I suppose it is a sign of just how much progress rugby is making out here in the States that there are starting to become conflicts with some of America’s biggest sports.
Take American Football. Traditionally, the sport has always been very supportive of its athletes playing rugby too. Many clubs take the view that their players can improve several of their football disciplines by playing rugby.
We get to see numerous athletes from football who are incredible specimens and in great physical shape but their stamina is nowhere near as good as it could be.
Football coaches know that by coming to play rugby too, that is one part of their make-up that should improve dramatically.
Not only that, but we are finding that young football players like rugby because they actually get to touch the ball. If they play on defence in football, they may never touch the ball at all throughout any game.
I would also like to think that they could learn a bit about team unity as part of a 22-man rugby squad as opposed to a 50-man football roster.
Recently, we have come across examples of one or two players saying that they would like to leave football completely to focus on rugby.
While that may be good for us in the short term that athletes feel compelled to cross over to our sport, the long-term effects could be detrimental.
We need the support of the football teams and coaches and don’t want to start getting their backs up.
We believe guys can play both sports alongside each other.
I suppose it is down to finding the right time for the sport of rugby in the structure of the school calendar.
There is still a situation where the east coast and west coast tend to play the game at different times of the year.
That is obviously not great for planning.
It’s just another hurdle that we are trying to cross.
Follow Gaving Hickie on twitter @Lineoutcoach
Underarmour are offering free delivery* on orders placed before May 6th - *see site for t&c.