11 Bulldogs Awarded 2017 Academic All-Ivy Men's Team

Congratulations to 11 of our very own players who have been awarded with the honor of appearing on the 2017 Academic All-Ivy Men's Team. These players qualified for the honor for appearing in at least two Ivy Rugby Conference matches while also maintaining a GPA of at least 3.7. The selections were made by all 8 coaches of the Ivy Rugby Conference based on these players achievements on and off the field. These Bulldogs include:

  1. Bryan Herbert '18 (Yale)
  2. Scott Cockburn '19 (Yale)
  3. Joseph Goode '19 (Yale)
  4. Josh Racine '19 (Yale)
  5. Harry Seavey '19 (Yale)
  6. Diego Sialer '19 (Yale)
  7. Kohl Weisman '19 (Yale)
  8. Alex O'Neill '20 (Yale)
  9. Mateo Beccar Varela '20 (Yale)
  10. Kevin Gallagher '21 (Yale)
  11. Tat Wei Lee '21 (Yale)

The full list can be viewed here: https://www.ivyrugby.com/news/mens-2017-academic-all-ivy-team

Yale Harvard Ivy League Game-014.jpg

Yale Rugby prepare for Hong Kong and Tokyo Tour 2018

Yale Rugby wrap up a successful off-season as they prepare for the upcoming tour to Hong Kong and Tokyo March 9th-24th. Having trained 4/5 times per week on strength, conditioning, and skills since returning from Winter Break, the Bulldogs have hit the fields once again as they continue to work hard towards the tour fixtures. Returning in late March they face their first spring scrimmage against UCONN Away March 31st. Tune into @YaleRugby on Twitter for updates and news from tour!

Yale Harvard Ivy League Game-020.jpg

Director of Rugby Greg McWilliams appointed as assistant coach with the USA Men's National Team.

Intro: Yale University is delighted to announce that Director of Rugby Greg McWilliams has been named as the USA Men’s National Team Attack & Backs Coach for the America Rugby Championship (a tournament played between USA, Argentina, Canada, Chile, Brazil, and Uruguay) over the next six weeks. We caught up with Greg before his departure. 


Lucas: Can you tell us a little bit about your USA Men’s Rugby coaching experience so far?

Greg: After the last Ivy League game of the 2017 fall season, I assisted on the European tour with the USA Men’s National team so it's great to get another bite at it. I had been coaching with the USA Men’s Collegiate All-American side (U 23) since 2015 so I got to know a number of the players and staff which made the integration easier. We played Germany & Georgia on that tour and competed well, it's an exciting time with the World Cup on the horizon. The players are a very tight group who are prepared to work hard to get better - that's essential. The squad will meet up in San Diego on January 24th to begin the prep for the ARC. It's going to be a testing tour but we will learn a great amount as a group. We can test a lot of players over the course of the six games as we reduce the player pool leading into the summer tests.

Lucas: How will you manage the role alongside being a Yale coach?

Greg: I'm very lucky that USA Rugby runs parallel with the Yale Rugby program. For example, this upcoming tour with USA Rugby will not clash with the Yale Rugby schedule. For the next six weeks during our winter off season training block, the program is prioritizing our strength and conditioning to establish good habits off the field. We have a great coaching staff with Craig Wilson, with Brad Dufek, Corey Jones and Teofe Ziemnicki. It's also a great chance for them to lead. At the end of the day, the players will be taking the lead role, we are there to facilitate and support, this staff has a critical part to play in that. 

Lucas: What are your number one goals for Yale Rugby, USA Rugby, and your personal coaching career?

Greg: At the moment It’s about establishing best practice that promotes consistency at Yale for years to come. We have lots of moving parts working together, it's a lot of fun. The FYR alumni board helps to drive that. The current crop of players are driving those standards day to day and are beginning to understand the dynamics needed to be more competitive, particularly away from the field. It takes time to build that. Lastly, it is about getting the balance right between academics, rugby, family, and their social life, we continuously strive for that.

For USA Rugby, my goal is to try and help as much as I can in the next six weeks in preparation for the Rugby World Cup in Japan (2019). That is my main and only focus for the team at the moment. The support from Yale has been incredible, I'm grateful for that. I am also grateful for my amazingly patient wife Sarah. She will travel to the west coast with me which is a bonus.

As a coach, I am always trying to improve and learn something new every day. I will pick up many learnings from the players and staff  that I am excited to bring back to the Yale program in time for our jam-packed spring season. The competition is only getting stronger on the east coast so we have work to do..

Lucas: It was great to hear from you before you head off on your tour. Best of luck coach.

Get behind the Bulldogs


In March of 2018, the Bulldogs will be traveling to Hong Kong and Japan on a Spring tour. As you can imagine, there is great cost that goes into a trip of this magnitude. Read below and support a Bulldog of your choice. Your help is so much appreciated. Simply click on a link below and follow the instructions.

Charlie Hill - Wear a hot dog suit to class ($500=a day, $1000=a week)                                                  https://www.gofundme.com/yalerugby-charlie

Henry Loughlin - Eat a tube of wasabi in under 5 mintutes                                                                    https://www.gofundme.com/hanktotokyo

Daniel Marsh - Dye my hair blue https://www.gofundme.com/yale-mens-rugby-asia-tour?pc=fb_co_dashboard_a&rcid=317d66131d3243b2afd17c329b6d3137

Khaleel Rajwani - 100 hours of community service                                                                           https://www.gofundme.com/khaleel039s-fund-for-yale-rugby-tour

Anthony Geritano Jr - Shaved head at 500, risque outfit at 1000                                                                  https://www.gofundme.com/yale-rugby-club-tour-fundraiser

Phil Kapranov - $700, will do Buffalo Wild Wings Blazing Challenge. 12wings, 6mins                                  https://www.gofundme.com/yale-rugby-tour

Ryan Vollmer - Blue hair @ $500, Dwight Schrute style @ $1000                                                                  https://www.gofundme.com/ryans-fund-for-yale-rugby-tour

Simar Chadha - Will jump into New Haven Harbor during the winter months                                            https://www.gofundme.com/Simar-chadha-rugby-tour

Lucas Holter - Blue Mohawk                                                                                        https://www.gofundme.com/lucasholterrugbytourfundraiser

William (Alika) Smith - Gumby costume for a week and take coaches out for dinner.                            https://www.gofundme.com/yalerugby-william

Bryan Herbert - $500 = Half-Marathon; $1000 = Marathon                                                                       https://www.gofundme.com/bryans-yale-rugby-tour-fundraiser

Vlad Sychou - $500 = Bald Vlad                                                                                                                 https://www.gofundme.com/qwn4wr-yale-rugby-tour

Josh Racine - Dress as Naruto, run around like a ninja ($500- one day, $1000- one week)                   https://www.gofundme.com/yalerugby-josh

Miles Kim - 500, Buffalo wild wings challenge                                                                                        https://www.gofundme.com/miles039s-yale-rugby-tour-fund

Phillip Vorster - 500 to go to classes in only rugby shorts after a winter blizzard                                      https://www.gofundme.com/phillips-fund-for-yale-rugby-tour

Daniel Lee - $500 for a half marathon, $750 for a full marathon                                                          https://www.gofundme.com/yalerugby-daniel

Tat Wei Lee - Wear bunny suit to class for a week                                                                                        https://www.gofundme.com/tatwei-yalerugby-fundraising

Alex O'Neill - BWW Blazing Challenge .                                                                                                           https://www.gofundme.com/yale-rugby-tour-2018-fundraiser

Joe Goode                                                                                                                                                     https://www.gofundme.com/ebn92c-yale-rugby-tour

Bhupinder Singh - Dress as a Naruto character, run around like a ninja                                                            https://www.gofundme.com/yale-rugby-tour-fund

Nick Pham - Dye hair blonde                                                                                                                                https://www.gofundme.com/nick-pham-yale-rugby-tour

Ian Reid - Dress as Naruto, run around like a ninja ($500- one day, $1000- one week)                                    https://www.gofundme.com/ians-fund-for-yale-rugby-tour

Kohl Weisman - BWW Blazing Challenge                                                                                                  https://www.gofundme.com/kohl039s-fund-for-yale-rugby-tour

Tommy Lopez - Suite Cleaning                                                                                                                        https://www.gofundme.com/gmubk-diegos-fund-for-yale-rugby-tour

Diego Sialar - Suite Cleaning                                                                                                                                    https://www.gofundme.com/gmubk-diegos-fund-for-yale-rugby-tour

Mateo Beccar -Get tased                                                                                                                                    https://www.gofundme.com/mateos-fundraiser-for-rugby-tour

AJ Ding - Get a Reverse Mohawk (Dyed pink if $750)                                                                                          https://www.gofundme.com/aj039s-fund-for-yale-rugby-tour

Bojan Dosljak - I will do errands for people who donate over $15                                               https://www.gofundme.com/yalerugbyfundraiserbojan

Bohan Lou - $500 Wax legs. $1000 wax whole body.


Yale Women leading the way

Screen Shot 2017-10-06 at 11.07.23 AM.png

Yale sits atop the Ivy Club standings, but the team has faced plenty of resistance during its 3-0 fall thus far. The Bulldogs outscored two opponents by one try each (with conversions pushing the point differential), and the team expects an equal amount of pressure in round two.

Yale began to recenter itself in fall 2015, when new head coach Craig Wilson relocated from Hong Kong, where he was involved with the national U14-U20 age grade teams, to New Haven, Conn. He joined a women’s program that hadn’t won an Ivy 15s game in three years.

“Upon arrival at Yale, it was clear that the team, for all their endeavors, lacked direction and had low numbers,” Wilson recalled those early days. “I prioritized creating a compelling and attractive vision for the players to work towards. We shifted the mindset to focusing on the details we could control, such as the importance of hard work, increasing fitness levels and having fun. On top of that, I developed their rugby IQ by introducing tactical play supported with using video analysis and increasing the amount of rugby the team watched.”

A foundation had been re-established, and Yale went 5-2 that season to win the Ivy Club division.

This year's team is of modest size - 24 registered players - but it's the youth of the squad that draws interest. Fourteen are rookies and four players are in their second season of rugby.

 “The new players have certainly added to our overall athleticism, which is a core focus of the program,” Wilson indicated. “We unfortunately lost both our captains to injury in the first game of the season, but this has created an opportunity for the other players to step up and lead. I am excited to see the progress of this group, which has huge potential.”

The team started the fall with a 74-15 win over Columbia, followed by a 36-25 victory over Cornell, and then defeated Penn 38-27 last weekend. Penn sits in second place thanks to a 26-17 season-opening win over Cornell.

“Penn are well coached and have some talented players,” Wilson reflected on the team’s latest outing. “I believe our willingness to keep working hard to the final whistle was the difference in a very close game. We will have to go up another level if we are going to beat them again, especially away from home.”

Genevieve Simmons leads all points scorers with 36 on four tries and eight conversions, while Elisia Ceballo-Countryman is close behind with 28 (4T, 4C). Ann Chia, Debbie Dada and Veronica Rodriguez have contributed three tries apiece this season, and Fatemeh Mojarradi and Sophie Freeman have crossed the try line twice each.

Columbia forfeited this weekend's match, and so Yale will resume play on Oct. 14 against the traditionally tough Cornell. Yale will then face Penn on Oct. 28 to end the season, and final standings will name league champion. A challenge match will then ensue between the Ivy Club champion and fourth-place team in the Ivy League (Brown, Dartmouth, Harvard and Princeton) for promotion/relegation in fall 2018. Additionally, a new initiative will see the Ivy Club champion compete in the USA Rugby DII playoffs this fall.

News courtesy of www.therugbybreakdown.com

3 on the bounce for the Bulldogs



Yale Rugby recorded a big win v Cornell last weekend in the Ivy Conference. This was the 3rd Ivy game of the 2017 Fall season. Next weekend, Yale will be traveling to Hanover to play against pre competition favorites and perennial Ivy Championship winners Dartmouth.

This is a great challenge for this Yale side and a great opportunity to test ourselves against the best in the conference.

Scorers from the Cornell Game

Tries: Diego Sialer, Bryan Herbert 2, Camille Kima 3, Duane Madziva 3, Harry Seavey 3, Scott Cockburn, Ian Reid.

Conversions: Dan Marsh 6, Simon Soros 3, Bryan Herbert 1



Two Yale Rugby Alums Accept Prestigious University President Roles

This year, two former Yale Rugby players, James Ryan '88 and Mark Nemec '91, have been introduced as Presidents at the University of Virginia and Fairfield University respectively.

Both men have remained active with the FYR alumni group. Mark Nemec serves on the FYR board.

Mark and James join Thomas P. Foley, President of Mount Aloysius College & Ralph Nelson, President of Vancouver island university.

Click on a name to read more:

Mark Nemec

James Ryan

Thomas P. Foley

Ralph Nelson

Pre season finishes with a bang

Yale Rugby completed their pre season with an away trip to Fairfield University. Played in great spirits, the games finished 26-40 and 37-5.

Fairfield University president and FYR board member, Mark Nemec, hosted a BBQ at Bellermine Hall for the players and supporters. This was a truly special event enjoyed by all.

We wish 'the Stags' all the best with their season. Looking forward to the next one.

Exciting times for Yale rugby

Yale Rugby is proud to announce that it will be competing at its new location this fall season. The field will be equipped with an electronic scoreboard and floodlights. This is a massive step for the program. The players, alumni and supporters would like to give special thanks to the Yale Varsity programs and the administration. Without their help, none of this would be possible. 

The field has been previously used by both varsity field hockey and soccer. 

The program would like also like to thank the FYR board and grounds staff for making the dream a reality.

Go Dawgs

Yale Rugby to welcome Oxford to New Haven

On September 11th, Yale Rugby welcomes Oxford University to New Haven. Oxford will be playing the USA MCAA side in Philadelphia on Saturday September 16th. This part of the tour will be used as preparation for that game. 


  • Arrive late - 7.30pm / 8.00pm -Address - Lanman Center, Payne Whitney Gym, 70 Tower Pkwy, New Haven, 06511
  • Oxford and Yale players will meet and the players will be billeted out.


  • Varsity gym at 11.00am
  • Training on the rugby field at 4.00pm- Oxford Only.


  • Varsity Gym at 11.00am
  • Pitch session with Yale 4.00pm
  • Function on Wednesday evening.


  • Depart


Dave Rennie begins his new role with Glasgow warriors

For the past three seasons, Yale University, the Chiefs and St Paul's Collegiate School have developed a strong relationship. This year 4 more students traveled to train in the great rugby environment. A total of 11 Yale players have travelled to Hamilton. Dave has had a big influence, making the coaching staff and players feel so welcome.   

Rennie said he "couldn't turn down" the "opportunity to work with such exciting players at a club with big ambitions".

The former Wellington centre added: "It's no secret I have been interested in coaching abroad and this chance fits the bill. I am very motivated to continue the success (at Glasgow) and build the club."

Rennie joined The Chiefs in 2012 and won two Super Rugby titles in his first two seasons.

The New Zealander started his coaching career in 1999 at Wellington, where the team won their first NPC title in 14 years in his opening season as head coach in 2000.

He also coached Manawatu in the ITM Cup between 2006 and 2011 and also in that time won three consecutive Junior World Championships in charge of the New Zealand U20 side.

Scottish Rugby's chief executive Mark Dodson said: "It is a clear indication of the progress Scottish Rugby and Glasgow Warriors are making that we can attract a coach of Dave's experience to Scotland to work with our players.

We wish him well.

The six new laws of rugby explained - presentation & video

Thank you to Kurt Weaver from USA rugby for providing the documentation on the 6 new law trials that will be in effect this Fall for the Ivy Rugby conference.

USA Rugby Collegiate Academic Honors for Yale players

 Joseph Goode, '19, a recipient of an award

Joseph Goode, '19, a recipient of an award

Two hundred and twenty-five student athletes have been recognized for their academic excellence with their naming to the 2016-17 USA Rugby National Collegiate Academic Honor Roll.

The diverse group of college students represent both men's and women's rugby across Divisions I, II and the National Small College Rugby Organization (NSCRO). Nomination and naming to this prestigious honor requires the players to be at least a sophomore in class standing, possess a cumulative GPA of at least 3.50 and a regular member of his or her program's 'A-side' as either a starter or reserve.

In six years of naming a National Collegiate Academic Honor Roll, USA Rugby has recognized the hard work, leadership and diligence of over 1,500 well-deserving student-athletes.

"It is with great pleasure that we announce the 2016-17 USA Rugby Academic Honor Roll," said USA Rugby Collegiate Director Rich Cortez. "These athletes have proven once again that academic excellence and athletic achievement can be complementary. Their institutions, families, coaches and fans can be justifiably proud of their achievements on and off the field."

New Law changes come into play

The World Rugby Executive Committee has approved the addition of six law amendments to the programme of global law trials following positive trials in specific international competitions this year.

The amendments, which relate to the scrum (Law 20) and tackle/ruck (Laws 15 and 16), are aimed at making the game simpler to play and referee as well as further promoting player welfare. They have been approved following extensive game data analysis as well as player, coach, match official and union feedback from the tournaments in which these six aspects of law were trialled.

The six law amendments will now join the scheduled global law trial programme, completing a total package of 11 aspects of law, and will debut in full from 1 August, 2017 in the northern hemisphere and from 1 January, 2018 in the south.


The November 2017 tests will operate under the full global law trials, while Women’s Rugby World Cup 2017 will operate under the package of five global law trials that has been operational in the southern hemisphere since January and was operational during the June test window.


The six aspects of law approved to join the global trial programme are:


1. Law 20.5 and 20.6 (d) 

No signal from referee. The scrum-half must throw the ball in straight but is allowed to align their shoulder on the middle line of the scrum, therefore allowing them to stand a shoulder width towards their own side of the middle line.

Rationale: To promote scrum stability, a fair contest for possession while also giving the advantage to the team throwing in (non-offending team).


2. Law 20.9 (b) Handling in the scrum – exception

The number eight shall be allowed to pick the ball from the feet of the second-rows. 

Rationale: To promote continuity.


3. Law 20.8 (b) Striking after the throw-in

Once the ball touches the ground in the tunnel, any front-row player may use either foot to try to win possession of the ball. One player from the team who put the ball in must strike for the ball.

Sanction: Free-kick

Rationale: To promote a fair contest for possession.


4. Law 15.4 (c)

The tackler must get up before playing the ball and then can only play from their own side of the tackle “gate”.

Rationale: To make the tackle/ruck simpler for players and referees and more consistent with the rest of that law.


5. Law 16 Ruck

A ruck commences when at least one player is on their feet and over the ball which is on the ground (tackled player, tackler). At this point the offside lines are created. Players on their feet may use their hands to pick up the ball as long as this is immediate. As soon as an opposition player arrives, no hands can be used.

Rationale: To make the ruck simpler for players and referees.


6. Law 16.4: Other ruck offences

A player must not kick the ball out of a ruck. The player can only hook it in a backwards motion.

Sanction: Penalty

Rationale: To promote player welfare and to make it consistent with scrum law.




The six new aspects of law were part of the original 2015 laws review process, and were recommended to move to closed trial to provide a further analysis opportunity before global trial could be considered.


These closed trials were operational at this year's World Rugby U20 Championship, World Rugby Nations Cup, World Rugby Pacific Challenge, Americas Rugby Championship and Oceania Rugby U20 Championship, with positive outcomes:


Scrum outcomes: 

  • More ball coming back into play with fewer penalties and fewer collapses
  • The ball was thrown in without delay, with scrums continuing to be stable prior to throw-in
  • No collapses occurred by the number eight picking the ball up from under the second rows 

Tackle outcomes: 

  • Feedback indicated that the tackle was easier to referee with more clearly defined offside lines and tacklers not interfering with the quality of the ball with more players on their feet allowing counter rucking 

A comprehensive analysis was undertaken by the specialist Laws Review Group, the Scrum Steering Group, considering detailed and highly-positive union, player and match official feedback, before the recommendations were approved by the Rugby Committee and subsequently the Executive Committee. The trials were also considered at the high performance match officials and coaches meeting earlier this year. 


World Rugby Chairman Bill Beaumont said: "World Rugby continually reviews the laws to ensure that the game is as enjoyable, simple and safe as possible at all levels. I would like to thank our unions for their full support throughout the process, the experts who evaluated the closed trial data and look forward to seeing the full results of the global trial.” 


Rugby Committee Chairman John Jeffrey added: "These law amendments are designed to improve the experience of those playing and watching the game at all levels and to avoid negative play where possible. The results of the closed trials were highly-encouraging with more ball out from the scrum, fewer penalties and better stability, which has a player welfare benefit too.”


Implementation this year will enable at least a year of evaluation before the moratorium on law amendment begins a year out from Rugby World Cup 2019. 


Law Review Group members: Alain Rolland; Rhys Jones; Mark Harrington (all World Rugby); Nigel Melville (RFU); Ben Whitaker (ARU); David Nucifora (IRFU); Didier Retiere (FFR); Dave Rennie (NZR), Francesco Ascione (FIR); Rachael Burford (IRPA); Chris Paterson (SRU); Pablo Bouza (UAR); Paul Adams (WRU); Chean Roux (SARU). Previous inputs within the process include Paul O'Connell (IRPA); Eddie Jones (RFU); Nigel Whitehouse (WRU) and Dr Martin Raftery (World Rugby).