Gold Coast SUNS Academy

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Jen2310

Brownlow Medallist
Aug 21, 2018
12,602
17,080
Melbourne
AFL Club
Collingwood
Especially given his team averaged 82 points a game despite winning the grand final.
He scored about a quarter of his teams total points for the whole year - as a small forward, pretty impressive. Guess that's why he got drafted!
Yeah, hard work paid off. Good on him. Just shows, you can still be drafted as a mature prospect if you work hard enough.
 

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Mt Isa Mustang

Club Legend
Nov 23, 2019
2,353
2,615
AFL Club
Gold Coast
No, neither. Was GWS but then moved out of the region. But hasn't been in GC long enough to qualify, so will be in the open draft
Yeah, but I think he’s in the gc academy now? At least is playing with the junior sides. Just not been there long enough to qualify to get drafted directly to us.

he’s not in the gws academy any longer though - that’s what I was trying to express.
 

Jen2310

Brownlow Medallist
Aug 21, 2018
12,602
17,080
Melbourne
AFL Club
Collingwood
Yeah, but I think he’s in the gc academy now? At least is playing with the junior sides. Just not been there long enough to qualify to get drafted directly to us.

he’s not in the gws academy any longer though - that’s what I was trying to express.
Oh yeah. In the GC academy, just not tied to the club.

Thats right. Not in the GWS academy since he moved to the GC.
 

Yeeted Suns

Weiner
Jun 7, 2018
1,056
2,052
AFL Club
Gold Coast
Other Teams
Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Subiaco Lions
Ned Stevens is a big man at 195cm, guessing the club saw him coming through hence why we didnt reach for a tall this year. I likey.
 

Peel67skin

Norm Smith Medallist
May 21, 2017
8,233
3,842
AFL Club
Gold Coast
Other Teams
Liverpool
North Melbourne supporter start whinging about Ned Stevens NT eligibility for GC academy and i like it , no go home factor .
 

GC2015

Club Legend
May 27, 2013
2,163
2,441
AFL Club
Gold Coast
Ned Stevens is a big man at 195cm, guessing the club saw him coming through hence why we didnt reach for a tall this year. I likey.
Don't forget we also have Will Bella (194cm) and Jye Lockett (189cm, seems a bit short but apparently he plays taller than his height) coming through our academy as key forwards next year as well. So although we may be lacking tall stocks in 2021, we should be well placed from 2022 onward. Hopefully we can get at least one more good season out of Rory next year and then we can start the natural transition away from the older talls like Rory Thompson, Zac Smith, Jack Hombsch and Sam Day. That should allow young talls like Ned Stevens, Will Bella, Jye Lockett, Caleb Graham, Charlie Ballard, Patrick Murtagh and Matt Conroy to really start owning those areas of the ground and support the standout key pillars in Ben King and Sam Collins. Entering the VFL next year will also allow us to properly develop these young talls so the future is really bright when you think about it.
 

Yeeted Suns

Weiner
Jun 7, 2018
1,056
2,052
AFL Club
Gold Coast
Other Teams
Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Subiaco Lions
Don't forget we also have Will Bella (194cm) and Jye Lockett (189cm, seems a bit short but apparently he plays taller than his height) coming through our academy as key forwards next year as well. So although we may be lacking tall stocks in 2021, we should be well placed from 2022 onward. Hopefully we can get at least one more good season out of Rory next year and then we can start the natural transition away from the older talls like Rory Thompson, Zac Smith, Jack Hombsch and Sam Day. That should allow young talls like Ned Stevens, Will Bella, Jye Lockett, Caleb Graham, Charlie Ballard, Patrick Murtagh and Matt Conroy to really start owning those areas of the ground and support the standout key pillars in Ben King and Sam Collins. Entering the VFL next year will also allow us to properly develop these young talls so the future is really bright when you think about it.
Pretty awesome. Keen to see how Bella and Lockett go next year.
 

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GC2015

Club Legend
May 27, 2013
2,163
2,441
AFL Club
Gold Coast

Gold Coast Suns Academy expanding in FNQ
A NEW Suns high-performance squad for their FNQ-based academy is building towards bridging the gap between Cairns and Gold Coast programs.

Suns NQ Academy co-ordinator John Deitz is working with 20 emerging footballers in Cairns born between 2004-2006 in a high-performance group, 16 male and four female, who have been identified through the performances for north Queensland or in Suns carnivals.

The AFL has partnered with Sportsworld to run additional sessions on Saturday mornings where the players get access to gym, pool and recovery facilities.

Deitz believes the extra training and recovery load will best prepare the footballers if they are to relocate to the Gold Coast to chase their AFL dreams in the coming years.

"We have developed this group to give them extra gym training and individual development, on top of their academy on-field under-17s sessions, to try to prepare them better than in the past if they are to make the Suns under-19s squad and relocate to the Gold Coast," Deitz said.

"A player in a Gold Coast-based squad gets access to the academy facilities and gym at Metricon so we are trying to bridge the gap and give the players in NQ every opportunity to develop physically, which has been a bit of a gap in the program in the past."

....
High Performance Program Athletes

Male
  • Edward Kadlecek (Cairns Hawks, 2004)
  • Reagan Crees (Port Douglas, 2004)
  • Will Derrington (Cairns Saints, 2004)
  • Josh Welsford (Cairns Hawks, 2004)
  • Noah Cockerell (Cairns Saints, 2005)
  • Kyle Greenwood (Cairns Saints, 2005)
  • Angus Lane (Cairns Saints, 2005)
  • Ashton Colville (Cairns Saints, 2005)
  • Isaac Helms (Cairns City, 2005)
  • Jebbie Davis (North Cairns, 2005)
  • Harry Cook (Centrals Trinity Beach, 2006)
  • Brant Clubb (Cairns Saints, 2006)
  • Daniel Statton (Cairns Saints, 2006)
  • Caleb Nancarrow (Cairns City, 2006)
  • Jezz Butler (Cairns City, 2006)
  • Maddox Hunt (Port Douglas, 2006)
Female
  • Caitlin Sansom (Centrals Trinity Beach, 2004)
  • Jessica Frape (Cairns Saints, 2004)
  • Denisha Chilman (South Cairns, 2005)
  • Lauren Davon (North Cairns, 2006)
 

GC2015

Club Legend
May 27, 2013
2,163
2,441
AFL Club
Gold Coast
I came across some information before and thought it would be interesting to share here to give us a better understanding of our academy zone. Below is a list of players from our academy zone who reached 100 VFL/AFL games.
  1. Marcus Ashcroft (Gold Coast/Southport) - played 100th game for the Bears in Round 19, 1994. Retired after 318 games for the Bears and Lions.

  2. Stephen Lawrence (Gold Coast/Southport) - played 100th game for the Hawks in Round 24, 1994. Retired after 146 games for the Hawks.

  3. Matthew Kennedy (Gold Coast/Southport) - played 100th game for the Bears in Round 11, 1996. Retired after 188 games for the Bears and Lions.

  4. Michael Voss (Logan/Morningside) - played 100th game for the Lions in Round 4, 1998. Retired after 289 games for the Bears and Lions.

  5. Che Cockatoo-Collins (Cairns) - played 100th game for the Power in Round 1, 2001. Retired after 160 games for the Bombers and Power.

  6. Steven Lawrence (Gold Coast/Southport) - played 100th game for the Saints in Round 15, 2002. Retired after 120 games for the Bears, Lions and Saints.

  7. Clark Keating (Gold Coast/Surfers Paradise) - played 100th game for the Lions in Round Round 20, 2003. Retired after 139 games for the Bears and Lions.

  8. Brett Voss (Logan/Morningside) - played 100th game for the Saints in Round 13, 2004. Retired after 170 games for the Lions and Saints.

  9. Nick Riewoldt (Gold Coast/Southport) - played 100th game for the Saints in Round 9, 2006. Retired after 336 games for the Saints.

  10. David Hale (Gold Coast/Broadbeach) - played 100th game for the Kangaroos in Round 22, 2008. Retired after 237 games for the Kangaroos and Hawks.
  11. Michael Osborne (Gold Coast/Labrador) - played 100th game for the Hawks in Round 1, 2009. Retired after 168 games for the Hawks.

  12. Ben Hudson (Gold Coast/Palm Beach) - played 100th game for the Bulldogs in QF, 2009. Retired after 168 games for the Crows, Bulldogs, Lions and Magpies.

  13. Daniel Merrett (Gold Coast/Southport) - played 100th game for the Lions in Round 19, 2010. Retired after 200 games for the Lions.

  14. Sam Gilbert (Terranora/Southport) - played 100th game for the Saints in Round 15, 2011. Retired after 208 games for the Saints.

  15. Jarrod Harbrow (Cairns/South Cairns) - played 100th game for the Suns in Round 18, 2012. Harbrow is still playing.

  16. Kurt Tippett (Gold Coast/Southport) - played 100th game for the Crows in Round 22, 2012. Retired after 178 games for the Crows and Swans.

  17. Andrew Raines (Gold Coast/Southport) - played 100th games for the Lions in Round 22, 2012. Retired after 129 games for the Tigers, Lions and Suns.

  18. Luke McGuane (Gold Coast/Broadbeach) - played 100th game for the Tigers in Round 7, 2013. Retired after 112 games for the Tigers and Lions.

  19. Dayne Beams (Gold Coast/Southport) - played 100th game for the Magpies in Round 10, 2014. Retired after 177 games for the Magpies and Lions.

  20. David Armitage (Mackay/Morningside) - played 100th game for the Saints in Round 16, 2014. Retired after 169 games for the Saints.

  21. Courtenay Dempsey (Cairns/Morningside) - played 100th game for the Bombers in Round 18, 2014. Retired after 133 games for the Bombers.

  22. Jesse White (Gold Coast/Southport) - played 100th game for the Magpies in Round 11, 2015. Retired after 127 games for the Swans and Magpies.

  23. Dayne Zorko (Gold Coast/Broadbeach) - played 100th game for the Lions in Round 22, 2016. Zorko is still playing.

  24. Zac Smith (Rockhampton/Zillmere) - played 100th game for the Cats in Round 17, 2017. Smith is still playing.

  25. Charlie Dixon (Cairns/Redland) - played 100th game for the Power in Round 18, 2017. Dixon is still playing.

  26. Rory Thompson (Gold Coast/Southport) - played 100th game for the Suns in Round 16, 2018. Thompson is still playing.

  27. Charlie Cameron (Mornington Island) - played 100th game for the Lions in Round 17, 2019. Cameron is still playing.

Alex Sexton (Logan/Springwood - 100th game in Round 3, 2019) and Lachie Weller (Gold Coast/Broadbeach - 100th game in Round 14, 2020) may also deserve mentions but their eligibility as Queenslanders is in question so I left them off the list. Interestingly, when Charlie Cameron played his 100th game in Round 17, 2019, 48 Queenslanders had played 100 or more VFL/AFL games and 27 came from our academy zone. I guess this really shows the potential within our academy zone if we can get it right. We've got a nice brigade of academy graduates coming through now with guys like Bowes, Scott, Budarick, Davies and Harris who should all reach at least 100 games if they don't get injured so the future is definitely bright for our club.

I didn't include players from Darwin because it feels like we lay very little claim to them at this point and I do believe it will be removed from our academy zone in the next five years so I didn't add the NT players. I'm sure everyone is very aware of the talent that's come out of Darwin like Andrew McLeod, Aaron Davey, Matthew Stokes, Burgoyne brothers, Motlop brothers etc. Hopefully Joel Jeffrey and Malcolm Rosas can follow in their footsteps and become great players for us.

Here's one for those who appreciate obscure facts. Rugby league legend Darren Lockyer first played Aussie rules at Springwood as a child and lived in Logan. This means Lockyer would be a part of our academy zone if he was coming through now. Unfortunately, Lockyer was lost to our game because he moved out west for his father's work commitments and there were no Aussie rules clubs in Wandoan so he began playing rugby league instead. Like the Voss brothers, this shows there is talent to be found within the Logan section of our academy zone. Sexton is current day proof of that.
 

GC2015

Club Legend
May 27, 2013
2,163
2,441
AFL Club
Gold Coast
Posting this in anticipation that we'll likely draft Jye Lockett later this year. In case anyone doesn't know, he is the nephew of AFL legend Tony Lockett. His father Neil moved from Ballarat to the Gold Coast before he was born. Here is a 13 year old Jye Lockett training for the Southport Sharks U14s and being interviewed by future captain David Swallow. Interestingly, Spitta may still be the captain next year when they likely become teammates.



Jye was born and raised on the Gold Coast, he attended Marymount College and accepted a scholarship to board with St Patrick's College, Ballarat at the end of 2019 where he has been living down there since. He has been training with the Greater Western Victoria Rebels in the NAB League over the last 12 months but is yet to debut for the team due to COVID-19 situation. 2021 should be a big year for Jye with high level school footy for St Pats as well as NAB League footy with GWV. You can add in a few rep games for our academy and the Allies as well for Jye this year.








It's not really a pathway any of our academy guys have pursued before so it'll be interesting to see if a Queenslander boarding in Ballarat works out well. Jye also has a younger brother named Taj who plays footy on the Gold Coast and will be draft eligible in 2024.
 

GC2015

Club Legend
May 27, 2013
2,163
2,441
AFL Club
Gold Coast
Just had a look on the club website and it appears all age group academy teams have now been named. Some familiar surnames throughout the teams:

U18 Male
Will Bella (brother of Lauren)
Jye Lockett (nephew of Tony, brother of Taj)

U17 Male
Will Francou (son of Josh, brother of Oliver and Ben)
Louie McLennan (brother of Jez)

U16 Male
Will Graham (brother of Caleb)

U15 Male
Oliver Francou (son of Josh, brother of Will and Ben)
Taj Lockett (nephew of Tony, brother of Jye)

U14 Male
Ben Francou (son of Josh, brother of Will and Oliver)
Kalani White (son of Jeff)

U13 Male
Leroy Kaesler (son of Tate?)

U18 Female
Laquoiya Cockatoo-Motlap (niece of Che)
Litonya Cockatoo-Motlap (niece of Che)
Summah Joyce (sister of Jesse)
Teagan Levi (sister of Madi)

U17 Female
Jasmine Single (sister of Lucy)
 

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