Players Who Never Quite Made The Grade

dogwatch

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For me, the epitome of an almost player who totally looked the goods early will always be Alister Ford.

1981 was my first year of going to the footy with my mates rather than my Dad. We went to 1sts and 2nds week in week out.

1981 was also our worst ever year by wins (2) or percentage (65).

We were pretty keen for a saviour.

In Round 2 against powerhouse Collingwood at Vic Park (cruel selection choice) Ford was thrown to the wolves for his debut.

We performed to expectations, getting rolled by around 100 points, but Alister, an athletic barely 17 year old 196cm spearhead (great size for those days) with flowing blonde hair and a good leap took big pack marks and kicked 3 goals.

We were sold, for sure he was our next Templeton.....
His career was washed up before he turned 24, by which time he'd played 18 games over two seasons with St Kilda. His stats were better with them than in his 21 games for us - he even got a brownlow vote - but he clearly wasn't quite up to AFL level.
 

Fossie 32

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So I used to know James Cook. There was a period of time when he went out with my girlfriends best friend, so had a few nights out with him over a 6 month period. Gee he was a laugh. Never really took his footy too seriously. I remember him leaning on a goal post in a reserves game back at princess park so I quizzed him that night at the "Cactus" bar in Moonee Ponds. His response was its only the two's mate doesn't matter kicked 4 should be back next week!!! Was just a happy go lucky big kid really.

Mark West though, now that was the best 17 game player to ever play for the Dogs. If only Libba, Westy and Jose weren't around who knows what could have been. That and 3 should reconstructions wrecked his chances.
Loved watching Cookie, he had great goal sense. Would have been one of our best in the 97 finals. Would have been great if he had become a regular FF for us.
 

Fossie 32

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What about Alistair Ford. He kicked 6 goals at Arden St one day in about 1983.

Zeno Tzatzaris was a a popular guy who played a bit part role for about 6 years. I heard he still went on the footy trip for several years after he had finished up.


Matty Hogg got cleared to Carlton after playing with injury in his last year at the club. I thought he played really well for the dogs in all other years.
I played junior footy with him and it was the only reason I was not totally disgusted when Carlton won the 1995 premiership.

I would have like Matthew Dent to have played more games.

I suppose it is a bit rough to say these guys did not "make the grade". I my opinion any bloke that has played league footy has made the grade, and done more than many of the people who are posting here. It would be better off saying "Those who could have done more" or "Those who got the most out of what they had, but did not do it for many years"
Matty Dent was pretty reliable.
 

HahnPremium

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Not saying he not ever made it but farren ray.
That final against collingwood he was immense. Skills and seemed to hover above the ground in transit. I termed him the "glider" after that day.
 

maddog37

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This thread can be applied to musical acts. Star sailor released “Love is Here” and I loved it and played it relentlessly.

There next album was poo and they basically faded away. Anyone else have a similar story??

(Off-season so excuse my wanderings.)
 

O Grobbecker

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Frank "Rooster" Johnson. Early 60s, the new gun CHF from WA.. There was an article in Footscray Advertiser about Rooster stopping off for a training run on the Nullabor on his way across from South Fremantle, the first Aus Rules footballer to do it. He played 6 games, another 4 with Fitzroy then disappeared.
 

The Slitherin' Snake

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So I used to know James Cook. There was a period of time when he went out with my girlfriends best friend, so had a few nights out with him over a 6 month period. Gee he was a laugh. Never really took his footy too seriously. I remember him leaning on a goal post in a reserves game back at princess park so I quizzed him that night at the "Cactus" bar in Moonee Ponds. His response was its only the two's mate doesn't matter kicked 4 should be back next week!!! Was just a happy go lucky big kid really.

Mark West though, now that was the best 17 game player to ever play for the Dogs. If only Libba, Westy and Jose weren't around who knows what could have been. That and 3 should reconstructions wrecked his chances.
The urban legend is that during pre-season he'd drink bourbon and diet coke to maintain fitness but would go back to bourbon and coke in the off-season
 

franjon

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Shane Loveless. Had all the talent but not quite the application. Garry Baker, he statistically looks okay across his career but pretty much wasted his time and theirs at Footscray. Unfortunately for Zeno, he ran into Lockett one day and wasn't big enough, or good enough.
 

GetDimmaBack

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The urban legend is that during pre-season he'd drink bourbon and diet coke to maintain fitness but would go back to bourbon and coke in the off-season
I was watching a practice match pre 1998 season with a mate.

His comment on Cookie: "Looks like he's done his pre-season at McDonalds..."
 

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