Discussion Rocket Rod Owen's sad story

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George

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I think you have to go back further than simply blaming his actions on drug and alcohol abuse. The sexual abuse from a young age from multiple men for starters. That would mess anyone up, compounding with the party culture at St Kilda and no real father figure in his life. No wonder he went off the rails.

Does anyone know if Albert Briggs is still alive? I doubt it, but I hope his life membership was revoked all the same.
I said some responsibility for his actions, not the actions of others. But yes the actions of others definitely affected him, that's pretty self evident.
 

Kildonan

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It reminds me of the post match interview with Josh Bruce after kicking 10
when asked if he was going to sit down with a "red" tonight, he responded that he has been clear for ??90 days and is looking to make it to 100.
That suggests to me that he has had a problem with alcohol and may explain his poor performances last year.
Even more, it made me wonder if he had a problem while with us.
 

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StCicatriz

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Heartbreaking. Absolutely lost for words. I had no idea. Owen came before my time of following the club so was completely unaware as to his history. Playing from such a young age to the injuries and then trade to Melbourne.

I am staggered that our club has had issues with child abuse. I just don't know what to say. This is probably the lowest I've ever felt for the club.

But it pales in significance to what Owen has had to endure. If we dont support him in meaningful way which will mean putting our hand in our pocket to pay for resources to support him, then we might as well just fold as a club. It will be more lip service and a PR exercise rather than meaningful change.
 

StCicatriz

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I'm glad he takes some responsibility for his actions, namely his drug and alcohol abuse and general behaviour. Losing a parent at a young age is extremely tough, I can speak to that, but that doesn't give you a free pass to act a certain way.

Our club definitely didn't help the situation but I think his childhood and the loss of his father, a huge piece of a young man's growth, were what led to the life Rod has had.

I also believe our club's behaviour was behaviour that was normal at the time. That's not to excuse it, but you would imagine that every club had their issues around dealing with mental health and general player welfare. Look at how Nicky was treated by opposition supporters for instance. It was the norm back then.

And how is Matt Finnis. That bloke is shouldering responsibility for things that he wasn't involved in. Gee we have some terrific people at St.Kilda.

Really glad to see he has been sober for quite a while now.
He was molested as a kid, both at school and at our club and that's your take away from it...

There is nothing "normal" about an AFL clubs little league coach sexually assaulting children.

That is nothing to skim over. It should make every supporter of every club not just our own ask some big questions around what the hell was happening that allowed a paedophile to be exposed to children inside our club and what had occurred.

The club needs an investigation into what occurred.

Absolutely harrowing :-(
 

George

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He was molested as a kid, both at school and at our club and that's your take away from it...

There is nothing "normal" about an AFL clubs little league coach sexually assaulting children.

That is nothing to skim over. It should make every supporter of every club not just our own ask some big questions around what the hell was happening that allowed a paedophile to be exposed to children inside our club and what had occurred.

The club needs an investigation into what occurred.

Absolutely harrowing :-(
Here we go again with your usual hysteria. Ridiculous insinuations to paint me out to say something I didn't, and wilfully misquoting what I said.

I said I am glad he took some responsibility for his actions. 'Some', meaning not all, as there were other factors outside of his control that attributed to the way his life panned out, as I explained in a post I made following the one you quoted (the article was an incredibly long one, the point of his child abuse was self evident, it didn't need explaining or reasoning - it was wrong. Any person in their right mind would agree it is wrong, if I left it out it doesn't mean I am defending it). And 'his' actions - I was specifically talking about the issues that arose from his own behaviour such as missing important events in his children's life, almost killing someone, spending all his families money on his addiction. I am glad he now has the ability to look back and admit some of it was his own fault, whilst acknowledging and having the courage to speak out about those who treated him disgracefully. I spoke mainly about his drug abuse and the loss of his father because that is what resonated with me the most, having lived through both.

When I said "that was the norm at most clubs" did you really believe I was talking about sexually assaulting children, or are you being deliberately disingenuous to paint me in a poor light? What did I actually say? Shall we take another look?

I also believe our club's behaviour was behaviour that was normal at the time. That's not to excuse it, but you would imagine that every club had their issues around dealing with mental health and general player welfare. Look at how Nicky was treated by opposition supporters for instance. It was the norm back then.
Mismanaging players welfare and general mental health is the point I was making, specifically in regards to bringing him into the side at a young age, allowing him to go and drink with the senior players, and just the general ruining of his career...not some ridiculous comment about "Oh yeah, sexually assaulting children was normal". You've got to be taking the piss.
 

Pakenhamsaint

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Yep I really like the way Finnis reached out to both him and Muir. Seems to really be owning what the previous admin did.

weird comparison but it reminds me of KRudd apologising to the indigenous people - owning history and even though he directly has s not responsible he was aware of the toxic culture of the past resulting in these atrocities.

also could you imagine if Paddy had to deal with that backwards administration these days. So glad things have changed.
Finnis has been the best thing to ever happen to St Kilda.
He has changed our club for the better. He has this ability to bring supporters along with change.
 

Pakenhamsaint

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It reminds me of the post match interview with Josh Bruce after kicking 10
when asked if he was going to sit down with a "red" tonight, he responded that he has been clear for ??90 days and is looking to make it to 100.
That suggests to me that he has had a problem with alcohol and may explain his poor performances last year.
Even more, it made me wonder if he had a problem while with us.
I think Bruce has admitted the hub affected him last year.
 

George

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Finnis has been the best thing to ever happen to St Kilda.
He has changed our club for the better. He has this ability to bring supporters along with change.
He is doing a tremendous job, it's funny to look back now and think how wrong some were that we needed to move him on. Shouldering responsibility for events that happened before his time. He truly is reuniting St.Kilda people.

Would be nice to see Rod at a game or two in future, I heard Robbie Muir was at the game last week which was great to see. The Frawley centre is going to do great things for a lot of people and really compliments the kind of club we are becoming.
 

Pakenhamsaint

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Mismanaging players welfare and general mental health is the point I was making, specifically in regards to bringing him into the side at a young age, allowing him to go and drink with the senior players, and just the general ruining of his career...not some ridiculous comment about "Oh yeah, sexually assaulting children was normal". You've got to be taking the piss.
Even sexual assault of minors was mismanaged at the time. St Kilda isnt unique in that regard.
Its only recently that stuff has come to light and delt with as it should.
Back then it was the norm to cover up disgusting acts like that.
 

George

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Even sexual assault of minors was mismanaged at the time. St Kilda isnt unique in that regard.
Its only recently that stuff has come to light and delt with as it should.
Back then it was the norm to cover up disgusting acts like that.
I think this is the issue with posting on a forum as opposed to just talking about it. Rod's career was mismanaged in more ways than just the horrific sexual abuse, they put him in at 16 when his body wasn't ready for it and injured him less than 10 games in. Does his ACL the following year. Then the fact they pumped him full of pills to play through injury, which he then got addicted to, and then allowing him to go and drink with the senior players at such a young age. This is the kind of mismanagement I was talking about that would've been prevalent across the league. Players used to smoke and drink all the time back then. It was a completely different time, clubs had absolutely no clue about elite performance/athletes.

There was a lot in that article to digest, and it's all bad.
 

gringo2011

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He was molested as a kid, both at school and at our club and that's your take away from it...

There is nothing "normal" about an AFL clubs little league coach sexually assaulting children.

That is nothing to skim over. It should make every supporter of every club not just our own ask some big questions around what the hell was happening that allowed a paedophile to be exposed to children inside our club and what had occurred.

The club needs an investigation into what occurred.

Absolutely harrowing :-(

2 pedos inside our club and if true known about and covered up.
 

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gringo2011

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Even sexual assault of minors was mismanaged at the time. St Kilda isnt unique in that regard.
Its only recently that stuff has come to light and delt with as it should.
Back then it was the norm to cover up disgusting acts like that.

I don't think it was the norm, just easier to hide back then. Institutional abuse went on but it was never the norm and if the regular people who supported the institutions knew what was going on there would have been blood. The highlighting of it now makes it look like it was acceptable to hide it but I don't think the general population would have reacted any differently than they do today.
 

gringo2011

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I think this is the issue with posting on a forum as opposed to just talking about it. Rod's career was mismanaged in more ways than just the horrific sexual abuse, they put him in at 16 when his body wasn't ready for it and injured him less than 10 games in. Does his ACL the following year. Then the fact they pumped him full of pills to play through injury, which he then got addicted to, and then allowing him to go and drink with the senior players at such a young age. This is the kind of mismanagement I was talking about that would've been prevalent across the league. Players used to smoke and drink all the time back then. It was a completely different time, clubs had absolutely no clue about elite performance/athletes.

There was a lot in that article to digest, and it's all bad.

This guy I know said that Rod's dad was big on holding him back from being thrown in too early. Apparently he even threatened to take him to Essendon if we didn't back off. Once the old man died the club pressured him into playing and even at that age he was already drinking heavily.
 

George

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This guy I know said that Rod's dad was big on holding him back from being thrown in too early. Apparently he even threatened to take him to Essendon if we didn't back off. Once the old man died the club pressured him into playing and even at that age he was already drinking heavily.
Yeah that was mentioned a bit in the article. This is what I'm talking about though, I reckon that kind of stuff was happening across the league. Players playing through injury with pills, playing too early, pressuring the player to play despite other circumstances. They used to bring players back on the ground after being concussed...it's crazy. They had no idea about stuff that we know now regarding mental health and peak performance. As for the abuse I would hope the club revoke any life membership to those involved if they haven't done it already.
 

Brains Trust66

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So sad to read what was really happening. He had unbelievable skills and could do amazing things but the reality was we never saw the best of him and now we know why . I remember watching him play one day down at Moorabbin and he just had the ball on a string . Probably the closest player we had ever had to Baldock . Unfortunately I think either that game or the one after he did his knee , it was heartbreaking for us fans to see . Of course we had little knowledge of what was happening behind the scenes. The people in charge have a lot to answer for . Basically ruined Robbie Muir And Rodney Owen’s careers when they could have both been two of the greats if they had been looked after .
 

Brains Trust66

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Yeah that was mentioned a bit in the article. This is what I'm talking about though, I reckon that kind of stuff was happening across the league. Players playing through injury with pills, playing too early, pressuring the player to play despite other circumstances. They used to bring players back on the ground after being concussed...it's crazy. They had no idea about stuff that we know now regarding mental health and peak performance. As for the abuse I would hope the club revoke any life membership to those involved if they haven't done it already.
Well said George , those in charge should be kicked out of the club . It’s hard for us oldies to even express just how good both Muir and Owen could have been . Pretty sure at other clubs they would have been superstars . It’s sad that those in charge at our club didn’t care at all .😢
 

Pakenhamsaint

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Yeah that was mentioned a bit in the article. This is what I'm talking about though, I reckon that kind of stuff was happening across the league. Players playing through injury with pills, playing too early, pressuring the player to play despite other circumstances. They used to bring players back on the ground after being concussed...it's crazy. They had no idea about stuff that we know now regarding mental health and peak performance. As for the abuse I would hope the club revoke any life membership to those involved if they haven't done it already.
I can clearly remember hearing boundary riders on TV and radio. "It looks like hes concussed but hes coming back on"
Its amazing how far we have come in a short time in footy
 

malevu

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This guy I know said that Rod's dad was big on holding him back from being thrown in too early. Apparently he even threatened to take him to Essendon if we didn't back off. Once the old man died the club pressured him into playing and even at that age he was already drinking heavily.
Yeah, I heard that too. That was the story around the club at the time.
 

Yawkey way

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I remember rod owen and plugger training with the seniors, it was obvious both were massive talents.

I was at the collingwood practice match and he was absolutely incredible the sort of talent you see once or twice a generation. Personally I think he’s the greatest waste of talent I’ve ever seen at the saints although injuries certainly played a part. It’s an absolutely heart breaking read and one that doesn’t make me feel particularly proud of the saints. That rod had problems is news to no one, the extent of his problems is a real eye opener.

I used to chat to him occasionally at kings club, I’d be swimming laps and he’d come in to swim as part of his rehab. He was a friendly unassuming guy which is probably what most people say about broken mates when their not on the drink etc. I‘m just so glad he’s back on his feet and doing ok.

We‘re so lucky that we finally have people like Matt finnis down at the club, imo owning our mistakes and taking action just makes us a stronger club.
 

Atomboy

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I think this is the issue with posting on a forum as opposed to just talking about it. Rod's career was mismanaged in more ways than just the horrific sexual abuse, they put him in at 16 when his body wasn't ready for it and injured him less than 10 games in. Does his ACL the following year. Then the fact they pumped him full of pills to play through injury, which he then got addicted to, and then allowing him to go and drink with the senior players at such a young age. This is the kind of mismanagement I was talking about that would've been prevalent across the league. Players used to smoke and drink all the time back then. It was a completely different time, clubs had absolutely no clue about elite performance/athletes.

There was a lot in that article to digest, and it's all bad.
Drinking heavily with the boys was the norm at professional clubs until the late 90’s I reckon.

Read an interesting article on Adam Gilchrist not long ago and he referenced the expectations about drinking heavily post-match in the UK while he was there as an unaccompanied 17 year old playing County level cricket

Luckily he was a pretty level headed kid otherwise it could have gone the other way.
 

Jade Buddha

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Very sad and such a tragedy. hope rod gets some joy and some resolution in his life moving forward. Cant change the past but we can sure as hell make a statement about against these kind of appalling people ever being allowed in positions of power and responsibility ever.
 

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