EL PASO, Texas — The relentless sport of rugby has a growing presence in El Paso. That presence is being led by the UTEP rugby team, a recreational organization known as a "club" team.
The UTEP Miners rugby team competes against rugby club teams from other large universities all across the country. Regardless, the team is not recognized or ranked by the NCAA. Changing that status within the collegiate athletic community is the main priority of the UTEP rugby team. The team hopes to eventually be ranked as a Division one collegiate team. Meantime, a secondary priority is growing a local appreciation for what the team considers "rugby culture" in El Paso... and that means growing the support in the stands, and growing interest in prospective rugby athletes.
The efforts to expand rugby have been slow but they are slowly working. The UTEP rugby team competes regularly with another local rugby team the El Paso Scorpions. There is also a high school developmental team in Northeast El Paso, and most recently the Ysleta School Districts Young Womens' Leadership Academy has developed a team of girls all in junior high right now. In this segment of Carpe Diem, you learn more about the passion behind this sport locally and how you can get involved if you are interested in participating as a fan or on the field.