From Gobbler state champ team to rugby state champ team
By Jacob Stock
The Cuero Record
For Jackson Hardwick, the transition to rugby has been an exhilarating process that has warranted a bright future. A Cuero High School 2021 graduate, Hardwick is currently on the University of Wyoming Men’s Rugby team. Starting on the 2018 Gobbler state championship team, Hardwick went on to become a first-team all-district selection, second-team all-area selection, and also received Academic all-state for maintaining an outstanding performance in the classroom.
Although the transition to rugby wasn’t a walk in the park getting going, his toughness and physical skills were instrumental in adapting to the sport.
“Transitioning to rugby was one of the easiest but most difficult tasks I have ever done,” said Hardwick. “The easy part was taking the physical skills from football and other sports I had played and using them on the field. The difficult part of the transition was learning a completely different set of rules to implement during a fast-paced game. Rugby is a very strategic and physical game.”
Hardwick’s insight on the differences between football and rugby offers an interesting perspective. Although football is king in America, rugby is similar in many ways. Rugby closely resembles football and soccer, just mixed with its own physicality.
“There are many differences between rugby and football, the most obvious is rugby is played with no pads or helmet. Rugby is a European sport with a lot of influence from soccer. Most of our coaches grew up in Europe or played overseas for many years. You can only pass the ball backwards in rugby. To advance the ball forward, you must kick it,” Hardwick described.
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