It's that time of year again: Flowers are blooming; animals are coming out of hibernation; and of course... the D1A Rugby Playoffs are returning.
The four-week postseason competition finishes its opening round on Saturday, April 15, followed by quarterfinals on April 22 and semifinals on April 29. The D1A National Championship will kick off at 4 PM PT on May 6 at Saint Mary's College in Moraga, CA.
As the four highest-ranked teams to accept bids to the D1A Rugby Playoffs, No. 1 Saint Mary's (California), No. 2 Life (Mid-South), No. 7 Indiana (Big Ten Universities), and No. 16 Baylor (Red River) have been given first-round byes and will host quarterfinal matches next week.
The playoffs have been dominated by Saint Mary's and Life since 2013, with both teams meeting in the finals in each of the past four years. Both have won two titles apiece in that span.
In 2013, Life bested Saint Mary's with a 16-14 title victory. Over the next two years, Saint Mary's notched back-to-back championship wins over Life, with a 21-6 triumph in 2014 and a 30-24 victory 2015. A year ago, Life came away with a 24-20 win over Saint Mary's.
Will we see a finals repeat for the fifth year in a row? It's looking good so far.
Here's the playoff picture heading into this weekend's games:
OPENING ROUNDAPRIL 8
BYU 93, Colorado State 3
Lindenwood 36, Davenport 14
Utah at San Diego State
Arizona at Air Force
Game 5 -- SDSU/Utah winner at St. Mary's
Game 6 -- Air Force/Arizona winner at Baylor
Game 7 -- BYU at Indiana
Game 8 -- Lindenwood at Life
Winner Game 5 vs. Winner Game 6
Winner Game 7 vs Winner Game 8
Finals at Saint Mary's College
|9||San Diego State|