Red Bull is providing three members of the Western men’s rugby team with the opportunity to travel to Europe and Western and men’s rugby on national television.
Sophomores Davin Doggett, Charlie Ronan and freshman Sourabh Raigaga have entered the Red Bull Can You Make It competition as Team Rugger Nation. The contest gives university students a chance to be voted on based on a one-minute video submission explaining why their team should be chosen.
Western’s video opens with Raigaga drawing rugby plays and explaining them to Ronan and Doggett. These plays then transition to getting them trained and prepared for Europe. They then drink Red Bull and begin to train for their trip to Europe, using various locations in Bellingham.
At the end of the voting period, a panel of judges will pick from the teams with the most votes, according to Red Bull’s Can You Make It website. The winning team will participate in a seven-day trip across Europe using only cans of Red Bull as currency.
Raigaga, who has always wanted to travel to Europe, said he found the contest through his brother, a Red Bull student ambassador, and thought it looked fun.
“We want to do it to have something for our team to look forward to,” he said. “Another achievement, another thing our team is going out and doing.”
Raigaga said that he wants to try to get Western on the map.
“Most of the time these things are won and the competitions are entered by these really big schools … we want to get Western out there as well,” he said.
Western will be competing against larger schools as well, and Raigaga said he understands that.
“We’re not small, but we’re not a huge school either, so it’s always good to get [Western’s] name out” Raigaga said.
For them, the contest is not just winning. It’s about creating a sense of unity for Western as a whole, when it comes to competition against other schools.
“I think Western students should get involved because we’re representing the [university], not just the team. It’s good to say my college went out and won a contest,” Doggett said.
The competition factor will also be factor for them as well.
“Also, we’re going against other colleges, so it’s cool to be part of a competition.” Doggett said. “You’re beating other colleges with 40,000 or 50,000 people when we have 15,000 or 16,000 [students]. It’s like an underdog story.”
The inspiration for their video submission was based on the roll that rugby in their lives as well as a desire to stand out from the crowd and the rest of the competition.
“Rugby is all we do and all we know. It pretty much takes up our whole life, which is totally fine by us,” Ronan said. “Rugby in America is not that big. It’s a growing sport but we figured, why not use the one aspect of our life that we are strongest at and care about the most?”
Team Rugby Nation’s passion for rugby helped make the film.
“That made it easier to make the video. We’ll incorporate rugby and everything else fell into place from there,” Ronan said.
It also helped them to draw inspiration from video submissions that have been made in the past and to see what had been successful.
“[Videos from past years were] always unique and they had some form of theme in them, “ Raigaga said. “As Charlie said, rugby is our life right now; that’s what we do. We thought it would be better if we incorporated that and hopefully gives us a bit of an advantage.”
If Team Rugby Nation doesn’t get enough votes to move on to the next stage, this is won’t be the last time they participate in this contest.
“Next year, with more planning, I think we could really do a good video. We kind of know what we are doing now and we can definitely do this whole thing a lot better and a lot more efficiently next year.” Ronan said.
Learn more about Team Rugger Nation on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/teamruggernation/?fref=ts and Instagram https://www.instagram.com/teamruggernation/. Both platforms have the link to Team Rugger Nation’s page on Red Bull’s website where their team can be voted for. https://www.redbullcanyoumakeit.com/en/applications/5056/
Voting closes on Thursday, Feb. 25 at 8:00 a.m.