Luke Gross

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Luke Gross
Luke Gross.jpg
Date of birth (1969-11-21) November 21, 1969 (age 47)
Place of birth Decatur, Indiana
Height 6 ft 9 in (2.06 m)
Weight 125 kg (19 st 10 lb; 276 lb)
Rugby union career
Position(s) Lock
Amateur team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
Senior career
Years Team Apps (Points)
R. Roma


National team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
1996-2003 United States 62 ((0))
Teams coached
Years Team
2016– Sacramento Express
Correct as of February 8, 2016

Luke Gross (born November 21, 1969) is an American former rugby union player and current rugby coach and administrator. A lock who played for various club sides, he earned 62 caps for the United States between 1996 and 2003. Gross was the all-time caps leader for the United States, until Mike MacDonald broke his record in 2011.[1]

Since retiring as a player, Gross has served as a rugby administrator and coach. He has been the Head Coach of PRO Rugby team Sacramento Express since February 2016.

Playing career[edit]

Gross was born in Decatur, Indiana. Gross played basketball for Indiana State University and for Marshall University for two seasons (1991–92 and 1992–93).[2]

Gross started his rugby career far later than most international players, even those from countries like the United States where rugby is not a major sport, not taking up the sport seriously until age 24, after he had attended university. He began his rugby career with the Cincinnati Wolfhounds.[3] Gross was spotted by Dick Best, coach of the Harlequins.[4]

Gross' 6"9' frame gave him a considerable presence in the line-out. Gross earned 62 caps in 61 starts for the United States from 1996 to 2003, including 7 starts at the 1999 and 2003 Rugby World Cups.[5] Gross played his first test for the U.S. in 1996 against Ireland. His last four test matches came at the 2003 World Cup, which included a win over Japan. Although he was named to the USA squad for the 2007 Rugby World Cup, and played in the 2007 squad's final warmup against Celtic League side Munster, he did not play in the World Cup itself.[6]

Gross moved to Italy to play for Rivigo in 1998, and then played for Roma where the team won the Italian Cup.[7] Gross last played rugby for the Doncaster Knights, who play in National Division One, the second level of the game in England.


Coaching and administration[edit]

Gross has worked for several years at the USA Rugby National Office in Boulder, Colorado as the High Performance Player Development Manager, helping and coaching at USA Eagles and All-Americans camps. In February 2016, Gross was announced as the head coach of the new Sacramento PRO Rugby team.[8]

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ "Men's National Team: Historical Data". USA Rugby. 2008-01-15. 
  2. ^ "History & Records: All-Time Rosters" (PDF). 2007-08 Marshall Men's Basketball Media Guide. Marshall University Athletic Department. p. 135. Retrieved 2008-01-15. 
  3. ^ "Men's National Team Player Profile: Luke Gross". USA Rugby. 2008-01-15. 
  4. ^ "Gross plays like there's no tomorrow", The Journal, January 4, 2005.
  5. ^ Luke Gross, ESPN Scrum, Retrieved February 5, 2016.
  6. ^ "Men's National Team Player Detail: Luke Gross". USA Rugby. 2008-01-15. 
  7. ^ "Gross plays like there's no tomorrow", The Journal, January 4, 2005.
  8. ^ "Gross Picked To Lead Sacramento PRO Side", This Is American Rugby, February 4, 2016.

External links[edit]