Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Winners & Losers: Tolkin, Battle in the Bay, Infinity Park


Maybe it's just us (we do like to stay positive after all) but there were definitely more positives than negatives this week. In fact, we had to leave several positives off the list. Still, there are several worthy candidates as well as some worthy candidates for the negatives list. Give it a read and then share your opinion.

Winners

Mike Tolkin: Having to juggle matches on two different continents as well as the headache that always comes with player selection, Eagles head coach Mike Tolkin did a fantastic job in picking his fall squad. He was able to secure the services of his international players for at least the matches in Europe. He was also able to call in some younger players, like BYU's Kyle Sumsion, in order to get them acclimated to the Eagles set-up. All in the all the squad is well rounded and should be able to pick up at least one win.

Take the jump to read more.
Titi Lamositele: The young prop played very well at the Americas Rugby Championship and will likely earn a start--entirely on merit--on the fall tour. By starting he will be allowed to sign with Saracens. Having a young American in the system of one of the best teams in the world is always a good thing. Plus, his start may come at his new home ground.


The Battle in the Bay: This is already the premier college 7's tournament on the West Coast. It was well attended, well run, and featured a lot of great teams. Next year will likely be even better as teams see the benefit of the tournament.

Samu Manoa: His Man of the Match performance has the rugby world buzzing for justifiable reasons. He continues to grow as a rugby player and could one day be talked about as the greatest U.S. player of all time.

Houston & Atlanta: Three years in a row hosting a Tier I opponent isn't bad for Houston. Atlanta will finally get the chance to host an Eagles match.

Losers

Infinity Park: Having hosted so many Eagles matches for so long it't now been awhile since the Eagles have played there--Georgia in 2012. They were talked about as a host for the Eagles RWCQ qualifying leg against Uruguay but from a logistical standpoint Atlanta made more sense. They might get a match next year but now that the U.S. is drawing in bigger crowds it may be longer than that.

Taku Ngwenya: As we noted earlier today, his being left off the Eagles fall roster doesn't have anything to do with his current form so much as the form of up and coming players and his club. Still, it has to sting a little not to be on the team and there not to be a bigger fuss among the fan base.

John Quill: Things looked promising when he signed with London Irish in the summer, but some surgery and an infection have robbed him of the opportunity to shine for the club. Now it has kept him out of the Eagles tour. Hopefully he gets healthy for next season.

Metropolis: Okay, okay, Metropolis isn't really a "loser" when they have dominated much of the season but having their perfect record smashed last week has to hurt.

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