Eastern Kentucky University hosts half of the DIAA playoff bracket, and a very, very difficult half it is.
Bowling Green plays Mount Saint Mary’s, while James Madison plays Lindenwood-Belleville in what most would say is the tougher, one through four, half of the eight-team fall playoffs.
USA Rugby has released the Men's College DIAA fall playoff bracket, after some time negotiating and working with various issues within the conferences.
Eight teams will participate, and seeds are as follows:
1. Notre Dame College - Notre Dame College Over Lindenwood-Belleville
Bowling Green University won the Mid-American Conference Sunday, securing that title for the 36th straight time.
The Falcons defeated the University of Cincinnati 53-15, capping off a strong MAC season where they handled all of their tough games without getting much of a scare.
The Mid American Conference will head into its championship weekend at Bowling Green Saturday, with four teams playing two games over the two days.
Last year a slow start and some close losses doomed the University of Cincinnati to also-ran status, but things are just a shade different this year, and that small difference is actually pretty big.
In writing about the Chesapeake Conference, where there seemed to be an inordinate number of close games, we decided to see if our impressions were correct.
So we looked at the stats in Men's DI College rugby. We looked at which conferences had the most close losses (7 points or less) and also who had the most, what we'll call "competitive losses," which means losses of 14 or less.
Bowling Green hooker Phil Bryant is our Player Spotlight this week after he helped spark a 47-14 win over Western Michigan.
Bowling Green may have won the MAC playoffs last year, but they still remember being beaten by Western Michigan in the regular season.
That game was in the backs of the minds of the BGSU players this past weekend as the Falcons took on the Broncos in yet another meeting. Both teams were undefeated, of course, and so this game had plenty of meaning.
Of course once we at Goff Rugby Report profiled a team that might be on the rise, that team loses; so it was in the MAC where Louisville, which started strong last week, were pipped this week by Ohio.
One of the more intriguing results of the past weekend in DI rugby was in the Mid-American Conference, with Louisville defeating Miami 43-7.
Miami of Ohio has long been one of the stronger teams in the conference, and Louisville one of those teams chasing them, but this past weekend, Louisville seemed much the stronger of the two.
It's a slow buildup in DI rugby conferences, but we've identified a few games to keep a special eye on.