Spring Week 5 Preview

D1A Rugby: Spring Week 5 Preview
Photo Credit: A-State Rugby - Arkansas State University Facebook

This weekend the Spring Season continues to roll along, with several marquee match-ups. There are two games with ranked teams going head to head, as well as the resumption of the Mid-South Conference, and UCLA and Arizona raising the curtain for the USA Eagles match against Argentina XV at the StubHub Center.

In what will be the biggest game of the weekend, #2 Life will take on #7 Arkansas State to resume Mid-South play. Both teams are coming into the weekend having compiled an impressive resume in the lead up. Life is coming off a massive win against LSU, beating them 103-0. Arkansas State, who has already played one game in their Mid-South season beat Davenport 44-29 back in November. Life will be favorites to come out on top but a win from Arkansas State could really shake up the standings.

Elsewhere in the Mid-South #5 Lindenwood will take on Clemson. Lindenwood won in impressive style in their tightly fought game against #17 Central Washington last weekend. This will be Clemson’s second conference game for the season, they fell in their first to Davenport. 

The biggest game the weekend in terms of attendance will be #12 Arizona taking on UCLA. This game will be played at the StubHub Center before the USA Eagles ARC match. Arizona comes into this weekend in fine form having beaten #19 Grand Canyon, who have been known to cause an upset or two, with ease. UCLA also comes into the weekend on a hot-streak with a 2-0 conference record after dismantling USC and Arizona State in the previous two weeks. Arizona will then play USC on Sunday to complete their trip to Southern California.

Arizona State will also be in action this week against GCU. After splitting their tour of the Los Angeles area (1-1) they will be wanting to obtain a more solid result here. Grand Canyon is coming off an impressive game against #3 BYU where they were competitive at times but too many long range tries hurt their chances of competing. Look for Grand Canyon to tighten the defensive screws this weekend.

Another PAC team playing this weekend is #4 Cal. Cal will come up against #14 San Diego State, from the California Conference, who have had a forgettable fortnight. They were on the wrong end of an upset by, then unranked, GCU and then were beaten handedly by #1 Saint Mary’s Last weekend. Cal on the other hand is in fine form and continue to be one of the premier programs in all of college rugby.

The other California Conference teams getting into the thick of it this weekend are UC Davis and UC Santa Barbara. Santa Barbara didn’t have the start to the season that they were looking for as they lost to Saint Mary’s by over fifty points. UC Davis on the other hand has started their first season at the D1A level off with a bang, as they were able to beat Cal Poly last weekend.  

Red River continues to roll through their season with another slew of games this weekend, as Arkansas plays host to Baylor. The Razorbacks will be coming into the match feeling confident after causing somewhat of an upset in their prior conference match, knocking off Texas Tech. Baylor, will be looking to continue their domination of the conference, and continue their perfect season.

Houston will take on Texas A&M. Texas A&M is coming off a 25-point win over TCU las week where strong running from the loose forwards of the halves was a major source of success. Houston will be hoping that they can get a win to help right their season.

The final Red River game of the weekend will pit Oklahoma up against Texas Tech. This will be their second meeting of the season. Texas Tech won that in a resounding fashion, which they had hoped would be a launch pad for the rest of their season. But, three consecutive losses has put an end to any dreams they may have had. Instead they will now be looking to prove something to the rest of the conference.