Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

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Pilotman123
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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by Pilotman123 »

ormond lad wrote:
Blueberry wrote:Don't think there is any doubt that the trad rugby schools system is working, it's working brilliantly and producing continuously. I have no doubt this will continue. The wasted talent is in the club game where I have no doubt we are losing substantial talent because the club system is so antiquated and a mess in that key 12-16 year ago group. Many kids just through their hat at it and end up playing soccer or GAA not because they dont like rugby but because the club structures and competitions are a mess.
how is club game a mess for 12 to 16 year group. The amount of wasted talent in schools game is ridiculous considering how the schools game is structured
Schools system is working to an extent but still doesnt do enough for those not in the stronger schools. Focus on cup does need to change even with quality of some friendlies played beforehand.
Why do you think should happen then?

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by ronk »

We have a club and wider schools development pathway that is moderately successful at developing players (probably no better than the other provinces) and an elite schools pathway that is extremely successful but that will always have limited scalability. Only a few schools will ever be able to sustain programs that are effectively semi pro. The clubs and other schools aren’t doing anything wrong, they just aren’t overproducing.

Whatever other problems they have, the elite schools shouldn’t be stopped.

At the moment there are players who could have pro careers who can’t get into the academy such is the competition. What does more elite schools fix?

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by Blueberry »

ronk wrote:We have a club and wider schools development pathway that is moderately successful at developing players (probably no better than the other provinces) and an elite schools pathway that is extremely successful but that will always have limited scalability. Only a few schools will ever be able to sustain programs that are effectively semi pro. The clubs and other schools aren’t doing anything wrong, they just aren’t overproducing.

Whatever other problems they have, the elite schools shouldn’t be stopped.

At the moment there are players who could have pro careers who can’t get into the academy such is the competition. What does more elite schools fix?
Agree re the elite schools - without them Irish rugby is nowhere.

and re the clubs and 12-16 year age bracket I could write a book on the problems but in short it needs radical modernising if you want it to provide pro players:

a) Too many clubs struggling to get teams on the pitch. Clubs need to be reduced or clubbed together at underage level. Often clubs just put out 15 bodies, if you can make the KO time you get selected. Standard is cr@p.
b) Competitions are a mess, badly organised. (Last minute fixtures, unclear and inconsistent rules, teams end up playing the same teams over and over again, endless changes to KO times.......I could go on and on). Annoys parents and kids.
c) Coaching is often of a very poor quality. (The well intentioned dad etc....often little more)
d) The above often causes biased selection etc etc. Endless issues here, annoys the hell out of kids.
e) Lack of refs and usual home town nonsense, demotivates kids.
f) I could go on and on.

Of course most of the people involved are well meaning and their heart is in the right place but it depends what we want the clubs to do ?

a) Happy enough for the current 'local, friendly' rugby club doing their best with the very odd truly exceptional player cutting into the Leinster academy and accepting that many will drift off.
b) We want to turn the current club player talent pool into another real asset to feed the Leinster Academy and Ireland etc.

If B is the answer it needs radical change if A is the answer leave it alone and continue to largely depend on the handful of elite schools to supply Leinster and Ireland.

This is not some agenda based attack on the club game - there is lots to love about it on a community level as is but if you expect it to provide a platform for Pro player development in it's current form forget about it. Any talented kid who wants to play pro rugby needs to stop playing club rugby and join an elite school otherwise it's a tough road.
Last edited by Blueberry on October 28th, 2019, 9:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by ormond lad »

Pilotman123 wrote:
ormond lad wrote:
Blueberry wrote:Don't think there is any doubt that the trad rugby schools system is working, it's working brilliantly and producing continuously. I have no doubt this will continue. The wasted talent is in the club game where I have no doubt we are losing substantial talent because the club system is so antiquated and a mess in that key 12-16 year ago group. Many kids just through their hat at it and end up playing soccer or GAA not because they dont like rugby but because the club structures and competitions are a mess.
how is club game a mess for 12 to 16 year group. The amount of wasted talent in schools game is ridiculous considering how the schools game is structured
Schools system is working to an extent but still doesnt do enough for those not in the stronger schools. Focus on cup does need to change even with quality of some friendlies played beforehand.
Why do you think should happen then?
more games added to the cup. Change format to allow that.

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by ormond lad »

ronk wrote:We have a club and wider schools development pathway that is moderately successful at developing players (probably no better than the other provinces) and an elite schools pathway that is extremely successful but that will always have limited scalability. Only a few schools will ever be able to sustain programs that are effectively semi pro. The clubs and other schools aren’t doing anything wrong, they just aren’t overproducing.

Whatever other problems they have, the elite schools shouldn’t be stopped.

At the moment there are players who could have pro careers who can’t get into the academy such is the competition. What does more elite schools fix?
very few schools have money or playing numbers or coaches to produce pro players on very regular basis. Dont think anyone is saying the top schools should be stopped. You have to look beyond academy directly. We need to help those who cant immediately make academy and others stay in game longer. If good enough they will find a place in the pro game somewhere.

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by ormond lad »

ronk wrote:We have a club and wider schools development pathway that is moderately successful at developing players (probably no better than the other provinces) and an elite schools pathway that is extremely successful but that will always have limited scalability. Only a few schools will ever be able to sustain programs that are effectively semi pro. The clubs and other schools aren’t doing anything wrong, they just aren’t overproducing.

Whatever other problems they have, the elite schools shouldn’t be stopped.

At the moment there are players who could have pro careers who can’t get into the academy such is the competition. What does more elite schools fix?
very few schools have money or playing numbers or coaches to produce pro players on very regular basis. Dont think anyone is saying the top schools should be stopped. You have to look beyond academy directly. We need to help those who cant immediately make academy and others stay in game longer. If good enough they will find a place in the pro game somewhere.

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by ormond lad »

Blueberry wrote:
ronk wrote:We have a club and wider schools development pathway that is moderately successful at developing players (probably no better than the other provinces) and an elite schools pathway that is extremely successful but that will always have limited scalability. Only a few schools will ever be able to sustain programs that are effectively semi pro. The clubs and other schools aren’t doing anything wrong, they just aren’t overproducing.

Whatever other problems they have, the elite schools shouldn’t be stopped.

At the moment there are players who could have pro careers who can’t get into the academy such is the competition. What does more elite schools fix?
Agree re the elite schools - without them Irish rugby is nowhere.

and re the clubs and 12-16 year age bracket I could write a book on the problems but in short it needs radical modernising if you want it to provide pro players:

a) Too many clubs struggling to get teams on the pitch. Clubs need to be reduced or clubbed together at underage level. Often clubs just put out 15 bodies, if you can make the KO time you get selected. Standard is cr@p.
b) Competitions are a mess, badly organised. (Last minute fixtures, unclear and inconsistent rules, teams end up playing the same teams over and over again, endless changes to KO times.......I could go on and on). Annoys parents and kids.
c) Coaching is often of a very poor quality. (The well intentioned dad etc....often little more)
d) The above often causes biased selection etc etc. Endless issues here, annoys the hell out of kids.
d) Lack of refs and usual home town nonsense, demotivates kids.
e) I could go on and on.

Of course most of the people involved are well meaning and their heart is in the right place but it depends what we want the clubs to do ?

a) Happy enough for the current 'local, friendly' rugby club doing their best with the very odd truly exceptional player cutting into the Leinster academy and accepting that many will drift off.
b) We want to turn the current club player talent pool into another real asset to feed the Leinster Academy and Ireland etc.

If B is the answer it needs radical change if A is the answer leave it alone and continue to largely depend on the handful of elite schools to supply Leinster and Ireland.

This is not some agenda based attack on the club game - there is lots to love about it on a community level as is but if you expect it to provide a platform for Pro player development in it's current form forget about it. Any talented kid who wants to play pro rugby needs to stop playing club rugby and join an elite school otherwise it's a tough road.
clubs shouldn't be reduced. Clubs already do combine if they cant field on their own. Look at youths leagues and you always see 2 or more clubs playing together.
Competitions aren't really badly organised. Care to show how they are?
If teams playing same sides over and over again is an issue then that worse in the so superior schools rugby....

That is an extremely biased and misguided post. To say any kid with aspirations of going pro should join one of the so called elite schools which in this province are neatly all fee paying does nothing to properly develop the sport even more.
Coaching in some of the schools isnt really so superior than some clubs and especially for any club player within the talent identification system with the province.

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by Pilotman123 »

ormond lad wrote:
Blueberry wrote:
ronk wrote:We have a club and wider schools development pathway that is moderately successful at developing players (probably no better than the other provinces) and an elite schools pathway that is extremely successful but that will always have limited scalability. Only a few schools will ever be able to sustain programs that are effectively semi pro. The clubs and other schools aren’t doing anything wrong, they just aren’t overproducing.

Whatever other problems they have, the elite schools shouldn’t be stopped.

At the moment there are players who could have pro careers who can’t get into the academy such is the competition. What does more elite schools fix?
Agree re the elite schools - without them Irish rugby is nowhere.

and re the clubs and 12-16 year age bracket I could write a book on the problems but in short it needs radical modernising if you want it to provide pro players:

a) Too many clubs struggling to get teams on the pitch. Clubs need to be reduced or clubbed together at underage level. Often clubs just put out 15 bodies, if you can make the KO time you get selected. Standard is cr@p.
b) Competitions are a mess, badly organised. (Last minute fixtures, unclear and inconsistent rules, teams end up playing the same teams over and over again, endless changes to KO times.......I could go on and on). Annoys parents and kids.
c) Coaching is often of a very poor quality. (The well intentioned dad etc....often little more)
d) The above often causes biased selection etc etc. Endless issues here, annoys the hell out of kids.
d) Lack of refs and usual home town nonsense, demotivates kids.
e) I could go on and on.

Of course most of the people involved are well meaning and their heart is in the right place but it depends what we want the clubs to do ?

a) Happy enough for the current 'local, friendly' rugby club doing their best with the very odd truly exceptional player cutting into the Leinster academy and accepting that many will drift off.
b) We want to turn the current club player talent pool into another real asset to feed the Leinster Academy and Ireland etc.

If B is the answer it needs radical change if A is the answer leave it alone and continue to largely depend on the handful of elite schools to supply Leinster and Ireland.

This is not some agenda based attack on the club game - there is lots to love about it on a community level as is but if you expect it to provide a platform for Pro player development in it's current form forget about it. Any talented kid who wants to play pro rugby needs to stop playing club rugby and join an elite school otherwise it's a tough road.
clubs shouldn't be reduced. Clubs already do combine if they cant field on their own. Look at youths leagues and you always see 2 or more clubs playing together.
Competitions aren't really badly organised. Care to show how they are?
If teams playing same sides over and over again is an issue then that worse in the so superior schools rugby....

That is an extremely biased and misguided post. To say any kid with aspirations of going pro should join one of the so called elite schools which in this province are neatly all fee paying does nothing to properly develop the sport even more.
Coaching in some of the schools isnt really so superior than some clubs and especially for any club player within the talent identification system with the province.
The schools coaches are extremely superior to the clubs and if you want to increase your chances of making it in the pro game, going to a fee paying school does help, you are more likely to make it to pro rugby if you play schools instead of clubs, the numbers speak for themselves, look at everyone on Leinster, most of the players went to fee paying rugby schools.

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by Dave Cahill »

Its easy to be able to hire better coaches with better facilities with 90 million quids worth of someone elses money burning a hole in your pocket
I have Bumbleflex

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by Twist »

In starting the thread I wasn't suggesting we stop taking schools players or anything even close to that.

I just think it's noticeable that two schools are now over-represented in Leinster *relative to other elite schools.* That's a recent trend.

I'd question whether it's good for Leinster (and therefore Ireland). I don't think two schools can possibly produce enough players to regularly win H Cups and beat Saracens, South Africa and England.

So have the other schools dropped their standards or are Michael's and Blackrock doing something different?


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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by Pilotman123 »

Twist wrote:In starting the thread I wasn't suggesting we stop taking schools players or anything even close to that.

I just think it's noticeable that two schools are now over-represented in Leinster *relative to other elite schools.* That's a recent trend.

I'd question whether it's good for Leinster (and therefore Ireland). I don't think two schools can possibly produce enough players to regularly win H Cups and beat Saracens, South Africa and England.

So have the other schools dropped their standards or are Michael's and Blackrock doing something different?


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Belvedere are starting to produce more as are Clongowes into the academy/ sub academy
Last edited by Pilotman123 on October 28th, 2019, 10:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by Pilotman123 »

To be fair it is hard to understand how Michael’s produce more players than any other school considering they rarely win the Senior Cup or even get to a final. Michael’s beat Belvedere by a point last season and lost to them the previous 3 seasons and still produce loads of professionals without winning cups, then a school like Belvedere produced only one Leinster player (HOS) the past few years but yet have been more successful than Michael’s.

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by Blueberry »

ormond lad wrote:
Blueberry wrote:
ronk wrote:We have a club and wider schools development pathway that is moderately successful at developing players (probably no better than the other provinces) and an elite schools pathway that is extremely successful but that will always have limited scalability. Only a few schools will ever be able to sustain programs that are effectively semi pro. The clubs and other schools aren’t doing anything wrong, they just aren’t overproducing.

Whatever other problems they have, the elite schools shouldn’t be stopped.

At the moment there are players who could have pro careers who can’t get into the academy such is the competition. What does more elite schools fix?
Agree re the elite schools - without them Irish rugby is nowhere.

and re the clubs and 12-16 year age bracket I could write a book on the problems but in short it needs radical modernising if you want it to provide pro players:

a) Too many clubs struggling to get teams on the pitch. Clubs need to be reduced or clubbed together at underage level. Often clubs just put out 15 bodies, if you can make the KO time you get selected. Standard is cr@p.
b) Competitions are a mess, badly organised. (Last minute fixtures, unclear and inconsistent rules, teams end up playing the same teams over and over again, endless changes to KO times.......I could go on and on). Annoys parents and kids.
c) Coaching is often of a very poor quality. (The well intentioned dad etc....often little more)
d) The above often causes biased selection etc etc. Endless issues here, annoys the hell out of kids.
d) Lack of refs and usual home town nonsense, demotivates kids.
e) I could go on and on.

Of course most of the people involved are well meaning and their heart is in the right place but it depends what we want the clubs to do ?

a) Happy enough for the current 'local, friendly' rugby club doing their best with the very odd truly exceptional player cutting into the Leinster academy and accepting that many will drift off.
b) We want to turn the current club player talent pool into another real asset to feed the Leinster Academy and Ireland etc.

If B is the answer it needs radical change if A is the answer leave it alone and continue to largely depend on the handful of elite schools to supply Leinster and Ireland.

This is not some agenda based attack on the club game - there is lots to love about it on a community level as is but if you expect it to provide a platform for Pro player development in it's current form forget about it. Any talented kid who wants to play pro rugby needs to stop playing club rugby and join an elite school otherwise it's a tough road.
clubs shouldn't be reduced. Clubs already do combine if they cant field on their own. Look at youths leagues and you always see 2 or more clubs playing together.
Competitions aren't really badly organised. Care to show how they are?
If teams playing same sides over and over again is an issue then that worse in the so superior schools rugby....

That is an extremely biased and misguided post. To say any kid with aspirations of going pro should join one of the so called elite schools which in this province are neatly all fee paying does nothing to properly develop the sport even more.
Coaching in some of the schools isnt really so superior than some clubs and especially for any club player within the talent identification system with the province.
Well having seen the club game first hand for a number of years (including underage coaching) that is my opinion and I have got similar feedback from endless other coaches and parents and players - lots to like on a community and 'fun' get the kids involved level but it's nothing to compare to the elite schools in terms of ruthlessly pulling the best talent through. As I said I'm not getting at the clubs here, they in many cases are doing their best with a bunch of well meaning volunteers but it's not structured correctly in so many ways (I could write a book on it if you wanted....) and I have seen several very talented kids look elsewhere for well organised competitive sport. It's all a bit hap hazard and run like we are still in the 1980's.

It really depends what you want ? I'm not saying what they should do but anyone who thinks the current club structure is setup and run to best maximize the talent out there is misguided. It's nowhere close. The elite schools are delivering in spades.

We are losing talent at the club game level (or not developing it as well as it could be) and I'm not some 'pro elite rugby schools jock' and if we want to dine at the top table in world rugby we can do better by looking very closely at this structure and pool of players to supplement the elite schools feed through.

It's remarkable what the elite schools have produced and we should applaud it but it does also have wider socio-economic questions as many players won't get that opportunity, but with a radially revised club game at underage level things could improve for kids who can't get to these schools.

Take what you want from my post but I'm sorry anyone who thinks that a really talented kid playing club rugby in Portlaoise or Wexford or Naas or Dundalk or Arklow etc etc has anything like the chance of making it PRO v the same kid entering Rock or Michael's is deluded.

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by the spoofer »

I'd like to point out that Birr Rugby club have produced 4 professional players in the last few years. That's more than some of the elite schools.

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by backrower8 »

Pilotman123 wrote:To be fair it is hard to understand how Michael’s produce more players than any other school considering they rarely win the Senior Cup or even get to a final.
Just a silly statement.

As you should know, nobody has been to more finals than Michael's in the last 10 years. 4 finals. Same as Clongowes and Belvedere and Blackrock. Rock, with 3 wins from 4, have been the most successful with each of the others on 2 wins from 4 each.

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by backrower8 »

the spoofer wrote:I'd like to point out that Birr Rugby club have produced 4 professional players in the last few years. That's more than some of the elite schools.
:happy clapper: :happy clapper:

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by backrower8 »

Twist wrote:In starting the thread I wasn't suggesting we stop taking schools players or anything even close to that.

I just think it's noticeable that two schools are now over-represented in Leinster *relative to other elite schools.* That's a recent trend.

I'd question whether it's good for Leinster (and therefore Ireland). I don't think two schools can possibly produce enough players to regularly win H Cups and beat Saracens, South Africa and England.

So have the other schools dropped their standards or are Michael's and Blackrock doing something different?


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:clap: :clap:

I agree, 2 schools or even 5 schools (Pres Cork and Munchins to name two more major producers, there are others) cannot produce sufficient players for Ireland to be consistently in the top 4 in the world.

It is not sustainable in my view in Michael's. Whatever about Rock who have a culture of rugby performance of 150+ years backed by being the largest rugby-playing boys school in the country, Michael's are half the size of Rock and Belvo and only performing consistently in the last 10-12 years.

There are plenty of reasons why an independently run school could and have decided to dial-down their investment in rugby. Belvedere, the second most successful school ever in Leinster, didn't win the SCT once in 32 seasons between 1973 and 2004! Terenure, the third most successful have 1 win in 20 years.

Michael's rise as a supplier of pro players is only 10 years old (Noel Reid). They can only be considered a reliable bulk supplier if they keep supplying a few players a season to the Academy for another 10-15 years.

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by Flash Gordon »

the spoofer wrote:I'd like to point out that Birr Rugby club have produced 4 professional players in the last few years. That's more than some of the elite schools.
And we need to develop more of this kind of productivity. Not just from a producing players point of view but from a culture and fan recruitment viewpoint. It'd be hard for a kid growing up in Wexford or Louth to identify with a team that is a reflection of private schools on the Merrion Road.

Much of the club conversation is around the senior team, the reality is that the Leinster "system" starts at U7's in the Clubs. If you haven't played rugby by the time you get to secondary school at age 12-13, you probably aren't going to make it.
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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by Pilotman123 »

the spoofer wrote:I'd like to point out that Birr Rugby club have produced 4 professional players in the last few years. That's more than some of the elite schools.
Names?

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Re: Overreliance on St Michael's and Blackrock(?)

Post by johng »

Both the starting and replacement LH props in tonight's team and Shane Delahunt in Connacht. Think there is a guy in the Ulster academy too. Not sure if he has made his debut for them.

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