The USA Eagles have won four matches in a row. In three of those matches, they’ve exceeded 50 points. I am someone who does not need a lot of reason to get excited, and if I just leave the door open a crack, my optimism comes pouring out.
Every time I am swept up in an optimism flood, I get worried. Are these wins progress, or just a nice blip? All of the matches, after all, have been against... Read More
At the Estadio San Carlos de Apoquindo outside of Santiago, Chile hosted USA in Round Four of the 2017 Americas Rugby Championship. The Eagles secured the result they needed—a bonus point win that keeps them on target for the chance to win the ARC. The final score was 57-9.
In contrast to the sharp start last weekend against Canada, USA opened the match in a relatively sloppy, if ambitious,... Read More
In the third round of the Americas Rugby Championship, Canada hosted USA at Swangard Stadium Burnaby, British Columbia. The Eagles secured another bonus point win, 51-34.
The Eagles started well and scored two tries in the first six minutes. While Canada did have several strong passages, the Eagles never gave up the lead.
Mike Te’o handed Phil Mack’s first box kick cleanly, giving USA possession... Read More
USA Rugby’s Congress assembles this weekend in Austin, Texas, and two expected hot topics are PRO Rugby and the performance of the national governing body’s Board of Directors.
The former makes sense because this is the first Congress assembly since the uncovering of PRO’s horde of unpaid employees and vendors, and the latter because some well-known members of the rugby community have been... Read More
The countdown to the 2017 Americas Rugby Championship continues. In order to get a sense of what to look for from the USA Eagles in the ARC and beyond, here is a look at some specifics from 2016.
An earlier post looked at the performance of the USA Eagles from the kicking tee in 2016 and at restarts in November. This post looks at tries and penalties for the Eagles in 2016.
The Eagles... Read More
Playing in San Sebastian, Spain at Estadio Anoeta, Tonga took an early lead and was able to hang on in the second half to defeat the USA Eagles, 20-17.
In an echo of last week’s match against Romania, the Eagles started slowly and, despite “winning” the second half, could not overcome that slow start.
There were plenty of signs of worry for the Eagles early as poor territorial kicking gave Tonga... Read More
Head coach John Mitchell has handed out 35 new caps in 2016, a remarkable amount by any measure. Those filling them have come from many places – 7s guys taking their first real crack at international 15s, recent college stars making the step up, and even some previously unearthed U.S.-qualified overseas professionals.
But for one of this year’s debutants, at least, the seminal accomplishment of... Read More
My teeth were firmly gritted for most of the recent USA v Romania match. If I relaxed my jaw, the string of profanities to come out would be like one of those magician’s handkerchiefs.
It was not just the Eagles’ play that made me think the match could look better. Watching the Eagles fall behind 20-0 and ultimately lose 23-10 was the source of most of, but not all of, the frustration. Also... Read More
In the past, quite a few players used the USA sevens program as a stepping-stone toward a professional path in fifteens. However, the landscape has changed. With the Sevens World Series, and USA’s place on it, well-established, and with another Olympic cycle looming as soon as one ends, it isn’t clear how different players with navigate options in sevens and fifteens.
Several of the USA sevens... Read More
At Toyota Park just outside Chicago, the New Zealand Maori All Blacks comfortably defeated the USA Eagles, 54-7. The last time the two sides met, in 2013, the Maori won 29-19.
For the USA, too much of the first 40 minutes was spent inside its defensive half. Maori coach Colin Cooper said, “We made the States play inside their half. We’re blessed with the kickers that we have. That was probably... Read More