I like what Billups is doing by integrating these new players into the Eagle lineup. I am very interested in what Ryland and Palefau will produce in USA colors. Those two players are very athletic. I think the weakness will be the inexperience of the two locks. Stanfill is really young. I think he is 20 years old. Any predictions? ----------------------------------------- Eagles Debut Four Against Canada May 23 2005, Tokyo – Four debut internationals, including both second rows, will take the field in the USA’s opening Super Cup match, against Canada on Wednesday. Locks James Lik and Louis Stanfill, flanker Andrew Ryland, and wing Mike Palefau are to be the newest Eagles. Five of the seven-man bench also would earn their first caps should they see playing time. The newcomers are joined by hooker Mark Griffin, flanker Todd Clever, and flyhalf Matt Sherman, all of whom last earned “run on” caps in 2003, and Albert Tuipulotu, making his first start at inside center. In all, there are nine changes from the USA’s final match of the 2004 season. “The players in the Super Cup squad have earned their way over the past year through their performances on the field, and now they have the responsibility to play their guts out for the United States” USA head coach Tom Billups said in announcing the squad. In the forwards, Griffin joins props Mike MacDonald and Jacob Waasdorp. Lik and Stanfill are the locks, with Ryland, Clever, and number eight and captain Kort Schubert at the back of the scrum. At halfback, Sherman pairs with Mose Timoteo, while Tuipulotu and Paul Emerick combine at center. Eagle 7s teammates Palefau and David Fee are the wings, with Francois Viljoen at fullback. The bench includes hooker Mike Hobson and prop Chris Osentowski, back five player Mike Mangan, and flanker Jon Hartman. Osentowski, who debuted last fall against Italy, is the only capped forward. Halfback Doug Rowe and center Scott Jones also are uncapped, while the final position goes to Mike Hercus, fresh off a European Challenge Cup victory with Sale Sharks. Canada twice downed the USA by three points in 2004, once at the Super Cup and once in Edmonton, reversing the Eagles’ two-game sweep a year before. At 13th, the Maple Leafs are the highest-ranked team in the four-team competition, three places higher than the USA. 14th-ranked Romania takes on 17th-placed Japan in Wednesday’s other match. United States: Francois Viljoen; Mike Palefau, Paul Emerick, Albert Tuipulotu, David Fee; Matt Sherman, Mose Timoteo; Mike MacDonald, Mark Griffin, Jacob Waasdorp, James Lik, Louis Stanfill, Andrew Ryland, Todd Clever, Kort Schubert (captain). Reserves: Mike Hobson, Chris Osentowski, Mike Mangan, Jon Hartman; Doug Rowe; Scott Jones, Mike Hercus.