NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. - An internationally renowned rugby superstar is taking his unique skills to New Rochelle, where he will establish a Rugby Academy at Monroe College.
This fall, James English, who has played professionally in Europe and domestically, will launch the Rugby Academy at Monroe, which will introduce Westchester to “the fastest-growing team sport in the country.”
When it launches, the Rugby Academy will provide athletes of various abilities and experiences to play competitively at the collegiate level, playing “fifteens” - 15-on-15 matches - and “sevens,” a faster-paced tournament-style format.
Those participating on English’s team will compete in the Central Division of the Tri-State Conference for Collegiate Rugby during the fall, with the first game scheduled for Sept. 11 against Vassar College.
English, who began his coaching career in 2003, comes to New Rochelle after serving as the Head of Rugby and Long Term Athlete Development at a specialized sports school in England where he worked with future Olympians in various disciplines. He later taught and coached at powerhouse Blackrock College in Dublin.
Since moving stateside three years ago, English has worked for Rugby Pennsylvania, Yale University and the Atavus USA Rugby Academy. In addition to his time at the Academy, English will also coach with Play Rugby USA’s Community Olympic Development Program and the New York Rugby Club in the Women’s Premier League.
“With its core focus on developing the whole student-athlete, Monroe’s approach of driving academic accomplishment and personal development along with sport-specific technical skills and training is very much aligned with my own philosophy, and a key reason I jumped at the chance to help build a rugby program here,” English said.
“The Rugby Academy will operate as a club program, but with the training rigor and discipline of a varsity program, bringing experienced players and those from sports like football with transferable skills together on the pitch.”
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