Rugby Texas Game Day Procedures- Outlines considerations for HS game day. 



1. Objectives

a. The purpose of these policies is to support the following objectives:

i. Player Eligibility

ii. Pre-game field set up

iii. Game protocols for players, coaches and fans

iv. Post-game reporting

v. Match reschedule procedures

2. Player Eligibility

a. Players are eligible if they have not reached their 19th birthday by the September 1st

that occurs at the start of the school year containing the competitive season, including

the summer following that school year, and enrolled in an accredited public, private,

parochial, charter or home school program.

b. Players must be registered to Rugby Texas through the USA Youth and High School

Rugby registration process in order to be eligible to be on a match day roster.

c. Players must not play in a Qualifying Match for any other club in a rugby match,

including a High School team or club, College Club, or Senior Club competitions, while

those players’ League Qualifying Match season is in progress.

d. Players must be at least 15 years old to participate in High School Rugby. Players that

are 14 and enrolled in high school must complete the ‘Under 15 Acknowledgement’ to

participate in High School Rugby. 14 year old players must not participate in the front

row of fifteens or 10s contact high school rugby matches.

e. Players must be registered and have been roster for two (2) Qualifying Cup Matches

prior to March 15th to be eligible to participate in the Rugby Texas State Championship.

3. Player Transfers

a. Players Transfers are not allowed after the First Qualifying Cup Scheduled Cup Match

has been played, unless there are extenuating circumstances.

b. If a player’s transfer request is approved after the start of the season and there are no

extenuating circumstances, the player will not be allowed to join a team in the Division of

the Club that they are transferring from. Rugby Texas reserves the right to provide the

player with club options in which they can join in another division.

c. If a player is requesting a transfer and there found to be extenuating circumstances, and

the player transfers to a team in the same Division, that player will not be allowed to be

rostered for a match where the opposition is the club that the player has left.

d. If a player is requesting to transfer after the season has started, the players and parents

are required to complete the Player Transfer Request and submit it to the Director of

Competitions. The Coach/Administrative Staff of both teams will be provided with the

explanation of why the player is requesting the transfer, unless that information involves

a SafeSport Violation.

e. The Board of Rugby Texas will review the request and if necessary request further

information for the parent, player and/or coach of the player.

f. Players are not allowed to be rostered and/or participate in friendly scrimmages,

matches or tournaments for a minimum of two (2) weeks and until a determination is

given by the Rugby Texas Board of Directors. Players are allowed to participate in

training sessions provided an acknowledgement is given by the hosting club.

g. Participating with another club’s training session does not guarantee approval of transfer.

4. Technical Zone

a. The Technical Zone refers to the area for use by players, coaches, officials, and

administrators. The Technical Zone will comprise three areas that will be properly

lined/coned and roped off as illustrated in the diagram below.

i. Team Box 1 and 2- Staging area for players, coaches, and administrators of the

home/visiting that are properly certified and registered with the team through

Rugby Texas.

ii. Administrative Area- For use by Rugby Texas officials, medical staff, and


iii. Spectators must be behind a physical barrier which may be a rope or fence as in

the case of a stadium set up. Players must be on the opposite side line of any


iv. Players should be behind a rope or physical barrier unless special considerations

need to be made for turf fields. Please email 48

hours in advance of a match for special considerations if fixed ropes are not


b. Effective immediately all players, registered coaches, and registered administrators with a

team must be in their assigned Team Box behind a physical rope 5 meters from the touch

line. No coaches, players, or administrators are allowed within the 5m gap from touch in

front of the line nor past the 22m or 10m line respective to their Team Box.

i. Players may leave the Team Box in order to warm up for game play in a

designated area away from the match pitch.

ii. Coaches and administrators may leave the Team Box to join spectators on the

other side of the field. At least one certified L1 Coach registered with the club is

required to remain in the Team Box at all times during a match.

c. Coaches, players, and administrators not observing the Team Box procedures are

considered to be in violation of Referee Abuse policies and will have the following

repercussions from the match referee:

i. A verbal warning.

ii. An on-field team penalty when the violation next occurs.

iii. Removal from the Team Box area to the spectator area- game play will be

suspended until compliance.

iv. Team forfeit and reporting to Rugby Texas for further sanctioning.

*Updated 02/07/2022.

5. Competitions

a. VARSITY TEAMS SHALL PLAY FIRST, followed by Junior Varsity games. This

procedure is set as Varsity is the only competition in Rugby Texas. Junior Varsity is

meant to be developmental, mimicking UIL rules. Therefore, it is imperative that the

Varsity game is completed and that every effort is made to ensure a JV match is played.

b. The Match Referee will check both teams in one hour prior to kickoff. The club

administrator or head coach will supply the necessary documentation including roster and

front row waiver to the match referee and opposition coach/administrator. Player roster

and front row waiver must be submitted to

c. Each team is required to maintain eligibility requirements for all players in a Match Day

Book (paper or digital) available upon request by opposition coach/administrator and/or

Rugby Texas official.

d. Any modifications to the Rugby Texas field setup must be made in writing to the board

prior to the season.

e. Any post game comments shall be recorded on the Manual Match Report at

*Updated 02/07/2022.

6. Spectators

a. Spectators are only allowed to be on the opposite sideline from the teams before and

during games behind a physical rope/barrier at least 5m from the line of touch.

b. Spectators are never allowed on the field of play for any reason and are subject to

dismissal from the playing grounds.

c. In event of injury, parents of injured players shall be permitted to confer with the LAT.

7. Schedule Policy

a. Once a division schedule is released and changes agreed upon, all teams must abide by

the finalized schedule. Any modifications to the schedule must be submitted to Rugby

Texas using the Add/Change form to ensure referees and LATs are notified. All efforts to

finalize the schedule prior to the season shall be made.

b. A team must not reschedule a game due to:

i. Lack of player numbers (not showing up at the scheduled time)

ii. Lack of field availability

iii. Any other controllable situation

iv. The team requesting a reschedule the day of the game shall be issued a forfeit.

c. In the case of weather, or any other uncontrollable situation, the game will then be

rescheduled by the teams involved at a mutually agreed upon time and venue.

d. All efforts shall be made to ensure that competition is fair and safe. Coaches shall be

responsible to ensure that all players are involved in appropriate competition.

e. If field availability is an issue for an upcoming game, a neutral alternate location should

be agreed upon by both competing teams, and if no neutral location is available, the game

may be played at the visiting team’s field.

8. Forfeiture, Cancellation, or Postponement

a. Notification of matches that are agreed to be forfeited, canceled, postponed, or otherwise

abandoned, as agreed upon by the home and visiting team, shall be made to the Rugby

Texas Competitions Director no later than 72 hours prior to the scheduled kick off.

b. The home team shall notify the assigned referee(s) after confirmation from Rugby Texas

Competition Director.

c. The team initiating the change in match time/date is responsible for notifying the

previously mentioned parties.

d. The penalty for failing to notify Rugby Texas will be a forfeited match subject to RT

Policies for forfeiture.

e. The canceling team is responsible for making contact with both the RT Director and

opposing administration with available dates for reschedule.

i. If no contact is made by the canceling team within seven days to organize a

reschedule date the match will be recorded as a forfeit by the canceling team.

ii. If no reasonable date is agreed upon by both the canceling and opposing team the

match will go down as a forfeit. Reasonable shall include dates that both teams

have open before the end of the regular season.

iii. If reasonable dates are available and the opposition refuses to reschedule then the

match will be a forfeit by the opposition.

*Updated 02/07/2022.

iv. Forfeits are subject to appeal through the RT Competitions Director.

9. Safety Policy

a. It is RT Policy that every school, club, team or other party with any responsibility for a

rugby activity or event (organizers), shall take reasonable steps to safeguard the safety of

players, coaches, referees and spectators (participants) who participate in or attend the


b. In the event that any organizer determines that there is a foreseeable risk of harm to a

participant in a rugby activity or event, it is the responsibility of that organizer to

promptly eliminate or guard against such risk or, if necessary, terminate the activity or


c. RT shall only be responsible for safety at those events for which it specifically assumes

organizational responsibility.

10. Safety and Medical Professional Requirements

a. It is vitally important that rugby programs provide the tools necessary to create a safe

environment for all athletes. USA Rugby has developed a guide to explain what is needed

to prevent injuries and improve medical coverage at local events, league competition, and

all other development activities. We highly recommend you read through and understand

what is required of each administrator, coach and parent. The main topics pertaining to

Rugby Texas are:

i. Every home team must provide, at minimum, one certified medical professional,

i.e. Licensed Athletic Trainer (LAT), Paramedic, EMT, Doctor, or Nurse.

ii. A copy of USA Rugby Concussion policy is attached in Section XIII below. This

protocol shall be in place at every match.

iii. It is the responsibility of the home team to make sure that the assigned medical

staff is aware of USA Rugby Concussion policy.

iv. Home team coach should verify LAT is aware of the protocol.

v. It is mandatory that the medical staff stay within the administrative area for the

duration of the game, unless there is a medical emergency on field, and the referee

signals they may enter the field.

vi. Medical staff must examine players removed from the game due to injury within

the administrative area, unless they deem the area is unfit to properly evaluate the

injured player.

vii. Home team coaches must identify the medical personnel to the referee before the

start of the game.

viii. If there is not a medical professional on site at the scheduled start time, the referee

must not start the game, which may result in a home team forfeit.

ix. Every home team should be prepared on the field with a fully stocked medical kit.

x. Every home team is required to have an Emergency Action Plan in case of a life

threatening emergency or injury that requires additional means of attention for

each home facility where games/practices occur.

11. Lightning Concerns

a. In case of lightning everyone must evacuate the area to a safe location.

*Updated 02/07/2022.

i. A large building is the best location while sheds, dugouts and bleachers are to be


ii. If a sturdy building is not available, a vehicle with closed windows will work


b. The safety of all participants is the responsibility of the host club/ organization.

i. Electronic lightning trackers should be used whenever possible.

ii. Lightning strikes within 8 miles will result in game suspension for 30 minutes.

iii. If a game, practice, or other activity is suspended or postponed due to lightning

activity, it is important to establish criteria for resumption of activity. Each time

lightning is recorded within 8 miles the 30-minute clock will be reset.

12. Match Results

a. It is the responsibility of both home and away teams to:

i. Properly input Conference Match Results within seventy-two (72) hours of a

Conference Match in the Competitions Report form at

ii. Red and Yellow Card violations must be included in theCompetitions Report


iii. Provide player rosters and front row waivers as uploaded attachments on the form

OR email the forms to with TEAM NAME and

DATE OF MATCH in the subject line.

13. Disciplinary Committee

a. Rugby Texas Disciplinary Committee (DC) will consider any proposed disciplinary

actions which may be reported on the Match Report on the Rugby Texas website

Competitions Report form, Manual Disciplinary form, or by the referee in their society

reporting form.

b. DC meetings or deliberations can occur via conference call.

c. The DC will deal with all violations that affect Inter-Conference issues, such as Playoffs

and club, team or player dissociations.

14. Concussion Policy (USA Rugby)

a. If a player shows symptoms, or is suspected of having concussion for any reason before,

during or after a match, that player MUST be removed from play immediately, not to

return during that match. NO EXCEPTIONS.

b. The player needs to be evaluated by a physician with head trauma experience, to

diagnose a concussion or be cleared. No player may return to action without a written

consent from a certified medical doctor.

c. An Athletic Trainer cannot diagnose unless he/she has the additional certifications, and

certainly can’t clear concussions - it must be a certified physician.

d. If a concussion is diagnosed in a Youth and HS player (18 and under), that player must sit

out of activity with full rest for a minimum of 2 weeks (14 full days) AND be symptom

free for a minimum of one week before beginning the 5 day Graduated Return to Play

Protocols (GRTP).

i. Example: A player receiving a concussion and becoming symptom free on the

15th day following the initial contact, must sit out an additional week of symptom

*Updated 02/07/2022.

free days before beginning the 5 day GRTP protocol.

e. Once a player is cleared by a physician, they should be closely monitored for any

lingering symptoms and be removed from play immediately if symptoms occur.

f. USA Rugby: Know the 5 Rs- USA Rugby’s policy requires that ALL rugby players, staff,

parents, referees, volunteers, and even fans follow these five basic steps when dealing

with suspected concussions:

i. Recognize – Learn the signs and symptoms of a concussion so you understand

when an athlete might have a suspected concussion.

ii. Remove – If an athlete has a concussion or even a suspected concussion he or she

must be removed from play immediately.

iii. Refer – Once removed from play, the player should be referred immediately to a

qualified healthcare professional who is trained in evaluating and treating


iv. Recover – Full recovery from the concussion is required before return to play is

authorized. This includes being symptom-free. Rest and some specific treatment

options are critical for the health of the injured participant.

v. Return – In order for safe return to play in rugby, the athlete must be symptom

free and cleared in writing by a qualified healthcare professional who is trained in

evaluating and treating concussions. USA Rugby requires that the athlete

complete the GRTP protocol.

g. USA Rugby Concussion Return to Play (RTP)RTP Protocol minimum rest periods can be

found at which more accurately

describes the minimum amount of rest time to be followed by all players that have been

diagnosed with a concussion.

h. Any player with any symptoms following a head injury should NOT return to training or

playing whilst symptoms persist. A second head impact on a player who has not fully

recovered from concussion could lead to dangerous neurological complications, including