Expansion IS IT TIME FOR TWO DIVISIONS ??

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LordLucifer

Brownlow Medallist
Mar 20, 2002
20,679
19,747
The North Shore Daaaahling !!
AFL Club
Carlton
I've been against the idea of having conferences and the like but after talking to a colleague of mine in Adelaide today, I'm a little more open to the concept.

Based on the current ladder positions today (Tuesday, 4th August), here's how it might work :

Premier Division
1. PORT ADELAIDE
2. BRISBANE
3. ST KILDA
4. WEST COAST
5. RICHMOND
6. GEELONG
7. GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY
8. BULLDOGS
9. ESSENDON
10. COLLINGWOOD

Champion Division
1. GOLD COAST
2. CARLTON
3. HAWTHORN
4. NORTH MELBOURNE
5. MELBOURNE
6. FREMANTLE
7. SYDNEY
8. ADELAIDE
9. SYDNEY NORTH (new)
10. TASMANIA (new)

- 18 round season (teams play each other twice, one home and one away)
- final 5 in each division with playoffs to eventual premier
- relegation to Champion Division for bottom two teams of Premier Division annually
- promotion to Premier Division for top two teams of Champion Division annually
- two new teams created (eg. Sydney North & Tasmania) who start off in Champion Division
- team lists reduced to 35
- team numbers reduced to 20 (18 onfield plus two interchange/reserves only)
- one national draft for all 20 teams
- all teams who finished 3-10 in Champions Division get an extra priority pick prior to the first round of the national draft (they are given picks 1-8, then are given 9-16 and the remaining 12 teams follow from pick 17 in ladder finishing order)

Advantages
- makes games count for more due to finals eligibility and promotion & relegation
- gives everyone a completely even draw
- clubs get rewarded for being quality player recruitment & development (premiership & promotion)
- clubs get penalised for being continually poor in talent identification & performance (relegation)
- dramatically reduces the reasons for a club to tank
- extra game per week potentially increases broadcast rights value or opens up the option of splitting it between three FTA networks
- 10 teams play finals each year instead of 8
- extra finals each year
- creation of new Norm Smith medal & Brownlow medal (obviously with new names) for Champion Division
- the two new entities can be initially set-up via some (but not all) of the players who are delisted with the playing list reductions

Disadvantages
- clubs in lower division may be prone to player raids from clubs in higher division (some more thought is needed to prevent this from regularly happening)
- due to only 18 rounds, there are 18 less games over the whole year but this may be slightly offset by some extra finals matches
- will need to recruit, train & develop more umpires due to extra game each week
 
Last edited:

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JohnZ

Premiership Player
Mar 10, 2016
4,154
5,753
AFL Club
Geelong
You only go divisions because you're locked into 22 game seasons and you want a fairer fixture. That means 24 teams. (2x12 team comps = 22 games for a full H+A, same as 1970 to 1987).

I'd still prefer we keep 18 teams (preferably 16) and play 30/34 game seasons (full H+A)

can be achieved without conferences
EPL style divisions are not conferences, and are immeasurably better than sh*t the AFL forced the AFLW into. That we can all agree on.
 

Walshawk

Club Legend
Mar 24, 2017
1,813
1,707
Blackburn
AFL Club
Hawthorn
You only go divisions because you're locked into 22 game seasons and you want a fairer fixture. That means 24 teams. (2x12 team comps = 22 games for a full H+A, same as 1970 to 1987).

I'd still prefer we keep 18 teams (preferably 16) and play 30/34 game seasons (full H+A)



EPL style divisions are not conferences, and are immeasurably better than sh*t the AFL forced the AFLW into. That we can all agree on.
Divisions would be worse. Imagine the exodus from a small club if they drop down a division.
 

JohnZ

Premiership Player
Mar 10, 2016
4,154
5,753
AFL Club
Geelong
Divisions would be worse. Imagine the exodus from a small club if they drop down a division.
No different to when clubs finish bottom 4. At least it's faster to get back up to the top (don't have to play the best 12 teams to get back into Div 1).
 

Pessimistic

Make me an Admin!
Sep 13, 2000
76,562
34,258
Melbourne cricket ground. Australia
AFL Club
Hawthorn
Other Teams
Horks
I've been against the idea of having conferences and the like but after talking to a colleague of mine in Adelaide today, I'm a little more open to the concept.

Based on the current ladder positions today (Tuesday, 4th August), here's how it might work :

Premier Division
1. PORT ADELAIDE
2. BRISBANE
3. ST KILDA
4. WEST COAST
5. RICHMOND
6. GEELONG
7. GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY
8. BULLDOGS
9. ESSENDON
10. COLLINGWOOD

Champion Division
1. GOLD COAST
2. CARLTON
3. HAWTHORN
4. NORTH MELBOURNE
5. MELBOURNE
6. FREMANTLE
7. SYDNEY
8. ADELAIDE
9. SYDNEY NORTH (new)
10. TASMANIA (new)

- 18 round season (teams play each other twice, one home and one away)
- final 5 in each division with playoffs to eventual premier
- relegation to Champion Division for bottom two teams of Premier Division annually
- promotion to Premier Division for top two teams of Champion Division annually
- two new teams created (eg. Sydney North & Tasmania) who start off in Champion Division
- team lists reduced to 35
- team numbers reduced to 20 (18 onfield plus two interchange/reserves only)
- one national draft for all 20 teams
- all teams who finished 3-10 in Champions Division get an extra priority pick prior to the first round of the national draft (they are given picks 1-8, then are given 9-16 and the remaining 12 teams follow from pick 17 in ladder finishing order)

Advantages
- makes games count for more due to finals eligibility and promotion & relegation
- gives everyone a completely even draw
- clubs get rewarded for being quality player recruitment & development (premiership & promotion)
- clubs get penalised for being continually poor in talent identification & performance (relegation)
- dramatically reduces the reasons for a club to tank
- extra game per week potentially increases broadcast rights value or opens up the option of splitting it between three FTA networks
- 10 teams play finals each year instead of 8
- extra finals each year
- creation of new Norm Smith medal & Brownlow medal (obviously with new names) for Champion Division
- the two new entities can be initially set-up via some (but not all) of the players who are delisted with the playing list reductions

Disadvantages
- clubs in lower division may be prone to player raids from clubs in higher division (some more thought is needed to prevent this from regularly happening)
- due to only 18 rounds, there are 18 less games over the whole year but this may be slightly offset by some extra finals matches
- will need to recruit, train & develop more umpires due to extra game each week
Hawthorn and Sydney are division 1 period
 

Bomberboyokay

Cancelled
Sep 27, 2014
34,231
28,786
AFL Club
Essendon
I've been against the idea of having conferences and the like but after talking to a colleague of mine in Adelaide today, I'm a little more open to the concept.

Based on the current ladder positions today (Tuesday, 4th August), here's how it might work :

Premier Division
1. PORT ADELAIDE
2. BRISBANE
3. ST KILDA
4. WEST COAST
5. RICHMOND
6. GEELONG
7. GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY
8. BULLDOGS
9. ESSENDON
10. COLLINGWOOD

Champion Division
1. GOLD COAST
2. CARLTON
3. HAWTHORN
4. NORTH MELBOURNE
5. MELBOURNE
6. FREMANTLE
7. SYDNEY
8. ADELAIDE
9. SYDNEY NORTH (new)
10. TASMANIA (new)

- 18 round season (teams play each other twice, one home and one away)
- final 5 in each division with playoffs to eventual premier
- relegation to Champion Division for bottom two teams of Premier Division annually
- promotion to Premier Division for top two teams of Champion Division annually
- two new teams created (eg. Sydney North & Tasmania) who start off in Champion Division
- team lists reduced to 35
- team numbers reduced to 20 (18 onfield plus two interchange/reserves only)
- one national draft for all 20 teams
- all teams who finished 3-10 in Champions Division get an extra priority pick prior to the first round of the national draft (they are given picks 1-8, then are given 9-16 and the remaining 12 teams follow from pick 17 in ladder finishing order)

Advantages
- makes games count for more due to finals eligibility and promotion & relegation
- gives everyone a completely even draw
- clubs get rewarded for being quality player recruitment & development (premiership & promotion)
- clubs get penalised for being continually poor in talent identification & performance (relegation)
- dramatically reduces the reasons for a club to tank
- extra game per week potentially increases broadcast rights value or opens up the option of splitting it between three FTA networks
- 10 teams play finals each year instead of 8
- extra finals each year
- creation of new Norm Smith medal & Brownlow medal (obviously with new names) for Champion Division
- the two new entities can be initially set-up via some (but not all) of the players who are delisted with the playing list reductions

Disadvantages
- clubs in lower division may be prone to player raids from clubs in higher division (some more thought is needed to prevent this from regularly happening)
- due to only 18 rounds, there are 18 less games over the whole year but this may be slightly offset by some extra finals matches
- will need to recruit, train & develop more umpires due to extra game each week
Did the "colleague of mine in Adelaide" start watching soccer in the last 6 months like everyone else who makes these threads?

It 'works' in soccer because no salary cap or squad limit means the biggest clubs with the most supporters almost never get relegated.
 
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LordLucifer

Brownlow Medallist
Mar 20, 2002
20,679
19,747
The North Shore Daaaahling !!
AFL Club
Carlton
Did the "colleague of mine in Adelaide" start watching soccer in the last 6 months like everyone else who makes these threads?

It 'works' in soccer because no salary cap or squad limit means the biggest clubs with the most supporters almost never get relegated.
He's a rusted on AFL fan and ran the umpires division in the ammos for a few years.
 

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rdrdrdrd

Rookie
Jan 24, 2020
28
16
AFL Club
Adelaide
I posted this in another thread "What size should the AFL be?" back in Jan 2020 long before Covid started up - at the time it solved a lot of the annoying AFL issues. Might have to delay this Grand Master Plan by a few years now...


What about this set up for the AFL to be up and running by 2026?
Sorry about the length of the post but I think I’ve covered all the existing AFL problems, annoyances and inequalities in one shot.
For 2026 it could be 20 teams playing in the AFL Premier League (Div 1) and AFL Championship (Div 2) comprising 10 teams in each division.
I have added 2 new teams and rebranded 2 existing teams.
Gold Coast Suns have not worked in their current set up and are currently doomed to join the long list of failed Gold Coast sporting franchises. Rename them as the Northern Suns and play their home games across 3 venues at Metricon Stadium, Darwin and Alice Springs. This gives the AFL fans living in Darwin and Alice Springs a home team to barrack for a few times a year, rather than just 2 fly in fly out clubs who promote the game and hold coaching clinics for one week and are never seen otherwise. No need to radically revamp the Guernsey or colours – and the NT along with PNG can become the exclusive recruiting zone of the Northern Suns players.
Rebrand GWS to the Eastern Giants and relocate half of their home games to Canberra. The western suburbs of Sydney are rugby and soccer fans and will only be token passive fans of GWS at best. Canberra has a ready-made AFL fan base just waiting for a team to support and like Darwin and Alice Springs deserves the chance to have a home team to follow.
19th team to join the AFL – Tasmania – no further discussion needed here.
20th team? Has to be either a third Perth or Adelaide team. Both cities have recently built sensational stadiums that host AFL games just once a week for the season. They, like the MCG and Marvel could easily host 2 games a weekend. Perth is the city with the rapidly expanding population growth but a new 3rd team may have trouble attracting fans who are rusted on West Coast or Freo folk. Subiaco are the dominant WAFL team but the WAFL has little profile or support in Perth. Under 19000 attended the 2019 WAFL Grand Final where Subiaco belted South Fremantle by 96 points. Adelaide has an advantage over Perth as the SANFL competition still has some profile and healthier attendances than the WAFL. SANFL teams Norwood and Sturt are neighbouring clubs who offered to merge to join the AFL in the mid-1990s and they remain SANFL powerhouses with healthy memberships. Anecdotally thousands of Crows fans were Norwood and Sturt fans prior to 1991 and if the Crows continue to disappoint their members, then many of them could join “Sturtwood” if the merger was done fairly and not a case of one club swallowing the other. Interesting that the plans to build a hotel attached to Adelaide Oval got approved in seemingly record time – perfect for travelling footy fans to camp in when travelling to Adelaide for AFL games. This gives Adelaide Oval a big advantage over Perth’s stadium. For the purpose of this post let’s say the 20th team into the AFL comp is Sturtwood.
Division One (based on top 10 teams from the 2019 season) – Richmond, Eastern Giants, Geelong, Collingwood, Brisbane, West Coast, Bulldogs, Essendon, Hawthorn, Port Adelaide.
Division Two – Adelaide, North Melb, Fremantle, St Kilda, Sydney, Carlton, Melbourne, Northern Suns, Tasmania, Sturtwood.
For the minor round each team plays 18 games – 9 home and 9 away. Port fans would note that there would be no Showdown against the Crows but would they care seeing their 9 home games would be against Richmond, Giants, Geelong, Collingwood, Brisbane, West Coast, Bulldogs, Essendon and Hawthorn?
Bragging rights would be simply reminding Crows fans “We’re in the big time you’re not…”
West Coast, Eastern Giants and Brisbane fans would also enjoy this scenario.
So the minor round consists of 90 games (18 rounds @ 5 games) for each division = 180 games in total with 10 games a week – hence the AFL could program Thursday night games which could become Div 2 Night and maybe some Friday night double headers featuring Perth night games to commence after an Eastern State game has finished.
In 2019 there were 198 minor round games followed by 9 finals matches – a total of 207 games for the season.
In 2026 the finals would be top 6 for each of the 10 team divisions. That would create 5 finals for each division and 10 finals in all bringing the total number of games for the season to 190. Seventeen games fewer than the current fixture but all irregularities and unfairness with double up games has been removed – each team simply plays everyone else in their division once at home and once away. No more double up games and bonus wins against weak opposition simply because your club resides in the same state as the weak team – think of Sydney/GWS and WC/Freo in the early years and the current Brisbane/Gold Coast situation.
The Finals have the traditional method for a top 6 finals series.

Week 1 – Semi Finals - 3v6 and 4v5
Week 2 – Prelim Finals – 1 v winner of 4/5 and 2 v winner of 3/6
Week 3 – two winners play in Grand Final

Yearly promotion and relegation is easy – the 4 teams that miss the Div 1 finals would be relegated to be replaced by the 4 Preliminary Finalists from Div 2.

No Div 1 teams tanking to improve draft selections – simply if you miss the finals you’re relegated.
The Div 2 Semi Finals between 3/6 and 4/5 would become epics as the 2 winners earn promotion for Div 1.

September in 2026 would be scheduled like this:

September Week 4 – Sat Arvo - Div 1 GF – all us traditionalists remain very happy.

September Week 3 – Fri Night – Div 1 Prelim Final; Sat Arvo – Div 1 Prelim Final; Sat Night – Div 2 GF – the AFL and TV networks get their much wanted night grand final to be played in the home state of the higher ranked team. Sunday would be kept AFL-free for the various state league grand finals.

September Week 2 – Fri Night – Div 1 Semi Final; Sat Arvo – Div 2 PF; Sat Twilight – Div 2 PF; Sat Night – Div 1 Semi Final.

September Week 1– Fri Night – Div 2 Semi Final; Sat Night – Div 2 Semi Final – The AFL keeps the pre finals bye for the Div 1 teams. The focus this weekend is then solely on which 2 Div 2 teams earn promotion to Div 1 for next year.

August Week 4 – Floating Final minor round for both divisions – have all 5 Div 2 games done by Saturday night. Some Div 1 games can play on Sunday seeing that they have the following week off.

Minor round would be 18 games so mid-season split rounds would still exist to keep the players union happy. There would still be time for Port to win another Chinese premiership mid-season.

Pre-season games? Easy – each team plays two games as usual but against teams from the ‘other division’. So states would still get a showdown or local derby of sorts should their two state teams be in different divisions for the upcoming regular season.

Round One of the minor round would be very enticing – no team would have played each other at all in the build up to the season and also no more Richmond/Carlton supposed blockbuster to kick things off. The first game of Round One should be the previous season’s Division Grand Finalists playing on a Friday night in the home state of the reigning premier who can then unfurl their premiership banner and perform all other premiership ceremonies at the perfect time for their fans and the massive TV audience.

Anzac Day at the MCG – time to remove the Essendon/Collingwood ownership. Simply make the MCG Anzac Day game played between the two highest ranked Victorian teams of the previous season – in this example Richmond and Geelong players and fans get the opportunity to enjoy the Anzac Day experience.

The draft would be as normal with the bottom team of div 2 getting the first pick and then work your way up – each round is 20 picks – no trading of future year’s picks allowed – that is one of my personal irritants.

The Brownlow Medal remains as is for Division One – a new medal would be created for the Division Two League – players would be polling votes for the Adam Goodes Medal – this allows the AFL to properly recognise the on and off field achievements of the much-loved dual Brownlow Medalist.

Should I send this to Gill at the AFL?

After all AFLX got born during his reign…
 

bixente

Team Captain
Feb 21, 2017
497
480
AFL Club
Melbourne
Looking forward to the AFL Champions League - best teams from Australia, United States and China, duking it out!
 

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