I completely agree with you.To be honest I don't agree with some of the very negative posts in the last three pages. I do however respect the right of people to post their honestly held views and I am happy to take them on board. I think you would find people who have been burnt or feel they have been burnt by every elite sports program in every sport. I've heard the same criticisms in the context of olympic programs where you would expect everything is as good as it can be.
The fact is that assessing talent is incredibly subjective and ever changing. A 12 year old gun may be an 18 year old dud. An 18 year old gun might be missing unseen critical elements that render him not draftable. Also the swans academy and the swans might simply get it wrong and make mistakes.
What I do know is that a player has to own his own future and concentrate only on the things he can control. Great examples include guys like Angus Baker who has been knocked back several times with injuries yet keeps performing at a level that suggests he should be drafted.
As a parent I know I have to teach my kid to own the outcomes and not blame the system or others. When his time is up, whether reasonable or a mistake, it is up to him to regroup and move forward, even if that means not achieving AFL level.
Sam Mitchell took 3 years to get drafted, and the rest is history.
But how can a kid like Gedes get overlooked for Allies, of which he had been selected, for another player, who was not a member?