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The Doss

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Joined February 2012

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By day I teach primary school kids, by night I share my opinion on all things AFL.

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Goal umpiring needs an overhaul

It is time to completely overhaul the way we ‘coach’ our goal umpires. The introduction of the goal review system was put in place to eradicate the decisions goal umpires miss, in particular when the ball is very close to the goal post.

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Carlton's key to success in 2012

There is certainly no doubt that Carlton will be pushing once again for premiership glory in season 2012. However, the question for Carlton supporters and AFL followers is this: What is going to be different in 2012 from the previous year’s campaign for the Blues?

Great article! Thanks. It reminds me of when Mark Riccuito announced his retirement. I loved his quote ” One week I was playing and I was best on ground, the next week I knew I had to retire”. How quickly things can change in sport and this is a perfect example. I think dignity and pride sake, if this keeps up, Vettel will retire and be remembered as a multiple world champion and not for getting spanked by his Gen Z teammates and opposition!

Whether he wants to or not, Vettel is passing on the baton

We only know what we hear through the media! It wouldn’t surprise me if the numbers were greater. For the welfare of all players as human beings in our society I hope this is not the case.

Drugs policy needs AFL-wide attention

dermienator…you argument while throwing some interesting facts about win losses over the time is overall fundamentally flawed. You highlight a period in Essendon’s history where they had much success through 97-04. Obviously 2000 was one of the most successful home and away seasons of all time. Teams have major drop offs after much success. Brisbane after their triple premiership year had much of a slide due to many reasons. To throw figures out Brisbane between 2000-2005 had 80 home and away wins compared to their following 5 years of only 44. A difference of 36.

Also in your article you have thrown a number of names that simply baffles me. Watson, Stanton, Ryder and Fletcher struggling to hold their spots? Are you kidding? As for Hille and Bellchambers in that ridiculous list, Essendon are one of the few clubs to have the luxury of having 3 excellent ruck men who will be in any starting 22. Unfortunately (and tried unsuccessfully) playing 3 falls doesn’t work. One will miss.

I think with Hird saying the improvement will come from within is spot on. There is no doubt players like Howlett, Carlisle, Hardingham and I would even throw into the mix players like Prismall are genuine great players for the bombers in the future. Prismall did not get his chance under Knights with his rotating door policy.

I think the best way to see it all is Essendon supporters are not calling for Hird or the coaches heads, not because it is “our James” but rather for the first time in a decade, Essendon supporters are seeing the bigger picture and the potential within the club. You even said it yourself “Clubs are built over seasons”.

The Bombers need a total rebuild

Your article certainly raises the obvious elephant in the AFL room that the draw is unfair. Aspects of your idea would work and keeps things as fair as possible. However two things I want to highlight maybe others haven’t. Firstly the AFL and their love of $$$ will not buy it. As you say…the blockbusters are gone however I do like the fact your idea creates a final 3 round draw where each game is crucial for spots come finals. However my dislike is giving section C teams extra draft picks for winning. Wouldn’t that punish genuinely poor teams like GWS who can try as hard as they like and not string a win. Wouldn’t they need the drafts to make what you say a fairer system? I can certainly see the other of the coin to this and that teams would not try if in the section C group and that word that is around will come haunting back….TANKING!

Solution for a fairer AFL draw

Great piece mate! As many before me have said, you have summed it up beautifully! I found many of the comments well thought out, concise and highly intelligent. Others are just plain hilarious! Can someone please explain ‘fussballsAFLteamspreadsheet’ or whatever it was as a name? To funny! I also find it ironic many comments have thrown in their own two cents of new rules. Deliberate out of bounds only in certain areas of the ground, slapping side of arms ok and possession changes for out of bounds! What the?!?! I think the point I got out of alll of this was stop over umpired games with ridiculous rules and let the umpires use their experience to umpire correctly and let those soft and ridiculous frees go!

Umpires and rules ruining the game

Andrew A is spot on. The issue I have with Carlton and undeniably many supporters and the board feel is everything needs to work for Carlton. Carlton are too reliant on the skill and talent of key players getting them out of trouble and winning games. I think the elephant in the room for Carlton is under Ratten, they have no effective game plan and when a few key cogs fall off the wagon, the whole thing turns ugly. Management of players in a long season is just as important as anything else. Bombers supporters look at what Hird has been able to do with a similar list to that of Knights. Big improvements and it’s supporters, board and media all see where they are going. That is the massive positive for Hird. Nobody can see the future of Carlton under Ratten. An injury free, suspension free and cool headed captain (eyegouging, chicken wing, pressure point, wreckless elbows) will put Carlton close to premiership glory buy nobody can see it!

Why aren't they calling for Hird's head?

Good piece! From my viewing of Carlton this season it simply comes down to a lack of game plan. Many clubs, in particular Collingwood and Essendon have had lots of injuries to key players. The difference has been the the Blues have no structure. They rely too heavily on talent to get them over the line. When a player is out injured, teams like the pies bring in younger and less experienced players and give them a specific role. They have a job and they do it. It seems like Carlton play their young ones and just simply hope for the best. Would love to be a fly on the wall and listen to what sort of instructions kids like Bootsma get.

Carlton not injured, just soft

Interesting read. No doubt crowd numbers have dropped and well researched on your part. The suns and GWS have added to this decrease in numbers and the huge Foxtel deal has meant coverage at home has meant people can choose to be more comfortable at home wathcing the footy. It all comes back to money and the AFL in my eyes are excellent at what they do. They have set up our league financially to be strong for the future. Many clubs are supported by the AFL well beyond what we see as a general public. I think they key thing with trying to link crows numbers and memberships is that the opportunities now to buy different types of memberships has changed and makes it far more difficult to compare memberships to crow numbers. Clubs are now offering 3 game memberships to set games. There are even memberships that are purely supporter ones with no games you are allowed to go to. They are there for people to support their clubs if overseas, prepare for finals footy and simply guarantee themselves a GF ticket if they get there. The 70k you say for Collingwood is far skewed by what you would get to a game each week because of this.

I disagree with you on the season being scripted and predictable. SO many teams are pushing for top 8 and it won’t be until the very end I suspect this season that our 8 will be locked in. In saying that I certainly agree that the fixturing needs review for the future.

Does AFL HQ care about crowds anymore?

Good piece. The problem with Freo is their inconsistency outside of Pattersons. Without a top 4 finish and unlikely a home final, it would seem it is against them and another early finals exit. I think you missed the fact that with Essendon they finally played a brand of football to suit playing at Pattersons. For too long now Essendon brought an Etihad game plan with little effect. The spread and run and carry of the bombers was exceptional. Key changes allowed for this gameplan with Delolio and Reimers adding that run and spark Essendon would of been exposed to with slower utilities/forwards.

In regards to Essendon and a third tall, it was trialled last year with Bellchambers, Ryder and Hille all in the side. It didn’t work. I don’t think it is completely out of the picture but for now it is not needed. The Bombers spine is great with more strength than height the key. Crameri and Hurley forward are great. Hille and Ryder combination works perfectly well and Hardingham and Fletcher amazing down back. The only issue in my eyes is Hooker and Pears are not quite there yet in terms of consistency. Sometimes are getting outmarked or outmuscled by opponents they should easily beat.

Freo magic against Essendon, but only for three quarters

All very valid reasons that would strengthen a tilt at a premiership. Money doesn’t hurt but I don’t think aids in a premiership stoush. North were examples of that in the 90’s. No money but built a culture and had talent on the field to win. I think Carlton is an interesting one to throw in the mix. Ratten has been coaching since 07. In this time they have built a strong culture and powerful leadership base, with Kernahan and Ratten as Carlton greats. The likes of Alan Richardson, Gavin Brown and Paul Williams all arch rival collingwood folk but with terrific knowledge of our great game and culture. Since 07 Carlton have drafted names like Kreuzer, Armfield, Ellard, Yarren, Garlett, Robinson, Tuohy, Lucas, Duigan and Curnow. All players consistently in their 22. Judd as an onfiled leader and face of the club is a clear strength but at this point show no sign of a premiership flag playing poor football. Yes injuries have hurt but it all comes back to no structure. The pies are decimated with injury but their structure allows for people to step in and fill a roll and execute a plan. Carlton rely on talent to get them over the line. For me, coaches and their structure to get their team to play 23 rounds of good football and back up for finals is what wins you premierships. No structure = no premiership.

How to win an AFL Premiership

Did anyone see Sam Gilbert last night? Enough said I think! My whole article can be summed up by his efforts last night. Tackled because he can’t kick with his right foot. He purely gets a game for his height and matching athletic ability. But for goodness sake, shouldn’t all AFL footballers be able to kick with both sides of their body and not get tackled in the goal square because of it?

Desperation makes an AFL footballer

Great piece! I think Bower is gone not necessarily for anything else but athletisism. His effort and intensity for 4 quarters is unquestionable. However, Jamison has his measure in all areas, both at ground level and in the air and also running with key forwards like a Cloke or Dawes. Duigan adds an element of flair down back Bower simply doesn’t offer. Would you put Bower as a sub? Time will tell! Good to have such a problem though!

Carlton to make AFL defence even stronger

Great piece camtherose! Thoroughly enjoyed it. Once again, interesting choice on Dustin Martin. Not only do I guess reraise the point of Poohdini that rarely does a player outside the 8 go on to win it but also the tigers still in my eyes don’t have the depth and he lacks support around him to get the footy and make his possessions quality ones. There is always the discussion about too many good players in one team stealing votes however past history has shown that it doesn’t ruin a gun players shot at the brownlow. I think tigers will be once again out of the 8. Martin to surely poll more votes than 12 this year but will be well out of contention to winning it.

What we learned from the opening round of the NAB Cup

Good point ‘m’. However the tactics and strategy of coaches has always changed over the course of the years and the stats discussed had always been decreasing. Certainly hear your opinion however IMO I think the rules have directly correlated to these increase in long kicks etc. I certainly agree with you about the 5-10 years data. I made sure I was talking about ‘trends’ in the piece.
Last paragraph: “Only time will tell the impacts of the overall trend, and then we can only truly determine the success of Anderson’s laws committee”

Adrian Anderson's positive AFL rule changes

The advantage rule itself is great. For too many years it was frustrating watch an umpire bring an advantage back or to bring the player taking the free kick back around the mark and kill a whole lot of time and advantage a defence to get back. Once again it comes down to the interpretation and judgement of the umpires. It needs work and time will balance it out. The hands in the back faced similar issues but now it has balanced itself out and is working well.

Adrian Anderson's positive AFL rule changes

Thanks AndyMack! Certainly the errors of judgement are the ones, us as fans, certainly see and make our opinion on the rules from. Thought I might paint the brighter side of it all. I definitely agree with you on the management of the AFL being far better than the NRL. The AFL is now the 4th largest sport across the world in terms of average crowd attendances. They are doing something right! Thanks for the feedback!

Adrian Anderson's positive AFL rule changes

Bombers now over 40,000.

Carlton's key to success in 2012

Certainly agree Johno. Think I was coming from the point of view of missing draft picks during the salary cap scandal and the financial hole they are digging themselves from and the good work the board have done. Bower was heavily relied upon a couple of seasons ago but I am finding Laidler has his measure. A fit Bower certainly boosts their backline options. I think what is funnier is how Thornton has rejuvinated his career up forward.

Carlton's key to success in 2012