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The three teams that make up the Mid-South, Davenport, Lindenwood and Life, have made a gentleman's agreement to limit the number of non-American-qualified players on the field at a given time. There is currently no such rule in college rugby, but the Mid-South teams will self impose a limit consistent with USA Rugby's eligibility regulations for clubs, allowing just five foreigners on the field, per team, at a time.
"This agreement has come from a need to further develop future Eagles, while still facilitating and welcoming international students whom continue to enrich the domestic game,” the teams said in a mutual press release.
It's an interesting decision for these teams, as all of them have leaned on foreign-born players at one time or another. Davenport was led to back-to-back DI-AA National Championships by JP Eloff, who grew up in South Africa, but whose brother was an Eagle. When Lindenwood won the DII National Championship in 2012, multiple Lions draped themselves in the flags of their home countries while celebrating on the field.
The foreigner discussion has long been a heated one in college rugby, and the temperature has turned up since the influx of scholarship-doling programs, like Life, Lindenwood and Davenport. Many in the American rugby community believe scholarship opportunities should be going to American kids. Apparently, the coaches at these schools agree, evidenced not only by this agreement, but by the increased emphasis on developing homegrown talent.