The Cincinnati Rugby Football Club, know more commonly as the Wolfhounds, is the premier men’s Rugby club in Ohio. The team is comprised of non-professional players and sanctioned by USA Rugby to compete in men’s Division 1. Founded in 1974, the team has since competed in 17 Midwest Championships and four national championship sweet 16 tournaments, including a 5th in the nation finish in 2005 and a 4th place finish in 2007. In the fall of 2009 the CRFC launched a newly formed Division III team so as to increase the number of players who have the opportunity to compete for a national title.
The CRFC also strives to send individual players on to play representative, or select side, rugby with the hopes of them reaching the world stage. Competition begins locally with players being nominated to support the Ohio Rugby team. The local area tournament allows selectors to pick the best players to join the Midwest Rugby team. At the national tournament players compete against the best in the country in front of the USA Eagles coaching staff. Numerous CRFC players have followed this path to the US team and the World Cup held every four years. Most recently, Luke Gross earned 62 caps between 1996 and 2003 and is among the all-time caps leaders for the USA.
Competing at the highest level and promoting player development is only the first half of our mission. The second half is to promote the sport in Cincinnati and grow youth opportunity and involvement. At the time of the Club’s inception, over 35 years ago, rugby could only be seen at two local university clubs (the University of Cincinnati and Miami University). Since then the CRFC has either directly or indirectly influenced the creation of other Men’s and Women’s clubs. Within the past ten years, the CRFC has also been involved in helping to create and organize a high school program in Cincinnati. Current and former members manage and coach the majority of those clubs today.
Brimelow Fields, our home pitch, is the crown jewel of the club. Located just North of I-275 in Fairfield, this formerly overgrown wooded lot was transformed, in the late 90’s, into the top rugby facility in the Midwest. The grounds, complete with clubhouse and separate practice field, are among the best in the country. It is at Brimelow Fields that the Wolfhounds train for competition. It is thru Brimelow Fields that the CRFC is able to promote and grow the sport. Recently, the grounds hosted a record 48 high school matches, 14 college matches, and 16 Wolfhound matches. Other events held at Brimelow include: