NSW fullback Josh Dugan wants to follow in Jarryd Hayne's footsteps

By @hoopsdontstop30 on
Jarryd Hayne
Jarryd Hayne agreed to deal with Under Armour for his first major sponsorship in his NFL career. Reuters/Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

New South Wales Blues fullback Josh Dugan has taken interest in following in Jarryd Hayne’s footsteps after the latter’s successful transition from rugby league to the NFL. Dugan has spoken with his manager about a possible move in the wake of Hayne’s remarkable American football campaign.

Dugan, a custodian for the St George Illawara Dragons, was inspired by Hayne’s trip to the San Francisco 49ers’ 53-man roster. Dugan replaced Hayne as fullback for the Blues, and now he also wants to tread the same path the former Eel took.

“If I had the opportunity to do it, I would give it a crack,” Dugan said, reports Fox Sports. “I feel like I could make an impact over there as well.”

Dugan said playing in the NFL has always been his dream, and is convinced he could make an impact in playing American football. The 25-year-old rugby footballer also praised Hayne for opening the door for a lot of athletes who want to pursue a career in the NFL.

The National Rugby League was also inspired by the “Haynemania,” considering a return to California, 28 years after the disaster that was Peter Sterling and the unbreakable Origin banner. NRL Boss Dave Smith and Head of Football Todd Greenburg hinted that the governing body is seriously seeing America as a potential target market as the hype surrounding Hayne grows.

Greenberg said Hayne’s successful campaign to land a spot in the 49ers’ main roster signifies a reason to take the NRL exhibition games, NRL rounds or Origin back to California. “The NRL is always looking to grow the game and showcase it where opportunities arise,’’ Greenberg said told the Daily Telegraph. “Naturally, we’d look at any option to take the game to the United States, especially given the current interest in our game.”

A disastrous State of Origin exhibition game was played in Long Beach, California in 1987. The match hardly created noise in the US media, with less than 10,000 fans turning out for a game that was best remembered for former NSW captain Sterling, who was trapped in a banner as he tried to lead the Blues onto the field.

Contact the writer at feedback@ibtimes.com.au, or let us know what you think below.