As One Door Closes. Introducing Our New Coach

Thank you to all who were able to make it to the meeting over Memorial Day weekend; if you were unaware we recent lost our head coach, Jeff “Copper” Bollig, to retirement. He built up a great platform for our future success by implementing new ideas, different practice styles, and a whole new revamped offense, and as players we got together to discuss our next candidate and what our future will look like with him at the helm.

“A coach cannot want something more than the team does. Otherwise, the expectations are too high, and the training is too hard to retain that club’s type of players.”

Whenever a new coach takes over he is always faced with the natural response from his new team of “well that’s not how we’ve been doing it.” To show you the kind of forward thinker our new head coach is, when approached by our leadership team he got ahead of that issue by explaining he would love to be our coach and believes we can go to the next level together, but in order for that to happen there has to be a complete buy-in from the players into his way of doing things and his level of expectations, so he posed a few shifts that he would like us as players to buy into. In addition to that he knows this is an unpaid club, so he expected there to be rebuttals on his shifts but the closer we could get to his outlines the better we will be.

It turns out every one of us believes this man is the right man for our future because we hardly adjusted any of his requests! We all agreed that if we buy in to what he is asking of us that we will be the best NoogaRugby club that has ever been around and will exceed the expectations he has for us, and with his leadership building on top of what Copper laid down during his tenure, the only thing stopping us, is us.

Before I go into those outlines and what we’ve agreed to, let me be the first to welcome our new Head Coach [and Former Assistant Coach] Chris Martin!

For those who don’t know our new Head Coach and Former Assistant Coach Chris Martin (HCAFACCM for short), he has been around the rugby world for a good while now! He is a certified level 300 coach, has coached both men and women up at Lee University (3rd place in nationals in both 15s and 7s for the women along with numerous other placements as an assistant coach there), coached the Tennessee HS All Stars for 2 years, is currently still the head coach and director of the USA South Women’s team, is playing for Nooga Men’s club, and this past season he assisted Copper in our conditioning and defensive game plan at Nooga. We could all see from the first drill he had us do that he knew and had passion for what he was talking about and more importantly he knew how to relate that to every player out there and get their commitment to do it properly.

By having someone with a mind and a passion like HCAFACCM we are poised to earn our way into the deeper playoff rounds and bring out our full potential, and I have been anticipating this announcement for a few weeks now! Welcome Chris!

There were rumors flying that our social side of rugby was going to be ruined and taken away in Chris’ “demands to be a coach” but that is completely false! Number 1 he never laid our “demands” instead he asked for a “contractual agreement” meaning we all agree to the terms and then hold to them. Secondly he never wanted to end our social life, in fact he told me “90% of the time I hang out with Nooga guys we’re going to find alcohol” so he knows our social scene is one of the most attractive parts to our culture, our player retention, and our recruiting. He just believes [and we all agree] that if we commit to what he outlines for us as much as we commit to “winning the party” that we will elevate our overall presence and expand our reach throughout the rugby world, and playing rugby will be at a completely different level than many of us have ever played!

We're extremely excited to ring in the new decade with you Chris!

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