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TRU Board Meeting Notes – 2/20/23

At the request of our members the TRU Board will be releasing their monthly board call minutes and notes. View all of the TRU archived minutes or read on for the most recent notes:

    1. Roll Call
      1. Young
      2. Dodge
      3. Martin
      4. Kurylas
      5. Tate
      6. Wilson
      7. Hiller
      8. Tomsak
      9. Roche
        1. Guests
          1. Hansel
        2. Regrets
          1. McPhail
    2. New Administrator
      1. Tate: We’d like to introduce Chris ‘Hansel’ Hanson as a new administrator for the TRU. He has done a lot of the leadership and operational work for the Huns for a long time so he is perfect for our team. 
      2. Hansel: Awesome, glad to be here and happy to help out.
      3. Young: So excited about having Hansel join us. He’s already helping us out by doing the Monday competition/roster checks. So if you receive emails from Hansel, please respond accordingly.
    3. Club Viability Fee
      1. Young: Las Colinas has met their requirements as a new club and so I went ahead and refunded their club viability fee that they paid earlier in the year. They also have great player numbers and their administrative support seems very strong.
      2. Tate: Excellent, we don’t want their money! We want their performance and compliance and it appears that we are getting that.
      3. Martin: I played with a lot of folks on this team at the University of Dallas. Very excited to see their success.
      4. Dodge: They are also heading up a vibrant youth program.
      5. Tate: Awesome.
    4. Disciplinary
      1. 1/14 Austin Blacks vs Dallas RFC MD1 Robin Coetzee – Undetected foul play, DC issued ruling and TRRA has appealed
        1. Tate: The Coetzee appeal went to the USAR Disciplinary committee and it was pushed back down to the regional TRU appeals committee. Whatever the ruling is, it can be pushed back to to the USAR Disciplinary committee if needed. Zach, do we have an update?
        2. Hiller: Yes, I hope we will have a decision in the next few days.
        3. Tate: I had a conversation with Scot Courtney and neither of us have ego in these decisions. If something is affirmed or overruled that is fine. We are both just interested in getting the correct outcome at the end of the day. If the TRU Appeals Committee or the USAR DIsciplinary disagrees then we will take that and apply any rulings going forward. 
        4. Dodge: If the ruling stands as stated, I believe it was 2 weeks or 2 matches. Has he already served this? As far as I understand, the match on Saturday was a forfeit. Does that matter?
        5. Tate; He has already served his sentence. If for some reason if the sanction is extended that does raise the question if the played forfeit match would count. Typically we do count those because it’s not his club’s fault for forfeiting. Even while the appeal is being heard we cannot hold the player out if they have served their sentence.
        6. Dodge: My question is more around the forfeit. Does that count towards the sanction?
        7. Tate: Gotcha. Yes, the forfeit does count because that is often out of the player’s hands. We would only not count matches if it’s a multi-side club, you can’t make up that they would have played in a D3 match if they would never really do that. This has come up in the past so we have precedent.
      2. Alliance/OKC W Friendly @ OKC Tribe
        1. Tate: We received a report from Alliance W of unsportsmanlike behavior from members of another club who was spectating the match. I talked about this with Scot Courtney and this doesn’t really fall under any World Rugby Regulations. I did reach out to Club Administrators and had personal conversations and asked them to get things in hand. THe conversations were positive and we are just going to leave it at that. Hopefully we will have less of that going forward. 
    5. Forfeits
      1. 12/17 Little Rock vs Denton M – Denton played forfeit
      2. 1/14 – Huns III vs HURT II M – HURT unplayed forfeit with late notification / TRU fined per policy
      3. 1/21 Grand Prairie vs HURT M – unplayed forfeit, notification was done before deadline, no additional sanction
      4. 1/14 Corpus Christi vs ORC M – ORC unplayed forfeit with late notification, TRU fined per policy
      5. 2/4 Shreveport vs Kingwood M – Kingwood unplayed forfeit with Sat morning notification
      6. 2/11 OKC Crusaders vs Denton – Denton played forfeit, notification on time
      7. 2/18 Blacks v Grand Prairie MD1 – played forfeit by GP, notification on time
      8. 2/18 Arrows vs Kingwood – Kingwood played forfeit
        1. Tate: First I want to call out the kudos, Denton has had a few forfeits but they have played with what they have. They are notifying us on time and that is allowing matches to be played by both sides. If matches have to be played 10 or 12 a side…that’s OK we want clubs to play rugby and overcome adversity. Great job. Also, Grand Prairie had an unplayed forfeit but they gave a timely notification so we  TRRA could reassign resources and the visiting club didn’t waste time on traveling and such. Good communication can mean we avoid fines and that’s all we require. We hope to see both of these clubs back at full strength in the coming weeks.
          1. Tate: Looks like we do have one match to review from 2/4 where Kingwood didn;t notify on time and did not play the match. Per our policy that will be a fine for the unplayed forfeit. I do want to make this clear that the TRU is not taking this fine, it is being paid to us and then being shared with TRRA and the non-forfeiting club. This is to cover expenses because notification wasn’t timely.
          2. Young: I will get a notice of fine out to Kingwood.
          3. Tate: Thank you, when that money comes in we can take care of TRRA and Shreveport.
          4. Young: Tomsak, were there any extra expenses due to the late notice?
          5. Tomsak: Yes, but we’re fine with not getting it back as we had a planned event for that day already.
          6. Tate: I’ve done this a lot of years and the way you grow a club when you are short in numbers…you take whoever can go and give them an opportunity to play. A good road trip, social and a chance to bond builds a club. If you don’t go play then the handful of players that have shown up are going to leave the game or the club. You never win by canceling the trip. You take what you have and you make it the best experience you can for those players that cared enough to be there.
    6. Roster Issues
      1. Tate: Yes, this is the dreaded name withheld problem. The main issue is that the opponent’s, referee and disciplinary committee need to know who is on the field that day. It’s not enough to be able for the Union to check the RX dashboard…we have to know who is really out there. We have had issues with this in the past and we want to avoid this at all costs.
      2. Young: Hansel is checking these and noting them on our competition tracking sheet. X is fine and R means there is an issue. No problems for 2/4 or 2/11 but one for 2/18 (HURT).
      3. Tate: So HURT will receive a $25 fee (same as CMS unlock fee for other roster/date issues). We’ve published that we will begin assessing fines and we’re going to enforce it now. If clubs have a justification or reason to appeal we are open to hearing their concerns.
      4. Young (UPDATE 2/21): HURT doesn’t have a roster issue, they listed their coach as their #8 and RX failed to show the entry. It instead shows a blank spot. We escalated this to USAR and it is a bug that they will work on.
    7. Outstanding Fines
      1. 1/14 – Huns III vs HURT II M – HURT unplayed forfeit with late notification
      2. 1/14 Corpus Christi vs ORC M – ORC unplayed forfeit with late notification
        1. Young: These are both outstanding and I have sent notices. I know ORC has folded so I won’t be bothering them anymore.
        2. Tate: Yes, if a club has folded then we won’t pester them about it. If they are able to revive and want to remain competitive they would remain in ‘not in good standing’ until they resolve any outstanding fines. We have probated fines in the past and such, again it’s not about taking your money.
        3. Young: Zach can you reach out to HURT about their outstanding fine? I haven’t heard anything.
        4. Hiller: Yes, I have already messaged them!
    8. AGM
      1. Tate; We haven’t done a mid-Winter AGM in the past few years. It was very low attendance and so we will continue with our Summer AGM for now. If members would like to meet more often, please let us know.
    9. Elections
      1. President – Sep 2023 (3 year term)
      2. Vice President – Sep 2025 (3 year term) Tomsak
      3. DI M Rep – Sep 2025 (3 year term) Dodge
      4. W Rep – Sep 2025 (3 year term) Wilson
      5. DII M Rep – Sep 2024 (3 year term)
      6. DIII M Rep – Sep 2024 (3 year term)
        1. Tate: We do want to mention that we will have our annual elections  this summer. Dodge, when does RRRC vote?
        2. Dodge: It is the same time and matches the TRU now and it will be other half of the seats that we didn’t elect in 2022.
    10. Gulf Coast Super Regional 5/6-7
      1. Tate: McPhail can’t be on the call tonight but he can join if we need him. The only piece we’re waiting on is the official confirmation that our Super Regional will be in Orlando.
      2. Young: I was cc’d on another email and it definitely seems like that is where we will be going but we still are waiting for the official word.
      3. Tate: This means that most of our teams will probably have to fly to this event so we want to let folks know as early as we can.
      4. Young: I wanted to let this team know that I won’t be able to attend that weekend as I have a prior engagement with the MLR. So far they haven’t asked for our support but we have offered.
      5. Tate: I am also not available that weekend.
    11. All Stars Budget Request from USAR SCC
      1. Tate: I had to miss the meeting this past time. Was this discussed?
      2. Dodge: We didn’t get to talk about it on the call but there was supposed to be an email that went out? Did you receive that?
      3. Tate: No, I don’t think I did.
      4. Dodge: OK, I will follow up. I also proposed a new budget for M/W All Stars that is quite substantial. 
      5. Tate: Excellent. We are getting more and more requests to attend the Mary Graham All Stars. We are already going to have to move to two fields which means more referees, administrators and such. Not a bad problem to have but we can’t continue to solely fund this.
      6. Tomsak: How many women’s teams attended this past year?
      7. Young: 8 and we have interest from at least 4 more teams. Interest is growing and we want to be able to accommodate all of the various Unions. Any extra funding would be really helpful so we can keep the event high performance.
      8. Tate: We have a unique opportunity with the women’s All Stars because their pathways are not as clear as the men with the MLR. All Stars is still a scouting event for the women. It’s not to say that we couldn’t still do it for our Union but we would need someone to step up and take charge of a men’s work.
    12. HOF Nominations
      1. Tate: These will be opening soon and we’ll have a notice on the website. I have a couple of positions I can appoint on the final selections committee and I’ve reached out to a few folks. The elected positions are already filled and I’m looking to diversify the committee regionally and in terms of gender.
      2. Young: Thank you for looking to diversify the committee. The event this year will be the last weekend of August and we’re looking at Fort Worth. We’ll be honoring the 2000 Fort Worth D2 National Championship team along with the HOF class and any other awards.
    13. 501c3
      1. Tate: IRS asked for additional budget info. Will provide this week. Usually this is a good sign because it means that someone has picked it up out of the queue!
    14. USAR SCC Updates
      1. Dodge: A few updates from the USAR SCC calls, we are looking to hire an administrator to help with the day-to-day operations. For 7s, Keuppens is still working on the structure but he is getting some pushback from Unions and they continue discussions.
      2. Dodge: Wendy, I heard you are back on the USAR Club Competitions Committee?
      3. Young: Yes, I signed up again! I don’t know if I’m crazy but there is a new chair (Andrew King) and I;m excited about the direction he is going in. We are focusing on building out the committee, finding a Nationals venue and planning for 2023-24 competitions..
      4. Tate: The TRU is well represented at the National level, Zach Hiller is on the Disciplinary Committee, Michael Norton is on eligibility along with Dodge and I’s Council seats..
    15. New Business
      1. RX Access Use
        1. Dodge: Who do we contact if we have RX access problems?
        2. Roche: That is still me but I’m training Hansel so he can take over. For now, please reach out to me.
      2. WTR Contacts
        1. Dodge: What about changing contacts in WTR?
        2. Roche: It’s a bit confusing because the user has to create an account in WTR and then I manually update it on our TRU contact sheet. The best way is to fill out the Team Contact Update Form and you can indicate if old contacts need to be updated.
        3. Dodge: So, I can’t make the changes myself as a Team Admin?
        4. Roche: No, unfortunately not, WTR doesn’t have permissions like that. It has to be done manually.
    16. Meeting Adjournment (9:05 PM)