Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship & Rhino Rugby Partner with ATAVUS Football for Free Clinics for Coaches & Student Athletes on the ATAVUS Tackling System Powered by Rhino

World’s Largest Collegiate Rugby Festival Puts the Spotlight Squarely on the New Olympic Sport of Rugby Sevens, June 4th & 5th at Talen Energy Stadium in Philadelphia

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – May 12, 2016 – For the second consecutive year, the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship and Rhino Rugby are partnering to present a series of free clinics for football coaches and student-athletes to demonstrate rugby tackling techniques that can be applied to the game of football. 

To register in advance for the ATAVUS Tackling System Powered by Rhino demonstrations and events, please visit

In partnership with ATAVUS Football, the ATAVUS Tackling System Powered by Rhino will be demonstrated over two events during the weekend of Friday, June 3rd, in conjunction with the 2016 Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship.

On Friday, June 3rd, ATAVUS Football partnered with Rhino Rugby will present a Rugby-Inspired Tackle Coach Seminar from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Sheraton Philadelphia Downtown Hotel (201 North 17th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103).  Speakers will include Rex Norris, the head of ATAVUS Football, and Rutgers University Head Football Coach Chris Ash.

On Sunday, June 5th, ATAVUS Football partnered with Rhino Rugby will present a Rugby-Inspired Tackle demonstration on the practice fields surrounding Talen Energy Stadium (formerly PPL Park) in Chester, the home of the 2016 Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship.  The clinic will feature ATAVUS coaches and special guests guiding student-athletes and coaches through rugby-inspired tackling techniques.  The session is free for coaches and student-athletes.  Also, there will be opportunities for all attending the ATAVUS Rugby-Inspired Tackling demonstrations to watch the 2016 Penn Mutual Collegiate Championship matches in Talen Energy Stadium from a special VIP Hospitality area of the stadium.

The ATAVUS Tackling System brings the vital skill of contact tackling full-circle by educating coaches sot that they can deliver a tackling system to their program that sets the athlete up for a successful tackle outcome, while putting the athlete in the safest possible position.  This system has been embraced by top high school, college and professional coaches in both football and rugby across the United States, including Pete Carroll of the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks, as well as notable college football coaches at the University of Washington, Ohio State and Rutgers.

During the demonstrations and events at this June’s Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship, coaches and student-athletes will see that the ATAVUS Tackling System Powered by Rhino focuses on a rugby-inspired tackle which, at it’s very core, focuses on keeping the head out of the tackle.  By employing a systematic approach to the tackle, teams and athletes can effect a safer tackle and increase the likelihood of a successful outcome defensively.

Putting the spotlight squarely on the new Olympic sport of Rugby Sevens (which will make its return to the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro this summer), this two-day rugby festival is one of the largest gatherings of collegiate and high school rugby teams in the world. Penn Mutual is in the second year of a title sponsorship for the event, and NBC Sports will once again return as both broadcaster and event partner.  Philadelphia, and Talen Energy Stadium, has been home to the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship since 2011.

The 24-team men’s collegiate rugby field in the 2016 Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship includes three-time defending champion California, as well as Arizona, Arkansas State, Army, Boston College, Clemson, Dartmouth, Drexel, Indiana, Kutztown, Life, Maryland, Michigan, Navy, Notre Dame, Penn State, South Carolina, St. Joseph’s, Temple, Tennessee, UCLA, Utah Virginia Tech, and Wisconsin.

The winner of the 2016 Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship takes home the coveted Pete Dawkins Trophy.  The championship trophy is named after Dawkins, who as an All-American football standout at West Point won the Heisman Trophy in 1958. Dawkins then won a Rhodes scholarship to Oxford where he used his outstanding football skills to make him a star on the Oxford Varsity rugby team, revolutionizing the game in the process.

The field for the 2016 Women’s Collegiate Championship has expanded to 16 teams for the first time ever, and the women’s championship final will be televised live nationally on NBC Sports Network.  The women’s collegiate rugby field includes 16 of the nation’s top collegiate programs, including three-time defending champion Penn State (winner in 2013, 2014, and 2015) and local favorites Temple (which returns to the event after missing the 2015 competition), Delaware, Bloomsburg and Kutztown.  Also returning to the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship are the women’s rugby squads from Arizona, Boston University, Life, Lindenwood, Michigan and Notre Dame.  Newcomers include Ohio State, Princeton, Rutgers and the National Small College Rugby Organization (NSCRO) Selects squad, an all-star team chosen from the best of the NSCRO’s sevens teams.

The “World’s Largest Collegiate Rugby Festival” also includes the National Small College Rugby Organization (NSCRO) national championship, and the nation’s largest high school tournament with both boys and girls’ teams. 

The interest in Rugby Sevens (also known as Rugby 7s) will continue to grow as the sport returns to the Olympic Games this summer following a 92-year hiatus.

The Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship is part of a nationwide effort to build American rugby talent in preparation for the Olympics. In the past three years, the Collegiate Rugby Championship has produced 15 players who have gone on to play for the U.S. National teams.

Tickets are now on sale for the 2016 Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship, and are available online at  All games will be played at Talen Energy Stadium in Chester.


ATAVUS is an ancestor from which character is inherited, passing along Rugby while instilling values in every player. Headquartered in Seattle, Washington, ATAVUS is relentlessly driven to breed character, develop skills and champion Rugby in the USA and beyond. The company builds and executes sustained, progression-based programming that provides coaching inclusive of any age, skill set or gender. Programs includes the year-round ATAVUS Academy, the USA Rugby Academy Powered by ATAVUS, customizable “Powered by ATAVUS” consulting services, and international programs with key partners. ATAVUS also provides a brand identify, through social media and apparel, for the Rugby community that helps raise the level of noise around the sport in the U.S. For more information on ATAVUS, including upcoming player and coach training sessions visit

About United World Sports

United World Sports (UWS) is the largest commercial rugby entity in the United States, and the owner and operator of a growing portfolio of dynamic sports, media and apparel brands including, the USA Sevens Rugby international tournament, the largest professional rugby event in North America; the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship, the premier college 7s rugby championship; and the Penn Mutual Varsity Cup Championship, the 15s national rugby championship. Through its apparel division, UWS owns the exclusive North and South American license for Rhino Rugby, one of the world's leading rugby apparel and equipment brands. UWS also owns and operates, the largest and most widely read media destination dedicated to American rugby. For more information about UWS and its properties, visit

About The Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company: 

Since its founding in 1847, Penn Mutual has been driven by its noble purpose to create a world of possibilities. At the heart of this purpose is the belief that purchasing life insurance is the most protective, responsible and rewarding action a person can take, and is central to a sound financial plan. The company is committed to helping individuals, families and small businesses unlock life's possibilities through life insurance and annuity solutions. This is accomplished through a national network of more than 5,000 financial professionals, who help clients make great things possible. Penn Mutual supports its field representatives with brokerage services through Honor, Townsend & Kent, Inc. Registered Investment Advisor and wholly owned subsidiary. Member FINRA/SIPC. Visit Penn Mutual on the Internet at

About NBC Sports Group: 

When the Comcast-NBCUniversal transaction was completed in January 2011, the sports assets of the two companies combined to form NBC Sports Group, which serves sports fans 24/7 with premier live events, insightful studio shows, and compelling original programming. The sports media company consists of a unique array of broadcast television, cable television, radio and digital sports assets, including NBC Sports, NBC Olympics, NBCSN (NBC Sports Network), Golf Channel, 11 NBC Sports Regional Networks, NBC Sports Radio and NBC Sports Digital.

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