We can all harp on the Eagles once again. After a solid we of back-patting, USA rugby fans had come back down to Earth in an abrupt fashion. In spite of the 41-18 drubbing, how did the Canucks fail in this leg of the competition? No television.
Simply put, this game needed to be on television on both sides on the border. Rugby needs to be on the tube for people see the game played. Simple as that. If we want the sport to become a commercially viable commodity then we need to sell it as one. This is where USA Rugby has failed in the past, but managed to get it right last week.
This is an instance where a lack of foresight on Rugby Canada's part lead to fans from both countries feeling frustrated and forgotten. I understand the cost was steep, but national TV time is huge for any sport. In this case, the USA's fans might be grateful not to get pumped on ESPN by our hairy neighbors to the North, but the Canucks would have relished a chance to watch the USA lose at anything.
My feeling is that these decisions need to be joint decisions. Rugby Canada and USA Rugby need to pool resources at times like these. The fates of these two rugby nations depend upon one another, whether we like it or not. Canada can't make a professional league without the USA, but do have a few cities that could host teams. The ground work needs to be laid now for this type of thing not to happen again.