In breaking news yesterday, Hilton College Old Boy and former Cell C Sharks centre Tristan Blewett (22) has been invited to try out for National Football League (NFL) side the New Orleans Saints.
American Football is of course big-money massive in the USA.
“It’s too good a story, I can’t tell you,” New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton said about his surprise invitation to Blewett.
“If I told you a local artist texted me about this rugby player…
“Here’s what you have to understand,” explained Saints coach Payton:
“When someone sends you something about a player, obviously that happens a lot.
“If it’s a College (university) player, I might forward it to Jeff Ireland. If it is a pro player I will forward it to Terry Fontenot.
“When someone’s recommendation comes, you go about the process every time.
“Knowing that there might be 44 out of 44 (players) where there’s nothing… but then the 45th one…
“It was an email, a text forwarded. It is easy to work out a player who’s right here. That was kind of it,” Saints coach Payton added.
An American Football League try-out – a chance to play in the NFL – was definitely not on the Tristan Blewett radar, but now that the chance has presented itself, he’s going to give it a full go.
“When I first came over with my coach, I was joking about it, saying, ‘I am going to live here to play American football’, and then two weeks ago – when I got the call – we both laughed like, “It has actually happened!’
“I told my mom a day or two ago, but I think no one back home really knows much about (American) football – and neither do I. So I think, as I learn, I’ll sort of explain it to them.”
On Tuesday in the USA: Tristan Blewett, who plays outside centre for the NOLA Gold rugby franchise, discusses his mini-camp try-out with the New Orleans Saints NFL (professional American football) franchise team.
Tristan gets a big plus from New Orleans-based Maritzburg College Old Boy Benjamin Haswell:
“Tristan has been a credit to his family and his country over here in New Orleans, with his stellar play (for the New Orleans Gold rugby union team) — and that South African gentlemanly humbleness has made him a fan favourite.
“Tristan’s come a long way since turning out for the Impi at Maritzburg Varsity!”
Johannesburg-born and Durban raised, Tristan represented the Sharks before a brief stay with the Kings in PE in 2018.
Tristan signed a two-year contract with the New Orleans Gold rugby union team towards the end of last year, where he has excelled in the USA Major League and captured the attention of both rugby union and influential American Football personalities.
COMMENTS FROM NEW ORLEANS SAINTS FANS
about Hilton College Old Boy Tristan Blewett:
Howard Jackson – “So what position this guy supposed to play?”
Chance Cooper – “They’re playing him as a DB, and punt returner.”
Geoffrey Ormsby – “He’ll definitely show people how to properly tackle!!”
DaPinkBubble – “I sure hope so; I still have nightmares of how bad the defence used to be at tackling…”
Eddie Scott – “Kicker or punter.”
Cash Money Gee – “Probably won’t drop a pass!”
Jerry Cave – “Give him the ball, you’ll see!”
Rafael Delgadillo – “He’ll most likely play… as a returner and a gunner. Though playing at running back will not be out of the question.
Gerardo Aguilera – “Running back or line backer.”
KZN10.com says – “Well, there is a lot of interest in Tristan but some confusion amongst New Orleans Saints fans as to what position Tristan is likely to play!
“The best of KZN10.com wishes to you Tristan!”
A final comment – this one from John Enslin: “Good luck young man… living the dream.”