The Allied Rugby Conference welcomes Baylor Coach Nicholas Lane as its Conference Commissioner. Nick Lane has been handling a rugby ball since he was an 8 year old boy in Australia. By 18, he was playing for a Men’s Grade 1st Division side, the Gold Coast Breakers. Nick has played for the Queensland U21s, Queensland B (Red Heelers), and Manly in New South Wales before moving to the USA to play gridiron football at Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, TX. That experiment lasted a year before the pads became too cumbersome. In 2003, he began playing for the Austin Blacks and continued there until his old Manly coach called and asked him to play for the Gentlemen of Aspen. After proposing to his wife in 2005, the couple decided to return to Texas so that she could complete her degree at Baylor. From 2006-2009, Nick coached the Baylor Rugby Club until it was time to start his own business, Aussie Lane Construction, that remodels, restores and builds custom homes. He took a couple of years off from rugby, but could not deny the call. Once his business was solidified, Nick returned to coaching the Bears in 2011.
Last season was the Bears’ first in the ARC. When asked about his impressions of the conference, Nick states:
The professional manner in which the ARC is run and the standards they set are apart from any other conference I’ve experienced. The social media resources, sponsorship, structure of the program were in the direction that the club was looking toward. Being n a D1-A conference gained Baylor a huge advantage. Also, the 7s and XVs camps with professional coaches was something we had not seen previously.
As Conference Commissioner, Nick wants to focus on “maintaining a strong competitive level of rugby within the our current teams and providing each club with the assistance they require to compete at a national level.” His stated goal for the conference is “to expand the number of competitive teams for the 2014-2015 season.” The Allied Rugby Conference maintains a Conference Advisory Board (CAB) that advises the management group, T5½ Rugby Development Group, LLC. The CAB includes a Conference Commissioner, Treasurer and Disciplinary Chair. Each member club puts forth a representative for the CAB. This board also decides who fills each role for the next two seasons and populates conference committees as needed. The CAB and T5½ work close together on all issues concerning the conference to ensure each member club has a real voice in how the conference operates.