Towards the end of 2015, Jake Carlisle was right, the club was ■■■■■■.
The playing group was obviously at breaking point, we were continually getting flogged, we had the WADA appeal hanging over the players heads, the media was still gunning for Hird, from the sounds of sections of the Board we gunning for Hird.
We had lost Crameri, Ryder, and were about to lose Carlisle. The only players we could attract to the club we those past their best, or were fringe players at other clubs. We had mass debt that was only going to get worse with the compensation payouts & further court costs to come.x
At the end of 2015, Hird had copped 3 years of daily intrusion, savage public denunciation and a mass smear campaign the majority of the Footy world was only too willing to run with.
Whether James jumped or was pushed I don’t know, in the end I don’t really think it matters, it was the right thing that he went at that time. It gave immediate relief to the pressure on not only the playing group and the club, but James himself. It was a final act of integrity that is far beyond most of the dickheads in the AFL world.
I love Jimmy and it breaks my heart that his time as coach of the club ended the way did. If it was a purely a question of whether Hird could coach he would have survived, but of course it was much more than that.
I’m not going to hold Paul and Catherine or anyone else on the Board responsible for that. We were at the end of 2015 compared to where we are now only 2 years later is remarkable. Record membership, record profit, have somehow managed to turn ourselves into a destination club only 12 month after our worse season in multiple generations,young, exciting, talented list. The leadership in Xav, Lindsay, the Board, Woosha, Disco, Leadership Group have done a tremendous job turning the ship around so quickly, not sure why anyone is keen to rush to change things.
Yes we all wanted to see James Hird and Jobe Watson on that dias on the last Saturday in September holding aloft Number 17 and it hurts that we will never get to see it. Maybe it was naive for 2 Board Candidates to run with a heavy focus on supporting James Hird. However, I feel it is also ridiculous not to realise that from when they ran for the Board, to when Hird left things had changed dramatically.
In the end vote for who you want to, if you think their are candidates with better skill sets, or more experience or who will simply do a better job then sure vote for them. I just don’t think that ignoring the good work Paul and Catherine have done over the last three years because you are ■■■■■■ they “knifed Hirdy” makes any sense or will make you feel any better about what happened to James.