The Origins of Rugby

Rugby has been around since the 1820’s when a player in England started running with the ball during a traditional football game (where the person could only kick and catch the ball).  Since then, rugby has evolved into what it is today, with rules and regulations.  Back then, the ball was round and there was no limit to the number of players which sometimes made matches last days.  It wasn’t until 1845 where actual rules were established.  Rugby was first seen here in the United States around the 1900s.

 How it All Began at OSU…

The Ohio State University Rugby Football Club was founded in 1966 by two physicians working at University Hospitals, along with the assistance of exiled foreigners and some local talent. Former faculty advisor, Dr. Glyn Meyrick, was among this dastardly crew. Today, the club is dedicated to a path of dynamic rugby in pursuit of the Midwest title and National Championship!

The OSURFC was a significant force in the formation of many local and state clubs, and of the Ohio Union itself. By 1973 (when the Union was formally founded), there were 18 clubs in Ohio and the OSURFC was fielding five sides.

In 1975, Scioto Valley RFC was formed from most of the senior players on the OSURFC. This movement was to provide students an opportunity to play at the 1st and 2nd side level, while also providing Scioto Valley with experienced players upon graduation. It took a few years, but both clubs are reaping generous rewards from the relationship.

The OSURFC has had many Eagles from its’ ranks. The Buckeyes have been coached by two Eagles (Parthmore, 1980-1982, and Steve Finkel, 1988-1991), and have had many players selected as All-Americans since the USARFU began naming an All-American squad in 1988, along with numerous other Midwest-select and Ohio-select players.

The “clum” is perennially a top challenger for the Midwest title. It claimed the Midwest Championship and 3rd in the National Championship in 1990 and 1991.

The OSURFC A team was 2nd place in the 2014 BTU Rugby Championship with the B team winning their Championship game.