The Evolution of the Rhinos

The Evolution of the Rhinos


The Dublin Rhinos began in 2008 as a rough and ready group of players, most of whom had spent some time and gained experience in the Irish American Football League. With the extremely dedicated Head Coach Mark Lawless at the helm assisted by Coach Robbie Andrews, the players developed and fed from the passion their coaches had shown towards them and the sport.

The tight knit group of players fought long and hard games which turned into long, tough seasons. 2008 & 2009 was seen as a learning experience for the team jumping from 0 wins in 2008 to 1 win in 2009. Things had started to click. With an infusion of fresh blood and dedicated players the Rhinos pushed on into 2010 taking everybody by surprise en route to a Semi-Final appearance, losing only to the eventual Shamrock Bowl winners.

2011 saw the end of the beginning and the start of the future. No more massively one sided defeats and every game was a competition that either team could come out on top of. Finishing the season 2-6 and missing out on the playoffs was not the result the Rhinos had hoped for after their 2010 semi-final appearance but it paved the way for the 2012 season.

The 2012 season has been the Rhinos most successful season in their short history, finishing 4-4 after picking up wins in their last 2 games of the season. A wild card defeat at the hands of the Carrickfergus Knights kept the Rhinos from returning to the semi-finals which they reached in 2010.

The highlight of the 2013 season was defeating the Dublin Rebels in a 7-6 victory. When the Rhinos first formed and joined the Irish American Football League the Rebels were the most dominant team in the country and handed the Rhinos defeats of up to 65-0 to prove it. Every year the Rhinos have improved on those results and after coming close in 2012 a victory was finally earned by the Rhinos over the Rebels. Grit and determination over the years resulted in that victory, and it is the same grit and determination that will turn around the 2013 record of 2-6 next season.

The dedication within the team is growing, players are taking part in off season strength and conditioning programmes to better themselves to better the team. October 2013 is only around the corner and the 2014 Dublin Rhinos have some history to make.