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Newly Appointed Navy Men's Coach - Gavin Hickie, the Dartmouth Head Coach for the past five-years, is moving to the Naval Academy as Head Men's Coach and Director of Club Rugby. He was the forward’s coach of Belmont Shore Rugby Club and also coached the USA U20s to the Junior World Trophy title in 2012. He writes coaching columns for Rugby Today, The Rugby Site and LineoutCoach.com, his own web site.
Position to be Filled at Dartmouth - Hickie's departure creates an opening for a new Men's Coach at Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, one of the nation's prestigious coaching positions. Dartmouth has played rugby since the early 1950s, often fielding three-sides. It holds the distinction of being the first US college or rugby club to tour England, the event in 1959 was written up in Sports Illustrated. The Big Green ruggers were also the first eastern side to tour California teams, also in 1959. In 1960, Dartmouth and Stanford competed in the first nationally televised rugby game, which was played at West Point. For the past two-decades, it has dominated the Ivy League, winning league championships annually. It boasts superior rugby facilities, including, the Corey Ford clubhouse, manicured pitches, and an electronic scoreboard. It has produced two noted Eagles Alex Magleby and Madison Hughes. Finally, it's outstanding alumni support serves as a positive, proactive model for other schools to emulate.
Pro 12 Team Zebre Collapses - The professional Italian club Zebre has failed financially and its operation taken over by the Italian Rugby Federation. Historically, the two Italian sides have not performed successfully in the Celtic League Pro 12, which recently added two South African teams, the Cheetahs and the Southern Kings.
English RFU Will Not Renew Women's XV Contracts - The RFU announced it would not renew English Women's World Cup team contracts after the 2017 WRWC in Ireland this summer. Instead, the Union will concentrate on the Women's 7s game for the next two-years, refunding the national fifteen side in 2019. In a letter to Ian Ritchie, CEO of the RFU, Dr. Rosena Allin-Khan, the Shadow Minister of Sport, stated that, "Asking (women) players to pause and resume their professions every two years puts their futures at considerable risk." Predictions are that many of the English fifteen squad will migrate to the sevens program.