The history of BAFA and BUCS
In 2007, preceding the first NFL Wembley games, BUCS & BAFA initiated conversations regarding the development of the then-BUAFL setup with a view to incorporating the sport into the overarching BUCS programme: 2,390 students | 42 teams
In 2012, BUCS & BAFA completed the process of sanctioning American football as a fully-fledged BUCS sport, ensuring compliance with BUCS regulations and continued discussion around the development of the student game: 3,586 students | 68 teams
In 2019, BUCS & BAFA announced a new process looking to enhance the level of administration and development for the student membership: 4,230 students | 81 teams
How to join a university American football team
To play BUCS American football, individuals must be eligible students of the institution that they are looking to represent. Institutions have specific criteria to meet in order to represent within BUCS, which usually includes a payment towards the running costs (e.g. Athletics Union Membership).
Interested students should liaise directly with their institution’s sports department to find out how they would be able to join a team.
BUCS classifies Premier and Tier 1 as Performance tiers, with a focus on creating an elite environment both on and off the field of play. Tier 2 (and below) is classified as a Participation tier, with a focus on a welcoming environment for as many players playing the sport as possible. For the first time in the 2019/20 season, the University of Nottingham and University of West England entered ‘2nd teams’ in order to enable as many interested students to play American football at their institutions.