Whatever Happened to The Highlanders?

Brian Damage

They were once considered top prospects in WWE’s developmental program. After their debut…the team never seemed to hit their stride. The duo would ultimately get released after a some controversy. Today on the blog we ask…’Whatever Happened To’ The Highlanders?

Derek Couch and Russell Murray met each other while training to become wrestlers in Canada. They were both enrolled in Waldo Von Erich’s school. The two hit it off and decided to form a tag team. They debuted together in 2001 as the Scottish Highlanders and adopted the names of Robbie and Rory McAllister. They wrestled all over the Canadian independents for four years.

In July of 2005, the Highlanders were signed to a developmental contract and assigned to Ohio Valley Wrestling. They wrestled various teams down in OVW including Deuce and Domino, the Heart Throbs, the Riggs Brothers and others. After a year in developmental, the Highlanders were called up to the main roster and wrestled a series of dark matches.

A series of vignettes began to air on WWE television hyping the Highlanders arrival. Robbie and Rory were billed as cousins and were given a sort of Bushwackers type of gimmick…ala fish out of water. After the team debuted…they were seemingly thrust right into the tag team title picture. They feuded with teams like the Spirit Squad as well as Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch. The Highlanders were unsuccessful in their quest for the WWE tag team titles.

The Highlanders would ultimately drop their comedic schtick and turn heel. They had a brief feud with Brian Kendrick and Paul London…but the heel turn did not do much to further their WWE careers. Rory would suffer an injury and was shelved for several months. Robbie started wrestling as a singles competitor, but was used mostly as enhancement talent.

In March of 2008, Derek ‘Robbie’ Couch was spotted on camera at a TNA event. WWE management called TNA offices and demanded that Couch leave the arena. Robbie admitted he was getting frustrated with his career and wanted to be spotted on camera so he could get fired. The Highlanders remained with WWE a couple of more months to put over other tag teams. They were eventually released in August of 2008.

After their release…the Highlanders returned to wrestling on the independent scene. Robbie would open his own promotion based in Canada called…Canadian Pro Wrestling. So the question remains, whatever happened to the Highlanders?

Derek ‘Robbie ‘ Couch still wrestles occasionally on the independent scene. He lives in Minnesota with his wife and son and works in sales for construction equipment.

Russell ‘Rory’ Murray is retired from wrestling and lives in Cincinnati, Ohio with his wife and daughter. He currently works for a major courier company.

4 thoughts on “Whatever Happened to The Highlanders?

  1. That is a stupid way to get yourself fired. All because you didn’t like where you were going and then you show up on a rival minor league promotion to get yourself fired. I heard he got a serious ass-whooping for that.

    Liked by 1 person

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