WASHINGTON, DC (April 1, 2022) – Old Glory DC has named former NOLA Gold Head Coach Nate Osborne as Interim Head Coach for the balance of the 2022 Major League Rugby season. Osborne replaces former Old Glory Head Coach Andrew Douglas, whose departure was announced Tuesday.
Osborne, a native of Australia, comes to Washington, DC, after four seasons as Head Coach of NOLA Gold, having led the team since its inaugural season in MLR and through the 2021 MLR season. While at NOLA, Osborne oversaw all aspects of the Gold’s professional rugby program, including identifying and recruiting first-team players, hiring and supervising assistant coaches and other team roles, developing and leading training sessions, and ensuring adherence to Major League Rugby rules and regulations. His leadership at NOLA Gold proved a steady success, with the team narrowly missing the playoffs in each of its four seasons. Most recently, NOLA Gold was atop the Eastern Conference table for most of MLR’s 2021 season, only falling short of the playoffs by two table points to Rugby New York, despite having just won the final regular-season matchup between the two Eastern Conference rivals in Week 18 by a score of 35-32.
Outside of MLR, Osborne has an extensive background in coaching rugby at all levels of the game, including Easts Rugby RFC in Canberra, Australia, and Metropolis RFC in Minneapolis, MN. In 2014, he was called up to USA Rugby to coach the Men’s XV National Team as the Backs and Attack Coach alongside Mike Tolkin and joined the US XV side during its Rugby World Cup campaign in England in 2015.
In making the first head coach change in its history, Old Glory DC also announces its intent to conduct a worldwide search for its next head coach, designed to fill the role with a leader focused on the philosophy of developing a program of sustainable excellence built on a robust home-grown player development pathway. It is expected that Osborne will be a candidate for the position, but his hiring in the interim role today reflects the organization’s commitment to begin its course change now.
“Nate’s teams have always earned our respect, ever since Old Glory entered MLR,” said Old Glory co-owner Chris Dunlavey. “But we’ve asked him to take on this opportunity based on the confidence he has in the team we have assembled here and his belief that he can help us win. The 2022 season is far from over, and we still have a lot to show the rugby fans of Washington.”
“Firstly, I’d like to thank Chris and Paul for giving me this amazing opportunity,” said Osborne. “It’s an honor and a privilege to have the opportunity to lead such a great franchise. I’m looking forward to helping build on what Andrew, the owners, the coaching staff, the front office, the past and present players, and the fans have started in DC. I can’t wait to hit the ground running.”
Osborne will join Old Glory DC in New York this Sunday in round 9 of MLR. He will begin coaching full-time at St. James Monday, April 4.