NMHU Rugby Football Club VATOS

NMHU Rugby Football Club VATOS

vatos_rugby_2012

EVERYONE IS WELCOME TO JOIN THIS HISTORIC, SUCCESSFUL, AND RESPECTED RUGBY CLUB. No experience necessary!

Goal: To advance the National Championship with sportsmanship and skills
Coaches: PJ Trujillo 505.4597016 and Dick Greene 505.263.7812
patrickjtrujillo88@yahoo.com and greene_d@nmhu.edu
Club President: Chris Villarreal, crisvreal@yahoo.com
Club Captain: Earl Smith, esmith175@gmail.com
 

History

Formed: 1992
Rio Grande Rugby Union Champions: 14 years (various divisions) AZ/NM Champion MD3 2013
USA Western Rugby Union Champion: 2005
USA Western Rugby Union Finalist: 2006, 2010
USA Rugby Highest National Ranking MD3: 8th 2005 and 16th 2013
Overall Winning Percentage: 70%
Western All Stars and Super League Players: 16

Graduation rate: ~70%
Alumni: >220 solid rugby men


Seasons: Sept. – Nov. and Feb. – May (depending on playoffs).

Core Values: unselfishness, lifelong fitness, courage, humor, sportsmanship, helpfulness, integrity, good character.

Training: Tuesdays and Thursdays; starts by the first Tuesday of Fall and Spring semesters, in Perkins Stadium complex. Bring shorts, strong jersey, cleats, and warm sweats. A mouth guard is useful. Ask what you can to for the club and game, not what they can do for you! BE A MATURE ADULT.

Games:  Generally Saturdays during seasons; half are away games, generally 12-14 total games/season. The Vatos generally travel to one or two major tournaments and national playoffs each season. We pay our way and enjoy the earned independence.

Vision and requirements: After winning the AZ/NM Rugby Union MD3 and reaching the National Sweet Sixteen in MD3 in Dallas last May, our goals remain the same. We are looking for hard and capable gentlemen. Rugby, the second most popular game in the world, demands good sportsmanship and moral, mental, and physical fitness. Highlands' rugby is open to all students, full or part-time. Players must be willing to commit, act maturely and unselfishly, and enjoy the rugby. NO EXPERIENCE IS NECESSARY. The time commitment is four to eight hours/week during both Fall and Spring – 11-week seasons. The club is self sufficient and independent, thus members share responsibilities and expenses, host visiting teams, travel strong, and do fundraising with community service. Costs are relatively minimal – usually less than $100/season. WE DO NOT RELY ON THE TAXPAYER. We are very proud that our student athletes have a greater than 70% graduation rate, and they become respected and productive alumni. Our alumni, "Vato Viejos" old boy team forms periodically and are very competitive.

New league: After years of playing successfully in the Men’s Division with basically a college team, by vote of club members, NMHU RFC has joined the highly respected, well-managed, and more inclusive Frontier League of the National Small College Rugby Organization (NSCRO). There are over 230 members of the NSCRO and it is organized under USA Rugby. It has a national playoff structure that leads to a national championship for small schools with many nontraditional students in Denver of ESPN April 26, 2013. The Frontier League has 10 clubs and includes most RMAC schools. The University of Denver and Colorado School of Mines were the best teams in 2012-13 and advanced in the national playoffs. University of Northern Colorado is an ex-national college champion in D2. To reach the Sweet Sixteen Nationally on April 5, 2013, the top two Frontier League clubs advanced to a playoff with the Texas top two teams in Dallas on March 22, 2013. Two teams advanced.

Eligibility to play NSCRO league games (anyone can play in non-league games):

Importantly, by vote of club members last May, NMHU RFC has joined the highly respected and well managed Frontier League of the National Small College Rugby Organization (NSCRO). There are over 230 members of the NSCRO and it is organized under USA Rugby. It has a national playoff structure that leads to a national championship in Denver of ESPN on April 26 2013. The Frontier League has nine clubs and includes most RMAC schools. The University of Denver and Colorado School of Mines were the best teams in 2012-13 and advanced in the national playoffs. To reach the Sweet Sixteen Nationally on April 5, 2013, the top two Frontier League clubs advanced to a playoff with the Texas top two teams in Dallas on March 22, 2013. Two teams advanced.

Players must review the NSCRO website for all eligibility requirements. Here are the main rules:

  1. Players have five years of playing eligibility from first entry into a college or university. This is firm.
  2. If out of school or a student is at a school without a rugby club for one or two years, the five years of playing eligibility can be used within this six- to seven-year period. Seven years is the maximum window to be eligible to play five years. Students CANNOT play seven years of NSCRO rugby, only five, period.
  3. One year of graduate school (at the same institution) can be used in the five years of playing eligibility.
  4. Both full time and part time students are eligible but students must be in good standing at school.
  5. Eligible students from nearby schools (LCC) without a rugby club are also allowed to join the club.
  6. Players can be of any age. Nevertheless, only five eligible players over the age of 23 on Sept 1, 2013 can be on a specific game roster. Thus, only five maximum are on the field.

2013-2014 Schedule (* league games):

Aug. 20, 2013: Training begins 5-7PM, Tuesday and Thursday, Perkins Stadium

Sept. 1, 2013: @ Santa Fe 10’s

Sept. 7, 2013: @UNM

Sept. 14, 2013: Albuquerque

Sept. 21, 2013: Alumni Game

Sept. 28, 2013: @ University of Colorado at Mesa*

Oct. 5, 2013: @ Western State College*

Oct. 12, 2013: Colorado School of Mines*

Oct. 19, 2013: @ High Desert Classic

Oct. 26, 2013: University of Colorado at Colorado Springs*

Nov. 2, 2013: University of Northern Colorado*

Nov. 9, 2013: @ RRCC*

Winter Break (Stay Fit!)

Jan. 14, 2014: Training begins, same time and place

Feb. 15, 2014: USAFA

Feb. 22, 2014: @ Adams State College*

Mar. 1, 2014: Denver University*

Mar. 8, 2014: Regis College*

Mar. 15, 2014: NMSU

Mar. 22, 2014: @Regional Playoffs, Cowboy Cup, Dallas (if qualified)*

Apr. 5, 2014: @Pacific West Playoffs, Sweet Sixteen, TBD (if qualified)*

Apr. 26, 2014: @ Final Four, Denver and ESPN (if qualified)*

NMHU RFU Vatos Rugby Update October 15, 2013
The Vatos finished the 2012-2013 season strong as the regional NM/AZ Champions and in the National Men’s Division 3 Sweet Sixteen in Dallas last May. They lost to regional champions from Kansas City and San Francisco and ended the season ranked 15th of 238 teams in the nation.
 “We are about 80% a college-eligible team (students only) who have done well playing the big boys in the Men’s Division 3. At the national level against unbeaten men’s teams, our youth, inexperience, and fitness levels limit us. We cannot continue to rely on importing skilled alumni to compete at the highest level,” noted volunteer faculty adviser Dick Greene.

Thus, the team voted to play their college peers and enter the 250-member, USA Rugby sanctioned, National Small College Rugby Organization (NSCRO), specifically the 10-member Frontier League. As college rugby is rapidly growing, the Frontier League basically includes most of the RMAC schools. Players must be true student athletes and enrolled in school in good standing. Student athletes have seven years to play five years of college rugby. “This is inclusive of nontraditional students. It fits us well,” Greene added.

In the last three weeks, alumni and new volunteer coach, PJ Trujillo, and the Vatos (3-0) have traveled (at no cost to NMHU) over 1500 mountain miles and 28 hours to Colorado Mesa University (29-24) and Western State College (26-24).  At home last weekend they outscored the engineers from nationally ranked Colorado School of Mines 29-14 to gain sole possession of first place in the Frontier League.

 “With a good blend of upper classmen like Jake Whiting, Adrian McDuff, and Joey Ivey and rookies like Kevon Williams and Leonard Arias, the Vatos are fast, forcible, and fun to watch. With more fitness and luck they could make it to the national playoffs next April. I am proud of the lads. Quality rugby will be a lasting memory of doing something well. It will keep little NMHU with its solid national reputation. More importantly, rugby helps to generate university graduates and hard gentlemen with skills and a general work ethic,” Greene noted.

The independent Vatos travel to Albuquerque on this Saturday and Sunday to defend their championship in the 42th High Desert Classic at Bullhead Park. Games begin at 10 a.m. and last all day. The next Frontier League game is at Perkins on Saturday, Oct. 26 against UCCS.  Kickoff is at 2 p.m. and everyone is welcome to the free games and post-game socials hosting the visiting teams. New players are always welcome. Please contact Coach Trujillo at 505.459.7016.

Archived Stories: click here