The brotherhood and fellowship of rugby
Club sports are a place for GC students to compete at a higher level without having to dedicate their whole lives to the sport. For the Bobcat’s Club Rugby team, however, it is much more than a game: it’s a brotherhood.
The team was formed in 2006 but took a brief hiatus before returning strong in 2010. Since then, the team has competed against a wide range of schools varying in size and difficulty.
On GC’s campus, the lesser known sport of rugby is becoming increasingly popular each year and continues to gain new members. New members are encouraged to come out and try the sport even if they have never played.
“I found out about GC’s rugby team through Springfest,” said Chris Fisher, a member of the club rugby team. “The easiest way to learn the sport without playing is by watching YouTube videos.”
The team practices three times a week and focuses on teaching proper hitting form to new members so no one gets hurt.
“Oftentimes guys will come from football and assume that they can tackle the same way they did in high school, and that is how players get injured,” said Correy Baker, captain of the Bobcats Club Rugby Team.
The logistics of the game might take new members some time to learn, but the brotherhood that comes along with rugby does not.
A key component of the bond that forms inside the rugby team is that the older members take care of the younger ones.
“It could be 4 a.m. on a school night, and we would be there for one another, whether that be picking them up or giving them a place to sleep,” Baker said.
Friends are made not only on the team, but also on the field.
“During the games, we of course want to beat whoever we are playing, but once the game is over, we are best buds,” Baker said.
It is a well-known tradition in rugby that the home team throws a social for the opposing team.
“We will throw a big barbecue or take them downtown and let them sleep in our beds and use our showers,” Baker said.
This gives the guys an opportunity to make lifelong friends who share the same love of rugby.
As far as other traditions go, the team will sing songs together and yell chants similar to the “haka,” a traditional war cry performed by rugby teams all over the world.
Because the sport is less popular in the U.S., when one rugby player meets another, an immediate bond is usually formed. The sport can also be seen as a form of networking.
“If a rugby player meets a fellow player in a job interview, that gives them something to talk about and oftentimes gets their resume put on the top of the pile,” Baker said.
The rugby team’s first game is at Emory on Saturday, Sept. 8.