Two More Developmental Players Named
Jackals Development Players are key to building rugby domestically. Training full time with the Jackals and placement with local clubs to gain game experience, the Developmental Players will have the opportunity to improve to MLR level of play as part of our high performance pathway.
Growing up in Akron, Ohio, Chaz began playing rugby for Copley High School after seeing his cousin play. After his first season, he also joined the Akron RFC and says he “quickly fell in love with the sport.” Soon after, his high school, Walsh Jesuit High School, created a club so he continued to practice with all three clubs.
After high school, Chaz was recruited by St. Bonaventure (Bonas) University’s head coach Tui Osbourne, who formerly coached Life University to two national championships. Chaz credits the rugby culture at Bonas for bringing him even closer to the game and says he was “able to develop into a more complete player.” While at Bonas, he played varsity wing all four years and was named 2020 Back of the Year.
Chaz graduated with a degree in International Studies. He says, “I’ve always been fascinated by different cultures and languages and I hope to work in the government someday.” Along with English, he speaks Chinese and Arabic and hopes to use his “knowledge of language to do something great someday.” In his free time, Chaz enjoys snowboarding and BMX Racing.
Chaz says, “I want to make my brothers and coaches proud and show them how far I have come because of their help.” A few of Chaz’s former teammates have made it to the MLR so he sees this as an “opportunity of a lifetime and wants to surpass any expectation that anyone has of [him].”
He is excited to move to Dallas for the weather also. “Although I like snowboarding, I hate the cold. I want to see a winter without snow for the first time in my life,” Chaz said. He continued, “I can’t wait to start this new adventure.” Welcome to the pack Chaz!
Like many American kids, Ryheem played football in high school. He and his friends were watching sports highlights when they came across rugby clips. After some research, Ryheem found a local club to join and he hasn’t looked back since.
Ryheem is from Warminster, PA and attended William Tennett High School. While using high school football to stay active, he played for Doylestown Rugby Club from U15 through U19. He says, “I fell in love with the sport and knew I would pursue it as long as I could.”
After high school, Ryheem attended Susquehanna University located in Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania where he majored in Early Childhood Education. During his time at Susquehanna, Ryheem was named Mid Atlantic Conference All-Star in 2017, was 1 of 83 of the nation’s top athletes invited to the 2018 Collegiate All-American selection camp, and was captain of the rugby club.
Ryheem also had the opportunity to travel to Ireland and New Zealand when he attended the Crusaders International High Performance Unit. Recently, Ryheem joined four other members from Doylestown Rugby Club and played on the Philadelphia United Select team.
Ryheem says rugby gave him something to connect with. He continued, “I finally started to become my true self, became more outgoing and all around a more positive person.” Growing up playing football, he noticed that teams generally do not show respect for opponents while playing, but his experience playing internationally solidified that rugby is different. “It’s a community of people who share the same love and respect for one thing, which is to say they are part of the rugby family.” Ryheem went on, “there seems to be no sport like it.”
Ryheem comes from a large family where he is the middle of seven kids. Family is actually a huge pull for him coming to Dallas as part of his extended family lives in Texas. He also has a one year old pit bull puppy named King who will accompany him.
“I am excited to be a Jackal because this is an opportunity I’ve been chasing since I picked up a rugby ball,” Ryheem exclaimed. He continued that coming to Dallas allows him to be a part of growing the game in the US, improve his own skills and develop into a top level player. He said, “There was something that caught the Jackals attention and I want to keep that and prove my worth.” Welcome to the pack Ryhemm!
About Dallas Jackals —
The Dallas Jackals are a professional rugby team of Major League Rugby (MLR), the highest level of rugby competition in North America. The Jackals were named as an expansion team in 2020 and will play their inaugural season in 2021. The team’s central mission is to develop domestic talent to a world-class level of play and professionalism while strengthening the high performance pathway in DFW by supporting the local clubs. Through proactive Community Outreach, the Jackals will exemplify and spread the passion of rugby by inspiring tradition, respect, family, and character on and off the pitch.
About MLR —
Major League Rugby is a professional sports league entering its fourth season and represents the highest level of competition in North America. The League evolved from seven teams in 2018, to 13 teams in 2021, featuring 12 from the United States and one from Canada. The competition follows an 18-week regular schedule for a chance to advance to the playoffs. Matches are televised on CBS Sports Network, Fox Sports 2, ESPN+, Facebook Live (for international viewers) and on different platforms in each local market. MLR prides itself on its incredible athletes, the passionate community behind them, and its strong values of Respect, Inclusivity, and Tradition.
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