Thompson, Lawrence assume new age-grade roles
BOULDER, Colo. – USA Rugby is excited to announce that two positions in the men’s age-grade program have been filled. Former High School All-Americans coach, Scott Lawrence, will coach the USA Men’s Under-20s and Salty Thompson will replace Lawrence as coach of the High School All-Americans.
USA Men’s U20s
Lawrence will take the reigns of the U20s program from Ray Lehner, who resigned last month. The USA U20s will compete in the IRB Junior World Rugby Trophy tournament next summer and the new coach has identified a distinct goal for the next nine months: to be able to compete at maximum potential. To achieve this goal, athletes in the program will have the task of “performing confidently at their best,” according to Lawrence. The U20s staff will work with collegiate and club coaches to design and execute each player’s training plan.
In order to select the strongest possible squad, a nomination process is being solidified so that there is a comprehensive view of players available for selection. For Lawrence, a key element of age-grade selection is acquiring accurate measurements of a recommended athlete. Age, height, weight, fitness and strength test results and quality game footage are all factors for consideration.
Scott Lawrence – Head Coach, Justin Hickey – Team Manager, Jason Kelly – Backline and Skills Development Coach, Luke Gross – Forwards Coach, Bill LeClerc – Scrum Coach, Chris Osentowski – Scrum Coach, Mike Diamantopoulos – Performance and SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) Analysis Coach, Ben Cowin – Medical Coordinator
Schedule and Fixtures
November 20- 21 – Camp, USOC Training Center in Birmingham, Ala. (Forwards and halfbacks only)
December 26 – January 2 – Camp, Santa Barbara, Calif. or Phoenix, Ariz.
June 6 – 11 – U23 Collegiate All-Stars Tournament, Glendale, Colo.
June 12 – 30 – IRB Junior Rugby World Trophy, Location TBD
High School All-Americans
Salty Thompson will coach the men’s High School All-Americans. Thompson has vast experience coaching in age-grade programs and is looking forward to challenging players to improve their game. The High School All-American program is focused on developing players, improving skills, and exposing athletes to high-performance rugby and international competition.
Lawrence and his staff created thorough depth charts and have provided Thompson with a pool of players that will be considered for selection. In order to construct a strong squad and program overall, Thompson is open to player recommendations from coaches. Recommended players must be current high school juniors or seniors born in 1993 or 1994. A camp will be held this winter for Thompson to evaluate which athletes will be High School All-Americans in 2011.
Head Coach – Salty Thompson, Michael Engelbrecht – Assistant Coach, Jason Payne – Assistant Coach, David Fee – Assistant Coach, James Paul – Strength and Conditioning Coach, Eric Taber – Team Manager
Schedule and Fixtures
Winter Selection Camp (details TBD)
Three match tour of Canada (details TBD)