This is way beyond a farce now! I don't think there is any alternative but for the ARU Board and CEO to either resign or be sacked. The process is all over the place. Multiple govenerance models and different financial models for different clubs. We should do what South African rugby is doing and use it as an opportunity to restructure both the governance and then hold an open tender for all Australian Super Rugby Clubs.
We could put down a minimum criteria and then open it up. People could choose to merge, put new models together or chance their arm and leave the current offering in place. If the ARU are really wanting to support the grass roots (which they really need to be doing more of) then they can't afford to prop up ANY of the Super Rugby clubs. That means they must all be self sustaining.
Centralising their marketing, ticketing and back office platforms would make a lot of since and make every club have an alliance agreement. Do you really need five CFO's, five COO's and five CIO's?
And by grassroots I don't mean Shuts shield. Hell if the argument is all about Shuts Shield needing more love, make it the national club competition. Have multiple tiers in the competition with relegation and promotion. Let each Super Rugby Team field a development team in the comp. You could scrap the ARC. There is no way on a $3 Mil Foxtel sponsorship that it is breaking even regardless of what Puller has said.
We need some creative thinking and the normal squabble between the various unions and levels of the game will only lead to contraction and eventually irrelevance. Puller was right in saying it was the most competitive winter sporting market in the world, so you can be AFL, Football and NRL are quite happy to fill the gap if we can't get our house in order!
ARU needs to get it's shit together and FAST!