Pete Fallon

Pete Fallon, '65

When Pete Fallon returned for the start of his junior year at Fairfield in the fall of 1963 he hoped to form a club of former high school football players to play a game he learned in high school from an English exchange student. Selling his fellow Stags on a game other than football wasn't easy; they agreed to participate only after hearing about a requirement to host the visiting team with a beer "drink up" before sending them home.

In addition to recruiting players and teaching them the game, Pete had to find teams to play. He ultimately was able to arrange a match against Fordham University at Rose Hill. Pete served as the captain of that very first team and found himself in a position to convert a try late in the game resulting in an 8-6 victory for Fairfield in their first ever match. What a beginning for the Red Ruggers!

Pete worked with teammates Doug Ciacci and Jeff Campbell in organizing practices and arranging matches; he also recruited Dr. John Kenyon, a Professor of Psychology at the university, to coach the team. "Doc" had played rugby at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland; he provided the knowledge of the game and the link to the University's administration that helped the club survive that first season.

Under Pete's leadership, the club dealt with many issues beyond just performing on the pitch. Late in that first season a major morale booster occurred when the team sported its red and white hooped uniforms for the first time at the New York Seven-A-Side Tournament in Van Courtlandt Park. Fairfield finished in second place from among 39 teams, losing to Old Blue in the tournament finals.

Pete was elected Captain again for the 1964 spring season. Under his leadership, the club played teams like Boston, Manhattan, Holy Cross, and Harvard Business School. His leadership was essential to both the development of the young team and to the building of a culture and ethos that will remain a cornerstone of Fairfield Rugby as long as the game is played.

Career highlights include:
  • Founding member of the Fairfield University Rugby Football Club - Fall 1963
  • First team Captain in the history of the Fairfield Rugby Club.
  • The Fairfield University Rugby Club's original Red Rugger.