On USA Rugby, John Mitchell, RIM, The Rugby Channel, & the Board. Reply

I wonder if the likes of Chairmen Chang and Keck, and Marni Vath watched the debacle of USA Rugby vs. Canada today. I doubt it, but if they did – perhaps they might note the horrific state our Union is in. Note, it is not about the players on the field – but the fact that over the past 10 years, and at this current time – have no viable vision, let alone a plan to support that vision. We are woefully mismanaged financially. What can we do with this rudderless ship? Anyone who takes away any significant positivity from today’s match for the USA should consider raising their standards and expectations.

But remember, we have RIM and The Rugby Channel.  It’s comedic really.

Tony Ridnell

In a calamity that could only be described as “Melvillean” in nature, USA Rugby head coach John Mitchell has seemingly made his 4 year commitment/contract disappear.  The announcement of Mitchell signing on as “Executive of Rugby” for the Super Rugby Bulls franchise really has come as no surprise, as rumors have been circulating to this effect for months.

I understand that “sports is a business”, what I don’t understand is how people that sign 4 year contracts and ‘commit’ to take a national team through a complete Rugby World Cup cycle, simply get to walk away.  Rumors were already circulating approximately two months ago when USAR CEO Dan Payne requested that Mitchell domicile in the United States.  Mitchell has lived in Pietermaritzburg, RSA during his tenure as USAR Men’s XV Coach and has rarely been seen at any non USA Eagle events that should mandate his presence.

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On USA Rugby Vision, Strategy 2020, RWC 2018/2027, Age Grade, HP audit, & more on the Board/RIM 2

In responding to a question about ‘vision’, it is difficult not to discuss the Board and the massive effect (positive or negative) it can and has on any such ‘visions’. It is time to get back to basics and instill some Business Basics back into this Board.  Without it, and the proper alignment to the organization – it doesn’t matter what anyone’s vision is, it is bound for failure.   More…

My Weekend with the Austin Huns Rugby Club/Community & some MLR News! 2

Support MLR and its national growth over the next few years.  The possibility of a world scale sports company taking on this league is real, and we should support these 9 brave ‘owner‘s’ who are putting it on the line to create the next phase of club rugby (i.e. professional) in the USA More…

USAR Board of Directors: No Plan for 10 years, No Accountability.  Time to go!  1

I wrote this piece about the USAR Board of Directors in October, 2016.

Today, coincidentally, there is a timely and well written piece from Rugby Wrap Up concerning the negligence, and lack of ‘duty of care’ of the USA Board of Directors regarding the PRO Sanctioning agreement.

It supports what many of us have known for a long time. It is an American Rugby tragedy, and it must be rectified.
Jeremiah Johnson (The USAR Congress rep to the Board of Directors) is caught in the proverbial ‘rock and a hard place’. He must support the organization, yet must see the egregious negligence that is present.
For simplicity sake, here is the request of the American Rugby community.
Ask each Board member, “Did you read this agreement”. If the answer is no, your congress should demand their immediate resignation. If the answer is yes, and the Board member approved/signed off on this agreement, you should demand their immediate resignation.
Are there any questions?

Tony Ridnell

This article will address perhaps the most boring rugby topic imaginable, that of the Board of Directors of USA Rugby, and the responsibility of the USAR Congress to hold this Board to account.  It’s boring, but it’s important, and it affects the game in our country immeasurably.  For example, if you are reading this as the parent of a prospective ‘premiership’ level rugby player, the issues I discuss will be the legacy as we look forward 10 years and greatly affect your child’s future in the sport and/or his/her career.

Author’s Note: This article contains my opinion about the USA Rugby Board of Directors performance as it relates to our successes/failures as a Union both on and off the field.  I was nominated for a Board Seat during the last cycle and was not selected.  A few (and I limit it to only a few) people have mentioned on social…

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