I’ve been impressed by the number of postings from both fans as well as members of the BYU women’s rugby team. As I noted in my earlier comments, I do feel that it’s incumbent on the team that wants to be accomodated to make sure that they let the tournament directors know well in advance of any special provisions. In this case, the BYU team wanted to remind USA Rugby that, as in years past, they would prefer not to have to play a game on a Sunday.
According to the New York Times (April 16, 2010), USA Rugby had reassured BYU as late as March 11th that they would be accomodated in their request. Based upon that reassurance – -according to the blog postings I received – the BYU team relied upon that promise, only to find out as the tournament drew near that their scheduling request had somehow not been carried out.
By the time the error had been discovered, because the teams had purchased non-refundable plane tickets, it was too late to change the tournament schedule. In other words, the fault in this particular case certainly seems to rest with the USA Rugby staff — not with the BYU team.
That is, as per my blog from yesterday, the BYU team DID do all the right things. They went out of their way well in advance to insure that their scheduling needs would be granted, and once they were told their request would be granted, they made their flight plans.
I haven’t heard or seen any kind of response from USA Rugby and in fairness to them, maybe they do have an explanation. But if everything the BYU players says is true, it would seem — in my opinion — that USA Rugby owes the team a huge apology and ought to at least do something as a gesture of good faith to let the BYU athletes know that USA Rugby really messed up. I’m also very grateful that the BYU team let me know so quickly of their feelings on this matter. Thank you Cougars!