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GWS: what could have been

Number8

Tiger Matchwinner
Oct 12, 2010
532
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Melbourne
I feel sorry for stars who play for these soulless clubs. Nobody cares. They are not connected to a community.
Yeah, agree. For all the stuff you hear about Auskick numbers and local league participation, yada yada yada, a true connection with a footy club runs so much deeper than that.

I never understood why GC wasn't effectively an extension of Southport, for that very reason. And it's why I think so many supporters can't understand why Tassie is yet to have a side—that fan base will be fanatical and will genuinely and authentically add to the fabric of the competition.
 
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eZyT

Tiger Legend
Jun 28, 2019
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Yeah, agree. For all the stuff you hear about Auskick numbers and local league participation, yada yada yada, a true connection with a footy club runs so much deeper than that.

I never understood why GC wasn't effectively an extension of Southport, for that very reason. And it's why I think so many supporters can't understand why Tassie is yet to have a side—that fan base will be fanatical and will genuinely and authentically add to the fabric of the competition.

Especially strange given both GC and Southport will both field a side in the new 22 side East Coast reserves competition in 2021 (against Richmond, Brisbane, Sydney, GWS and Melbourne based 'reserves')

I imagine it came down to whichever clubs had the biggest dick and the stronger narcissism and the most mates in head office at the table when they were trying to sort it the expansion licenses???

AFL numbers (Auskick and participation) are soooooo fudged up here. They throw a kinder kid a drink bottle as she runs passed on her way to soccer training, and they chalk down her and all her siblings and cousins as 'AFL participants'.

Its largely because a heap of useless blokes on $100k a year plus a car want to keep their easy jobs.
 
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DavidSSS

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Dec 11, 2017
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I agree it would be difficult to build a culture for a new club, no matter where they are. It actually takes decades not a couple of years.

They need to concentrate at least as hard on this as they do on performance.

As for the players, well, you recruit that many guns and you are going to have to off load them when they get to the end of their contracts and you can't fit them all in under the salary cap. They need to plan for players who are paid less so they can build a side which fits under the cap.

Tasmania needs a club, it would not take long to build a culture there because it already exists. North Melbourne can go there, call them the Tassie Kangaroos for 5 years and then just change it to the Tassie Devils. North Melbourne wanted us gone when we were in trouble, let's see if their multitude of supporters will bail them out, if not, off you go.

DS
 
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Number8

Tiger Matchwinner
Oct 12, 2010
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I reckon you are pretty generous. Starting with their 1st draft. The only 1 of their 1st 5 picks they would be happy with is Coniglio. Though in fairness it was a rotten draft.
2012 they had 5 picks in the top 14. they chose worse than we did in 2004. The 2nd best player they picked up was Corr. (That was the year they missed Vlastuin and Grundy. and MacRae and Wines.
2014 3 picks in the top 7. all duds.

Then how many of those listed in the 22 were only draft cos they received more draft picks for losing players?

Half the steals- Finlayson, Steele and Williams were academy players- so noone else could touch them.

The Giants have only been close to success (if you call 89 pts close) because they have been given soo many chances, and then SOS, when he went to Carlton, went and gave them more by trading for the duds he drafted in the 1st place.
Decent counterarguments.

I reckon you have to see it through the lens of overall draft success, however. No club nails every pick, we know that, but even high picks can be a bit of a lottery.

With regard to 2011, it wouldn't have mattered what order they picked them in, the fact is they had 11 of the first 14 picks and also got Greene, Haynes and Dev Smith in that haul—I reckon on reflection that'd be really happy with that draft.

Their effort in 2012 was certainly only so-so but it was a horrible—an awful—draft. Plenty of clubs missed the likes of Grundy. Corr at 14 is actually not too bad when you look at the dross that was to come.

Can't dispute SOS's odd record at the Blues, however. Some very odd choices.

Marchbank, Plowman, Kennedy and Setterfield were acceptable; Whiley, Jaksch, Sumner, Lamb, Pickett and Palmer were not so great.
 

The Big Richo

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Aug 19, 2010
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Great post @Number8 debunking one of the modern day footy myths.

GWS didn't do a lot wrong on the recruiting front, they are just a flag or two short in the end but they are bloody hard to win. To be so consistently in finals is a huge achievement in itself.

As for the player retention stuff, it's a hard one. It's a solid club with great facilities and as good a vibe as any other footy club but the problem they have is kids don't grow up dreaming of playing in Homebush and the draft demographics mean they will almost never have local players. The turn over as players mature will always be high.

My view is COLA should be reinstated for the Sydney clubs to help with the retention issues. It was a hugely misunderstood allowance that is really nothing like the public perception but addresses a disadvantage for the Sydney clubs in the value of a contract.
 
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artball

labels are for canned food
Jul 30, 2013
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its a strange story the GWS one that maybe a flag would've changed?
I don't see them getting one now.
and the chestnut: "Leon Cameron has a Ferrari and drives it like a Commodore", is funny.
 

taztiger4

Shovelheads- Keeping hipsters off Harley's
Jul 13, 2005
5,508
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Richmond Victoria
Great post @Number8 debunking one of the modern day footy myths.

GWS didn't do a lot wrong on the recruiting front, they are just a flag or two short in the end but they are bloody hard to win. To be so consistently in finals is a huge achievement in itself.

As for the player retention stuff, it's a hard one. It's a solid club with great facilities and as good a vibe as any other footy club but the problem they have is kids don't grow up dreaming of playing in Homebush and the draft demographics mean they will almost never have local players. The turn over as players mature will always be high.

My view is COLA should be reinstated for the Sydney clubs to help with the retention issues. It was a hugely misunderstood allowance that is really nothing like the public perception but addresses a disadvantage for the Sydney clubs in the value of a contract.
We the footy public in Melbourne thought it was a rort used to inflate the TPP & recruit the likes of Franklin and Tippett etc.

Wouldn't have been an issue if the $1M or whatever it was , was spread evenly across the whole list but it wasnt.

happy to hear your view.
 
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taztiger4

Shovelheads- Keeping hipsters off Harley's
Jul 13, 2005
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The player movement away from GC & GWS was planned, the AFL said it themselves, give the expansion teams the majority of the young talent & the other clubs will trade with them, thats exactly what has happened.
 
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The Big Richo

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Aug 19, 2010
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We the footy public in Melbourne thought it was a rort used to inflate the TPP & recruit the likes of Franklin and Tippett etc.

Wouldn't have been an issue if the $1M or whatever it was , was spread evenly across the whole list but it wasnt.

Yeah most people see COLA as a sack of cash the Sydney clubs could throw at a big name player and recruit them. That's because Eddie McGuire lost a Grand Final to Brisbane and then made it his personal mission to get rid of COLA and ran a very effective myth media campaign.

The reality was COLA was 9.8% of the salary cap and was paid equally across every player on the list. If we put it in today's pre-COVID figures, the salary cap was about 13 million so COLA would have been 1,274,000. Split across the 45 players on the Swans list in 2020 it is $28,311.11 each.

I would suggest pretty confidently that no AFL player in history, especially not on Franklin or Tippett type wages, has ever made a favourable decision on a contract based on 28 grand before tax.
 
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eZyT

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Jun 28, 2019
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The player movement away from GC & GWS was planned, the AFL said it themselves, give the expansion teams the majority of the young talent & the other clubs will trade with them, thats exactly what has happened.

I posted a year or so ago, that I was at an AFLQ gig, and I was surprised when the state head of the talent pathway explained that the Academies are designed to produce footballers for the AFL, not for clubs.

I guess thats kind of an extension to what your saying Taz?
 

tigertim

something funny is written here
Mar 6, 2004
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Yeah most people see COLA as a sack of cash the Sydney clubs could throw at a big name player and recruit them. That's because Eddie McGuire lost a Grand Final to Brisbane and then made it his personal mission to get rid of COLA and ran a very effective myth media campaign.

The reality was COLA was 9.8% of the salary cap and was paid equally across every player on the list. If we put it in today's pre-COVID figures, the salary cap was about 13 million so COLA would have been 1,274,000. Split across the 45 players on the Swans list in 2020 it is $28,311.11 each.

I would suggest pretty confidently that no AFL player in history, especially not on Franklin or Tippett type wages, has ever made a favourable decision on a contract based on 28 grand before tax.
I thought it was 10% (or 9.8%) of each individual annual salary.

So if Buddy was on $1m he’d get $98k but John Smith on $100k got $9800.
 
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sausage_meat69

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Oct 28, 2005
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We the footy public in Melbourne thought it was a rort used to inflate the TPP & recruit the likes of Franklin and Tippett etc.

Wouldn't have been an issue if the $1M or whatever it was , was spread evenly across the whole list but it wasnt.

happy to hear your view.
You took my thunder. It would be more acceptable if salary cap remained the same and that COLA was a kicker percentage applied consistently across applicable lists. As Taz suggested it seemed Syd concentrated the funding into securing FAs. It's a pretty simple approach am I missing something?
 

taztiger4

Shovelheads- Keeping hipsters off Harley's
Jul 13, 2005
5,508
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Richmond Victoria
Yeah most people see COLA as a sack of cash the Sydney clubs could throw at a big name player and recruit them. That's because Eddie McGuire lost a Grand Final to Brisbane and then made it his personal mission to get rid of COLA and ran a very effective myth media campaign.

The reality was COLA was 9.8% of the salary cap and was paid equally across every player on the list. If we put it in today's pre-COVID figures, the salary cap was about 13 million so COLA would have been 1,274,000. Split across the 45 players on the Swans list in 2020 it is $28,311.11 each.

I would suggest pretty confidently that no AFL player in history, especially not on Franklin or Tippett type wages, has ever made a favourable decision on a contract based on 28 grand before tax.
Are you certain thats how it was paid ?, my understanding was that it wasn't & that was the issue
 
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tigerman

It's Tiger Time
Mar 17, 2003
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I've come to the view GWS's recruitment has been unfairly maligned.

The bigger issue for the club is its inability to hold onto good players and attract good established players.

I recently looked into the good players the club has lost. Imagine for a moment they had been able to keep their list intact.

Going into 2021, they'd look something like this:

B: Haynes, Davis, Plowman*
HB: Williams*, Taylor, Wilson*
C: Whitfield, Steele*, Shiel*
HF: Taranto, Riccardi, Kelly
F: Greene, Cameron*, Himmelberg
R: Lobb*, Ward, Treloar*
I: Smith*, Adams*, Coniglio, Finlayson
E: Tomlinson*, Hogan, Scully*

*Now at another club

And what about the also-rans?

The above team doesn't include the likes of Mumford, Boyd, Daniels, Ash, Perryman, Caldwell, Hopper, Patton, Townsend, Frost, Marchbank, Hoskin-Elliot, Bonar, Stewart, Setterfield, Bruce, Hombsch, de Boer, Corr, Tyson, Miles, Kennedy ...

For balance, let's take a quick look at the club's big draft misses:

2011
#10 Liam Sumner
2012
#2 Jonathan O'Rourke
#12 Kristian Jaksch
2014
#4 Jarrod Pickett
#7 Paul Ahern
#23 Patrick McKenna
2017
#11 Aiden Bonar

In terms of pure busts, that's it. Even then, some of these guys were hardly disastrous picks.

For further balance, let's look at some of their draft gold:

Sam Frost, 2011 rookie draft, pick #1
Zac Williams, 2012 rookie draft, pick #54
Jack Steele, 2014 national draft, pick #24
Jeremy Finlayson, 2014 national draft, pick #85
Matt de Boer, 2016 national draft, pick #58
Sam Taylor, 2017 national draft, pick #28

Looking closer at the 2011 national draft, notwithstanding their mega haul of picks, they smashed it out of the park.

1 GWS Jonathon Patton
2 GWS Stephen Coniglio
3 GWS Dom Tyson
4 GWS Will Hoskin-Elliott
5 GWS Matthew Buntine
7 GWS Nick Haynes
9 GWS Adam Tomlinson
10 GWS Liam Sumner
11 GWS Toby Greene
13 GWS Taylor Adams
14 GWS Devon Smith

Interesting, however, to note the bloke picked at #15, Brandon Ellis, has played more games than any of the other top 15 picks (192).

A further Richmond-related note: Jacob Townsend is the first and only of the inaugural GWS players to play in a flag (Tom Boyd, drafted later, won in 2016 with the Dogs).

In summary:

I know we have fun with the SOS-can't-recruit narrative but GWS's issue hasn't been recruiting, it's been hanging onto their players.

A good read Number8.

Most of the players that they have lost have been expendable, Smith has been ok at Essendon, as has Wilson at the Dockers.

Adams and Treloar have been turnover merchants, though Adams was better this season. Steele and Shiel are good ball getters but butcher the ball.

Cameron and Williams will be big losses.

I reckon GWS have just lacked a quality ruckman and a decent game plan.
 
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taztiger4

Shovelheads- Keeping hipsters off Harley's
Jul 13, 2005
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I posted a year or so ago, that I was at an AFLQ gig, and I was surprised when the state head of the talent pathway explained that the Academies are designed to produce footballers for the AFL, not for clubs.

I guess thats kind of an extension to what your saying Taz?
exactly, I have heard our Academy guys say similar things
 
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The Big Richo

Moderator
Aug 19, 2010
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I thought it was 10% (or 9.8%) of each individual annual salary.

So if Buddy was on $1m he’d get $98k but John Smith on $100k got $9800.
Are you certain thats how it was paid ?, my understanding was that it wasn't & that was the issue

Unless my memory is failing I'm pretty sure it was the same amount paid across the list.

I had some documentation on it from years ago for when people argued about it that I'm searching through my archives to try and find.
 
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Tenacious

Tiger Champion
May 19, 2008
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Are you certain thats how it was paid ?, my understanding was that it wasn't & that was the issue

My understanding also FWIW (i.e. that it was not distributed equally as a dollar amount to each player on the list)
 
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