RRRC Club “Eligibility Book” Procedures

The RRRC & TRU require all clubs to have a team “eligibility book” that includes player identification and citizenship information. The “book” is designed to verify that clubs are complying with USA Rugby’s current Eligibility Regulations.

Clubs are encouraged to complete a book check prior to all matches. If clubs forgo this process, they also forgo the right to contest a match on eligibility or citizenship grounds.

Need a quick and easy template? West Houston was kind enough to share an example.

Spot Checks:

In order to ensure that all clubs are aware of this requirement, prepared for any book check that may be requested by an opposing team, and prepared for playoffs, RRRC Committee members will be conducting book spot checks throughout the balance of the  competitive season.  This is your notice that these checks will be occurring.

Please also take notice that complete eligibility documentation is mandatory for all playoff rounds, including the Red River Rugby Conference Playoffs.  Playoff matches will NOT be played under protest. If your eligibility book is not in order for a playoff match, your club will forfeit the match.

Playing under Protest:

Book checks should be expected at all matches that a TRRA referee has been assigned.  Unless a number 4 referee has been assigned, TRRA Referee’s are not involved in the book checking process. If a club has a pre-match protest, they should notify the referee before the match kicks off.  Lodging a protest does NOT mean the match is cancelled. Games will be played “under protest”. The only acceptable reason not to play a match would be for player safety reasons. This is the only “ruling” that the referee will make outside their normal match day procedures.

As soon as possible after the match, you should email the details of your protest to the TRU / RRRC Administrator (admin@texasrugbyunion.com), copying the administrative contact for your opponent.  If there is a deficiency in a club’s eligibility paperwork, they will have 24 hours from this notice to cure the defects by submitting the appropriate paperwork to the TRU / RRRC Administrator and the protesting club. The RRRC (or its designees) will adjudicate all disputes regarding the sufficiency of eligibility paperwork.

Book Format and Contents:


Books can be hard copies of player identification or citizenship or digital copies. We would recommend that for the digital option that a tablet is used for a larger viewing.  Digital images should be arranged in roster order. Hard copy books should be arranged in alphabetical order by player last name.

Due to identity theft concerns, we highly recommend that you redact passport, driver’s license, and similar numbers, as well as parents’ names from birth certificates, before storing digital copies of eligibility documents online.


  • Photo identification for players
    • Original or copy of Driver’s License or other government issued photo identification; OR
    • Original or copy of official school ID for students; OR
    • Original or copy of photo page of U.S. passport; OR
    • Original or certified copy of Permanent (Green Card) or Conditional Permanent Resident.
  • Proof of citizenship for players
    • Original or copy of U.S. birth certificate; OR
    • Original or copy of photo page of U.S. passport; OR
    • Original or certified copy of Permanent (Green Card) or Conditional Permanent Resident.

(NOTE:  Under the Eligibility Regulations, any person that cannot show they are a U.S. Citizen, Permanent Resident, or Conditional Resident, will be considered a “Non-Resident” player for purposes of the non-resident player cap of 5 players. Documentation in reference to the pursuit of permanent or conditional resident status in order to facilitate a player’s participation in the Competition is NOT sufficient.).

  • Eligibility Waivers, if applicable (e.g., proof of approval of in-season transfers or waivers of minimum match requirements due to injury or other factors).
  • Roster printed from CMS or USA Rugby Public Rosters
  • Match Roster for current match printed from CMS, which should be signed and presented to the referee prior to the match.
  • Completed FRONT ROW WAIVERS for current match from TRU website, which should be signed and presented to the referee prior to the match.
  • Post-Match CMS Rosters for each match played proving players have played in the minimum amount of matches, and (for clubs fielding multiple sides of the same gender) demonstrating players have not played in too many matches at a higher division.

Book Check Procedures:

    1. We recommend completing the book check at least an hour before kick-off as to not interfere with either team’s warm up. If the books are in order these checks can be done in 3-5 minutes.
    2. There are two types of checks:  (A) a “Records Only” check; and (B) an “In-Person” check.   NOTE: In Person checks will be performed for all regional and national playoff matches.  In-Person checks are recommended for regular-season matches.
      1. A Records Only Check may be performed for regular season matches with the agreement of both teams.  In a Records Only check, a representative of each team reviews the hard-copy or digital eligibility documentation against the match roster, without asking each player to present original identification in person.  If teams elect to perform a Records Only Check, they will waive any eligibility issue that could have been detected by an In-Person Check.
      2. To perform an In Person Check, players should line up in either roster or alphabetical order (depending on how a team’s “book” is organized) and present original, government-issued, photo identification (e.g., driver’s license, passport, green card, etc.), to the person checking the book.  The person checking the book should ensure that the photos and names in the book match those of the player on the original identification presented. The player need not present the same piece of identification as appears in the team’s book (e.g., a player may present his/her driver’s license, even if the eligibility documentation in the team’s book is a copy of the player’s passport or green card).
    3. Upon completion of the book check, team administrators Team administrators will either note that the books are in order and play the match, or if there is missing information, inform the referee prior to kickoff that the match is being played under protest. If a match was played under protest due to missing information, and the protesting team wishes to have the protest decided, please alert the TRU / RRRC Administrator ASAP after the match of: (a) the basis of the protest; (b) the result of the match; © and whether a Records Only or In Person Check was performed.  Please copy the opposing team administrator on this email.
  • NOTE:  A successful protest in which it is shown that a team played an ineligible player could result in the offending team forfeiting the match at issue, and other sanctions imposed on coaches, administrators, and clubs by the RRRC and/or TRU.

Going forward, RRRC reserves the right, at any time, to randomly check a club’s book. Teams will be selected on a rotating basis.

If you have any questions at all, please contact the TRU / RRRC Administrator or your RRRC divisional representative.

Post Season Play

Once the clubs have qualified for a USA Rugby Championship event, USA Rugby will notify the team or teams that will be checked for that event at least 12 days prior or upon qualification to the championship event. Once notified the team will have 72 hours (3 days) to produce the proper proof of eligibility. This proof should come in the form of a file that the team is to keep for each match.

USA Rugby reserves the right to do spot checks on site at championship events as well. Each team should travel with their packet of eligibility information throughout the season as well as during all post season play.  All players should be capable of presenting original, government-issued identification, if requested by USA Rugby. If USA Rugby wishes to spot check a team for citizenship (or any other rule) they will do so at the team’s scheduled check in time. If the team does not have the proper information with them, the questioned player’s eligibility for matches may be in jeopardy and subject to further investigation.

Thank you and we appreciate your cooperation!

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