Isles Leaves Rugby, Joins NFL

Posted: December 27, 2013 at 4:10 pm

Isles_Carlin_runningIt appears that Carlin Isles’s journey into rugby has lasted less than two years. AHe signed with the Detroit Lions practice squad today. After realizing he wasn’t going to make the 2012 Olympics as a sprinter Isles picked up rugby to keep his Olympic dreams alive. During his time with the Eagles he appeared in 12 tournaments and scored a number of tries.  While he learned the game quickly and his speed gave opponents plenty of trouble there were other aspects of the game that he lacked. He was never a consistent presence in the starting lineup.  By signing with the Lions practice squad he will earn considerably more than on a 7s contract and could even return to rugby in a few months time.

All-Americans Assemble

Camp for the boy’s High School All-Americans and the Junior All-Americans is underway in Arizona. Both teams announced their camp participants earlier in the week. The Junior All-Americans still do not have a coach in place although there are strong rumors that one has been chosen. Time is of the essence for the Junior All-Americans as they have only a few months before they play in the Junior World Rugby Trophy in Hong Kong. The High School All-Americans are preparing for the Las Vegas 7s and their tour of England.

Boxing Day Matches

It’s Boxing Day, which means it’s time for local derbies in the United Kingdom. In the Scotland derby Glasgow used a try from Stuart Hogg and five penalties from Duncan Weir to defeat Edinburgh 20-16. In Wales, the Ospreys came from behind to defeat Scarlets 10-6.

Premiership, RFU Hold Euro Talks

The Premiership and the RFU sat down from Christmas Eve talks to discuss the future of English teams in European competition. As of now England will be the only country not to play in the Heineken Cup or Amlin Challenge Cup next year. However, that situation may be changing as it looks as if the English teams have new momentum on their side in negotiations with several other entities wanting the competition governed by someone other than the European Rugby Cup.

Curtis Reed is the founder and editor of This Is American Rugby. He can be found on Twitter @ThisIsAmerRugby, on Facebook, and at

  • Matt Manley

    I ask this in the most genuine and sincere way: how can we realistically pay the 7s players a competitive wage that would spark an interest in more players?

    Obviously, we need a revenue stream, but how can we as fans bring this to fruition when no one has the grapes to give it a go?

  • Ted Hardy


    Great question. Not sure anyone has the answer. To spark the interest of more players and retain the good ones, they’d need to pay them at least $50K/year with the potential to make that number closer to $100K/year. Something that will never happen under the current system. As a union, we are not equipped for something of that magnitude in 7s or 15s. It’s going to take private enterprise.

    As you mentioned, an entirely new revenue stream is needed. Something that is sustainable, which rules out sponsorship. All that leaves is some kind of professional tour/competition. We need to put the game in front of people. Seeing as business people can’t even get one off the ground, I’m not sure if us fans will be able to muster anything.

    • Matt Manley

      If they can make stars out of idiots on reality TV, then it should be simple to make people care about rugby in America.

      • Ted Hardy

        It’s mind boggling isn’t it? The really sad part is that someone could probably market a reality show following a rag-tag rugby club pretty easily. Some of the antics are made for reality TV. Not exactly the image we want to sell to the general American audience, but it would probably make more noise for the sport than the Detroit Lions signing a kick returner to their practice squad.

        If done correctly, someone could use some nuance to weave the positive values of rugby… brotherhood, teamwork, tradition, sportsmanship into a story with rugby shenanigans and probably make rugby very attractive to a large audience.