To promote and advance the exciting game of Rugby in Connecticut

RugbyCT League Rules


Our hope is that no team loses any league points for any reasons.  These penalty points are in place in order to enforce and encourage common sense behaviors.  All matches should be played as scheduled with assigned referees and with a B game.  If for some reason some part of this expectation will not take place, teams must communicate this quickly so that players, parents, bus companies, athletic directors, trainers, referees, and coaches all know what is going on.

The competition committee will have final say over the facts and rule interpretations in the event of any question of a league points penalty.  Please communicate any situations that would lead to penalty points and please respond quickly to any inquiries from the competition committee regarding the facts.  Absent timely communication, the competition committee will use its best judgment given the facts it has.

Rule 1) Making Friday the default game day.  There are a few reasons for this including referee availability, standardized and adequate rest/recovery time, and a predictable schedule for parents.  Teams that have a problem with playing on a given Friday should first try to work out the conflict with their opponent. If only one team from any given contest has a problem with playing on a given Friday, they can force an alternate date (for instance, the Thursday, Saturday, or Sunday of that week) one time in the season with no penalty.  After that one forced non-Friday game, we will follow this protocol:

if the team with the issue was the scheduled home team, the scheduled away team gets the opportunity to host the match on the Friday;

if that does not solve the problem, then the team that is forcing the change will take a -1 league points penalty.

If both teams have a problem with playing on Friday, then they should work out a mutually agreeable alternate date, with no penalty to either team.  

For unusual circumstances, exemptions, or appeals, the team(s) involved must communicate to the competition committee the nature of the problem and the preferred alternate date by February 15, 2017.  It would be helpful if teams with multiple ‘friday issues’ ranked them in order of importance.

Rule 2) A minor forfeit is when one team does not complete a scheduled league match of 2 35-minute halves using its own players, having started the match with 15 of its own players  OR when one team is unable to start a scheduled league match, having communicated this to their opponent and the competition committee at least one week prior to the scheduled kickoff. -1 league points for a minor forfeit.

Rule 3) For Division 1 teams, It is assumed that a full B match of at least 25 minute halves will follow the A match.  A team that is doubtful it will be able to play the B match must communicate this to their opponent at least one week prior to the scheduled kickoff so the team with the full B side can make other arrangements for a match.  -1 league points for failing to notify of not being able to play a B match.

Rule 4) A major forfeit is when one team makes evident that they cannot start a scheduled league  match with 15 of its own players within one week of the scheduled kickoff. -3 league points.

Rule 5) Responsibilities of home team:

  1. Submit the match for assignment through NERRS or RRSNY prior to March 1, 2017. (-1 league points/match not submitted for assignment through a referee society).
  2. Use the assigned referee.  In emergency situations of sudden, unexpected unavailability of a referee, make every effort to secure an alternate referee through the appropriate society.  If this does not work, let competition committee know and try get secure a referee on your own. (-1 league points/match that does not used the assigned referee, if available).
  3. Provide a certified trainer (-1 league points/match).
  4. Enter the match on the league website by February 1, 2017 (-1 league points/match).
  5. Report the correct score, including number of tries scored, on the league website within 48 hours of final whistle (-1 league points/match where score is reported late or incorrectly).

Rule 6) Double forfeits.  If, for any reason, a league match is not completed by the Tuesday after the Friday of week 6, both teams will take a -3 league points penalty, a 0-0 score is reported, and no positive points are awarded.

Rule 7) All players on a Rugby Connecticut team must be enrolled in high school in Connecticut.  Returning non-Connecticut players who played for a Rugby Connecticut team in 2016 will be grandfathered for 2017, but new players should be directed to one of the teams in their home state.  Any proposed exceptions to this rule should be brought to the competition committee.

Rule 8) No Rugby Connecticut team can play another team based in Connecticut that is not a member of Rugby Connecticut.

Rule 9)  Every Rugby Connecticut team must have at least one Level 200 certified and one Level 100 certified coach.  Please provide the names of these coaches and their certification level to the competition committee.

Rule 10) Rugby Connecticut teams that are not varsity programs must have 23 CIPPed players as of March 15, 2017 and be team CIPPed.

Rule 11) Any student enrolled in a school which has a rugby team cannot play for a club team during the league season without first getting approval from the head coach of the school team and from the competition committee.

Rule 12)  Whenever possible, league matches should be played on fields which accord with World Rugby Law 1.  For turf fields marked for football and soccer, rugby matches should be played using the widest set of lines consistent with Law 1 and with player safety.

Rule 13) B team playing in Division 2.  D1 teams which enter a side into D2 must communicate to the competition committee via hard copy or email a roster of 22 ‘A side only’ players who are not allowed to play in any D2 league matches for the season.  Roster must include complete name, cipp number, and school year (junior, senior, etc) pertaining to the season in question.  Any proposed changes to the roster, which has no effect on players used in a D1 league competition, must be submitted to the competition committee, whose ruling on such such changes shall be required before a player in question participates in a D2 league match.  The competition committee’s ruling in such matters will be final and not subject to appeal.

Note: USA Rugby is becoming increasingly insistent on the coaching certification requirement as well as starting to encourage the use of ‘technical zones.’  While Rugby Connecticut decided not to adopt a requirement for the 2017 season, teams are encouraged to prepare themselves for the day when this might become a requirement.