I’ve enjoyed the Rugby World Cup coverage on Versus, even if the games are a few days old by the time they air. One unforeseen source of pleasure has been the announcers and their attitude toward the U.S. team, the Eagles. Of course, the U.S. is hardly a rugby power, evident in the 0-4 performance the team put forth over in France. The announcers–Britons with posh accents–take great pains to applaud the U.S. effort, calling them "brave" and "courageous" and other flattering/condescending things.
I also liked the announcer’s description of how the American players came to the game of rugby during the U.S.-South Africa match. After pointing out that Eagle flanker Louis Stanfill is a student at Cal-"Barkley" (as opposed to Berkeley), the guy (sorry, didn’t get his name…probably Nigel or something) then explained how the American players started with rugby after failing to make the football squads at our country’s premier football universities–which the guy then explained were the Ivy League schools.
Sure, Yale, Harvard and Dartmouth are football powers. And Benjamin Harrison is still president, and Bessie Smith rules the pop charts.