Cover image of Trends with Marc McGowan - an AFL podcast

Trends with Marc McGowan - an AFL podcast

What will the nine rules and interpretations changes introduced for season 2019 mean to the way footy is played? Trends with Marc McGowan aims to find out, checking with analysts at the AFL and the clubs to get a gauge on what’s happening and why

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Understanding your player: The ex-Roo whose hardship makes him a better coach

Leigh Adams played more than 100 games for North Melbourne, twice finished in the top five of the club's best and fairest, and was regarded as one of the competition's most courageous players. Sadly, he called time on his AFL career in 2015, after a fifth concussion within a year affected his mental health and left him with migraines and blurred vision. The silver lining to the premature end of his playing days is a burgeoning coaching career. At age 31, the man known as 'Patch' has already coached South Croydon to a premiership in the strong Eastern Football League, and is now in charge of VFL club Coburg.


11 Jun 2019

Rank #1

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How to rate players: What you see v what the numbers tell you

The search for a competitive advantage in recruiting has seen AFL clubs increasingly turn to player analytics, although it still remains foreign to some. The idea is to remove bias from decision-making and to challenge the traditional thought process. The Adelaide Crows and their expert, Binuk Kodituwakku, are at the forefront of this development in the AFL.


4 Jun 2019

Rank #2

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Forward or defender? How personality decides your end of the ground

Whether you're organising the backline or telling the forwards what to do, outsiders might think every coaching job is the same. St Kilda assistant Henry Playfair quickly discovered otherwise. He started his coaching journey overseeing Sydney's forward line before later switching his attention to the other end of the ground. Throughout those experiences, Playfair learned the value of understanding a player's personality before even thinking of the practical elements.


6 Aug 2019

Rank #3

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How a single trade can be years in the making

Marc McGowan is joined by former AFL player and leading player manager Marty Pask to draw back the curtain on how the league's biggest trades really go down, discuss his coaching aspirations and share his thoughts on how the game has changed since his playing days.


9 Apr 2019

Rank #4

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Footy jargon 101: Dirty balls, spitters and Clarko's cluster

We're five rounds into a revamped version of Australian Football at the highest level, complete with new rules and different conditions. The numbers tell us something's changed, but how much should we really be reading into them? AFL Coaching Innovation & Education Manager David Rath joins the show to help us understand what's happening on the field each weekend, and explain some of the footy terms that many fans may not understand.


23 Apr 2019

Rank #5

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How the Cats won two games they should have lost

Every football statistic you read and hear about comes from one source - Champion Data. The AFL's official number-cruncher has spent the past two decades giving great insight into the game and continually tries to make its offering more sophisticated. One of the key men at Champion Data is Karl Jackson who created the AFL Player Ratings system. Karl deals with clubs on a weekly basis to better understand their needs and develop stats that help them find an edge.


18 Jun 2019

Rank #6

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How to find AFL traits in junior athletes

The importance of school football in the AFL pathway is all too often overlooked or downplayed. But one man who will never be accused of that is former AFL footballer and coach Robert Shaw, who coached Brighton Grammar to three premierships. Among his AFL graduates were top-10 draft picks Andy McGrath, Josh Kelly, Christian Salem and Jack Watts. Those players may have always made the grade, but Shaw was also able to help identify talented athletes from other sports, including McGrath, who are now on AFL lists.


9 Jul 2019

Rank #7

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How the stars solve their fear of failure: goalkicking guru explains

Goalkicking is a constant source of frustration within clubs, in the media, and in the outer with the fans. Players are fitter and stronger than ever, but goalkicking accuracy continues to slowly decline. So what's the issue? There is no better man to answer that question than goalkicking guru David Wheadon, a man who has worked at six AFL clubs and alongside the likes of Tom Hafey, Kevin Sheedy, David Parkin and Ross Lyon.


21 May 2019

Rank #8

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Revealed: Why 2019's expected scoring fireworks haven't happened

The fascination about how the AFL's new 6-6-6 starting positions would impact the game is now too often replaced by simplistic analysis about there being only a slight uptick in scoring from centre bounces. Instead, there needs to be a more educated discussion on what's happening and how clubs are adapting.This week's guest Brett Munro is a former club opposition analyst who works in the AFL's game analysis team, giving him a great perspective on the 6-6-6 debate.


28 May 2019

Rank #9

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Transforming average into extraordinary: how cohesive environments change players

Cohesion: the action or fact of forming a united whole. It's a word former Wallaby and Gain Line Analytics co-founder Ben Darwin has become an expert in as he challenges the way professional sporting teams chase success. The less teams change, the better they become, according to Darwin, with average players and even coaches often made to look greater in a cohesive environment. It's what Darwin calls the 'Melbourne Storm Mirage'.


23 Jul 2019

Rank #10