Sean Rutgerson was born in Byron Bay in 1978.
He grew up and played his junior rugby league on the northern coast of New South Wales.
Working his way lower grades to begin with, Sean started with the North Sydney Bears in 1994.
He made his NRL debut for the Bears in 1998 and played 12 games for them over two seasons. He was part of the last ever season of the Bears as a stand alone side in the NRL in 1999.
The Bears merged with Manly to become the Northern Eagles and Sean headed down the highway to the Raiders in 2000. His first season in Canberra coincided with that famous game against the Tigers in the snow and funnily enough he scored his only NRL try in 68 appearances in that game!Embed from Getty Images
His first taste of international rugby league was representing South Africa at the 2000 World Cup where he played three games in the second row.
With 68 games overall in the NRL, Sean then headed to the Super League where he quickly became a fan favourite at the Salford Red Devils.
He was a part of the 2006 team which finished fifth, the club’s second highest ever finish in the Super League.
Predominately a front rower, he played 74 games in the Super League for Salford and scored five tries.
He was voted as one of the props in Salford’s best ever team a few years ago which shows the regard they hold him in at the club.
After retiring from professional footy, Sean became a Personal Trainer at Anytime Fitness in Sydney. At the same time as personal training, he was the Strength and Conditioning Coach for the Wests Tigers NSW Cup team.
With his partner from Canberra, he captain-coached the Tuggeranong Bushrangers in the Canberra Raiders Cup in 2008.
Taking on the growing popularity of rugby league in the USA he went on to coach the Jacksonville Axemen in 2009 and has had an affinity with the club ever since with time spent between both countries.In 2011 he took up an assistant coach role at the Newtown Jets before heading back to the states again and worked his way up the coaching ranks.
Now 43, Sean is the Head Coach of the USA Rugby League team, the Hawks. He has coached the team to three wins and two losses so far.
Prior to the Hawks top job he was the Strength and Conditioning Coach for the national side whilst coaching the club side, the Jacksonville Axemen.