This weekend, over 550 young rugby players under the age of 14 will converge on the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif. to compete in the "Olympic 7s Youth Tournament." The USA men's sevens team will be on hand to show their support for youth rugby and are slated to deliver the medals to winning teams in each division (Under 8, Under 10, Under 12, Under 14).
Hosted by the San Diego Wallabies, the youth arm of the Old Mission Bay Athletic Club (OMBAC), a club that has produced over 50 Eagles over the years, the event was so popular that the hosts had to stop accepting teams.
The Wallabies have around 100 youth players across four different age groups. Down the road in Encinitas, the Coastal Dragons have hit the 100 mark in just two years.
With youth rugby participation rates exploding across the country, events like the "Olympic 7s Youth Tournament" expose parents, young players, and coaches to the sport.
The most inspiring aspect of the tournament's success, in addition to the fact that youth rugby is gaining traction, is that the young players competing in the tournament this weekend may be training for 2016 Olympics at that very facility five years from now.