Utah Warriors signed Eagle prop Paul Mullen for the 2021 Major League Rugby season. The 29-year-old tighthead prop is 6’0″ and 270 lbs.
Paul started all five matches for the San Diego Legion in 2020.
Paul played with the Houston SaberCats in 2018 and 2019. In 2019 he played 287 minutes in 7 matches, carried 10 times for 36 meters, and made 27 tackles. National Team duties for the American Rugby Championship and team assembles in June had him unavailable for half the season.
Paul was a standout prop for the SaberCats in 2018 and led to his selection for the USA Rugby Men’s National team for the June Internationals. Since his debut against Russia, he has earned 18 caps, 12 as a starter. He was part of the squad that beat Scotland and then Canada in June 2018. In November the team beat Samoa for the first time, Romania, and then lost to Ireland. In 2019 he played in the Pacific Nations Cup ahead of the Rugby World Cup and his last test was against Tonga on October 13.
Following the June 2018 Internationals. Paul signed a contract with the Newcastle Falcons and also played for the Doncaster Knights. He then spent time with family in the Aran Islands before returning to Texas.
Paul is from the Aran Islands, Galway, Ireland, and was USA eligible based on his residency in the U.S. He previously played for the USA under-20s in Tbilisi, Georgia at the Junior World Rugby Trophy.
Paul was introduced to rugby at age 13 at the Glenstal Abby School in County Limerick and played there from 2004 through 2009. He then went to The King’s Hospital School in Dublin from 2009-2010 and helped led the team to the Leinster Schools Senior League Final against Newbridge College in 2009.
Paul also played age-grade rugby for Munster under-18s, 19s, and 20s, as well as for Ireland under-19s. On July 31, 2010, he also played for the Munster-Connacht combined team against the Ulster-Leinster combined team to open Aviva Stadium in Dublin.
In 2011, Mullen moved to Texas and in 2015 earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Marine Engineering Technology at Texas A&M University. He then continued education at Texas A&M in Galveston from 2015-2017, earning a Master’s Degree in Marine Resources Management.
While in Texas, Mullen played for HARC and later for Galveston Rugby Club. In 2014 he played with the Texas Rugby Union All-Stars and also became a Texas Rugby Union referee.
Galveston Rugby Football Club celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2017. The Galveston News quoted Mullen indicating that “For someone like me, a foreigner coming to a new country, I can relate to all these guys because I play rugby. So straight away, you’ve got friends …. I like that I can travel anywhere in the world and basically have a group of friends pretty fast.”
DJCoil Rugby articles by Doug Coil are also available on Facebook. Other Social Media sites to follow or subscribe to include Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube for interviews.