Todd Clever

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Todd Clever
Todd Clever Churchill Cup 2010.jpg
Full name Todd Stanger Clever
Date of birth (1983-01-16) January 16, 1983 (age 32)
Place of birth Palm Springs, California
Height 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight 220 lb (103 kg, 15 st 10 lb )
Rugby union career
Playing career
Position Flanker
Amateur clubs
Years Club / team
2015-present OMBAC
correct as of 23 January 2015.
Professional / senior clubs
Years Club / team Caps (points)
Suntory Sungoliath
NTT Shining Arcs
correct as of 26 January 2015.
Provincial/State sides
Years Club / team Caps (points)
North Harbour
Golden Lions


Super Rugby
Years Club / team Caps (points)
2009–2010 Lions 21 (15)
correct as of 6 February 2014.
National team(s)
Years Club / team Caps (points)
2003– United States 63 (55)
correct as of 23 November 2014.
Sevens national teams
Years Club / team Comps
2004–2009 United States 24

Todd Stanger Clever (born January 16, 1983) is an American rugby union player who plays flanker for the NTT Shining Arcs in Japan's Top League .[1] He was the captain of the United States national team until he was released from the team for multiple conduct violations. He was the first American to play Super Rugby, for South African team the Lions.

Youth career[edit]

Clever began playing rugby at Santa Teresa High School in San Jose, and played for the USA U19 team in 2000–02.[2] In college, he played for University of Nevada, Reno where he was a 3-time College All-American (2002–04).

Club career[edit]

Clever began his professional career in New Zealand in 2006 when he joined Harbour in the National Provincial Championship.[2]

He played with the South African Lions franchise in the 2009 Super 14. Clever is the first American player to ever play in the Super 14 and scored the first try for an American in Super 14 against the Hurricanes on March 28 of 2009.

Clever joined Suntory of Japan in June 2010. In March 2012 Clever and Suntory won the Japan Top League final over Panasonic.[3] He then went on to play for the BGC APBs which won the 2012 Hong Kong 10s tournament.[4] In March 2012 Clever signed a contract with NTT Shining Arcs which also competes in the Top League.[5] He confirmed that he would be leaving the Shining Arcs after the 2015 season to rejoin his former club OMBAC to compete in the 2015 Pacific Rugby Premiership.[6]

International career[edit]

Clever was the captain of the United States national team, and as of June 2012 has scored 11 tries for the Eagles, ranking him third all-time among US try scorers, and first among forwards.[7] He has been chosen as the North American Player of the Decade and the Ruggamatrix USA Player of the Decade for 2000-2009.[8]

Clever made his international debut against Argentina in August 2003, at the age of 20.[9] Clever played for the US during the 2007 Rugby World Cup, where he intercepted a pass against South Africa that led to Takudzwa Ngwenya scoring the try of the 2007 World Cup.[10][11]

Among other accolades, Clever was named the 2008 USA Rugby Men's Player of the Year by World Rugby Shop. Clever played for the Lions against the British & Irish Lions. One of the reasons he has stated for his move to Japan is that he wishes play and promote the game more in the USA, and the move will allow him to do this.[12] Clever played in the 2009 Churchill Cup that saw the Eagles clinch the Bowl by beating Georgia.[13] Clever further led the Eagles to success in 2009 by beating Uruguay in a home-and-away series to clinch a berth into the 2011 Rugby World Cup.[14] Clever captained the team during the 2011 Rugby World Cup, starting three matches.

Clever has become the face of the USA Eagles. He has been chosen as the team captain and has been used in countless ads highlighting the sponsorship relationship between USA Rugby and Canterbury of New Zealand.

Clever has also played for the US national rugby sevens team. In late 2009, Clever scored what was deemed the try of the day in George. In the final match of the day for the US against Scotland, Clever leaped over an injured player and physio and glided into the try zone for a consolation try.[15]

On July 19, 2015, one day after a loss to Samoa in the Pacific Nations Cup, USA Rugby announced that Todd Clever was released from the Eagles roster due to what was referred to as "multiple squad conduct violations."[16]


  • U-19 National Team Member (2000–2002)
  • 3-time College All-American (2002–2004)
  • USA Eagles (7s)
  • USA Eagles (XVs)
  • Captain USA Eagles (XVs)
  • First American to play in the Super 14
  • First American to score a try in the Super 14
  • 2006 ARN Player of the Year[17]
  • 2008 World Rugby Shop's USA Rugby Men's Player of the Year[18]
  • 2008 USA Rugby Men's Player of the Year[19]
  • 2009 Player of the Year[20]
  • 2009 Overseas Performer of the Year[21]
  • North American Rugby Player of the Decade 2000–2009[22]
  • RuggaMatrix USA Player of the Decade 2000–2009[23]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Players & Officials / Todd Clever". Retrieved May 4, 2009. 
  2. ^ a b Universal Sports, Todd Clever bio,
  3. ^ "Clever Wins". 
  4. ^ "Clever Helps APBs to HK 10s Cup". 
  5. ^ "Clever Signs with NTT". 
  6. ^ TIAR Retrieved 23 January 2015.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  7. ^ Rugby Mag, USA Men National Team Stat Leaders, June 19 2012,
  8. ^ Rugby Mag, Clever Claims Award, Jan. 11, 2012,
  9. ^ USA Rugby – Men's National Team – Player Profile – Todd Clever. Retrieved on June 7, 2012.
  10. ^ YouTube – Ngwenya scores Rugby try of 2007[dead link]
  11. ^ "Habana wins player of year award". BBC News. October 22, 2007. Retrieved May 25, 2010. 
  12. ^ Rugby Union Tournaments | Super Rugby. Planet Rugby. Retrieved on June 7, 2012.
  13. ^ Loading. American Rugby News. Retrieved on June 7, 2012.
  14. ^ Loading. American Rugby News. Retrieved on June 7, 2012.
  15. ^ Play of the Day: George Final day. YouTube (December 12, 2009). Retrieved on June 7, 2012.
  16. ^ "Todd Clever released from USA Rugby Eagles’ Pacific Nations Cup squad" (Press release). USA Rugby. 2015-07-19. Retrieved 2015-07-20. 
  17. ^ Loading. American Rugby News. Retrieved on June 7, 2012.
  18. ^ By CountryNews | Rugby News. Retrieved on June 7, 2012.
  19. ^ [1][dead link]
  20. ^ [2][dead link]
  21. ^ [3][dead link]
  22. ^ [4][dead link]
  23. ^ [5][dead link]

External links[edit]