Rugby ATL re-signed Will Burke for the 2023 Major League Rugby season. The 26-year-old (27 in March) loosehead prop, who previously played tighthead, is 6’0″ and 255 lbs.
Will played 654 minutes in 14 matches, starting 10, and made 103 tackles for Rugby ATL in 2022. He then played for Rugby ATL’s Academy team in the American Rugby Premiership in the Fall.
Will played 107 minutes in 7 matches for the Ratlers in 2021. In the Fall, he played with Pathway 404, the team’s Academy side.
Will was signed by the Dallas Jackals for 2021, however, when the team delayed inclusion in the league until 2022, he was a free agent signing by Rugby ATL. He played with the Ratlers against the Utah Warriors in a 2021 preseason match.
Will played 67 minutes in the first two matches with Rugby United New York in Las Vegas to begin the 2020 season but due to the truncated season due to COVID-19.
Will is from Upstate New York and played high school football and wrestled. He attended the University of Buffalo from 2014-2018 and was a D1A Rugby East All-Conference honorable mention before his first-team All Rugby East selection in 2016. He was also nominated for the Collegiate All-Americans.
Following his graduation from the University of Buffalo, he played with the Buffalo Rugby Club in the Spring and helped them to finish 7th in the country in Men’s D2 rugby. Willa then went to Northern Ireland to play with Lurgan Rugby Football Club in the Kukri Ulster Championship Divison 2. In his team debut on 31 August 2019, he was named Man of the Match. That lasted four months before he returned to play with Buffalo RFC.
Will Burke has a bright future in rugby and joined RUNY after attending training camp, which led to securing an MLR contract for 2020. Playing time should increase in 2021 with Rugby ATL.