The USA Sevens Rugby Collegiate Championship Invitational has officially released their broadcast and match schedule. Set to play June 4-6 at Columbus Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio, the championship is the first ever Rugby Sevens Championship contested at the collegiate level.
The USA Sevens Rugby Collegiate Championship Invitational will be broadcast live on Saturday and Sunday, June 5-6 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. EST on Universal Sports and 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. EST on NBC.
“We’ve brought together the best of the best for the inaugural USA Sevens Rugby Collegiate Championship Invitational,” said Dan Lyle, Tournament Director for USA Sevens Rugby. “It’s a great opportunity to expose the sport to a mass audience in anticipation of inclusion in the Olympics.”
The pool breakdowns for the Collegiate Sevens Championship have been evenly paired, with the emphasis on keeping together some traditional collegiate rivalries.
Pool A: Cal, Dartmouth, Harvard, Notre Dame
Pool B: San Diego State, Tennessee, Florida, Indiana
Pool C: Army, Arizona, Navy, Arizona State
Pool D: Utah, Penn State, Ohio State, Bowling Green
The pairings allow each of the four pools to boast their own rivalry game.
Rivalry matchups include Ivy League stalwarts Dartmouth and Harvard in Pool A, SEC foes Tennessee and Florida in Pool B, Service Academy titans Army and Navy in Pool C, and Big 10 rivals Penn State and Ohio State in Pool D.
Cal, the most decorated collegiate rugby program in the nation, heads into the tournament as early favorites, but the championship is far from decided. If this were a 15s tournament, forget about it. But anything can happen in sevens, and the inaugural Collegiate Sevens Championship should have some surprises in store for fans.
Most importantly, the tournament presents a golden opportunity for teams to make their mark on a national stage.
“Rugby Sevens is such a fast-paced sport that once you watch it you get to appreciate how much endurance and skill it takes to play the game,” said Ohio State head coach Tom Rooney. “Creating a tournament to match up the best of the best on the university level is a great way to showcase the sport to a growing fan base.”
NBC Sports has live coverage from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. EST on June 5 and 6.
Universal Sports has live coverage from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. EST on June 5 and 6.
NBC Mobile has live simulcast from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. EST on June 5 and 6.
Hulu.com will have full event coverage available on demand in HD quality video.
If the first ever championship wasn’t a monumental enough event for you, the broadcast is the most comprehensive coverage of any event in the history of American rugby.
The Olympics' inclusion of sevens has been a watershed moment for the sport in America. Broadcasters are finally beginning to take notice of the explosive and athletic nature of the sport.
A broadcaster's dream, sevens is positioning itself for massive growth in the coming years.
This article was originally published at Rugby America .