Australia: Melbourne University Royals kick off 2017 season with new head coach, new look

Despite losing their opener to the Monash Warriors, the Melbourne University Gridiron Club is optimistic with new head coach, European veteran coach John Trana, and a new identity.

Moving into its seventh season, the Club’s three teams, the Royals (Men’s), the Chargers (Women’s) and the Lions (Colts/Under 19s), are now collectively known as the Melbourne University Royals. Regarding their new identity, Club President Robert Smith said, ‘The branding aligns perfectly with our Club motto of One Club, One Family’.

Melbourne University Royals HC John Trana looks on as his team plays the Monash Warriors Photo: Alex Letelier Photography

The new branding has an updated logo of a roaring lion’s head wearing a gold crown, was in full display on the updated uniforms of the men’s team  in the season launch Sunday against reigning Gridiron Victoria Division 1 champions and league stalwarts, the Monash Warriors.

In addition to sporting a new look, the Men’s Royals team recently appointed Head Coach John Trana. Coach Trana joined the club in February and brings a wealth of coaching experience from the United States and Europe. Trana has previously coached High School and Junior College Gridiron in New York, Idaho and Colorado and his European coaching experience includes seasons with the Zagreb Patriots – Croatia, Moscow Patriots – Russia, Viterbo Pitbulls – Italy and Limhamn Griffins – Sweden. When he is not coaching, Trana considers Arkansas in the US his home.

Royals HC John Trana showing support for Women’s Gridiron team Photo: Alex Letelier Photography

Regarding his current role with the Royals and life in Australia, Trana noted all has gone very smoothly.

‘Everyone at the Club has made me feel a part of the Royals’ family. The players are coachable with a number of great personalities, which makes coaching both fun and rewarding’.

Trana has high expectations for the Division 1 Men’s team this season.

‘We are looking to compete for a Championship. The players and coaches are committed to reaching our goal, and we’ve developed game plans to put our talented players in a position to be successful.’

Unfortunately, the Royals lost their opener to the Monash Warriors 32-7. Next up

Source: Melbourne University Sport

Photos: Alex Letelier Photography

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