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MLR Pre-Season XV and Awards

Photo Cred - Josh Fredlund

The time is nigh for season two of Major League Rugby. Pre-season matches have been played. New player and coach signings have been announced. Two new teams have officially joined the league. And we've got a 16 week schedule this year. So let's hand out some pre-season awards.

Pre-Season All-MLR XV

1. Kellen Gordon - Seattle Seawolves

2. Dylan Fawsitt - Rugby United NY

3. Paul Mullen - Houston SaberCats

4. Ben Mitchell - Austin Elite

5. Cam Polson - Seattle Seawolves

6. Vili Toluta'u - Seattle Seawolves

7. Hanco Germishuys - Glendale Raptors

8. Cam Dolan - NOLA Gold

9. Phil Mack - Seattle Seawolves

10. Sam Windsor - Houston SaberCats

11. Tonata Lauti - Utah Warriors

12. Osea Kolinisau - Houston SaberCats

13. Ryan Matyas - San Diego Legion

14. Harley Davidson - Glendale Raptors

15. Mat Turner - Seattle Seawolves

Pre-Season Player of the Year - Phil Mack, Seattle Seawolves

Mack was THE best player week in and week out last season. The fact that Mack was acting as the head coach for Seattle, after a visa issue, made his performance even more impressive. Mack has a little more help this year and if he can continue his strong performances this season, the Seawolves have a chance to repeat as MLR Champions.

Pre-Season Newcomer of the Year - Ben Foden, Rugby United NY

This may feel like a cop out and it probably is, but when RUNY announced the signing of Ben Foden, the talent level in MLR was immediately raised up a few notches. Foden may not be as talented as he was in previous years, but he still brings a skill level that will challenge other teams and raise the talent of his own team. Foden is also set to coach the back for RUNY and that should help RUNY in the years to come.

Pre-Season Coach of the Year - Nate Osborne, NOLA Gold

NOLA had a lot of breaks go against them last season. Their field looked terrible after being installed right before the season and a couple key players went down with injuries early in the season. The Gold were able to salvage together an ok season, but it definitely could've gone better. This off-season NOLA has made some key signings and coach Osborne has the Gold rolling in their pre-season matchups. Expect the Gold to cause some problems this season.

MLR is taking a big step forward with season two. The talent level has increased and the in-game competition should increase as well. It looks like some big things are going to happen this year in Major League Rugby so stay tuned in, watch some games, and spread the word.

~Josh Fredlund