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EIRA Player of the Week - Bailey Wilson

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EIRA Player of the Week - Bailey Wilson

Many of the HS programs that finish at or near the top every year are senior-heavy; the programs are deep and naturally the older players have certain advantages.

But every now and then a player breaks through from the younger levels, and that’s why we’re takubg ti Bailey Wilson.

The sophomore is a starting openside flanker for United in Utah, and he’s most certainly not just there to make up the numbers.

“His IQ is very impressive,” said Coach Colin Puriri. “He understands the game extremely well and is a leader for us - our forwards captain. He’s got a great motor, too.”

Wilson was born in Australia but move to the USA at the age of 12, when he family relocated to Florida. There he played for the Orlando club before work prompted his family to move to Utah two years ago.

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“It certainly helped me to grow up with the game,” Wilson told Goff Rugby Report. “You see it every day and you’re around it from a young age. Because of that, everyone gets the basics down pretty early, do you can start to work on other things - those extra things that improve you game.”

Wilson’s ability to read the game and anticipate play is a huge part of why he’s important for United. Puriri likens Wilson to USA 7s star Maka Unufe or BYU center Calvin Whiting - both United alumni - in terms of the type of worker and impact player he is.

Wilson, who also was selected for the Eagle Impact Rugby Academy U16 tour of British Columbia last year, and captained that team, isn’t so sure.

“There’s a lot I need to work on and a lot the team needs to work on still,” he said. “Probably the first things for both is fitness. I’ve been working harder on that and we get together as a team to run the hills. It’s a good team-bonding thing, as well. We need to come together as a team and I think we’re doing that.”

Despite having to adjust to the harsh Utah winters after spending his childhood in Sydney, Wilson is enjoying his time with United, and it’s pretty clear the feeling is mutual.

Bailey Wilson is our Eagle Impact Rugby Academy Player of the Week.