Saturday, March 21, 2015

(UPDATED) Mary Washington Men Suspended


The Mary Washington men's rugby team has been suspended indefinitely after audio of a chant containing violent and sexually explicit lyrics has surfaced. The team was suspended at the beginning of the semester but the disciplinary process concluded last Wednesday confirming the suspension. The incident occurred at an off campus party last fall and several members of the rugby team participated in the chant and shared it over social media.

In an article on Fredericksburg.com UMW President Rick Hurley said “The university will not stand for such behavior. It not only violates our community values, it is not how members of this collegial campus live, and it is not reflective of the Mary Washington we all know and love.”

Take the jump to read more.
UPDATE: According to a TIAR source the team is working with the University and full embraces the decision. The source also noted that at the time of the incident the bulk of the team (38 of 46 players) was not at the party. Mary Washington is known for their work in the community and have been named the club of the year three times thanks to putting in over 1800 hours of community service. They also donate four sets of Canterbury jersey's to needy teams each year.

This is just the latest incidence of a rugby team being suspended for the conduct following the effective ending of the Delaware program and the temporary suspensions of the Utah and Army programs. Both Utah and Army have rebounded and appear as strong as ever. Louisiana State was also recently suspended.

It's a reminder that for all the positive things that rugby teams do--just this week there were articles highlighting work in the community--that there is still a negative perception of rugby teams that all sides must combat. Whether or not it's reality all teams must not only actively avoid putting themselves in compromising situations but also actively striving to portray a positive image to their schools and communities. 

15 comments:

  1. Who hasn't sung marrying kind or Chicago department store? Both violent and sexually explicit. What a joke

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  3. Jesus can'take play rugby because his headgear is illegal

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  4. Double standards, politically expedient correctness and the thought police are all over this like a dose of chicken pox.

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  5. You guys don't get the point. University administrations have zero tolerance for this type of rugby "tradition." It doesn't help the game. I hope for the day when a club is investigated for being to fit or too competitive internationally.

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  6. The idea that group punishment is acceptable for the actions of a few is simply despicable. Mary Washington should be ashamed of itself. If they do not understand how wrong this is; they need a course in ethics. Morally, this is the same as visiting the sins of the father on their innocent sons. What the Rugby players did was wrong, this is worse.

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  7. In reference to the section where you say the rugby team members released the chant to social media is inaccurate. A member of the UMW staff released the chant to social media.

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  8. Crying about double standards and political correctness simply ignores the obvious fact that there are college rugby programs that need to grow up and act like adults. It doesn't matter if it is one guy or one hundred guys that are guilty - the loser is the game. I saw far too much of this when I was involved in college and club rugby back in the 80's and 90's. It is pretty sad to see people making exudes for unacceptable behavior at this stage of the game.

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    1. Exactly. As a non US rugby fan I'm sick and tired of hearing how US college players continually shoot the sport in the foot there. About time said immature college players start understanding anytime they do this they harm the game. If I was USARFU president I would be banning the guys who did it from rugby as well for bringing the game into disrepute. FFS grow up and start respecting the game you're playing!

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  9. College rugby players need to be focused on playing bette rugby not singing songs. Actually all rugby players need to be focused on being better. There is little danger of rugby losing any of its social allure.

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  10. From what I heard this audio which was obtained illegally was leaked by UMW administration. I also heard that you can clearly hear one of the female rugby players singing louder than the men. I also heard she belongs to the group feminist united on campus (who like to call themselves FUC).

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  11. Maureen - you are just perpetuating the same excuse making BS that has been going on for years. And it really does get tiring. I don't know how many times I heard jackasses saying "I'm a rugby player" to excuse boorish behavior. Usually the statement is made by some un-fit wannabe that couldn't cut it anywhere else, joined the college rugby team and continued acting like an idiot but decided that it is because he (or she) was a rugby player. Didn't need them back when I played and definitely don't need them now.

    Yes, members of other teams do stupid things and often worse things. With the tacit approval of the administration (Syracuse U and Jim Boeheim come to mind rather quickly). It really doesn't matter. "They did it too" went out as an excuse for me somewhere around 2nd grade.

    Rugby is a great game, espouses all the great values sports are supposed to and then some. Why make excuses for idiots that are rugby players in name only.

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  12. Mary Washington protected the integrity of Rugby! As a University professor, retired coach, and Rugby conference administrator, I honestly believe that this nonsense of "boys will be boys" or "girls will be girls" in college rugby needs to stop. College Rugby players are just that College Rugby players. you are representing the school you attend. And, if you want to be treated as adults, then behave as such. Yes, there is a place for Drink ups and chants, but I believe that is at the professional levels in other countries where Rugby has a wonderful history; not in the U.S. where we're just starting to earn the respect of athletics. Grow up!! And Good for UMW! Now let's see what we all can do about creating a USA Rugger reputation as being the gentlemen and ladies who play a game on the pitch like hooligans. Not the other way around!!

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  13. I wanted to say as an alumni and a female I am ashamed of this ruling. When I went I was on the female rugby team, and that song was my favorite one to sing. I proudly sang it every chance I got and I still do. In fact, all rugby teams have raunchy songs. My dad played rugby when he was in college in the 70's, and the same songs existed. It has been a long standing tradition to drink and chant, and while barbaric, they do serve a purpose. To bond with other teams and chant and try to get the other team to blush. It's human primal instinct to have sex on the brain, and whether you are in your early 20's or elderly, it's there. The problem is not that these songs exist, it's the over-reaction by groups that act as offended as your posts that are. Words don't hurt, actions do. Nobody was raping or sexually assaulting anyone, it was just a song. Being a feminist is being an independent and secure female, not playing the victim. It's standing up and saying "I am equal to any man and I will be treated as such." By making a "to-do" over minor sex-related topics you are a contributor to a society that is becoming dulled by sexual assault and rape stories.

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  14. You missed the part where only 8 members of the rugby team participated in this. There were numerous other NCAA sanctioned athletes in attendance. This party occurred off-campus. The president of FUC (Feminists United on Campus) was shown this by the person who took it and leaked this to a professor, then fought with administration over getting the rugby team punished. This was a horrible move on Hurley's part, and I hope the Mother Ruggers take legal action against the school. The majority of their team was in Maryland at the time; they do not deserve to be punished for the actions of a few, nor do the NCAA athletes deserve to go unscathed if the Ruggers are getting hit this hard.

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