John Mitchell's arrival as national 15s coach will reunite the New Zealander not only with chief executive Nigel Melville, but also Eagle 7s coach Mike Friday.
In the late 1990s, Friday played scrumhalf for England's Wasps, where Mitchell was a budding forwards coach and Melville was head man.
The background didn't figure in Mitchell's hiring, according to union officials.
Still, the connection could facilitate one of Mitchell's aims, forging a cadre of 10-15 elite coaches thinking the same ways about strategy and tactics, the competitive season, player development, and so on.
Opponents now 'fear' the USA 7s team, Mitchell said in an interview, which has gained ground by result of its bona fide professional setup. He means to to extend its elements not only to the 50 or so players he estimates will be in 2015's 15s squad, but to athletes outside the Eagle program per se. Doing so entails aligning with outside coaches.
'The speed of development comes from investment in structure, recruiting, developing people,' Mitchell observed.
The coaching group would begin with the US 15s and 7s staffs and coaches of the planned Pro Rugby league, Mitchell said.
With 7s Eagles pointing at the Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro, the 15s team competing in March and July, and Pro Rugby hoping to get underway this spring, deep integration seems unlikely until after summer. Yet a more comprehensive approach to national-level players and resources is also in the sights of Alex Magleby, USARFU's high performance director, Mitchell's supervisor.
From a competitive perspective, two of Mitchell's 2015 priorities are defending for 4 minutes (without conceding points) and regaining structure from disorganized play. 'Intent doesn't always work. We have to be able to transition quickly', he said.
Reviewing the 2015 World Cup, Mitchell spoke of American strength at the gainline, explosive in ballcarrying and destructive in tackling. From this base, he intends to develop an attacking style with a 'higher scoring probability' that would be the basis of 'really competing' with Tier 1 nations.