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RRRC Competitions Committee Notes – 11/14/22

  1. Welcome
    1. McPhail: First, I wanted to welcome Kat back from her exploits in New Zealand with the 2021 Rugby World Cup. You’ve represented the USA and the TRU well. Also a welcome back to Wendy since she was over there supporting as well.
  2. Roll Call
    1. Young
    2. Kurylas
    3. Roche
    4. Dale
    5. McPhail
    6. Martin
    7. Curl
    8. Dodge
    9. Hughes
    10. Keuppens
    11. Norton
      1. Regrets
        1. Hanlon
        2. Fosco
        3. Horn
  3. New Clubs
    1. Las Colinas – paid club viability fee, registered with USAR, L1 coach and working on players
      1. Young: They are now fully compliant with USAR registration, coach and 18 players. So they are good to go!
      2. Dodge: Great, they are built into MD4.
      3. McPhail: Ok, so MD4 is happening and there are three teams this year. Lost Souls are playing socially and Celina is out.
      4. Dodge: Most of the MD4 will probably pick up matches with other sides in the spring.
      5. Roche: I still have Lost Souls on the schedule?
      6. Dodge: Todd contacted me and they wanted to drop this year.
      7. Roche: Ok, I will remove.
    2. Celina – Notice from Mark Kissigner on 11/2 that they will not have a club this year
      1. Young: This was a name change from NTX Barbarians to Celina and they were approved by the TRU in 2021.
      2. Roche: Should I go ahead and change them in our systems from NTX Barbarians to Celina?
      3. Young: Yes.
      4. Dodge: Are we positive that Mark is the correct representative for this club? We did have some correspondence with another individual.
      5. Young: Mark has been my contact the entire time and this individual was new to me and they didn’t reply to me either.
      6. McPhail: It seems they don’t want to talk to us.
      7. Dodge: There is room in MD4 if they want to join or they can play socially as long as they are compliant.
  4. Upcoming Season
    1. Compliance
      1. Young: It’s looking really good, 33 out of 45 are compliant with most of the non-compliant clubs waiting on numbers. Overall we have 1,297 players registered so we are well on our way. I am concerned with the OKC Tribe, ORC, and San Antonio Riveters as they have pretty low numbers. I’ve reached out to all of them at one time or another and it may be time for another touch point.
        1. Young: I’m in contact with ORC and they are working on numbers.
        2. Kurylas: I can talk with OKC Tribe.
        3. Curl: I can talk with the Riveters.
      2. CMS tracking sheet
        1. Young: Kat is using this to track all the matches with the teams and that they are entering their CMS data. She will also use this to track that rosters are in place by 7pm on Fridays.
        2. Roche: I did want to bring up one item that there isn’t a “lock” function. In the past we’ve had the ability to lock matches so teams couldn’t make changes afterwards. Not many teams have done their CMS work except for HURT, they have done all of theirs!
        3. McPhail: Ok, I wasn’t familiar with this part of the system. 
        4. Dodge: I think we should see if that locking functionality can be added. This would be added to a bug request. 
        5. McPhail: We probably should have a plan for this season.
        6. Roche: We could hold referee assignments back if CMS data wasn’t complete? I can still send them notifications and they have to pay the fee. 
        7. Dodge: Should we circulate pre-existing video of using the MatchDay app or circulate training materials?
        8. Young: We have already posted lots of supporting materials but have no idea if they are being read. 🙂
        9. Dale: We used it for our friendly and it was very very simple. I would advocate for the $25 fine and if information isn’t in place by Monday at 5pm they can be further fined.
        10. Hughes: I like that but we need to encourage people to use the MatchDay app, it’s so easy and simple. So once they do it they should have a good experience.
        11. Roche: I am thinking more about small clubs that have 15 on a Saturday, not sure who is going to do this? 
        12. Young: They had to somehow collect that data in the past. It doesn’t have to be using the MatchDay app but that is what we’d prefer.
        13. Dodge: I don’t want to be too draconian about this, this data is incredibly important for our competition and for playoffs. 
        14. McPhail: Perhaps we send out a reminder about the CMS policy and the included fine this week. 
        15. Roche: Ok, I can spearhead that. I will put together some cool graphics.
    2. Competitions
      1. Young: I put together a post for using CMS in RX: Tips for managing matches in RX and that includes a reminder that friendly match data must also be added to RX. We missed some early matches so I don’t think that we should go to hard on those.
      2. Roche: This isn’t abnormal for the beginning of the season. 
      3. Open Items
        1. HURT solicitation to D3 South
          1. McPhail: This was an email from HURT to the D3 South clubs. There was little to no response and I am of the opinion that there was little interest. There was no vote proposed by the members and so nothing has happened.
          2. Hughes: I think it was too late in the game for this type of maneuvering.
          3. Young: Having the schedule makes changes like this tough.
        2. Utah W vs Gray Wolves W 10/1 match was not played
          1. Young: A reminder that WD1 plays regional league matches with Rocky Mountain and Frontier. We were notified that Utah didn’t play their 10/1 match and any chances to reschedule have failed so this will be deemed a forfeit. As a result Utah is not able to advance to USAR playoffs per our guidelines. I’ve looped KC in on the discussions so she is aware as well.
          2. Curl: Yes, this is a disappointment but par for the course as this has happened before with Utah.
          3. Young: I think we’re still ok on match minimums so there isn’t any concern around that right now.
        3. Valks DII 
          1. Young: I also got a disappointing email that the Valkyries will not have the numbers for a second side. This means the DII North is down to Quins, Little Rock and Dallas Reds.
          2. McPhail: OK, you’ve talked with the club?
          3. Young: Yes, and we talked through a few scenarios but they struggled last year with two sides, I’m recommending that we drop their second side from the competition. This is pretty easy since that division hasn’t started matches yet. I’ll share this with all the women’s reps so we can make a decision that is best for the women’s league.
      4. Name Withheld
        1. Norton: It appears there is a capability in RX that a player can register and during that process they can check a box for privacy. As a result their name shows up as ‘Name Withheld’ on the public roster.
        2. Dodge: This is part of the privacy laws in Australia and there is a bug request to have it fixed in the USA version but we don’t have an ETA yet.
        3. Hughes: This was messaged to the membership in the latest notice: https://texasrugbyunion.com/2022/11/07/updated-team-roster-requirements/.
          1. Roche: I was thinking we could do a ‘Am I Ready to Play’ to do list or FAQ for players, coaches, admins, etc. This could include an additional note about this feature and how the TRU doesn’t support it. 
          2. McPhail: If you’re willing to put the effort in, go for it.
        4. Dodge: Mike, have you had anyone go in and change from private to public?
        5. Norton: Yes.
        6. Dodge: So it’s possible but just needs to be done. You can always do a book check, that is another way to handle this.
        7. Young: Yes, I also included those steps in the post on the TRU site that Travis mentioned above.
        8. Norton: So what’s the process for this? Can clubs protest?
        9. McPhail: Like Dodge, I agree that this seems to fall under the book check guidelines. Referees shouldn’t be involved in this, it needs to be on the clubs to manage themselves. If clubs want to play under protest it follows our existing guidelines.
        10. Dodge: If someone is objecting to putting their name then they should have to go through the book check process. The protesting club can then push it up the chain if needed.
      5. RRRC Championships 4/22-23
        1. Playoff Location Bid Review Sub-committee
          1. Young: The sub-committee has met and reviewed three bids, from Prestige Worldwide in Durant, OK, Huns and Blacks. We are still in discussions around the bids. The deadline to announce our membership is Dec 1 so we need to make decisions sooner than later.
          2. Dodge: Can a decision be made by Friday? That allows the TRU to review on their Monday call.
          3. Young: I think that is doable.
      6. Gulf Coast Super Regionals 5/6-7
        1. McPhail: Dodge looped me in on this and I am beginning discussions with our counterparts in True South. We are still discussing possible venues. I will continue our dialogue as we’d like to have a venue chosen as quickly as possible. 
    3. USA Rugby
      1. Championships 6/2-4
        1. Young: No news here, just wanted to keep the date in the minutes.
      2. SCC Proposals
        1. Dodge: I wanted to share these with the committee as they are being considered by the SCC. We have the opportunity to provide feedback:
          1. Rolling Replacements
          2. NCS Overtime Policy
          3. NCS Forfeiture Policy
  5. Eligibility Rules Changes
    1. McPhail: SCC to vote soon on the 7s portion, here are the key changes:
      1. PR7s is formally recognized as a Professional Rugby Series in North America and PR7s participants are formally recognized as Professional Rugby Players.
        1. **This does not apply for fifteens competitions for the 2022-23 season.
      2. Professional Player limit on Event Rosters = 4 (PR7s, MLR). 
        1. Teams can receive one Homegrown Player waiver for one of their long-time members who also played in PR7s (so teams could have five Professional Players on a roster).
      3. Defined terms for Recognized Competitive Tournaments which, so long as approved by the Sevens Competitions Committee by May 1, can be used for player eligibility purposes – but are not team Qualifying events.
        1. Confirmed all events will be conducted using the 13 player event rosters, each game limited to 12 players, player interchanges limited to five moves with a player able to enter/re-enter multiple times (so long as within the permissible five moves).
      4. Tracking PR7s participants: A spreadsheet has been created showing all participants from the 2021-22 competitive cycle. If there is a senior club website this will be maintained on that site.
    2. Keuppens: Waiting on some approvals from the SCC but I’ve proposed breaking the country into four governing regions (these are not competitive regions). Each region will have a National Director and two Regional Directors. The hope is that each region would submit host venues and work amongst themselves to identify Champions and such.
  6. 7s
    1. TOLA/RRRC 7s
      1. McPhail: I got an email from Jeff Kolberg indicating that he wanted to start requesting dates from teams and such. I asked him to slow down a bit until we can announce the XVs Championship location. 
      2. Young: So you are saying that Jeff Kolberg is the Director? I’m not advocating for or against, just clarifying for the notes.
      3. McPhail: No, the committee can determine the director but he is a willing participant at this point.
      4. Keuppens: Historically 7s has had sub-committees that handle TOLA and RRRC together.
      5. McPhail: I do think we need to have more people willing to row in our boat. 🙂
      6. Young: I love all this energy to work on things early but we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Let’s get the decision about our XVs hosts and then we can switch to 7s. I appreciate you slowing him down a bit.
  7. New Business
    1. All Stars
      1. Young: Traci and I have put together a proposal for the USAR SCC and the MG All Stars. We’re proposing that USAR use their allocated All Star budget to help cover our event costs that impact all teams like streaming, bringing in HP referees, etc.
  8. Meeting Adjournment (9:26 PM)