The USA Rugby Division I Fall College Championship began with a quarterfinal play-in round, and thus, 10 teams appeared in regional playoffs and now the final rankings.
DI fall champion Air Force claims the top spot after its 40-27 win over 2017 fall champion Davenport. There is no third-place match in Division I, but the nod goes to Minnesota over UCONN (but wouldn’t that be a great game).
Northeastern and Notre Dame dropped their respective quarterfinals and then rebounded with wins the following day in the consolation round. The Maddogs exerted themselves against Michigan State on day two, winning 59-17, while the Irish took a 48-29 win over Sam Houston State. The Texans beat Texas A&M to advance to its first DI post-season and dropped a 76-5 decision to Air Force in the fall quarterfinals.
Independent Navy and Allegheny’s Kent State lost their play-in matches. The Midshipmen played Northeastern to a 29-0 loss, and the Owls fell 51-17 to Michigan State. Limiting the rankings to teams that competed in the regional playoffs is convenient but there is a very good argument for Utah State to have a place on the list if it expanded.
In the New Year, the other half of the country starts or continues its league season and will build toward the USA Rugby Division I SPRING Championship, contested in April/May. Pacific Mountain, Pacific Desert (formerly Gold Coast), Florida (which is a DI/II hybrid this year) and Mason-Dixon are the operational conferences.