In the Fall of 1983, two friends from Midland, Texas came to San Marcos to attend Southwest Texas State University. Alan “Lizard” Noel and Phil “Phur” McKown had initially learned the game of rugby with the Maddogs RFC in Midland and Alan had played while attending Duke University. They wanted to continue to develop their games and began to recruit other like-minded gentlemen to form the Renegade Rugby Football Club.
Since the club was not originally affiliated with the university, the club did not take on the school mascot, nor did they incorporate the traditional school colors of maroon & gold.
The first season of competition was as a Men’s club-side and even after receiving Club Sport status through the university, thus establishing the Southwest Texas State Renegade Rugby Football Club, they continued to compete in the club-side level in the Texas Rugby Union.
That first season was extremely difficult and failed to produce a win, nonetheless and true to form, the membership celebrated the season with the first ever Rugby Prom late that spring.
Money, or the lack thereof was the impetus for many of the early traditions of the club.
The second season began to yield success on the field, but more importantly, the club began to exhibit an ability in fielding a complete and competitive side on a weekly basis competing with predominately Men’s club-sides throughout Texas.
The first major on-field success came in the spring of 1985, when the club defeated the University of Texas to win the Collegiate Division of the Austin Rugby Tournament. Renegade rugby had arrived and there was much rejoicing in San Marcos. The 3rd year also marked an increased number of members, but most remarkable was that the club took 3rd place in the Open Division of the Austin Rugby Tournament that spring.
Successes became more common in both tournament and match play, including Summer 7’s and by the end of the 3rd season, the original members were proud to say they had defeated every team they had lost to in the first two years.
A benchmark was reached in the Spring of ’87 when the club hosted the Collegiate Cup Tournament in San Marcos, where the club was crowned Texas Collegiate Champions.