Rugby is rising.
August 2016 was a huge month for rugby. For the first time since 1924, the sport was included in the Olympic games, and for the first time ever women played Olympic rugby. The conversation about the return of rugby dominated social media!
Across the United States people were tweeting about how exciting and entertaining rugby is to watch, and many thought that the U.S. teams had some of the most well rounded athletes at the Rio Games. The fast-paced nature of Rugby 7s, filled with running, tackling, and kicking, is just what the Olympics needed!
The USA Men’s Basketball team took a moment to pass around a rugby ball at their practice early in the week, and Matthew McConaughey revealed himself as rugby’s newest fan – showing up on the women’s sidelines wearing his USA T-shirt. Ryan Seacrest also learned a bit about rugby when he invited USA Eagle and former Glendale Raptor Jillion Potter to his Late Night Olympics Special. Jillion even got McConaughey to scrum down with her!
As I watched the rugby matches from the comfort of my couch (not jealous at all that I wasn’t in Rio) I saw so many outrageous, exuberant fans from around the world. They certainly stood out amongst the more subdued attendees of other events.
Since the Olympic rugby matches aired on regular broadcast television and live stream, the Raptors have had lots of new players in our Summer Flag Rugby program, all of them even more excited than before to learn their new favorite sport. I’ve received calls from parents because their kids saw rugby in the Olympics and now they want to play immediately. Young viewers were thrilled to learn one of the best parts of rugby: no matter what position you play, you can run with the ball, tackle people, and score!
With RugbyTown 7s starting in just a few days right here in Infinity Park, we’re excited to see fan growth in the stands, as well as fans tuning into our live stream. August was an incredible month for rugby and it’s only going to get better from here on out. What a time to be alive and playing the fastest growing sport in the United States!
To buy tickets to RugbyTown 7s, visit rugbytown.us/serevi.
To reserve a spot in Fall After School Rugby, visit raptorsacademy.com/fall.