San Francisco Fog RFC
|Full name||San Francisco Fog Rugby Football Club|
Northern California Rugby Football Union
|Ground(s)||Crocker Amazon Fields, San Francisco, California, USA|
San Francisco Fog Rugby Football Club (RFC), also known as "The Fog", is a rugby union football club in San Francisco, California. It is the first such team in the western United States established specifically to actively reach out to traditionally under-represented groups in rugby; such as people of color, gay men, and women (though it does not exclude players who do not fit into these categories). The club has over 100 members.
The club founded the Bingham Cup tournament in 2002 in honor of Fog player Mark Bingham, who died on Flight 93 in the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States, after trying to thwart the hijackers along with other passengers.
The men's side competes seasonally in Division III of the Northern California Rugby Football Union (NCRFU), a division of USA Rugby. It also competes in the International Gay Rugby Association and Board (IGRAB) season. Within IGRAB, the club competes every two years for the Bingham Cup, winning the first two tournaments in 2002 and 2004. Other tournaments the team competes in include Scrum by the Sea, Seattle Magnitude XVs, and the Wild West Rugby Fest.
The women's side competes seasonally in Division I of the Pacific Coast Rugby Football Union, and in tournaments such as the Chico Holiday Classic and the Champagne Classic.
Coat of arms
After a trip to London and Manchester in January 2001, the club developed its coat of arms, a link to—and reminder of—the culture in which the game originated. The team's coat of arms consists of three silver stars within a black diagonal stripe on a wavy blue-and-silver background. In heraldry terms, the coat of arms is blazoned "barry nebuly of six argent and azure, on a bend sable three mullets of the first".
The coat of arms elements represent various aspects of the club. The patterned background is called barry nebuly, and is often taken to represent clouds, water, or air, suitable for a team named after San Francisco's most famous meteorological phenomenon. The stars (or "mullets") stand for the club's three constituencies: the players, the staff, and the supporters.
The club is well known in the San Francisco rugby community for sponsoring free "Rugby 101" beginner's clinics, where people who have never played rugby before can try out the game. The club also publishes a guide to fundamentals and another on how to buy a kit for a new player. The San Francisco Fog also promote the culture of rugby by making available many traditional rugby songs and the socials form an important part of the atmosphere of the club.