What do you do when your life as a footy player comes to a close and you are faced with the prospect of getting a real job?
Do you go for a management position with a resume that lists as your only experience, “Kicked a Sherrin quite well for (insert club name here) for 15 years?
We do not frequent the online job boards, but we suspect that few managerial openings list, “Good at kicking the footy required.”
The obvious answer is that you look for a coaching slot, hopefully with an AFL club, but barring that, at least the SANFL or WAFL, where you can hope for promotion to the big league.
The end of the 2017 Toyota AFL Premiership competition featured a number of big-name retirements. Many of those players will be poached by clubs other than those for which they played in the hopes of gaining access to some secret information, but many will move into offices at their last teams’ headquarters.
Dennis Armfield is going to remain with the Carlton Blues, but he will fill some as yet undetermined role with the Blues’ AFLW side. He already has some experience in that slot from last year, when he lent a hand in the inaugural season of the AFLW.
Another Blues player who called time and will remain with the Blues is Brent Stanton, who joined the Flues’ football department and will serve as a development coach.
Steve Johnson has seemingly landed a plum position as an assistant coach for the Swans, where he may be valuable for some intel concerning his former club, the GWS Giants. He will tutor the forward line for the Swans and his credentials seemingly are a good fit, with three flags, a Norm Smith medal and 516 goals across 14 seasons with the Geelong Cats and two with GWS.
Not all former players can move on to be multi-millionaires based on developing and marketing tracking software for booze deliveries.
Footy coaching is less risky, unless you are afraid of axes and become involved with the wrong crowd.