REBELS JOIN FORCES WITH SHADOWMAN

SHADOWMAN SPORTS & DUBLIN REBELS ANNOUNCE OFFICIAL PARTNERSHIP

Dublin Rebels are delighted to announce that we have become official partners with Shadowman Sports.

Shadowman Sports, a revolutionary tackling system that enables more tackling reps while reducing player on player contact in practices and Dublin Rebels, the most successful team in the history of the Irish American Football League with eight national championship wins, have agreed to a Shadowman Sports branded MVP award. Both at the end of every game and the end of the year.

Shadowman Sports manufactures and markets proprietary tackling equipment that significantly reduces player-on-player contact, and thus the risk of injury, during team football practice for all levels of organised play, from professional through grassroots. The tackling system is now in use by more than 75,000+ athletes and 1,500 football programs throughout the United States, 70 Division 1 Collegiate teams, NFL teams including New York Giants, LA Rams and Oakland Raiders, and more than 1,500+ high school and amateur programs.

Dublin Rebels is the most decorated Irish American Football Team with eight national championships, six league titles and two European crowns. The Rebels finished the 2016 season with a 7-1 regular season record and went on to win the Shamrock Bowl in dramatic fashion.

“It is a great honour to partner with such a successful program like the Dublin Rebels. Partnering with the most successful club in the Irish American Football League further validates our belief that by using our innovative equipment in practice allows both coaches & players to get game speed reps without player-on-player contact. This allows for teaching proper technique and the development of player confidence in the tackle. We wish the Rebels continued success and look forward to continuing our partnership”. Steve Flanagan, President and CEO of Shadowman Sports.

“As National Champions our goal is to retain our title successfully and ensuring we fully utilise all necessary means in doing so. In order to do this, we need the best equipment and tools available to us, Shadowman is the best in the business and it is key for us in our drive to retain our title and to be the best there is out there. The first game of the season it was great to see every player available on the side-lines fully fit and was the biggest line up of players we have ever had at the start of a season and a big part of this was due to having Shadowman”. Vinny Dooley, Chairperson of the Dublin Rebels.

 

ABOUT SHADOWMAN

Shadowman Pro and Shadowman Jr. are the first moveable and detachable tackling systems that allow football teams at every level to reduce player-on-player contact during practice, enhance player longevity and increase game speed reps. Shadowman was invented and introduced to the football market after three years of research and development by J.P. Hartigan, a 29-year-old former rugby player and product design and technology expert from Limerick, Ireland. Shadowman is an air-filled humanoid, filled with water at the base to give the “body” an optimised low centre of gravity for tackling and displacement when coupled in the ring sled. Every last panel and contour is designed to give the tackler the best possible experience and feedback in the tackle. From the bent knee posture indicating the front and back position on the system, to the white optimal strike zone and the three target zones to guide players on head and shoulder placement, every part of Shadowman was designed with intent and care.

To find out more on Shadowman Sports and more of their products click here.

 

Team Ireland U20 Interview

DUBLIN REBELS NEWEST UNDER 20 IRISH INTERNATIONALS GIVE EXCULSIVE INTERVIEW

TIME TO MAKE HISTORY!

On Saturday April 8th 2017, another milestone in Irish American Football takes place. The next group of under-20 athletes from Ireland will make their International debuts. The game will see the Team Ireland under-20s take on an AFW Elite High School select team. The game takes place at the National Sports Campus in Abbotstown with a 1pm kick off.

Three more young Dublin Rebels will make their International bow, Jack Fagan, Cathal Keane and Ciarán Fitzpatrick. Friends since secondary school, Rebels teammates, and now set to make their International debuts together, we caught up with the guys to get their thoughts on the game, and football in general.

 

Hi Guys, so you all started with the Rebels 4 years ago, what drew each of you to American Football?

Cathal:     The combination of skill, strategy and violence is what attracted me to American football. I got hooked on tuning into Sky Sports’ NFL coverage every Sunday, and it was only a matter of time before my curiosity got the better of me and I wanted to have a go at playing the sport myself.

Jack:     In secondary school Cathal brought in a football we started throwing it around and it was fun. Started watching some games and soon after found out about the Rebels, came down to one training and after that I fell in love with the sport. I guess I can thank Cathal for introducing me to it.

Ciarán:     Before I started playing I had no particular interest in American Football and I didn’t know much about the sport. But like Jack, Cathal convinced me to try it out and I’ve been hooked ever since.

 

So, all your fault then, Cathal. You host a weekly Podcast with Ciarán and Jack, as well as friend Sean Gorman, how did that come about and where do you see that going in the future?

Cathal:     Anyone who knows us is aware of the fact that we spend a disturbing amount of time talking about American football on a daily basis. We are very opinionated when it comes to the NFL, so we figured that it was only right to start a podcast. We like to think of the show as just a regular conversation between the four of us, but with microphones switched on. Down the road, we will be looking to get some former players and notable media figures on to talk with us.

(Check it out here: NFLTalkPodcast)

 

Do you have a favourite play you’ve had with the Rebels?

Jack:     In my first season playing against the Carrickfergus Knights, at Wide Receiver I got the opportunity to crack block a linebacker and knock him down. Nothing more enjoyable in football, than knocking someone on their backside.

Cathal:     Scoring the opening touchdown in last year’s Shamrock Bowl, without a doubt.

Ciarán:     My favourite play has to be last year’s game winning touchdown in the Shamrock Bowl. We were losing by a point and I was lucky enough to be thrown a great pass to score with only seconds left in the game. That was special.

 

Jack Fagan, Cathal Keane &  Ciaran Fitzpatrick Interview
Jack Fagan, Cathal Keane & Ciaran Fitzpatrick

 

 You each play different positions, what is it about those positions that made you want to play there?

Jack:     Playing Quarterback, feeling like you’ve contributed on every play is definitely something that’s attractive about the position, be it handoff or pass. Also, knowing everything that’s going on, on the field, both with your offence and the defence. In the end I suppose I’m just a control freak and a Glory-seeker.

 

Well you do all play offence, I suppose there’s a bit of that Glory-seeking from all of you!

Cathal:     Coming from a GAA background, I felt pretty comfortable catching a ball. Chad Ochocinco was a guy I loved to watch play, so I guess playing Wide Receiver, I wanted to imitate him to some extent. I love the attention to detail involved with playing the position, specifically from a route-running perspective, the slightest head fake or stutter step can be the difference in getting open.

Ciarán:     I play Tight End and the reason is when I first started playing it seemed like a position that suited my size and build. Once I started to understand the game I loved the versatility of the position.

 

Ciarán, you recently went to London to take part in the Jacksonville Jaguar skills camp, tell us a little about that and how it improved your game?

Ciarán:     It consisted of three full days of nothing but football where I got to train under veteran NFL players. It gave me an opportunity to hone some skills that I had learned back home and develop a deeper understanding of the position I was playing.

 

On Saturday you make your International debuts, what does it mean to you to play for Ireland?

Ciarán:     I’m excited and proud to be able to represent my country and my sport at such a high level. It’s an incredible opportunity to play a team from the US and I’m looking forward to the challenge.

Cathal:     To be able to represent your country in any shape or form is an honour for anyone, and to do so in your chosen sport is an absolute privilege. It is also an opportunity for our team to test ourselves against some of the best competition in the world.

Jack:     Representing your national team is an honour and a privilege. It’s also a brilliant opportunity to test your skills against the best in the world. No matter what happens I’m proud to be able to say that I played on the Irish squad.

 

Jack, you’ve also been chosen as Offensive Captain for the team, how will you prepare for that?

Jack:     To me being Captain means two things; being approachable and being respected. You want others on the team to be able to come to you with their suggestions and problems on the sideline, but you also want them to listen to you in the huddle. I hope that my teammates see me that way come game day.

 

Thank you for your time guys, and we all wish you the very best of luck on Saturday.

 

Kick-off is 1pm on Saturday 8th April 2017, at the National Sports Campus in Abbotstown. Entry is Free, so please come out and support the guys and the rest of the team Make History, in their first International appearance for Ireland.

 

Interview by Paul Grogan

DUBLIN REBELS BEAT CARRICKFERGUS KNIGHTS IN TIGHT GAME

REBELS KEEP ROLLING AFTER TIGHT DEFENSIVE BATTLE WITH KNIGHTS

To say Sunday’s meeting between the Dublin Rebels and the Carrickfergus Knights was a defensive battle would be an understatement. The scoreboard only saw its duck broken in the fourth quarter.

While the reigning Champions defence dominated their side of the ball, the offensive unit made life hard for themselves. Receiving the opening Kick-off, the Rebels offence would take to the field missing several key starters from their line-up.

Pete McMahon, making his first start with his new team, continued where he left off in game one, racking up yardage across the ground, gaining a first down on the first play from scrimmage. From there the Defensive battle would begin. The Knights defence holding firm, led by MLB Spencer McDowell, who would also lead the offence on the day.

CERBERUS??

The Rebels would dominate the ground game throughout the day, the 3 headed monster of McMahon, Sean Douglas, and Dave McMahon rushing for over 180 yards between them on the day. Douglas adding over 100 yards total in the return game also.

Meanwhile the Knights ground attack remained in negative equity at the end of the game. This was due in no small part to an outstanding display from the Rebels defence.

Sacks seemed to be the food the defence would feed on for the day, see they’re hungry. Lead by 2 each total for D-linemen Steve Walsh, and Captain Gary Twamley, the defence would rack up 3 more. The secondary not to be outdone, got involved with sacks for Senan O’Mahony and Kevin Fitzgerald, the latter pairing his sack with an interception on the day.

Another member of the dangerous Rebels secondary would take the Shadowman Sports Defensive MVP game honours, Andrei-Vlad Vasilescu, racking up 4 tackles, 2 for loss, 2 passes defended and an interception.

Dublin Rebels Defensive MVP - Andrei-Vlad Vasilescu
Defensive MVP – Andrei-Vlad Vasilescu

 

Knights quarterback McDowell was under pressure all day long, but did manage some success through the air, having 12 completions for 100 yards.

At the start of the fourth quarter the score remained deadlocked, the Rebels having the ball on the Knights 2 yard line. Having ventured into the Red zone through long completions from QB Dennehy to leading Receiver Cathal Keane, and the hard running of the three headed monster.

SWAN LAKE, ALMOST!

From here the next play would belong more on a Ballet stage than a football field. A running play given to veteran player and possible cyborg, Simon Mackey. The ball handed to Mackey, a bone crunching lead block from Steve Walsh, what happened next stunned the crowd in attendance. Mackey would leap through the air with the grace of Baryshnikov to hurdle a would be tackler, followed by a pirouette the Latvian dancer would be proud to call his own, and crossing the Goal line for the opening score of the game! Click here for video

After another defensive stop from the Rebels wall, Shadowman Sports Offensive MVP for the game Pete McMahon would continue his scoring form, high-stepping past tacklers for the Touchdown, and put the game to rest.

Dublin Rebels Offensive MVP - Pete McMahon
Offensive MVP – Pete McMahon

It wasn’t pretty, but the Champs win their 1st home game of the season and continue their quest for back to back Shamrock Bowls with a hard won victory over the long time rival Knights.

next game…

Our next game is April 30th, when a trip to North Kildare Rugby club to take on home side the North Kildare Reapers is on the cards. Kick off 2pm.

By Paul Grogan

REBELS START 2017 WITH A WIN OVER UCD

CHAMPS GET OFF TO A WINNING START AGAINST STUDENTS

It was fitting that the weekend of Saint Patricks Day would see the return to the gridiron of the reigning Irish National Champions, the Dublin Rebels.

The opponents on the day for the Champs were last year’s Semi-finalist UCD on their home turf at the UCD Sports Campus. The volatile Irish weather, which can’t decide which time of year it wants to be, decided to go through all four seasons during the game. This ultimately had little impact on the game as a spectacle or as a contest.

REBELS GREAT START!

The Rebels would get off to a great start, when after UCD won the coin toss electing to receive. Rebels Linebacker Matthias Durot would strip the ball carrier, and take back the rock. One of two forced fumbles for Durot on Special Teams on the day.

The Rebels offence took over in great field position, but failed to capitalise after some miscues while shaking off the off-season rust.

But the visiting Rebels capitalised shortly after, when Quarterback Andrew Dennehy would open his 2017 account, hitting Tight End Peter Keely for 6. The following PAT was unsuccessful.

‘Andrew Dennehy’ – Photo courtesy of Laszlo Gezco Photography

UCD struggled to move the ball early, the staunch Rebels defence consistently stuffing the run game, and constantly pressuring talented young QB Tom Donavan, racking up 6 sacks on the day, 2 each for Defensive End pairing, affectionately known as Twackey!

As half time drew closer, UCD looked to gain a foothold in the game. After Donavan hit some completions to his receivers, and made some yards on the ground, the red zone opportunity arose. In a strange play, a ball that seemed to be thrown to Donavan’s favourite target on the day, Conor Hanrahan, would pop up off his hands and into the waiting grasp of Steven Culligan for the touchdown. Hanrahan scooped over the PAT to give the students a 7-6 lead going in to the interval.

SECOND HALF!

The second half got under way with a bang. Sean Douglas taking the opening kick-off at speed and bringing the Rebels into great field position. On the very next play Douglas would spring into action again, reversing the field to bypass the UCD defence. With nothing but green grass in front of him, he would bring to life a number of brand new Memes. By simply tripping over nothing and tucking into a forward roll in spectacular fashion.

The Rebels offence would not miss out on the opportunity though. After carries from Rebel debutante Pete McMahon and Douglas, QB Dennehy would strike again. This time hitting young gun Cathal Keane in the end zone, wasting no time in taking up where they left off at Shamrock Bowl 30. Sean Douglas adding the 2 point conversion on the ground.

With a 14-7 lead, and the Rebels defence playing at such a high level. Recording 6 sacks and two interceptions on the day, thanks to Conrad Cook and Andrei-Vlad Vasilescu. This meant the Rebels Offence could take control of the game. Through the running of Douglas, Pete McMahon, and another Rebel newcomer ‘Rev’ Dave McMahon (no relation to Pete J ), coupled with several completions to Sean Leamy, the Rebels offence sustained drive after drive, capping them off with rushing Touchdowns for Sean Douglas, and his first of undoubtedly many for Pete McMahon.

‘Pete McMahon’ – Photo courtesy of Laszlo Gezco Photography

 

A late Alfie O’Sullivan rushing touchdown would bring scant consolation to UCD who drop to 0-2 on the season, but there’s a lot of football to be played yet, and undoubtedly this young team will have a say in where the Shamrock Bowl ends up this year.

next game…

As for the Rebels, a solid victory for the defending champions gets their season off to a strong start, and they can look forward to their next opponents, old foes, the Carrickfergus Knights, in Sportslink, Santry on April 2nd, kick-off is at 2pm.

By Paul Grogan