By Seagulls Media
Former Sunshine Coast Falcons Head Coach Glen Dreger has joined the BMD Wynnum Manly Seagulls to head up the revamped Seagulls Academy program.
The Seagulls Academy is the Wynnum Manly Seagulls’ junior development program which works in with junior affiliate clubs, local high schools and its NRL Affiliate Club the Brisbane Broncos, to develop the Seagulls of the future.
Dreger commenced the role in late 2017, taking over from Chris McKenna, and is excited with what he has seen so far in the Seagulls youth.
“Over 100 U13 and U14 players turned up to our Development weekends recently and I am very excited at the talent coming through.
I am passionate about grass roots football and I look forward to working closely with clubs and schools, in particular the coaches.”
In addition to managing the Seagulls Academy, Dreger will oversee the important player welfare program at the club.
All youth players in the Seagulls Academy and senior squads are required to be working or studying, and Dreger has been amazed at how much the local community has supported the club with work opportunities.
“The community has been fantastic with their support. A number of our players are working with local businesses which helps the wider community.
I am excited to follow our young local Academy players through their journey and hopefully transitioning into Seagulls’ Intrust Super Cup players.
More importantly, it is very rewarding to see them gain local apprenticeships or further study at university.”
Supporting Dreger in the Seagulls Academy will be current Seagulls’ half Michael Dobson, who has taken up a development officer role in the program. The former Salford Red Devils’ inclusion will provide strong depth of experience to the Academy.
Seagulls’ Chief Executive Officer Hanan Laban states the club is committed to developing home grown talent through investing additional resources into the Seagulls Academy.
“The last couple of years has seen tremendous growth and change at BMD Kougari Oval. We have transformed our commercial business and the NRL has increased its support of the State Cup which has ensured sustainability and the ability to invest in more resources.
The Seagulls Academy is an important part of the club and it is the focus of our investment into the future. Glen and his team will now have the flexibility and resources to be more hands-on with our local clubs and high schools to improve their programs.
We are also in the process of establishing regional affiliations to ensure that we are providing as many young people as we can an opportunity for a pathway in rugby league.”
The Seagulls Academy educates young players about all aspects of Rugby League, both on and off the field. The program plays a crucial role in the recruitment structure of the Seagulls as it will produce the bulk of the club’s Intrust Super Cup squad into the future.
The Junior Academy consists of players aged between 12 to 15. The Senior Academy consists of players aged between 16 to 20 and incorporates the Mal Meninga U18s and Hastings Deering U20s sides.
In addition to rugby league specific skill development, Seagulls Academy players will receive education in strength & athletic performance, nutrition, social and well-being, and career advice.