Have a say… Who should be the ‘Executive Dream Team’ at USA Rugby? 47

I imagine that the person responsible for the ‘running of USA Rugby” has a job that could be described as…

“Responsible for the results at all levels for everything that is “USA Rugby”.

Well, we know where I could take this article… but I won’t – because it is time to stop complaining and create something special.

What would I do?

I would surround myself with minds that I respect, know the game, get the business, and will always hit me straight with their input. Create a culture of inclusiveness, openness and fearlessness at all levels.

What would you do, and who would you choose?

If you were the head of USA Rugby and decided to create a dream team “Rugby Executive Team” or whatever you would call it… who would you choose?   My standards would include Rugby IQ, Executive IQ, Leadership IQ + Passion . Choices can be American, Foreign, whatever…

Choose 3-5 people you would want as your consigliore’s.   Send me PM, email trseattle@Hotmail.com, or make your views public!!!

Independent Review of USA Performance at RWC 2015?

Who would you choose to lead/participate an independent review panel of USAR performance in the RWC? Do you think this is necessary?  What do you think of the current HP Director having to hand his report over to his boss (CEO) such that any ‘independent analysis’ can be muted/edited in the final report to the Board?

47 comments

  1. TR

    This is great stuff and has sparked up some great conversation in my local rugby circles. One of the questions that keeps coming up with your musings is that while you are obviously very passionate about what you say is wrong with the game in the USA…but can you give us some examples perhaps within the categories you have set out (Rugby IQ, Executive IQ, and Leadership IQ) to demonstrate why you are the man to lead us to the new Jerusalem of rugby in the U.S? And what you have personally done in rugby locally, nationally and internationally that would make you perfect USAR CEO material?

    • Hi Maurice, thanks for this post. I am not sure if your questions are ‘softballs’ or ‘landmines’. 🙂

      First, I am not running a personal campaign here. The first priority is removing the ‘tenured fiefdom’ culture that has been created at the CEO/BOD level at USAR. That is #1. For many reasons, I have discussed – my tolerance for being treated as a doormat by the rest of the rugby for the game I love in this country and for whom I am grateful to have represented – is done. I am committed to creating a culture of rugby, with standards on and off the field and the proper management, structure, and leadership to execute our plans. I am surrounded with very highly regarded and indisputable success and experience on the global rugby stage – on and off the field.

      Back to your question – are you asking for a brief resume of my personal background and experience in rugby and the business world?

      • He, like the rest of us are wondering why you are leading this campaign? Did Todd Clevers mom put you up to this?!

        Or did you actually help run a local club and do some good? I think you probably just stood on the touch line for the free piss and occasional party favors…….

      • Hi TR

        Yes I would love to hear about your personal background and experience in rugby and the business world?

      • Short and Sweet:

        Rugby: 14 tests for USA including RWC 1987, and RWC 1991. Played over 50 games for USA. In 7’s played in HK 7’s four times, and the 1993 7’s World Cup. Played on 4 national championship 7 teams with Old Puget Sound Beach.

        Business: Founded my company 21 years ago in my home with one employee. We have 32 people today in 5 countries. http://www.trichemicals.com I am CEO/Owner.

        Leadership: Graduated United States Military Academy at West Point, NY 1982. Commanded a company level unit in the Field Artillery, US Army

        I am taking a leave of absence, that can range in time as long as required in order to ensure that all Eagles present and future and all rugby people in America can be proud of the game in this country at all levels.

        I won’t reply to the comments about free piss, and Mrs. Clever. This is a serious matter (to me anyway, and apparently to thousands of others).

        Do you have any further questions?

      • Ridnell’s Rugby Dream Team

        Todd Clever
        George Robertson
        Michael Clements
        Todd Clevers mom
        That NZ #8 that runs Iranz
        (Please don’t drag Murray Mexted into this. He seems like a nice enough guy.)

        Your business seems so successful, who’s running it with all this time you’re putting into blogging?!

  2. Further, I have hired current and former USA and Club level players. Work/Intern arrangements. This includes past Captain of USA 7’s and RWC players. Given a small fortune to my local club over the years, support youth rugby financially, etc…

    I feel that someone is going to come out and say ‘well if you never ran a rugby club, how can you consider yourself qualified for a national job’… at which point I might have to exit the conversation.

    • TR

      That’s all very interesting you are clearly passionate about rugby so forgive me for wanting to dive deeper here but playing rugby for the U.S over 20 years ago before professionalism and playing 7s for a team a decade ago that no longer exists is while all very worthy doesn’t scream of high performance knowledge right now. Employing rugby players and sponsoring a team that no longer exist is also fantastic but not exceptional many wealthy men around the country do similar things but we do not talk of them as the next CEO. So there needs to be more if we the stakeholders are going to hand over the reigns of power. Please can you expand upon what you have done lately in rugby that we can all get behind and support this brave new dawn?

      • Maurice, can we agree that this is not about me, it is about an executive putting a team in place to succeed. Let me give you an example of this team. It’s not about what I personally know about HP, its about me getting the people in place that know HP. Let me pass on details of a note I received yesterday.

        I have a commitment from former All Black Murray Mexted, (who incidentally has a residence in the US) MD of IRANZ, NZ’s National Rugby Academy where they specialize in professional player & coach development. Nine IRANZ graduates played for the AB’s this year & no less than 13 teams at the current RWC have player or coach graduates. Murray has offered his & IRANZ services in the past & in fact has a Alliance Agreement with USA Rugby which is not being utilized.

        Now Maurice, I know you some people will say ‘we need to do this the American way’, and to a great extent I agree. but in answer to your HP question, I hope you would agree that the founder of the high performance academy in NZ currently turning out AB’s and Super 15 players would be someone good to have on the team to at least guide us on HP matters. It seems to me we ‘don’t know what we don’t know ‘ in this field.

        Are aware of IRANZ?

    • Leading is not hiding behind a blog. Who’s more childish, someone like me that can say I’ve done more in the last month to help this game or you, the astute blogger with all your solutions and committees with your ridiculous ideas.

      Childish indeed, sir.

      Follow your own advice. Get out of the way from those of us working out asses off. Your filth is an insult.

  3. Further, these aren’t jobs I would have foreigners fill.. They are more ‘train the trainer’ roles for longer term while we get shorter term needs filled by their immediate impact.

    • Tony

      I am sorry I disagree, this is all about you as you have made yourself King in waiting…I do not place negative or positive weight to that statement just how it appears through your own words and how you are projecting yourself.

      It is you that are touting yourself as the new CEO. As we live in civilized country and do not allow the law of the jungle to run amok here, I think it is reasonable to ask what it is you have done personally lately for rugby locally, nationally and professionally. As if you get your wish and become CEO we all need to know and understand what we are getting. As the man at the top of the tree you will need to understand and recognize what the issues and who they are solved elsewhere in the world and put that into context in an American model.
      So please I ask again as is only natural as a neutral stakeholder to ask for you to tell me and everyone else what it is you have done in the rugby world or business or life that makes you ‘our’ man as future CEO so we can all gage how your future brave new dawn may look…

      As for IRANZ I am aware of them yes and sorry I’m not as sold as you appear to be.

  4. Maurice, I am not touting myself for anything. All I am doing is taking a leadership role on implementing mandated change. 9 years of non-performance deserves new leadership at the top. Our rugby community is so fragmented it is an enormous task to gain any traction. I am taking on this task. I have no interest in being King, I want vision and leadership and accountability surrounding the game in this country. If you feel that it is a pre-requisite that I lined the fields last week at a club match then you will be sorely disappointed in me.

    Thanks for asking your question as a neutral stakeholder (there are some jerks I have heard from, and that is sad to me). I am not ‘your man’ in this, I am potentially ‘one of the men’ in this. I have 100% domain to talk on these matters (the combination of them). Not necessarily better or with more expertise than anyone, but I do have domain.

    Our strategic plan will come out shortly. I don’t know if we are ‘going to send that out’ so 10,000 people can comment. In fact, I can guarantee that won’t happen.. What I would like to do is take my team, have them select their ‘teams’ and have a ‘rugby summit’ a few weeks hence, so we can create some alignment nationwide as a rugby community, discuss our strategic plan with the community at the girls/boys and age grade thru national team levels. There is so much to do.

    If you are specifically looking at examples of successes from me, I am not sure if that is appropriate in this forum. However, I have had two jobs in my life. Army Officer, CEO/Owner of my current company (21 years). I played in two RWC for the USA and am a graduate of West Point. I am not sure what else you are looking for. Again, if you want me to tell you I lined the fields last week, that didn’t happen. That is not a pre-requisite for the job I am currently performing in this movement.

    • Tony

      I’m sorry again I disagree and I’m sorry to press you on this but as an equally passionate USA rugby stakeholder we need a little more than what you are currently giving…

      I’m not asking for you to say you have lined fields last week although there is nothing wrong with volunteering to line fields but it is not relevant to being CEO of USAR or taking on leadership role in ‘mandating’ change, that said playing rugby before professionalism was even dreamt about or running a chemical company is also not really screaming the leader of the revolution either. Again I’m not trying to put you down Tony just trying to tease some details or recent experiences from you as would be expected in an job ‘interview’ of any description.

      I’m loving your passion but please help me understand why you are the man we should all rally behind as the new leader or part of the new leadership?

      • Maurice, fair enough – thanks for keeping it cool and professional. Understand that it is not appropriate for me to get into a ‘toot my horn’ conversation in this forum. If ever there comes a day for me to do that publicly, I have no problem doing it. I actually retired the year it went professional and was witness to the many things that went wrong in the early days of this era (particularly in the UK). Call it a ‘those who forego history are bound to repeat it’ education. I’m not telling you to rally around me, I have provided my qualifications if there were a need to rally around me. However, I’m looking around – and at this time I don’t see too many people standing up for breaking our cycle of mediocrity.

      • You’re not appointing yourself but you are taking the lead. Sounds like you’re appointing yourself the king of kings there princess.

        Tell us why you’re appointing yourself. Last time I checked, you weren’t relevant and now all of a sudden you were.

        Maybe you should’ve backed the Eagles a little sooner than this to be taken serious…….

  5. Moreover, my request in this blog was not to judge me… it is to make specific names of rugby people to create an Executive Dream Team at USA Rugby. To date, there are still very few names..

  6. Tony

    I’m not asking you to ‘toot’ your horn I’m asking you to give me some detail as to why you are the man to lead us to the new USAR Jerusalem or at least be part of that ‘leadership’.

    Please tell me there is something more relevant in your resume than selling chemicals for a living and being a ex eagle from 20 plus years ago.

    I get and respect that you are passionate and you see issues with certain aspects of rugby in the USA. I’m sure you are not alone in the world in your frustrations in this regard post World Cup as I’m sure that there are similar supporters bemoaning their National teams performance in France, England and many other places…that said nobody in those unions are throwing the baby out with the bath water and proposing that a former player who has no experience at this level rides in on his white charger to save the day…

    Well that’s not strictly true England got carried away and appointed an ex player who had done nothing in the game post retiring as their head coach…but that didn’t work out to well did it…

    Again I have to stress that I’m not here to dim your candle BUT Tony please please give me something that says you are in anyway qualified to be on a leadership board of USAR or its CEO… Because playing 20/30 years ago and running a chemical company are not qualifications that will get you or USAR where we want it to go and neither will stories of watching rugby and chatting to former opponents from around the world…

    Please please tell me you have more up your sleeve than the above…

  7. Maurice, I need to reiterate – I am not ‘running’ for anything. I am just here. Would I consider a job at that level if offered, absolutely. Regarding my qualifications – I will refer to last message. But, I will indulge you regarding current holders.

    Although I have extensive sales experience this is not a ‘sales’ job. It is an executive job. A Chief Executive job. it is a Chief Executive job that has a rugby component. I have been a Chief Executive for 21 years. I have played rugby at as high a level an American can play.

    The sales portion of the job comes in the fundraising. So I will tell you this about me, give me a story to tell, and I will sell it. The current USAR leadership team has amassed in outside contributions just over $2MM in 2014. That is pathetic. This the job of the CEO and the Board.

    The current CEO’s credentials included 13 caps for England and a mediocre term as a Director of Rugby at Senior men’s clubs in England. No sales experience, no executive experience. That’s it. He was 2nd choice to John Kirwan, took the job when JK bailed and then combined the executive side of the job with a rugby side to actually create a CEO position, that we are clear on is not being handled to a level of any standard. I have this from shareholders and stakeholders from all over the board.

    The Board members honestly have a low Rugby IQ. This is a shame to me. Might be great business people but with extremely little exception, very little Rugby IQ, particularly on the global front.

    So, I will answer your question with a question of my own – if I were to be ‘running’ for this office, why wouldn’t I be qualified?

    • The reason that no one is utilizing Murray Mexted is that his camps cost an arm and a leg ($3500 for a week.)

      Instead of opening the gates and allowing people to take our players money, why don’t you lead a contingent of Eagle Alumni and push for support in the form of filling stadiums with fans?

      Or……

      Solicit sponsorship for the current program from major companies. I’m sure the players and management would appreciate that more than hearing how mediocre they are. Nigel Melville has the experience but with a country of our size and depth of athletes, surely he’d have more done if people stopped complaining and joined into the fight.

      Results will improve when the current staff and players stop having to hear all this crap and just heard the backing of our community. There are no “but’s” in this, creating in fighting is just driving the wedge deeper.

      The question shouldn’t be “who do we replace?”, it should be “How do we enable these guys to do the best job possible?”

      • Thanks for the more positive take… Now we agree..
        However, its not about taking a group of ex Eagles and filling stands. It is the Executive role to combine all our resources to fill stadiums, to lead that group of ex Eagles perhaps to enlist. Are you understanding the differentiation I am making? Yes, we need backing of our community (I call it alignment), and the question is who do we replace because we have had 9 years of nothing, and then when leadership is in place, enabling those guys to do the best job possible. You see we are not that far off… However, you still haven’t told us anything about you.

    • Tony

      So you are saying that you have not be actively involved in rugby in any shape or form in several years? I can only assume that as I have repeatedly asked if you can add more to this conversation regarding your rugby than your past exploits as a player from 20 plus years ago.

      If that is not accurate please please say so we can all understand what it is you have personally contributed recently.

      Again I’m not trying to be smart here Tony but if you are as passionate about the state of rugby within the USA I have to ask what have you done recently to make it better. If the answer is nothing then that is an issue because your resume with all due respect is not that inspiring…

      You mention Nigel’s lack of business IQ and a mediocre term in English rugby… I doubt know much about that but I did copy and paste this off of wiki, ‘During his playing career, Melville was the Head of UK Promotions for Nike working alongside elite athletes from a wide range of sports.

      On retirement, Melville entered coaching and as Director of Rugby at London Wasps, Melville coached the team to their first professional Premiership title in 1996, followed by three National Cup Final appearances, winning two. In 2002 he moved to Gloucester Rugby, winning the Zurich Championship Final, Powergen Cup and topped the Zurich Premiership table by a record 15 clear points. He left in 2005.[2]’

      Again I don’t know as its not my field but ‘Head of UK Promotions’ for a big U.S company like Nike sounds pretty impressive and am quite sure there are many professional coaches that would like to win as many trophies as Nigel has in one of the best professional leagues in the world.

      As for the board members rugby IQ I cannot comment as I don’t know but I just looked at their bios on USAR and they all sound more impressive business wise then being CEO of a small chemical company. Not that there is anything wrong with running a small chemical company in Seattle but it hardly shouts world domination.

      So again please give me more than this as it is not me but you that is shouting from the rooftops that I’m the new savior of USAR…and before you say your not saying that please re read your own blogs and remember that the rugby community is a small one and think about how many people you have personally said you are running to be the new USAR CEO to publicly and privately…

      • Maurice, we are not talking about a coach (i.e Nigel’s success), we are talking about CEO of a large organization. Perhaps you are not making the distinction. And, about Nike… where is that relationship then?
        And again, this is not about me. This is about a change. Immediately. Can I do the job, absolutely. Can I begin to create ‘legacy’ and standards, and team, and alignment across the board. Yes, That is what CEO’s do. The ‘board’ has raised just over $2MM in 2014. USAR has nothing to tell, so the board has nothing to sell (to sponsors). We are already in talks re: money. No more taking this down Maurice, please. This needs to happen. Today I have received letters from 3 players, 3 USAR employees, a major University Athletic director, and a mother of an 8 year old who plays rugby. There is 100% to support change at the top of USAR. Now, unless you are going to take the reins, I would appreciate your support. I don’t owe you any details. What we owe you is a commit to titanic change and a focused direction for USA Rugby at all levels. If you want to worry about how you think that is achieved, then come see me. If not, again – I would be grateful for your support.

  8. Maurice, again.. not about me. Who is your choice for the ‘executive team’ you would have around you if you were running the show. Has to be names, not qualifications. And if you don’t have those names (no problem) who would you appoint as an agent to ensure we are choosing the best people possible ?

    • All you need to know about me is that I’m not shouting for resignations from afar.

      As for filling stadiums, don’t you think a positive backing from former Eagles would go along way to getting wallets open?! No, instead many of you shout about mediocrity and regime change. How about shouting, “Get behind these guys and buy tickets!” The money goes into funding all of the National Teams and so many more athletes suffer because of this negativity.

      I’ve seen the failures of the Grand Prix and the NRFL and know that these aren’t the people I want at the helm.

      As for my dream team, it’s Nigel Melville, Mike Tolkin and the rest of the staff that are doing everything in their power to improve the Eagles. Will Chang is another man who has my ear because he talks real solutions and is making things happen. The problem we have here is that the problems were created long before the current regime.

      We wait for something of substance to come from you. Which we have yet to see. If you don’t have anything worthwhile to contribute, go back to the bleachers.

      • Baxter, or should I call you by your real name – Justin? Yes, Justin the forwards coach of the mens RWC2015 side. Now, I can see why you are taking this so personally – certainly the only person who has taken your disagreement with me to the depths you have (calling me a princess, really?).

        Sorry you got upset I reported what I heard first hand from multiple players. I can understand you are upset… you should be upset that the players feel the need to make those statements. A little self assessment perhaps.

        You are not getting my point… I am not attacking the players, nor to a degree the coaching staff. Every failure at USAR at the moment, and there is no dispute this thing is a mess at almost every level points to the Chief Executive. I, and the 100’s of people who have taken the time to write me and 1000’s more who have not – want a CEO with a piss poor 9 year performance record to be relieved. It would never last this long except for the tenured fiefdom that currently exists.

        This CEO said ‘no knee jerk reactions’ and made it clear he was speaking of the players and coaches. This is just classic denial of where responsibility lies for everything that does, and does not happen at USA Rugby. There should be one knee jerk reaction – remove the CEO and allow rugby in this country to prosper.

        If we had valid and effective leadership in that role, then we could provide the resources to all our teams, clubs, efforts and raise the professionalism at all levels. As a coach we wouldn’t be sending you to the RWC completely naked. If you feel you have all the resources you required, then I would ask you why we went 0-4, and why you are fine with the status quo (i.e. mediocrity).

        You should embrace this change… so I pissed you off – big deal. You would be a beneficiary of this change. And, when you ask me what I have done for the past 20 years. What I have been doing is building up 20 years of rage at the humiliation that we have all had to feel at US Rugby and currently feel, and now have a guy in your position say you are ok with it, and that status quo is acceptable.

        That’s what I’ve been doing, Justin Fitzpatrick. Building up the rage and passion that has kicked me into gear to make something happen. And here I am, and if someone asks me if I want that job I will take it. If someone asks me if I am qualified, I will them ‘absolutely, no question’. And if you asked me if I am asking for the job, I would tell you “no”. At this point in time I am an agent for an deniably necessary change. Nothing more. Some of the guys I am working with I would like to see in this job potentially.

        You could not understand the anguish of playing for our American team and having people make excuses for you (i.e. amateurs vs. pro’s) or whatever. I never felt that way. It was men playing men. I want to give our men the best shot they can of competing at the top level. And, I want every rugby person in America to feel proud of our game in this country. I am willing to do something about it. And do not ever try and tear me down on this subject again.

    • Tony

      Again It is about you as YOU have made it about you. It is as previously stated YOU that has said to multiple people and groups that you are running to be the next USAR CEO and oust Nigel Melville from his spot.

      So if I am, as a regular stakeholder in USAR truly to get onboard I need to know what you individually are bringing to the party and not what you are personally unhappy with currently. As so far it is all way too vague and out there never never cooperate speak with no substance and no relevant experience.

      So again if we are truly to TRust (your play on words not mine) you, then please you will need you to do more than be a rebel rouser in a lynch mob and give us something more than empty platitudes and somewhere over the rainbow stories…

      Again I’m sorry if that is unpleasant reading for you but I personally need to hear more as someone who is a critical thinker and equally passionate about rugby in the U.S. then what you are currently serving up…

      This current plan which is vague to say the least that you are peddling is currently a 1 out of 10 in terms of a credibility and will not take us forward to the promised land, it want even stand up to rigorous conversation and that is a massive issue…

  9. Maurice and Baxter,

    Where in the world did you two come from, what level of rugby do you profess to have been backing for 10, 20, 30 or more years…wait, before you answer it does not matter; you are a regular stakeholder that pays his dues, coaches or admins some team and goes to a test or two a year.

    Great, join the 100s thousands rugby people for the last 40 years, wahoo, yippee, three cheers for you!

    Join the Congress, jump up and down we have no business plan, celebrate RWC qualification, rejoice in our dwindling win percentage against tier two teams, then jump off a roof saying I don’t want to be better and nobody with any credentials, nor Buddha, Jesus or Ghandi can help, aiyeeee.

    Take a deep breath and stop critiquing TR, he has clearly said he is not gunning for a job, and why not the everyday person to spark conversation, begin dialogue and muster real tangible reasoning to what may be holding us back. If half true you should lay down your, “well you are just not good enough in my eyes” attitude and start answering the bell.

    Here is the bell; What I would like to hear is your experience, then list it in spades, tells you that even with a West Point education, Eagle player and successful CEO TR is not qualified, as you have done, but then –

    We do however recognize your points Tony and would recommend, X, Y, and Z to be on your dream executive group as their credentials are what we believe are needed.

    Or as suspected all along, It sounds like you are happy with the progress with listing the Wiki of Nigel, Tolkin & Chang as a man with ideas and so on.

    So actually for all you blowhard comments that TR is not qualified you WERE JUST WAITING TO BE APOLOGISTS.

    • Well not sure what your name is as you have chosen not to say…not sure why you need to hide your identity…

      But just so we are clear I’m not apologizing for anyone and I only quoted what I simply found on the Internet and all I have done is ask Tony what his involvement in rugby at any level has been over the last few years…we all still waiting to find the answer to that out…

      As for Tony not wanting to be the next CEO well he may have written that here but he has personally said something very different to lots of other people in the rugby community as he canvas for support.

      I personally have no horse in the race I’m however equally passionate about rugby and hence I have posed questions that haven’t been answered in any shape all form…

      Now you have taken offense that I have asked some simple questions and are looking for some clarification. I’m sorry but that sounds like it you that is the apologist and are blindly following without engaging in critical thought or asking questions as to what is being proposed…

      • Tony and whoever wrote that last post,

        Ha! I may be a forward, but I’m certainly no Justin Fitzpatrick. I am concerned that you would slander a man who has nothing to do with this. Let’s leave the current coaching staff out of this. They’ve got enough to worry with the RWC review let alone your silly crusade.

        Let’s discuss your dream team. I’ve named my names based on experience and clear improvement in a side. Where are yours?!

  10. No Maurice, I take offense that you challenge TR and then are very innacurate, the best one is France and England are doing reviews and are not throwing the baby out with the bath water.

    In case you did not realize, France is and has been imploding and will now go through an entire overhaul. England, well at least two review boards to shed Ied light on their earliest RWC exit, as one was questioned for its independence another was formed.

    The question at hand is not about TR, it is about a call for leadership that at a minimum would do an independent audit of our performance, equally our worse, our shrinking ability against Tier 2.

    Further, why would that not be a broader group?

    It is your right to question TR’s motivations and pedigree, and if warranted agree to disagree on his qualifications. However, that you cannot see we need a braoder group, independent review and potential leadership change in your words is blinding.

    • If either of you actually cared, you’d know that a performance review is already being conducted. It’s standard procedure after every Rugby World Cup. Just saying……..

      • So, Matt/Justin whomever, Oh,yes – a performance review is coming. One that will be written by a guy who actually has to prepare it for his boss – who will then present it to the board. The conflict of interest there is ridiculous. If it’s a true HP report like they do in IRB (as you say standard procedure) it will be an independent report, evaluating all levels (Including coach selection – in this case this responsibility lies with our CEO I believe) of performance. The author of the report (whom I have had occasion to speak with very recently) is conflicted in a big way. So, yes I care…and I know.

        So keep drinking that KoolAid mate, or eating Marmite whatever it is you do.. and believe that our status quo mediocrity is acceptable.

        I attended that club match yesterday to 100 screaming fans and a dog cheering on the #1 ranked team in America. Yeah, that was impressive. I think you are looking at my plea at far too narrow a level (i.e. how it applies to you). Clearly you are not in an executive position – or you would ‘get it’ like 99.9% of this audience does.

  11. Christ Baxter, no shit! Of course we know Alex M is doing a review and God help him as a true dedicated and talented rugby man who by himself has no where near the experience or cover to say, what really needs to be said. Point was to give him help, add 3-4 people (Billups, Prusmack, Prentice, USOC head of Performance and say MLS similar)

    Can’t stand it when people don’t listen or read!

  12. Well there you have it folks. The real deal. Thanks ‘No Press’. People hear ‘HP report’ and they think what they should.. integrity, etc… Not in this current regime. Any other questions, Baxter? Why hold onto this mediocrity?

  13. An apology to Justin Fitzpatrick…

    Justin,

    I owe you an apology. A lot has happened in the past two weeks, and a lot of emotional energy spent by many people on the state of USA Rugby, at all levels. There is no doubt – people care!! Today, I misidentified you within my blog post, and I should not have made any comments that mentioned your name. You received a message from a friend with a screenshot and rightfully asked me what the heck was going on.

    I got to thinking while I focused on you today. Here’s the background:

    A few weeks ago I did make reference to comments players made to me re: the coaching staff. I included the comment and chose not to give specifics. I have the screenshots. But that’s not the point. I am new at this public writing (blogging) thing. I don’t have all the protocol down, but whatever I write is 100% the truth as I know it at the time. I did not intend my writing to be ‘slanderous’ as someone said..

    Today, when an alias named Baxter (who clearly knows who I am, but won’t reveal himself – I have to think he knows you well) started poking me, I was emotional and I made a very well grounded assumption that it was you. And, I would still write the same thing I wrote in that blog… that this is not about the players – nor the coaches, it is so much greater than that and negatively affects so many levels – we need leadership that will provide American Rugby w/ expectations. Not mediocrity. You know this is the right thing, and because of your understandable reaction, we have not have had a chance to discuss the real issue.

    You have been an outstanding servant to USA Rugby. Three years with the forwards, and the success you have brought Seattle Saracens is a dream for us who wanted a championship mentality here in Seattle for so long.

    So, I am sorry I assumed that was you today and incorrectly identified you and commented accordingly. I let my passion be misguided. You did not deserve that. Please consider me a teammate and friend that wants exactly the same thing you do. I am committed to what I perceive as my role, just as you have been committed to yours.

    I hope you can accept this apology and we can be part of a group that together will architect a future for all levels of American rugby; Eagles to Eaglets (kids?).

    TR

  14. whay a crazy blog I have stumbled into- although I only know TR a little, very little- I would venture a guess by his track record that:

    1. He is a committed leader who will build a team.

    why- pedigree of West Point, HP Athletics, Business Owner for a few decades.

    2. He is passionate about our sport and the Team we all love, a team he once played for.

    3. He does not need the JOB of CEO USA Rugby- he wants us to Win!

    Although TR may need to stop the personal attacks, he is spot on. We are needing new leadership, USA Rugby had let us down, once again. Our Senior Women are woefully underfunded, we run a Women’s 7s Tournament that looses 300k per year, (roughly) we dramaticly dropped funding for our age/grade All American programs this year, at the grassroots level we have many parts of our members dropping or have looked at dropping CIPP membership to USA Rugby as they are not seeing the value which, will only further destroy the synergy that is possible if we work together. Nigel has been quoted a few times his disappointment in our mens performance at the RWQ and it was his plan that formulated and funded the development of the athletes and staff.

    So, I believe change is needed- how is this to happen? Does the Board make this move to let go Nigel, and then open the position up to any who would apply? Probably, but would we allow the Board to formulate the hiring process- I would offer up a NO, we need better check and balance, we need a couple of new members on the board with firm commitments to grow the needed cash, be part of the hiring process and to re-purpose the Board moving forward and I would bet Tony could be part of this process for the betterment of our great game.

  15. Maurice and Baxter, Ad Hominem attacks do nothing to further your point either debate Tony’s ideas or go away.

    As far as a dream team:

    1) Jack Clark
    2) Doug Arnot
    3) Dan Flynn (CEO US Soccer)
    4) Graham Henry (if we can get him away from Argentina)

    • Rob

      Please read carefully what I have written. have not attacked anyone. I have merely asked some simply questions of Tony which have still to be answered.

      I would like to know what recent involvement Tony has had in rugby and no playing as a Eagle 30 years ago is not recent. I ask because I believe this is very important because if you are saying (as Tony is) that we need change in USAR and we need the culture of rugby back (again I would like to hear exactly what that means!?) then I would ASSUME that one so passionate about our sport would be active in club, union, congress or something… As the question as not been answered and I have asked multiple times I can only assume that Tony has NOT been involved in the sport he says he’s into so much and so passionate about for quite some time. In which case I’m not impressed as I expect leaders to be active and engaged.

      Again Tony if you have been involved then just say so and this conversation is died and buried and we can all move on to debate some of the other really important issues.

      • Maurice,

        The premise of your argument is that Tony only has the right to question the direction of USA Rugby if he has been recently involved in rugby. Any fan of USA rugby has the right to question its direction and offer a solution which is what Tony has done. He has not offered himself as an option for CEO, he is just trying to lead the call for change. You should debate his argument not his right to make it. Are you happy with the direction with USA Rugby? If yes, say so and explain why. If not but you disagree with Tony’s approach offer a different one. Don’t just sit there and say that Tony’s argument is invalid simply because he may not have been directly involved in rugby in the past few years.

        Rob

      • Hey Maurice/Rob etc…

        Maurice, I understand that http://www.goffrugbyreport.com released a podcast today regarding an interview we did. Perhaps you would listen to it. I have not heard it, but I believe it will address the questions you have regarding experience/vision/ability etc… Again, this is not about me at all. This is about accurately self assessing our game in this country and doing something about it after we digest what we see in the mirror. I have made myself available to be a part of that.

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