White can give Bulls horns again
OPINION: Love him or hate him, Jake White is good at what he does.
His record in the game speaks for itself. He has brought success to every team he has coached in the last two decades and he could do the same for the Bulls.
Earlier this month, Alfons Meyer, the Chief Executive Officer of the Blue Bulls Company, confirmed that White is on the Bulls’ radar to replace the now-departed Alan Zondagh as Director of Rugby.
The Bulls are still in the early phase of finding a replacement, but White certainly must be at the top of their list of candidates.
White is best known for bringing respect back to the Springboks between 2004 and 2007, which included a Tri-Nations championship and a World Cup triumph.
He also transformed the Brumbies side into a powerhouse over two seasons which culminated in an appearance in the Super Rugby Final in 2013.
White was only in charge of the Sharks for one season in 2014. In that year, the Sharks were the South African Conference winners and finished third in the overall standings.
His stint in France also brought success to Montpellier, as they won the European Challenge Cup in 2016.
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White is an astute coach, who brings out the best in a team.
And a Director of Rugby role at the Bulls will give him the freedom to stamp his authority on all levels of game in a struggling organisation.
That role could be a similar one Rassie Erasmus has with Springboks where there will be a hands-on approach with the senior team.
The Bulls are a team who seem to have lost their identity in recent seasons and White’s rugby knowledge could be the catalyst to turn things around in Pretoria.
Pote Human’s side is far cry from the teams that won Super Rugby titles in 2007, 2009 and 2010 and a key reason for that is they just do not have the personnel to challenge the top teams.
White has a knack of getting what he wants, and the development of players and the recruitment of players could be boosted if he comes on board.
A lack of clear game plan and leadership on the field have been clear problems for the Bulls this year. A lack of quality in key positions has also been an area of concern.
In 2020 so far, the Bulls are currently sitting fourth in the South African Conference and 12th in the overall standings with just one win from their six games so far.
With the current season in limbo due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Bulls could start their preparations for the 2021 season a bit earlier behind the scenes with White at the helm.