Monday, May 15, 2017

Varsity Cup Mulling Changes

Press Release

Santa Clara, CA - On Friday, May 5, 2017, in advance of the Penn Mutual Varsity Cup Championship match between the University of California and Arkansas State University, at Stevens Stadium at Santa Clara University, the member coaches met for the Annual General Meeting. The meeting amongst the coaches and with partners United World Sports, followed a luncheon sponsored by The Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company.

Lasting approximately four hours, the meeting included a comprehensive review of 2017 and the acknowledgment of many highlights and achievements of the competition to date. Varsity Cup Partners United World Sports and Penn Mutual presented to the membership, expressing the commitment and vision to continue to provide America’s premier collegiate rugby post season and a rugby student-athlete experience that is second to none. The majority of the meeting centered around the future of the competition in 2018 and beyond, exploring the new evolution of the Varsity Cup Championship competition format.

Take the jump to read more.
Matt Sherman, Chairman of the Varsity Cup Competitions Committee shared, “the meeting was incredibly productive. Our coaches and teams are very proud of what we’ve accomplished so far, and share and exciting vision for expansion opportunities and future growth with the competition.” Sherman continued, “we’ve completed a critical analysis of the tournament to date, recognizing our strengths and identifying our areas for improvement. We’re extremely excited to reveal plans for the Varsity Cup 2.0, and what we believe will be the best year for the competition to date.”

2017, was a year of transition and change for the competition, but with change comes opportunity. A number of outstanding rugby programs have expressed high interest in joining the competition next year, and the competition committee will begin examining those schools that fit the profile, and who’s addition will enhance the tournament moving forward.

Penn Mutual Executive Vice President of Distribution, Tom Harris, shared his thoughts on the impact of the Varsity Cup so far, and what it has meant to them as the competition’s title sponsor.

“We saw great parallels between our goals and what those involved in collegiate rugby were trying to accomplish. Specifically, we saw our association with rugby as a way to help grow both Penn Mutual and the sport. We've just begun our third year of sponsorship of the Varsity Cup and the Collegiate Rugby Championship, and we have seen great results. Our association with these events has been a huge part of our success. We look forward to seeing continued growth in 2018.”

The Varsity Cup Coaches will meet again in Philadelphia, PA during the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship weekend to further outline the future plans and format for the competition, with the goal of revealing the 2018 Penn Mutual Varsity Cup model and schedule during the summer.


  1. Can you share with us the TV ratings for both varsity and USA d1A where and do we know what the crowd was in santa Clara ?

  2. How can you have a post season tournament where three of the top four teams are not participating (St. Mary's, Life, and BYU)? Every major college ranking has these three programs in the top four, and SMC the unanimous #1. There is only one National Champion this year ... SMC.