There was an old lady who swallowed a fly

AFL realises last years stupid rule is stupid, makes another even stupider rule to fix it

"THE AFL could see the holes, and knew they were going to be exposed more and more in coming seasons. The northern club academies have grown, developed more talent and bred better players every year since their inception in 2009. The old bidding system was not strong enough to handle what was – and is – about to land.

On Thursday the League revealed its new bidding process for academy and father-son prospects. It is a complex mass of shifting draft picks and mathematics equations that takes some working out, and may have some thinking it is football’s equivalent of the Duckworth-Lewis system.

But, most importantly, it is fairer for the competition and evens out some chinks that were there in the previous iteration. In the past few years of bidding, it was inconsistent (and largely random) whether a club paid market value for a player. It depended purely on finishing ladder position, meaning the advantage was sometimes far too great.

Such was the case last year, when the Sydney Swans, having made the Grand Final, drafted Isaac Heeney at No.18 despite a bid being made on him at No.2. It was the biggest ever differential between a bid and where the player finished up being picked.

Another major problem was that the previous system gave too big an advantage to clubs who had two or more prospects tied to them as academy or father-son players. Last year, the Brisbane Lions drafted two academy players – Liam Dawson and Harris Andrews. Dawson was around where he was viewed after a bid came in the second round (pick 31).

A bid also came three picks later for Andrews at No.34, but because the Lions had already committed their selections, they only needed to use their next pick, which in this case was a fourth-round selection (No.61 overall). That won’t happen again under the new points-based formula. The loophole has been closed.

The Sydney Swans and Greater Western Sydney will be the first clubs to get a real taste of how hard it is to secure two highly rated players under these rules.

Swans academy player Callum Mills is likely to attract the same type of bid that came for Heeney, which means if the Swans again made the Grand Final, their first live pick would be pushed into the 60s.

If the Swans then wanted to draft father-son Josh Dunkley (who still has to make up his own mind whether he nominates or not), they will use their remaining points and push back their first pick of 2016 draft. Or, they can choose to preemptively ship off a player during the preceding trade period and bring in another draft selection to ensure they have enough points to grab both.

The same applies to the Giants, whose dilemma could be helped if one of their out-of-contract stars departs at the end of the season. They have two academy players – Jacob Hopper and Matthew Kennedy – who at this stage appear possible top-10 picks.

If the Giants finish in eighth position and a bid comes in the first five or so selections for Hopper, the 20 per cent discount will mean GWS may be able to secure him with its first pick alone.

But if another top-10 bid came for Kennedy, and the Giants wanted him, they could choose to send the rest of their picks to the end of the 2015 draft, and have them owing points in 2016. Or they could also have already pulled the same ploy available to the Swans in agreeing to trade out an asset, acquire another top-15 pick and leave the rest unaffected.


So, because they’ve given the Sydney and Queensland clubs priority access to any and all kids from NSW and QLD, and because thise 4 clubs are making out like bandits, every other club gets penalised if they’re lucky enough to have even one very good F/S kid. Even extending to picks the following year.

Rather than, like a logical, mature person, or even a logical, mature paving tile, winding back the grossly unfair NSW/QLD concessions which created the imbalance in the first place.

AFL. Where idiots put on suits and get lauded and paid a lot of money to be bad at their jobs.

For the life of me I can’t remember a club having a two good F/S kids in one year (even when they were only 3rd rounders). I think one of the crap Clokes came through with one of the good Shaws (or vice versa) and I think Geelong got a crap F/S (Blake or Woolmough) the same year they got Scarlett. So this spin that it’s a “father son and/or academy kid” issue is plainly ■■■■■.

Seems pretty straight forward…

Bulldogs got Wallis and Libba in the one year.

They did too. Forgot that one.

Im sure there’s a small handful of times where it’s happened, over the decades F/S has been a thing (it predates the draft by a fair way).

To me that’s little more than dumb luck. If a couple of the 10? 20? eligible fathers in the right age group have good kids, in the same year - that’s just God kissing you on the chop. A windfall. You don’t change rules based on freak occurrences.

Sydney and GWS and Brisbane have already had multiple bites at the cherry in the 2-3 years their academies have been a thing. And look like having more next year.

Makes me very very angry.

I’d hate to see a situation where it’s not economical for clubs to take the sons of club champions because it’s going to cost them multiple picks over multiple years.

I couldn’t give a flying fudge if Sydney and Brisbane didn’t get their next handout. They’ve won between them 5 flags of the last 15 and lost a grand final or two each. Boo hoo. Poor you.

Whoops, posted this in the f/s thread, but it makes more sense here…

The thing that really worries me about the new system (apart from the fact is STILL doesn’t address the fact that Academies give northern states much greater access to locked-up talent, even though it’ll cost them a more reasonable price now) is that it seems to pave the way for trading of future picks. I think the way the new scheme works is that if you have a few blokes become eligible in a single year and you don’t have enough points to pay for them all, then the excess points are taken off your picks in the draft the year afterwards. In itself it’s not too bad, but it does make it very easy for a dud list management group to screw over a club in a way that taints even future drafts.
And while we haven’t yet got full trading of future picks, this really seems to indicate to me that it’s most likely going to happen some time in the nearish future.

Imagine if the Brisbane academy had been up and running, and there’d been a quality candidate coming out of it, in the year Crazy Vossy traded for Fev etc, can you imagine what havoc that would have wrought on the lions list and prospects? Voss would have still traded every pick he could get his hands on, but then he would have needed to find a couple of thousand bidding points to get the academy kid as well. Those would have come off his next years’ picks, so when Fev imploded, Voss got given the ****, and it all went south, the Lions next coach would have been left with a gutted list and a severely hamstrung set of picks in his first year to rebuild it with. And i shudder to think what Terry Wallace and his recruiting people would have done with unfettered trading of future picks, as Wallet and co desperately scrambled to save their jobs towards the end of his time at Richmond. He would have mortgaged the future and sold every pick for the next decade if there was a chance one trade would work out and would keep him in the big seat, no matter what it would have done to the club if his gambles didn’t come off.

The limitation on trading future picks is like the salary cap - it’s a restraint imposed on the clubs for their own good.

For example
I’m pretty sure under this system in Joe’s year, our pick after him (which started at 35 or so) would’ve been budged out to pick 41. Not that bad.
But if we only had a later first rounder, you’re in much worse shape.

I’m just waiting for the first club to have to give up all their picks for 2 years because some plonker at Carlton or Melbourne with a bushel of priority picks to wave around matches every bid. And then the kid busts his knees and only plays 15 games.

Uuughgghhh so damned infuriating. Would be as easy as anything to just wind back some of Syd/Bris’ etc power over their academy kids (Ie only one bite at the cherry per year) and leave everything else as is. But noooooo…

Alternatively, let EVERY club run an academy. Surely the objective of the academies is not just to get more blokes from non-traditional footy areas into AFL, but also to raise the standard of footy being played in those areas, and exposing more kids to top-level coaching could help that. Hell, let Melbourne run an academy in Alice around Liam Jurrah’s stomping ground, we’ll have one around the top end and Tiwi, St Kilda can have NZ since they’re so keen to play Anzac day games there etc etc

Nah. That’d be too hard. Plus we don’t need help like poor old Sydney need help. They’ve gotta get by with the same salary cap as everyone else now, I feel for them.

Alternatively, let EVERY club run an academy. Surely the objective of the academies is not just to get more blokes from non-traditional footy areas into AFL, but also to raise the standard of footy being played in those areas, and exposing more kids to top-level coaching could help that. Hell, let Melbourne run an academy in Alice around Liam Jurrah's stomping ground, we'll have one around the top end and Tiwi, St Kilda can have NZ since they're so keen to play Anzac day games there etc etc

They do that and Collingwood, Essendon, West Coast, Fremantle, Adelaide set up academies. Cue whinging from poor clubs (exactly like St Kilda and Melbourne) who can’t afford to run academies and the rich clubs are bullying the waaa waaa waaa

Given you have to match with your next highest picks, in that situation surely you’d trade out your highest pick for a player of the right value, then match the bid with whatever left over junk you can accrue during the trade period? For example, you have a F/S player that you’re certain someone will bid pick 10-12 on. You have pick 15, which would cover it. Alternatively if you’re not an idiot, you trade out pick 15 for a decent player, then do some wheeling and dealing with pick downgrades and fringe players to end up with 5 picks in the 50s, which basically requires just asking for them; nobody cares about picks in the 50s. Those picks are worth 200+ each, so 5 of them will match a bid of pick 9 or higher come draft night.

Seems ripe for exploitation to me.

Edit: after reading the official document ( you do have to use your next available pick as the kicking off point so I modified my example accordingly. It implies however that picks traded in are fair game.

Edit Edit: this is going to be a debacle of the highest order.

I assume father-son/academy-rort bidding will continue to be immediately prior to trade period, so you won’t be able to accumulate cruft for payment as suggested.

All the talk about it up to this point has been about having it on draft day, eg

a bidding meeting is still likely to be held much closer to the draft – possibly the week before or even the night before the full draft is staged and after the completion of the trade and free agency periods.

So if you know a kid has been training with dad’s club, done the odd promotional visit, been in the paper talking him up…
like this kid…
…you arrange for the club with the lowest pick to nominate him, thus decimating the father’s club’s chances of drafting anyone else that year.

More rule changes.

I like the academies. Anything that help talented kids from Qld & NSW to choose Aussie Rules as their sport is a good thing. We take the pathway into AFL for granted down there and over here but the infrastructure doesn’t exist in those other states. It will take decades to replicate the school + junior football systems. I get what the AFL are doing. Talented NSW kid makes it to big time playing for NSW side has 10x the impact of a superficial I Folau style marketing coup. For the AFL to remain the premier football code across the nation, it must gain support in NSW and Qld.

It can all be circumvented by doing a ‘Wingard’.

Son says “sure, go ahead and draft me. I’ll be back at the Bombers in 2 years, after a few pre-seasons, thanks”.

Well this makes drafting even more confusing for Carlton

Or the AFL could take over the running of these Academies and have the players available as normal for any club to select… thus talent still gets improved in the area (and thus the profile of AFL raised I guess?) and they don’t have to introduce a ■■■■■■■ ridiculous system.

The only times this is going to result in a player being passed over are:

  • A top team tries to get a top 5 rated player. (The first picks are massively overvalued)
  • Two highly rated players are available in one year. (Only really going to happen to academies, F/S just don’t produce enough candidates.)

I think this limits the academy system more by effectively capping the number of players you can afford per year. If one of these northern clubs do need to trade out establishe players for picks, it gives other clubs a stronger bargaining position in that trade.

Or the AFL could take over the running of these Academies and have the players available as normal for any club to select... thus talent still gets improved in the area (and thus the profile of AFL raised I guess?) and they don't have to introduce a ■■■■■■■ ridiculous system.

You think the purpose of these academies is actually to improve talent and participation of juniors throughout the country?

This is just the AFL treating a symptom (bad PR). They don’t consider the actual problem to be a problem…