Opinion Names on Back of Jumpers

Should Names be Shown on the Back of Jumpers?

  • Yes

  • No


Results are only viewable after voting.

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master bate

Brownlow Medallist
Aug 13, 2006
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Messy? What, worried it might clash with the Hungry Jacks and Mission logos? And unnecessary? Quite a few people saying it is. I genuinely can’t think of a logical reason to oppose it other than ‘that’s the way it’s always been’.

Also, still trying to get my head around the idea we should deliberately make sports complicated and difficult to understand to make it special. I mean, it might seem that way because of the AFL rules committee but I don’t think it’s standard practice.
I hope they get rid of the 2nd back of jumper sponsor immediately rather than get greedy and keep it, but they tried to names for a round and it just looked cluttered and added nothing that the numbers didn't already provide in a far easier to read format.

I don't think rules should constantly change or be subject to so much interpretation but sports like test cricket aren't easy to understand for those who don't know the game but it's the little nuances that make it a great sport. Time constraints and financial realities make t20 necessary but that doesn't mean every short form innovation comes in to test cricket, thankfully. For some reason crickets folded to the simpletons by introducing names on the back of shirts in test cricket which has achieved nothing of value.
 

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Call Me Cake

I'll brb
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Yeah, names on jumpers really helps and will be very legible...
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Were you watching this on a potato?

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Keep in mind we didn't have FHD/4K so widely available in 2014 as it is now.

No one is saying you'd be able to see the names during fast play, as sometimes (as others pointed out) you can't even read numbers in such cases (although 4K would improve that). But during slow play with the camera behind a player taking an unimpeded kick, a free, during stoppages, kick ins, replays, celebrations, ect; - they were visible in 2014 with shittier tech, and will be even more visible the further in the future (and higher in tech) we go. There are only benefits, no drawbacks, except for people being petty. If we stayed with things just because that's how they were, then we wouldn't have new rules such as those that stopped deliberate rush behinds, or be an Australia-wide comp by now.
 
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Back One Out

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Newcomers to the game would benefit a lot from having names on the back of jumpers.

Football is a spectator sport, and while spectating, we often make note of who is who. As much as some of us spectators like to exclaim otherwise, football is unashamedly individualized in regards to many areas of the game... when it just so happens to be convenient for us to let it be or pay no mind to.

From commentators mentioning player moments, disposal records, averages and accomplishments - to awards being given based on individual accolades in marquee matches, after the overall season or the Grand Final - to milestones being highlighted in terms of total goals kicked or games played - to certain hairstyles, rivalries, "compare the pair" segments - all the way to the point of showing betting odds for the likelihood of when a player will score, get their first touch, ect; - not to mention how venerated the father/son concept is - while being the most flagrant example of name-based individualisation that there can be. The entire meaning behind it is based on the recognition of names within a team.

Yet, the moment names on jumpers are brought into the discussion - you then have all of the previous examples of individuality thrown out of the window - and arguments of "team" start to conveniently pop up.

We must be consistent with our approach to this, and not let picking and choosing get in the way of the realities of our game today. We are living in the HD era - and as a spectator sport - names on the back of jumpers, while being shown on TV or big screens (or highlights) will undoubtedly help newcomers get acquainted with certain players quicker. Rather than constantly trying to discern a player's face, a new spectator can focus more on what they're doing with the ball. Perception to pairing a face to a name is a lot more efficient than to binary numbers - and has the added benefit of lessening confusion when players choose to leave/change numbers.

This added benefit does nothing to disrupt the game, it does nothing to hinder the play, and does nothing to distract viewing. Thus, the only reason to be against it is based purely on pettiness.

The game's future, especially after what's happened in the last two years, is going to base a lot of its survival and longevity on membership numbers, viewership numbers and crowd numbers, ect; - all influenced by growing interest from potential supporters. Bringing the game in-line with all other sports in making it easier for player recognition will be paramount to helping the game grow to new audiences. It also does not mean that the number loses significance, as the number will always be there, but passed on from host to host as a badge of honour. And as shown before, we have had no problems recognising individual efforts over and over when convenient for us and at no time did it sacrifice our interpretation of it as a team-based best 22 sport.

One could also say that father/son moments would be much more meaningful and impactful, upon witnessing a player don the last name of his father while playing for the same club, and knowing that his future son (or daughter) may have the chance to carry on the same last name on his/her jumper into the future.
So it's your contention that game's very survival depends on player names being added to the backs of the club guernsey?

It's been a tough lockdown, huh?

We'll get through it.
 

Call Me Cake

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So it's your contention that game's very survival depends on player names being added to the backs of the club guernsey?

It's been a tough lockdown, huh?

We'll get through it.
Putting words in my mouth. Nothing is ever the very reason to anything. That's not how life works. Maybe if you used up your allocated 4 hours of exercise and touched grass once in a while you wouldn't be as confused or petty.
 

Back One Out

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Putting words in my mouth. Nothing is ever the very reason to anything. That's not how life works. Maybe if you used up your allocated 4 hours of exercise and touched grass once in a while you wouldn't be as confused or petty.
How am I putting words in your mouth when you posted this...

Call Me Cake: "The game's future is going to base a lot of its survival and longevity on membership numbers, viewership numbers and crowd numbers - all influenced by growing interest from potential supporters. Bringing the game in-line with all other sports in making it easier for player recognition will be paramount to helping the game grow to new audiences."

This appears to be your main contention - that the AFL must add players' names to the backs of their jumpers in order to make it easier for non-AFL fans to identify players and therefore, become more interested in the game and increase the AFL's audience and market share.

You said it. Not me.

I actually disagree with this anyway. I watch a lot of sport: footy, cricket, tennis, soccer, league, rugby, boxing, UFC, NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, Olympics
I don't think I ever focus on the lettering on the backs of the competitors' shirts.

I get to know players by watching, hearing their names called by the commentators and remembering what they look like, hairstyle, body shape, how they move, the position they play. Familiarity from repeat viewing is what helps people identify players. Not tiny letters on their backs.

Case in point: the New York Yankees never put players' names on the back of their jerseys, but they were the one team that I knew every one of their players by sight, even as a casual viewer - for the sole reason, they were the team I watched most of the time when the MLB playoffs were on.

I don't think anyone really cares about individual players that much when you are new to watching a sport. I think you get caught up in the action, the colours, the commentary, the crowd noise, the skills and patterns of play. You only start caring about who the players are when you fully commit... and if you fully commit, then names on the backs aren't essential.
 

PetterdHoisted

Norm Smith Medallist
Apr 27, 2014
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True story

When they first floated the idea of putting numbers on the back of jumpers to help identify players, the people of the day pushed back on it and tried to resist it also.

Now it's just seen as a part of the game.
interesting, I was about to say, I'd prefer to see it go the other way and get rid of the numbers

Numbers is such a throw back to the days when there was no high-res TV and you didn't have mic-ed up umpires calling everyone by their pet names all match.

yes tougher at the ground, but most watch on telly these days.
 

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kane249

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interesting, I was about to say, I'd prefer to see it go the other way and get rid of the numbers

Numbers is such a throw back to the days when there was no high-res TV and you didn't have mic-ed up umpires calling everyone by their pet names all match.

yes tougher at the ground, but most watch on telly these days.
It's not about the die hards who can identify all the players by sight though, it's about the casual fans and improving their viewing experience.

Numbers and names on the jumper help them get into the game more by being able to more readily identify the obscure players.

If you make it more appealing for the casual to watch it and not just pandering to the footy snobs, it's how you get more money into the game and keep it growing.
 

PetterdHoisted

Norm Smith Medallist
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It's not about the die hards who can identify all the players by sight though, it's about the casual fans and improving their viewing experience.

Numbers and names on the jumper help them get into the game more by being able to more readily identify the obscure players.

If you make it more appealing for the casual to watch it and not just pandering to the footy snobs, it's how you get more money into the game and keep it growing.
I'm a footy nut but was never a numbers-nerd, sure I can tell you Richo and Dusty's numbers, but few others, it's the last thing I'm focusing on when watching a game. My brother is the opposite, knows all the numbers. I never understood that.

If anything, words are more useful than numbers.

Having said that, do you really care who has got the ball? Commentators just use names for filler 'insert name here' passes to 'insert name here'...and so on and on and on

I'm team focused, a footy communist, I just want the team to put the ball through the big sticks. If you wear black and yellow, you're my man, you get the picture.
 

dylan93

Club Legend
Mar 16, 2011
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Not really an Americanisation when soccer does it as well.
Baseball in the 60s, Ice Hockey & Gridiron in the 70s and finally soccer once again the earliest usage was in the 70s and you guessed it... in the American Soccer League.

Once again it's an unnecessary Americanisation that we don't need.

Numbers will suffice and like many have said in this thread, if you forget who is who there are apps/commentary/etc that can help you if you're a casual fan.
 

kane249

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Baseball in the 60s, Ice Hockey & Gridiron in the 70s and finally soccer once again the earliest usage was in the 70s and you guessed it... in the American Soccer League.

Once again it's an unnecessary Americanisation that we don't need.

Numbers will suffice and like many have said in this thread, if you forget who is who there are apps/commentary/etc that can help you if you're a casual fan.
Relying on commentators to get the player names right doesn't improve the situation ;)
 

Cripps 'n' Blue Bloods

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I voted yes, simply because I don't really care either way. Names, no names, won't make too much of a difference to my viewing.
On the other hand, seeing as though they seem hellbent on keeping BT as a commentator, if it helps him to get player names right, then that's a hell yes from me!
 

Bostonian

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It's not about the die hards who can identify all the players by sight though, it's about the casual fans and improving their viewing experience.

Numbers and names on the jumper help them get into the game more by being able to more readily identify the obscure players.

If you make it more appealing for the casual to watch it and not just pandering to the footy snobs, it's how you get more money into the game and keep it growing.
Removing a sponsor from the area where the name will go would actually mean clubs make less money.

So you're advocating for clubs losing money on the premise that these casual fans whoever they are will actually spend any money on the team in the first place, which I highly doubt they will.

I mean really, if you stop watching a game because you can't work out for yourself who the players are you must be a flat out idiot in the first place.

"Casual fans" are a nonentity.
 

kane249

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Removing a sponsor from the area where the name will go would actually mean clubs make less money.

So you're advocating for clubs losing money on the premise that these casual fans whoever they are will actually spend any money on the team in the first place, which I highly doubt they will.

I mean really, if you stop watching a game because you can't work out for yourself who the players are you must be a flat out idiot in the first place.

"Casual fans" are a nonentity.
You may lose a sponsor, but you make up for it on shirt sales.

From another perspective would you want Brighton to remove names from their player shirts and plonk another sponsor on there? You do see it in other sports where casuals will purchase a name/number top of their favourite player, heck I saw a Man United Tevez 32 top this year from someone still wearing one.

Again you are taking it from a die hards perspective on a dedicated footy forum, it's the every day man that putting names on jumpers is geared towards. You aren't the target audience.
 

Chopperdave

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The only way I'd allow it is if players could choose nicknames XFL style...

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Edit: Before anyone rips into me this is a joke and names on jumpers are stupid as...
 

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