The College Rugby Association of America (CRAA) has confirmed it's matchups for the 2022 Fall Classic, December 3-4 at Mecklenberg Sportsplex at Mathews, NC.
Headlined by the Women’s D1 Elite and Women’s D1 and D2 Fall Championships, the action-packed rugby weekend will also showcase two Men’s D1A Bowl Championships. All matches will be streamed LIVE for free on The Rugby Network.
CRAA has partnered with The Rugby Network (TRN) to provide free online streaming of the championship weekend, and CRAA “Match of the Week” in 2023. Complementing its end-to-end coverage of Major League Rugby, TRN is excited to expand the rugby offering and bring the collegiate game to the forefront.
“Last year’s championship event was an incredible experience for CRAA and the competing teams, an experience we’re thrilled to expand on this December. Our goal is to provide the student-athletes with a professional experience and deliver broadcast to all fans, alumni and spectators of the participating institutions,” said Paul Keeler, CRAA Chairperson. “Partnering with The Rugby Network for our championships and upcoming match of the week is delivering the best of college rugby to alumni and fans both near and abroad.”
College Rugby Association of America Fall Classic | December 3-4, 2022
Mecklenberg Sportsplex – Matthews, NC | *ALL TIMES ET*
December 3, 2022
1:00pm | Division 1 Elite Women’s National Championship | Lindenwood vs Life
3:00pm | Division 1A Men’s Mint City Bowl Championship | Colorado State vs Kentucky
5:00pm | Division 1 Women’s Fall Championship | Navy vs Utah State
7:00pm | Division 1A Men’s Hornet’s Nest Bowl Championship | Ohio State vs Penn State
December 4, 2022
12:00pm | Division 2 Women’s Fall Championship
*Winners of Temple vs Vassar and Colorado School of Mines vs US Coast Guard
The Women’s brackets feature some of the best that college rugby has on display. Moving from spring to fall, the Women’s D1 Elite National Championship will feature 2021 Champion Lindenwood University vs. Life University, a fifth straight year the Lions will face the Running Eagles in the final game of the year. The Women’s D1 Fall Championship will include the 2021 Champion US Naval Academy vs. Utah State, while the Women’s D2 Fall Championship will see winners of Temple vs 2021 Champions Vassar take on the winner of the second semifinal between Colorado School of Mines and US Coast Guard. The D2 semifinal matches will not be streamed by The Rugby Network, however the Championship Final will on Sunday.
"We are continuing to elevate the professional environment for these championship matches that create a fantastic student-athlete and fan experience for college rugby,” said Olivia Benzan-Daniel, CRAA Women's Rugby President. “Seeing women’s and men’s rugby at the highest levels compete in the Fall Classic Championship Weekend is a highlight to the Fall rugby season.”
The Mint City Bowl features the Colorado State University Rams from D1A’s Rocky Mountain Conference facing off against D1A debutant, University of Kentucky Wildcats. The Wildcats were undefeated in SCRC D1AA during this Fall 2022 season and concluded their schedule with a tie against Big10 runner-up, Ohio State. At the conclusion of the Ohio State match, the Wildcats were invited to test their mettle against the 19th ranked Rams at the Fall Classic.
The Hornet’s Nest Bowl see two premier D1A teams facing off in Ohio State University and Penn State University. The Buckeye’s finished 2nd in the Big10 Championship (ranked #17) while the Nittany Lions played in the Rugby East Conference this fall. These two teams will meet up for the first time this season at the Fall Classic.
Mecklenburg Sportsplex is a large sports complex and park in Matthews, North Carolina and has played host to the CRAA Fall Classic in the past. The facility sits southeast of Charlotte, featuring 12 full-sized soccer fields anchored by a 5,000-seat stadium.
8x8 Sports, an American rugby apparel company, is the “naming partner” of the overall event and has also sponsored the CRAA Spring Championships in Houston, TX. Sponsorship opportunities are still available for the event.
The College Rugby Association of America (CRAA) is a USA Rugby sanctioned competition that includes premier divisions within Men's and Women's Collegiate rugby. The competition includes Men's D1A, Women's D1 Elite, Women's D1 and Women's D2. CRAA is committed to creating the best possible experience for student athletes, keeping commercial resources in the collegiate game, and creating experiences for our members to engage their academic institutions and alumni.