The Big 10 may well be the next iconic college sports conference to have its very own rugby competition.
All 12 teams from the Big 10 participated in a conference call recently to discuss the possibility of creating a Big 10 Rugby Conference. As many as nine out of the 12 have voiced immediate support for the idea, with three others looking into the various challenges the competition might present, chief among those being competitiveness and travel.
Still the wheels are moving quickly and it’s distinctly possible a Big 10 conference could be formed in the next few weeks. Participating rugby programs are looking to legitimize their activities in the eyes of their administrations, and playing a Big 10 rugby schedule is a big part of that.
But there are some issues to address, including revenue sharing, how to work with teams that aren’t at the level of the strongest teams in the Big 10, and how teams can share not only money, but perhaps expertise and operational plans that could help the game as a whole.
The participating teams are expected to meet again soon, with a plan to address the concerns of those not fully committed yet.
The Big 10 is comprised of:
Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue, and Wisconsin.
The easternmost team is Penn State, roughly 1,000 miles east of the westernmost team, University of Nebraska – Lincoln.