A.J. "Rocc" LaRocca is next up. His father Tony and his grandfather John both played for the KU Rugby Club making A.J. the third generation of LaRocca's to play at KU. Before coming to Lawrence, he played football at Butler Community College where he was a kicker. Rocc did his family proud playing both wing and fullback. He also played scrum half occasionally and as the picture below shows, blind side forward when needed. That goes to show how versatile and athletic he was. A fit and fast back, Rocc's accurate and powerful boot could kick for points from anywhere inside of the 50m line. He was a fearless defender and a threat on attack when he had the ball. He always had a smile on his face and had a positive attitude. We asked him some questions about his time with KJRFC and here are his responses.
What plans do you have after graduation?
"After graduation I will be working. I am talking with medical sales companies. That's what I would like to be involved in."
What did you like about the rugby club?
"What I loved about the club is the traditions, traveling all over the country to play in different states and even tour to different countries. I have played all sorts of sports my entire life and the game of rugby is by far my favorite. The memories and stories I have for this club are endless!"
What was your fondest memory while at the club?
"My fondest memory was touring New Zealand. The trip was a non-stop thrill. We covered so much ground and saw so many things for the time we were there. The clubs we played against are things I will remember for the rest of my life."
What would you tell incoming players about the club?
"My advice for future players is that with this club you will make so many friends and memories. What's great about this club is that it teaches you to grow as an individual not only on the pitch as a player, but also off of it as a person."
Do you plan to play rugby after graduation?
"I would love to continue to play after school. I am definitely going to try and play as long as I can."
A.J., thanks for all that you brought to KJRFC and best of luck to what the future holds. "Rocc" Chalk Jayhawk!
Westwick Rugby Complex, E 1094 Road, Lawrence, KS, United States 66047 --- Mail to: The Kansas Rugby Foundation Inc. P.O. Box 1182 Lawrence, KS 66044