June 26, 2003
STANFORD, Calif. --- Stanford University has hired Rob Holder as Director of Rugby, as announced today by Athletics Director Ted Leland.
Holder, who has spent the last four years as the head coach of the United States Air Force Academy Men's Rugby Club, will begin his tenure on The Farm on September 1, 2003.
"We interviewed some of the best coaches in the USA, Canada, and Australia before deciding on Rob Holder," Stanford Assistant Athletic Director for Physical Education and Recreation Sherry Posthumus said. "Rob is committed to making rugby the most visible club sport on the Stanford campus. I am looking forward to the packed stands at the Steuber Rugby Field this coming season."
"I'm really excited about this opportunity," Holder said. "Stanford has an amazing athletic tradition and an amazing rugby tradition, and I'm very excited to become a part of it all."
Less than two months ago, Holder led the Air Force Academy to the 2003 Men's Collegiate Division I Rugby Championship at Stanford's Steuber Rugby Stadium. The Falcons defeated 12-time defending national champion California 46-28 in the semifinals and Harvard 45-37 in the championship match.
Holder took over an Air Force program that was winless against Division I opposition (0-4-1) in 1999-2000, and guided it to three consecutive Sweet 16 appearances and first Final Four appearance since1995 en route to the national championship.
Holder was also an accomplished player, as he was a member of the USA Eagles Player Pool in 1999 and captain of the USA Combined Services Select Side from 1996-2000. The 1989 graduate of the United States Military Academy was awarded a Bronze Star during his six years of military service, and then went on to work in the private sector for McMaster-Carr Supply Company and PepsiCo before joining the Air Force Academy.
In addition to overseeing the men's and women's programs, Holder will oversee the Steuber Rugby Stadium and Doyle Family Clubhouse, which were dedicated on March 8 of this year. The 762-seat capacity stadium and adjoining clubhouse combine to form the top collegiate rugby facility in the country. It is also the only rugby field in the U.S. to conform to international standards.
"I think the Steuber Rugby Stadium is the best rugby facility in America," Holder said. "I look forward to maximizing all that the facility has to offer."