Hawkins steps down as Men's Eagles Sevens coach

Hawkins steps down as Men's Eagles Sevens coach

CHULA VISTA, Calif. – Following a program review, Matt Hawkins will step down as head coach of the Men’s Eagles Sevens Thursday, USA Rugby announced.

Hawkins took over as head coach ahead of the 2013-14 IRB HSBC Sevens World Series and led the Eagles to a combined 14-2-34 record in nine events. The Eagles won four Shields during the Series and finished 13th with 41 points.

As a player, Hawkins scored 280 points in 38 competitions for the Eagles. He captained the team during the IRB Rugby World Cup Sevens 2013 in Moscow and the 2012-13 Series as the Eagles fought to keep core status.

“My career with the sevens program as a player, captain, and coach has been one that will be looked back on with much emotion and pride,” Hawkins said. “Unfortunately I have been asked to step down from my position as Head Coach. There was a real opportunity to make a change and have our program step forward in a new direction that allowed for short- and long-term sustainable success.

“I thank the administration for the opportunity, my staff for their support, and the players for the honor to lead and guide them.”

The goal of the Eagles Sevens program is to take the podium at the Rio 2016 Olympic Summer Games. The Eagles will look to qualify for the Olympics during the 2014-15 Sevens World Series.

“I would like to thank Matt for the outstanding contribution he has made to the Eagles Sevens program as both a player and a coach,” USA Rugby Chief Executive Officer Nigel Melville said. “With just under a year to go to Olympic qualification, we want to make sure that we continue to take the program to the next level and to achieve this we felt it was important to make changes.”

The new coaching staff will be announced in the next ten days.

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Comments (35)

  • Guest (Come On!)

    In reply to: Guest (Anna B)

    He may be all that, but he is a crap rugby coach. Worthless in fact.

  • Guest (David I. Cook)

    This is a reflection of the poor leadership within the upper management of USA Rugby, certainly not Matt Hawkins. He was put in an impossible situation. No coaching experience - who thought this was an appropriate selection for a head coach of a National Team?

  • Guest (Andrew)

    This is bull. Matt coached a team to one of the best seasons the Eagles have had in a long time.

  • Guest (MuckrakerRugby)

    In reply to: Guest (Andrew)

    Finishing 14-2-34 and two series' positions lower than the previous year is not a good season - definitely not "one of the best seasons the Eagles have had in a long time" - not by any stretch of the imagination.

  • Guest (Rugby Enthusiast)

    The Eagles 7's carousel continues and under the short term auspices of the one and only task of beating Canada next year and qualifying for Rio! It's ironic how guys like Caravelli, Magelby and Hawkins have all been forced out, asked to resign or put in a position where there only choice is to leave. How is in charge of this s)#O$ show??!! Let me guess....the man making the moves for himself at the top to leave us all high and dry in another 2 years! It's sad the way this program is run and looked after by our governing body...it's sad when most of us with a decent background in the game can identify many of the obvious reasons we continue to fail.
    We make our coaches professional fundraisers rather than professional coaches...how can you expect anyone to devote their life and livelihood to the game/program as a coach when the are paid and treated like a fast food chain manager!

  • Guest (Chaz)

    When you have a program that only looks so far as the west coast and pacific islands for talent - it loses all credibility.

  • Guest (Wall)

    USA Rugby needs to fire Nigel Melville - not Hawk!

  • Guest (John)

    Thank you for your commitment, effort, and time!! I hope Matt continues to help develop the next generation of Eagles!!

  • Guest (Brian Jackson)

    With miserable Eagles records at U20's 15's and 7'S is it not time for a public evaluation of USA Rugby's leadership? I wonder what their KPI's are?

  • Guest (MuckrakerRugby)

    In reply to: Guest (Brian Jackson)

    You assume that KPIs (as we would understand them) are assigned.

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