The Texas Rugby Hall of Fame has elected five outstanding new members. Making up the Class of 2023 are Suzanne Cobarruvias of Houston; David Dodge of Dallas, Larry Gallego of San Antonio; Greg “Guido” Goodman of Dallas (Harlequins); and the late Mark Anthony of Texas A&M.
Several additional honors were announced, including the recipient of the HOF’s highest honor, The Alan Sharpley Award, which this year goes to Bob Latham of Dallas.
Singled out for the prestigious Distinguished Service Awards are Bob Macnab of Dallas (college); John Via of Fort Worth/Houston (club); and the late father/son duo, Nick and Mike Marketos of Plano (HS/youth). The 2000 Fort Worth Rugby Club, winners of the national D-II championship, will be this year’s Honor Team.
The Hall of Fame Induction and Awards Ceremony will be held at the Fort Worth-Downtown Sheraton on August 26, in conjunction with the TRU Annual Conference and AGM. Guests are encouraged to purchase tickets and reserve rooms ASAP.
Also, don’t miss the opportunity to showcase your HOF pride with our exclusive merchandise offerings. Additionally, HOF members can also discover a wider range of TRU merchandise available at our online shop. To ensure delivery by the HOF banquet, please place all merchandise orders by July 15.
2023 HOF Class
Mark Anthony was one of the most revered players — on and off the pitch — in A&M history, partly owing to his joining the fledgling team in 1969 as a young cadet from Monahans. He would go on to lead the team in its epic defeat of LSU in 1974 in what was billed as the national championship game even before USA Rugby was created. Mark led the team to an additional five TRU titles. Along the way he was a perennial TRU All Star, as well as stalwart on the Western USA Select Side. He also was a member of the Houston Heathens. Above all, Mark was known as a true gentleman leader and a gifted singer. Sadly, he passed away in 2021.
Suzanne Cobarruvias began her playing career as one of the first members of the Texas A&M women’s club before becoming a founding member of the Houston Heathen Hearts. She was a Texas Select Side hooker, and was one of the first female referees in Texas. Suzanne was a Western RFU selector for five years, and was the Program Director for the USA Women’s National Team from 1992-1998, in addition to serving as the Manager of the first 7s national team to play in Hong Kong.
David Dodge of the Dallas RFC currently serves as treasurer for the USA Club Rugby Association and has a long resume as a player, coach and tireless administrator of the game, taking on many thankless roles to advance the game. These include serving on national committees overseeing financial auditing, risk analysis, insurance for players, eligibility, competitions, and more. In Texas, he serves as the D-1 representative on the TRU Board. At the club level, he is the president of the Dallas Reds, played at all levels of the club, and has coached the second side. He began his playing career with the Cadillac Rugby Club of Macon, Georgia.
Larry Gallego is a San Antonio RFC legend, or as the Express News once wrote “the SARFC’s answer to Dr. J.” That happens when you drop-kick in double overtime to win the State Championship (1976). His All Star credits include playing for the TRU and Western USA Select Sides. Larry also helped build the state union, serving as secretary/treasurer in the 1970s.
Greg “Guido” Goodman of the Dallas Harlequins is USA Eagle #213. He started playing with the Southwest Texas Renegades in 1983 before becoming Captain of the Dallas Reds prior to joining the ‘Quins where he captained a side that went to three USA Final Fours. He was a Western RFU All Star for a decade, and captain for all four of the West’s National Territorial Championships, where he was MVP in 1992. He also captained the TRU Select Side, and was previously a TRU collegiate All Star. His coaching stints include Rice University and Kent State. Greg is currently coaching his son’s youth rugby club.
Alan Sharpley Memorial Award
Robert P. “Bob” Latham embodies the spirit of The Alan Sharpley Award, which was created to recognize those with Texas connections who have made extraordinary and unique contributions to rugby. Just as Alan spearheaded a coalition to buy and develop Austin’s Burr Field, the first rugby complex in the state, Bob achieved many “firsts” of his own. And like Alan, Bob has devoted practically his entire adult life to moving the game forward. His impressive and too long resume includes serving as Chairman of USA Rugby, and he is completing his final term as the first American to serve on the Executive Board of World Rugby as arguably one of the top 4-5 leaders of the international game. A former tennis player, Bob migrated to rugby at Stanford University and continued to play while at the University of Virginia School of Law. Upon moving to Dallas, he soon became a fixture with the Harlequins, serving as president, and he also served on the Western USA Board. Ultimately, It was Bob’s leadership that gained USA Rugby membership in the US Olympic Committee, and he was a driving force globally in getting 7s Rugby into the Olympics, leveraging the contacts he developed over many years of leadership in both world rugby and the Olympic movement.
Distinguished Service Awards
John Via has been selected to receive the Distinguished Service Award after being a steward of the game for over four decades in several regions of the country, although he is most associated with the Fort Worth Rugby Club, where he was President when the team won the national D-II title. He also played club rugby in California, Pennsylvania and elsewhere as a handy back rower. John’s expertise and steady hand was vital to the Western RFU when he served as treasurer during a particularly challenging time. It was this same type of professionalism he brought to his other administrative roles with the Texas Select Side.
Bob Macnab already has a rugby field named in his honor, such was the impact he had as the long time coach of the University of Dallas. His playing career was spent in England, Holland and Scotland before he joined the famous London Scottish RFC. Upon moving to Dallas, he played for the Old Hat and toured internationally with the Texas XXXs before becoming “just” a coach for the fledgling University of Dallas for the next 32 years. In his rugby retirement, Bob established the Groundhog Rugby Alumni Association with a mission of supporting youth rugby nationwide.
The Marketos Family embody the term “legacy” as it relates to youth and high school rugby in Texas. That legacy began in 2000 when the patriarch, Nick, who brought his passion from Zimbabwe, started a rag-tag high school team that would become the vaunted Plano Rugby Club. In 2005, the program was expanded to include youth teams from kindergarten through 8th grade, including girls. With the help of his fellow founders and coaches, the program introduced the game to thousands of youths. After being named Chairman Emeritus, Nick passed away in 2017. His son, Mike, who played collegiately at A&M, carried on in the tradition of service to the game, becoming club President until his own untimely passing at age 50 earlier this year. Nick’s son Pete was a fine player for Rice University, and his granddaughter (Mike’s daughter), Elena suited up for the Plano youth team. The definition of legacy.
2000 Fort Worth Rugby Club, winners of the USA Rugby XVs National DII championship