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ACRA Officially Relaunches With 4 Conferences, 62 Teams

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ACRA Officially Relaunches With 4 Conferences, 62 Teams

ACRA was initially launched in 2014.

The American Collegiate Rugby Association has officially relaunched, operating collegiate rugby for four women's D2 conferences in the Northeast.

The conferences—Tri-State, Rugby Northeast, New England Wide, and Mid-Atlantic—will run their conference schedules with 15s in the fall, and end with a playoff among those four conferences. Teams and conferences that were part of NSCRO as small-colleges have now left NSCRO (now NCR) and joined ACRA. The four conferences include 62 women's D2-level collegiate teams.

This is the official announcement from the ACRA Board:

The US Collegiate Rugby landscape has been re-sculpted following the reorganization of USA Rugby and Women's teams have landed in 3 different organizations - The Collegiate Rugby Association of America (CRAA), the National Small College Rugby Organization (NSCRO) now rebranded as National Collegiate Rugby (NCR) and the American Collegiate Rugby Association (ACRA).

ACRA was founded in 2013 with the sole purpose of prioritizing women's collegiate rugby athletes. It provided its members with a desired Fall 15s National Championship and Spring 7s National Championship at the Division II level. As USA Rugby incorporated the Fall 15s Championship in 2016 and Spring 7s Division II National Championship in 2019, the need for ACRA waned. With the restructuring of USA Rugby, the need for ACRA has re-emerged. 

ACRA has been reconstituted as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with a dynamic and enthusiastic volunteer board comprising women and men keen to focus on the teams that are members with representation from all conferences as well as an open invitation for anyone to provide input will ensure that the real time needs of teams are addressed.

Initial discussions focused on how to truly serve and help women's collegiate teams. 

Priorities will include:

  • helping teams to increase their roster sizes; 
  • improvement of team playing standards; 
  • developing individual player skills; 
  • coach development; 
  • help with administrative duties; 
  • developing leadership skills; 
  • building relationships with school administrators. 

It is these priorities that will enable programs to grow and flourish. In addition, ACRA will provide national playoff pathways and competition structures for 15s and 7s.

We are hopeful and planning for Fall 2020 competition though we understand the need to comply with state and local policies. Despite the uncertainty of return to play this fall, we will begin work on the above initiatives for our teams. 

—ACRA Board

American Collegiate Rugby Association Conferences
New England Wide (24 teams)   Tri-State (19 teams)   Rugby North East (9 teams)   Mid-Atlantic (10 teams)
Tier I   North   Tier I   East
Eastern Connecticut State    Fairfield University   Colby College   Bloomsburg University
Smith College   Marist College   Middlebury College   Kutztown University
U.S. Coast Guard Academy   Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute   Northern Vermont   Saint Joseph's
University of Hartford   Stony Brook University   Providence College   The College of New Jersey
University of Maine   University at Albany   Saint Anselm College   University of Pennsylvania
University of New Hampshire   Vassar College   St. Michael's College   University of Delaware
University of Vermont   South   Stonehill College   Drexel University
Tier II   Columbia University   Southern Connecticut State    Rowan University
Brandeis University   Hofstra University   UMass-Lowell   Salisbury State University
Mount Holyoke College   Montclair State        Temple University
Springfield College   Rutgers University        
Tufts University   Siena College        
Westfield State University   SUNY-New Paltz        
Worcester Polytechnic Inst.   Central        
Tier III   Bard College        
Babson College   Drew University        
Central Connecticut State    Fordham University        
Champlain College   Hartwick College        
Connecticut College   Monroe College        
Framingham State University   SUNY-Maritime College        
College of the Holy Cross   University of New Haven        
Lasell University            
Wellesley College            
Wesleyan University            
Williams College