Westmeath Minotaurs mark tenth anniversary season

The Westmeath Minotaurs American Football Club celebrate their 10th competitive season in 2022. The original players first took the field in 2013 and predictably struggled to establish themselves within the Irish American Football Association.

With little to no experience of playing or coaching American football, low player numbers, almost no equipment, and limited financial resources, wins were hard to come by. It’s a ten-year story of perseverance and resilience.

It’s not easy to keep getting up after repeatedly getting knocked down. The saying repeated often by coach Conor Brennan rang true early on, and still does: “We never lose, we either win or learn.”

The club certainly learned much over ten years. The cumulative result of a lot of hard work is a club with a senior kitted championship game appearance, a flag football championship, over 50 club members, numerous supporting alumni, proper training equipment, and resources that will sustain the club into the future. Most importantly, the club has confidence.

Club Chairman Ros McAdden wants to set the bar a bit higher in 2022 with plans for some major and supporting events. To give back to the community, the club is organising a charity game for St Patrick’s Day weekend against a team from the United States. The opponents are the Philadelphia Blueflame.

The Blueflame is the Philadelphia Police and Fire Departments’ combined team which focuses on raising money for charity while playing the game they love. The supported charity for the game on March 19 is the Lakeland Area Retreat and Cancer Centre, or LARCC.

As long as Covid restrictions allow, the club will also host a pub quiz in February supporting LARCC. The Blueflame is also raising funds for LARCC back in Philadelphia. This game is the first of the season that will no doubt challenge the Minotaurs and be a great experience. After the Blueflame game, the sights are set on returning to the final and bringing home a championship to Westmeath.

Training for the 10th anniversary season starts next Sunday, January 9 at the Mullingar RFC from 10am to 12pm.

Later in the month on Saturday, January 23 from 9 to 11am at the Athlone Regional Sports Centre is the club’s Rookie Day. Everyone is welcome and no experience is required. If you can’t make Rookie Day, you're welcome at any of our training sessions throughout the year.

If you’re interested in playing for the Minotaurs, please make contact through the club’s Facebook page.