The Varsity Cup collegiate championship has officially announced its 2014 season.
The Varsity Cup brings together the best university programs in the country for a single elimination, post-season national championship.
Last year’s inaugural campaign featured eight seeded teams, competing over three weeks, culminating in a matchup between perennial rivals the University of California and Brigham Young University. Awarded RugbyMag.com’s College Game of the Year, the Varsity Cup Final was one of the most memorable collegiate national championship games in recent history.
Entering its second year, the Varsity Cup has expanded to 12 teams, adding Texas, Oklahoma, Utah and Clemson to the original eight. With the expansion to 12 universities, this year’s competition adds an additional round of play. The tournament will play out over four consecutive weekends culminating on May 3rd in the Cup Final at Rio Tinto Stadium in Salt Lake City, Utah home to Major League Soccer franchise Real Salt Lake. The final will be broadcast live on the NBC Sports Network.
The Varsity Cup is the third partnership between United World Sports and NBC Sports, along with the USA Sevens International Tournament in Las Vegas and the Collegiate Rugby Championship in Philadelphia.
Teams have been divided into four pools with the top team in each pool receiving a first round bye. Widely considered the two strongest teams in the nation, BYU and Cal were given the number one and number two seeds, respectively. In addition to Cal and BYU, Navy and Central Washington, both first-round winners in 2013, earned the first weekend off.
Round one commences on April 12. In Pool 1, newcomer Clemson will travel to Hanover, NH to take on Ivy League champions Dartmouth. Pool 2 features another newcomer, Texas, heading to South Bend, Ind. to battle the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame. In Pool 3, Oklahoma will take on UCLA in Westwood, Calif., while Utah and Air Force meet in Colorado Springs, Colo. in Pool 4.
The following weekend, the four advancing teams will head to either of two Super Regional locations, Annapolis, Md., home of the Navy Midshipmen, or to the campus of the UCLA Bruins. BYU, Navy, Cal, and CWU, will take on the four round-one winners from pools one through four, respectively. BYU and Navy will await challengers at the Northeast Regional site while Cal and CWU will travel to UCLA for the Super Regional.
The semifinals will take place on April 26 at the venue of the two highest remaining seeds.
Following three weeks of premier college rugby competitions, the finals will be aired live on the NBC Sports Network on May 3 at 4PM Eastern Standard Time. It will be a culmination of four weeks of the best university rugby programs battling to be crowned the 2014 Collegiate 15s National Champion.
Tickets for the May 3rd Championship Final are on sale now at varsitycup.us. Fans are encouraged to buy before April 1st to save 20% on tickets. Full ticket pricing options include:
- Tier I: $30.00 – premium lower-level, mid-pitch seating. Limited availability; perfect for those fans who want to be at the center of the action.
- Tier II: $20.00 – quality mid-level seating located at the try lines - a great value for families.
- Tier III: $10.00 – price friendly located in the upper-level and try zones.
In conjunction with the Varsity Cup, tickets include access to the 2014 Rugbypalooza, the Utah Open and fan festival. From 9 AM to 1 PM at West Jordan Sports Complex, there will be interactive activities and games to introduce kids and parents to rugby, introductory coaching and refereeing training courses and a tournament allowing high school athletes to showcase their talents for perspective college coaches.
With thousands of rugby fans in attendance, it is guaranteed be a festive weekend.