According to Robert Frost, "Nature is a Chaos, Humanity is a Ruck." He wasn't writing about rugby, but Jake wasn't entirely sure the first time he read it. In this episode, the brothers recap the Women's World Cup and consider the All Blacks second win of the season over Australia. Jake is already getting wound up about the Saracens v Newcastle match coming up in Philadelphia, so he is trying to get Ethan equally as excited, though that's no small thing. In the middle of it all, Jake announces his desire for a song for American fans to sing at USA matches. Suggestions welcome!
There is a lot for the brothers to catch up on after the longer-than-expected hiatus. Top of Jake's list is the Women's Rugby World Cup and the USA Eagles looming semi-final. Ethan's list of what to talk about was notably short, having drifted away from rugby-thoughts during the hiatus. MLR, The Rugby Championship, and the USA Club 7s Championships all come up as Jake tries to catch Ethan up and blow life into the embers of Ethan's "real fan" status.
Ethan made the apt observation that watching the USA defeat Canada and then almost immediately watching the All Blacks v Lions made the minor league status of the American accomplishment clear. Still, it was a good win, and both brothers enjoyed that. Jake pushed Ethan to pick a favorite player, and gauged Ethan's attitude toward the financial promise of rugby in America.
Jake catches Ethan up on rugby news and the brothers react to the first leg of the home-and-away USA Canada series. Neither brother was thrilled with how the match went, but there was a significant gap in frustration and disappointment. The brothers were in agreement, though, in the value in a recent Deadspin guide to rugby.
The brothers talk about the USA loss to Georgia and agree that the first half was hard to watch. With a big loss to Ireland and then a lurching performance against Georgia, Ethan asks: How can we be so far behind? Jake does his best to answer, and they also touch on a good sign from Major League Rugby and the Lions' tour in New Zealand.
Ethan gives his reaction to the USA Eagles recent loss to Ireland. He and Jake don't quite agree on how to view the loss. They also talk about the youngest fan who attended that match, as well as how the USA performance affects Ethan's enthusiasm for USA v Georgia.
The brothers react to the Barbarians match against England, the Hurricanes win over the Bulls, and discuss recent news from America. Ethan does not care as much as Jake about the USA Eagles coaching change, but his love for rugby comes through in his reaction to the news of a new competition forming in America.
The brothers manage to get through a conversation about the London 7s without exploding in frustration, and Ethan's admiration for the USA 7s team only deepens. Some time is spent on the topic of the Hurricanes, but the bigger reaction was about a newly-announced television deal for World Rugby events in America. Jake very bluntly steers the conversation to a piece he recently posted on Rugby Today. And Ethan makes it clear that he has no interest in being a "former rugby player."
Both brothers share their reactions to the Crusaders v Hurricanes Super Rugby match. Jake also has some USA-related news for Ethan, and Ethan once again shares how well he did in working out how to watch an HSBC 7s tournament without seeing the scores first.
Both brothers watched a Life v St. Mary's D1A champioship match, but it isn't clear at the start that they watched the same one. One of the brothers traveled back in time without realizing it. However, Ethan and Jake still talk about the idea of college rugby being a marketable rugby product in the US. There is also some nostalgia, some excitement ahead of the Paris 7s, and a renewed desire to become a Hurricanes fan from Ethan.