Testing Out Or Fronting Up? Eagle Lineup Breakdown

Miss Pass: What Would You Do?

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Is the Eagle lineup a surprise, or did we just get it wrong? 

In this week's Miss Pass we speculated on how Gary Gold would approach picking his team to face Canada. We figured Gold would rest some regular starters, and he is, sort of, and he's not, sort of.

A Mix Up Front

Take a look at the props and you see two very experienced guys coming in. But at the same time, we on the Miss Pass Show knew we'd see Eric Fry and Titi Lamositele because we haven't seen much of them of late. So, clearly, Gold is in a good position here, in that he's starting seasoned players who just need a little game time.

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Same goes for hooker. Joe Taufete'e was a bit of a question mark as he's been dealing with an injury, and as a result, Gold has started three different hookers and used four — none of them Taufete'e.

He's seen those guys, now back to the player with 20 tries in 22 test matches.

At lock, we kind of expected to see Ben Landry and Nate Brakeley. With Greg Peterson being pretty much a lock at lock and Nick Civetta working his way back from injury, Gold went for the big GP over testing a different combination.

Landry, by virtue of this pick, looks to be settled nicely into this squad and he deserves it.

Ben Landry Bandages And All

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The back row is kind of full of questions. It's hard to know which flanker combination is exactly the right one. This looks close to a front-line group, though, and Cam Dolan is the only No. 8. Dreams of testing out Riekert Hattingh were dashed when he hurt his knee. 

USA Names Lineup To Face Canada

So Dolan has to play, even though this writer said he wouldn't. The message is more: he doesn't have to, but he's the guy, and that's that.

Malon Al-Jiboori is still raw in some ways, but his athletic stats are very strong. He, Brakeley, and Olive Kilifi are on the bench with one more audition to give. The rest are cover.

Getting It Right

The Miss Pass guys got it pretty much right in the backline. No AJ MacGinrty; the scrumhalves we've been seeing take a rest. Marcel Brache gets a look in the #13 jersey. The only place Miss Pass got it wrong was thinking Gold would start Mike Te'o and rest Blaine Scully.


Scully's in no mood to rest up and Te'o will get his chance. Martin Iosefo has a key role to play on the left wing.

The halfback combination of Nate Augspurger and Will Magie makes sense. Both players need one more moment, and this start is it. Both will likely make the World Cup squad, but can't go into the World Cup cold.

So this is a strong USA team, especially in the tight five. It's one with a few players still playing for spots, and a few still playing for regular starting spots. But it's not a second-string side at all, and while Canada will be geared up and ready in Vancouver, this lineup can beat them.

England Looking To Stay Perfect Against Wales

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England has been rolling. 

Autumn Nations Cup Notebook #2: Contenders & Pretenders Revealed

Highlight: Wales vs Georgia

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The second weekend of Autumn Nations Cup action served up two of the most anticipated clashes of the tournament.

What Did We Learn From Stars vs Stripes Scrimmage?

Replay: USA Women Stars vs Stripes

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With the news that two players in and around the Eagles camp tested positive for coronavirus this week, the second Stars vs Stripes match was cancelled. 

USA Rugby Cancels Second Stars vs Stripes Game Due To Positive Covid Test

USA Rugby

During Friday’s scheduled screening, two Women’s XVs players tested positive for COVID-19. 

Can Ireland Handle England's Knockout Power?

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England is red hot coming off a title run at Six Nations and an absolute waxing of Georgia to the tune of a 40-0 shutout in its first Autumn Nations Cup game a week ago. 

Women's National Team XVs Rosters For Stars vs Stripes Scrimmage Series

Stars vs Stripes

Head Coach Rob Cain has announced a 49-player roster for the Women’s National Team XVs’ scrimmage series to happen November 18 and 21, KO 2 PM MT, at the Rugby Town National Training Center. 

Autumn Nations Cup Notebook #1: Blowouts, Comebacks, & Cancellations

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The first weekend of the 2020 Autumn Nations Cup went mostly how we thought. The favorites won and the action was exciting. 

Fiji vs France Canceled At Autumn Nations Cup

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Due to four positive Covid-19 test, the game between Fiji and France has been canceled. 

The Complete Autumn Nations Cup Preview

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Autumn Nations Cup gets underway as Wales hosts Ireland today (Friday, Nov. 13) at 2PM ET.

Big Opportunity For Georgia At Autumn Nations Cup

Georgia

The top dogs of tier-2 European rugby finally get the opportunity to play with the big boys of the Six Nations when Georgia competes in the Autumn Nations Cup.