The Dallas Jackals are the second MLR team this season to sign a coach to a player contract. Matoko Noudehou originally signed a contract as the team’s Strength and Conditioning Coach and will be on the 2022 week 11 match day squad. The 27-year-old center is 6’3”.
Matoko was born in Fairfax, Virginia and was introduced to rugby in 2006 while living in Kenya.
Matoko attended Blair Academy in New Jersey from 2010 to 2013 and played basketball. He attended the University of Wisconsin- Madison from 2013 to 2017, graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree in Philosophy and Physics. He played rugby, winning the Big Ten XVs Championship in 2014 and the 2015 USA Rugby Collegiate National Sevens Championship in 2015.
He earned a Master’s of Philosophy Degree, Youth Athlete Change of Direction from Auckland University of Technology in New Zealand.
He was a 5th grade science teacher in Houston in 2017-2018 and a Performance Coach from 2018-2020. While in Houston, he played rugby for West Houston RFC.
In 2020 he was the Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach at Vassar College in New York before becoming the Performance Coach for the New York Mets in 2021.
In December 2021, he was hired as the Dallas Jackals Strength and Conditioning Coach and on April 16, 2022, could make his MLR debut as a player.