Houston SaberCats Add Paul Emerick as Skills Coach

Houston SaberCats Add Paul Emerick To Coaching Staff


Paul Emerick is from Emmetsburg, Iowa and graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a Bachelor’s of Arts Degree in General Studies. While there he played rugby (2000-2003). Upon graduation, he played with the Chicago Lions before signing a professional contract with Amatori Catania of Federazione Italian Rugby. He a=made one appearance during the 2004-05 season and then signed with Overmach Parma the following year, making five appearances.

For the next two years, 2006-2008, he played for the PRO12 Rugby Newport Gwent Dragons, making 43 appearances. Then it was back to Overmach Parma in the Emila-Romagna region of Italy for the 2008-2010 seasons. There he would make 38 appearances.

Later in 2010, he went back to PRO12 Rugby playing with Ulster, where he made two appearances. While in Belfast, Northern Ireland, he also played with Malone RFC, an amateur club.

His last participation as a professional rugby player was in 2012 with the English Premiership London Wasps. he made four appearances for the team.

USA Rugby National Team & Paul Emerick

Paul Emerick, Eagle 325, earned 53 caps for the USA Rugby Men’s Eagles XVs team and 20 caps for the Eagles 7s team.

For the Eagles XV, he debuted on April 27, 2003, against Spain in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and made his last test against Romania in Bucharest on November 24, 2012. At the time, he was the leading try score leader. Of the 53 tests, he started 49 times. He also played three times in the Rugby World Cup (2003, 2007, and 2011).

Emerick played with the Eagles 7s team from 2002-2005 and from 2009-2010 in 20 competitions.

Paul Emerick & Coaching

Emerick was a rugby coach at the United States Air Force Academy where he began in August 2015 and coached for three years. He now joins both the Houston SaberCats as Skills Coach and the West Houston Lions as the Men’s D1 Head Coach.

Houston SaberCats Release 

HOUSTON, TX (September 20, 2018) The Major League Rugby Houston SaberCats are pleased to announce the arrival of new Skills Coach, Paul Emerick, first capped by the USA Eagles in 2003. With collegiate level experience and more than a decade of professional rugby experience internationally, Emerick’s arrival into Houston has elevated not only the SaberCats’ organization but that of the local West Houston Rugby Club to which he has also signed on as Head Coach.

“I’m excited and grateful for the opportunity to be a part of the Houston SaberCats organization as a skills coach and Head Coach of the West Houston Lions organization,” said Emerick. “The SaberCats’ dedication to not only grow the game at a professional level but to give a structured pathway for aspiring professional and international players to develop is second to none. I am looking forward to helping develop rugby at a professional level and also to help grow the game and provide a professional setting for players in the Houston area.”

Emerick is no stranger to the game of rugby, first getting his start at the University of Northern Iowa before advancing onto senior rugby with the Chicago Lions and then the USA Eagles, where he made his international playing debut. Spending the majority of his professional career abroad, Emerick played in Italy and Ireland before finding himself in London where he eventually announced his retirement in August 2013.

“We are very excited to have Paul join us at the SaberCats,” said SaberCats Head Coach, Justin M. Fitzpatrick. “He comes to us with a storied playing career and is one of the most recognizable Eagles of the last decade. Since retirement, Paul has built a respectable reputation in the collegiate world as a talented young coach, most recently coaching the collegiate All-Americans to a victory over the Glendale Raptors. Alongside being the SaberCats Skills Coach, Paul will be Head Coach of the SaberCats’ partner program, the West Houston Lions, ensuring seamless continuity in our pathway so that young talented players in the Greater Houston area have every opportunity to chase their MLR dreams and become a SaberCat. We are pleased to welcome Paul to the SaberCats family and look forward to working with him.”

The SaberCats are developing a rugby pathway both internally through their Academy and through their partnership with the West Houston Lions. The pathway starts with the West Houston Lions, where players as young as three years old can start their rugby journey. The SaberCats Academy is divided into four age groups, starting with high school students, all the way through post-high school professional players. At the
Academy, SaberCats players and coaches offer their experience to help aspiring rugby professionals refine their skills.

As the new Skills Coach for the SaberCats, Emerick’s responsibilities will primarily include assisting the backs and developing their rugby attack techniques, as he, himself, was a center during his career with the USA Eagles.

The Houston SaberCats 2018-19 season is underway with games through the summer.
For ticket information, visit https://houstonsabercats.com/mlr-tickets/ or call the Ticket
Office at (832) 491-0100.

About Houston SaberCats

The Houston SaberCats are a Major League Rugby team based in Houston, Texas, founded in 2017 by Jeremy Turner and Marty Power, for the purpose of competing in the United States’ new national professional league. The Houston SaberCats are a part of the original seven teams to join the Major League Rugby organization in 2017. For more information about the SaberCats, visit https://houstonsabercats.com/.

About West Houston Rugby Club

West Houston Rugby Club is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) registered organization in Texas. West Houston Rugby Club accepts players of all genders from the age of 3 to 18 and senior players post High School. Youth teams are grouped according to age, with girls competing at the same level as boys until age 13. The club has three competitive Senior Men’s teams in Divisions 1, 2, and 4 in the Red River and Texas conferences and is actively forming a Senior Women’s team. For more information on the West Houston Rugby Club, please visit https://www.westhoustonrugby.com/ or contact

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North American Rugby News With A USA Slant