College Program Highlight - UC Davis

“The closest thing to a cow college in the UC system, but with a cultured, upscale feel. Premed, prevet, food science-you name it. If the subject is living things, you can study it here. A small-town alternative to the bright lights of UC-Berkeley and UCLA. As is often true at science-oriented schools, the work is hard.”

~ Fiske Guide to Colleges 2017

UC Davis is the home of the Aggies — go-getters, change makers and problem solvers who make their mark at one of the top public universities in the United States.

Since we were founded in 1905, we’ve been known for standout academics, sustainability and Aggie Pride as well as valuing the Northern California lifestyle. These themes are woven into our 100-plus-year history and our reputation for solving problems related to food, health, the environment and society. UCD’s ranking in the 2017 edition of the US News & World Report Best Colleges is “National Universities, 44.”

UC Davis Men's Rugby


Men’s Rugby has played a big part in the history of UC Davis, and has been present on campus in different forms since the 1960s. Perhaps the most famous UC Davis Aggie rugby alumni is Colby E. “Babe” Slater, who after graduating in 1917 was selected as part of the USA Olympic Rugby Team that won both the 1920 and 1924 Olympic Gold Medals. Seventy years later, Babe Slater’s Daughter and Son-in-law, Marilyn and Dick McCapes decided that Babe’s legacy should live on at UC Davis, and donated his Gold Medals and other memorabilia to a permanent display that can be seen at the UC Davis campus in the school’s special collections at the library. The medals are on public display in a building across the street from the Aggie rugby field.

In recent years, the UC Davis Aggies are two time D1AA National Champions (2015-2016) and Runners-Up in 2017. In 2018, the Aggies are moving back into D1A where they will be competing regionally against the likes of reigning D1A National Champions, Saint Mary’s College.

The Aggies Head Coach is Andy Malpass, Kal Incendy serves as the Director of Rugby for the men’s club. An additional four Assistant Coaches ensure that every player is given the individual attention needed to excel. Practices typically occur three times a week with an additional two club run strength and conditioning sessions. UC Davis Rugby Club has a place for everyone, on any given year, we aim to run three teams so that every player has a level that they can comfortably play at, and an environment in which they can develop their skills and become great rugby players.

UC Davis Women's Rugby

UC Davis Women’s Rugby also has a very strong tradition.Some alumni have declared that the women’s team began in the 70’s. The team bobbed in and out of the UC Davis Club Sports scene until it gained permanent ground in 1997.  Actually, The Rugger’s Edge has very strong ties to this team since our founder, Karen Fong Donoghue was a member of the that founding team in 1997. Since then, the club has grown into a Division 1 team with close to 50 members each year. Aggie Rugby welcomes women of all shapes, sizes, and skill levels and prides itself on coaching every brand new rookie up to becoming a force to be reckoned with on the field. To that end, the Aggies have had great success on the field in recent years, winning the USA Rugby D-1 Women’s National Championship in 2016 & 2017. In 2017, one of their star players, Sydnee Watanabe was also a finalist for the Sorenson Award, named after former Women’s Rugby World Cup-winning prop and successful coach and medical doctor Maryanne Sorensen. It is given to the top women’s college rugby player in the country, and is sponsored by the Washington Athletic Club of Seattle, Wash. to A panel of coaches, USA Rugby representatives, and media selected the nominees and the college rugby public was then asked to vote for the finalists.

UC Davis is looking to add NCAA Women’s Rugby which will be set to begin play in the upcoming 2018-2019 school year.

UCD Women’s Rugby consists of both an “A” and “B” side. The A-side consists of more experienced players while B-side is great for beginners as well as players who’ve been in the game. However there are no tryouts or set A/B side. Players can continuously move between both sides depending on the growth of each player. While UCD Women’s Rugby take games, practices, and tournaments seriously, Aggie Rugby is more than just the sport. The club believes in making lasting friendships and a family that shares “Aggie Rugby Aggie Pride.”

UC Davis Men's Rugby

UCD’s in-state tuition and fees are $14,046 (2016-17); out-of-state tuition and fees are $40,728 (2016-17). Proud of its small-town atmosphere, Davis is not for the lazy or faint of heart. As one student says, “There’s no free ride. You are going to have to work for everything you get.” And most students get a lot out of their four or more years at Davis. It’s the ideal spot to combine high-powered work in science and agriculture with that famous easygoing California lifestyle.

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Ryan Kelly

Ryan Kelly

Head of Digital Media

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