFree for several years, which is injury tracking handled on game day at the pitch.  There was a 35% decline in injuries year over year from 2019 to 2020 per the InjureFree data.

2020 Review

Following the Youngers 2020 season, SCYR conducted surveys and hosted Zoom meetings to receive extensive member club feedback and input on the new Age/Weight program.  As well, the SCYR Board of Directors reviewed the program in detail each month.

2021 Youngers Age/Weight Program 

For the upcoming 2021 Youngers Season, the following parameters have been agreed upon by the SCYR Board of Directors and with input from participating clubs as noted during the recent spring and summer review process. The Youngers will continue with the current weights and competitive structure of max cap limits at the U10 and U12 divisions with BU14 continuing to operate with separate Open and Light divisions. 

While moving through the review process, the policy’s success in 2020 has continually been measured against the goals of original implementation: 1. Increasing player safety; 2. Increasing player participation. With these goals in mind, the policy has been successful in year one with a decrease in injuries and an uptick in playing numbers. 

It was evaluated to add Open/Light to other divisions for 2021 beyond BU14. However, it was decided to remain with the current 2020 competitive structure for 2021. There are considerable concerns from the medium to smaller clubs in moving to Open/Light across all age brackets as it could be detrimental to their teams in player development and safety. In review of the total playing numbers at all age brackets for our member clubs, this notion is supported as there is a larger player pool in the U14 age brackets, which allow for a more successful Open/Light distinction. Considering many clubs grew in registration numbers with this new age/weight implementation, keeping course at this time and promoting even more growth will allow us to collectively get to a point that Open and Light weights would be more accessible to additional Youngers Divisions (U10 and U12) in the near future. 

2021 Age/Weight Program – Policy Continuation 

  1. 2021 Weight Thresholds —  No change
  • The maximum weight at each division will stay the same.  U10=120 lbs, U12=145 lbs, BU1 Light=180 lbs.
  1. Open/Light Divisions –  No change
  • BU14 will remain the only division with an Open and Light distinction.

2021 Age/Weight Program – Policy Adjustments

  1. Max Cap Waiver Threshold – Adjustment  
  • Athletes applying for a Max Cap Waiver must be within 10% beyond their division’s weight maximum to be eligible.
  1. Number of Max Cap Waivers Granted Per Team – Adjustment
  • Max Cap Waivers are limited to three (3) per team.  Clubs with multiple teams per age division need to designate Team A, Team B, etc.
  1. Number of Max Cap Waiver Athletes Allowed to Play at One Time – Adjustment
  • A maximum of two (2) Max Cap Waived athletes may be in the game/on the pitch at one time.
  1. Age/Weight Regional Reps – New/Adjustment
  • Each of the four main SCYR regions (Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego, Tri-County) will have three designated Age/Weight representatives to assist in impartial weigh-ins, Max Cap Waiver reviews and provide support as needed.  
  • The Regional Age/Weight Representative term is for one year.  

August 31, 2020

We are excited to announce SCYR is moving to a new software system called Sportlomo. Sportlomo is a fully integrated sports management software system designed specifically for national governing bodies, state governing bodies, leagues and teams/clubs. Sportlomo is the new software choice of USA Rugby and the entire nation is transferring to this model.

You may have received an email from USA Rugby and/or Sportlomo requesting you to update your member information. Please note this email was generated for the whole country, but is a bit premature for SoCal Youth Rugby given our restricted Covid-19 no play situation. SCYR is not open for athlete, coach or referee registration at this time. With that said, we are beginning the Sportlomo onboarding and training for our SCYR Member Clubs/Teams. This starts with those that utilize Sportlomo the most extensively — the Club Administrators. 

REQUIRED Next step for all Clubs and High School teams
Please complete this CLUB ADMINISTATOR form asap.  I will set up the Sportlomo log-in access for this designated Club Administrator. Each Club/HS Team can appoint ONE Club Admin, however, this admin can add others admin access as the team needs.  

After I’ve set the Club Admins in Sportlomo, I’ll next share how to set up your team’s banking information, set-up other admins as noted, and learn a bit more about Sportlomo.  

Changes like software can be a bit challenging, but we’re looking forward to this unified Sportlomo system across the US and amongst our teams.