White targets top coach for Bulls
NEWS: The Bulls are set to bolster their coaching ranks at all levels under new Director of Rugby Jake White.
Wessel du Plessis, a former player, left the building industry for teaching on 2010 and then became the highly successful coach of the Grey College 1st XV, a universally acknowledged top school team in the world.
Now the well-financed Blue Bulls also want Du Plessis to leave Grey and look after their age-group teams. Apparently White has made Du Plessis and offer which he is considering.
While Du Plessis considers, Grey College are giving Du Plessis space to make his decision. The Grey director of rugby, Bobby Joubert, said that the great school respected Du Plessis’s right to decide and, because he was so valuable to Grey, they were giving him room to make up his mind.
If he were to move to the Blue Bulls he would be following in the footsteps of Sean Erasmus who made a name for himself with Glenwood and then at Paarl Boys’ High before accepting coaching opportunities at the Golden Lions.
White himself made the move from teaching to top-level coaching, going from Parktown and then Jeppe to become the Springbok coach of the team that won the 2007 Rugby World Cup and is still much in demand in top professional rugby.
Du Plessis started coaching at Under-17 level in 2004 when he was playing for the Cheetahs Under-20 side. Injuries put paid to his playing career and the difficulties of the building industry moved him into teaching at Grey in 2010. In 2014 he was appointed coach of the Grey 1st XV when the great school was battling in terms of its own high standards.
Success came back to Grey and it had an unbeaten season in 2019, playing against any top side willing to match it. In recent times they have had victories over Paarl Boys’ High, Paarl Gim, Affies, Paul Roos and two top New Zealand Schools in Christchurch Boys’ High (66-28 and 73-26) and Southland Boys’ High (54-0).
This year, Du Plessis was appointed the coach of the South African Schools A team.
He is 35 years of age.
President of the Blue Bulls Rugby Union , Willem Strauss, was on hand to officially welcome new Director of Rugby, Jake White who arrived at Loftus on Tuesday, and new CEO, Edgar Rathbone, who officially started on Monday… Looking forward to a new era #BullsFamily pic.twitter.com/IdtdqHJ4vK
— Official Blue Bulls (@BlueBullsRugby) June 4, 2020