Attention Collingwood amateur historians



To quote Collingwood’s best fictional coach, Laurie Holden: ‘I am asking you for the first any only time for your help.’


The fish-wrappers are all telling us Craig McRae is Collingwood’s 16the coach. My understanding is that Jock McHale was their first, and before him the office did not exist at the club. Indeed, no ‘coach’ is named for the 1902 or 1903 Premiership sides in the Atkinson Book of AFL Finals.


After McHale came Kyne, Rose, Mann, Weideman, Hafey, Erwin, Cahill, Rose, Matthews, Shaw, Malthouse, Buckley, Harvey and now McRae. Which is still only 15 names even counting Bob Rose twice.


So who is missing? (Maybe Laurie is actually our man…)



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  1. Luke Reynolds says

    It’s a great question Rick.

    From what I can tell, Bill Strickland was our first coach in 1904. Followed by Dick Condon, Ted Rowell and George Angus all before McHale started in 1912.

    With all the others you have mentioned, that makes 19. Take out Rose’s second stint and you have 18 (Strickland had 2 stints as well).

    My guess after that is that interim coaches Erwin and Harvey are not counted in the 16.

    The criteria is interesting, I wonder how other clubs class interim coaches?

  2. Luke Reynolds says

    But I’m all for official recognition of Laurie Holden…

  3. GRAHAM OTTO says

    After Jock McHale resigned the Collingwood Committee appointed reserves coach Bervyn Woods to coach the side. Kyne was the favourite but was beaten to the post by a casting vote at the committee meeting. He coached the following Saturday in an inter club practice match and given the support the players and supporters were showing Kyne Bervyn Woods resigned. Kyne who had resigned as a player because he was not appointed Coach was then appointed as Coach by the Commitee. Half of the Committee was sacked / resigned and it is said that John Wren purchased a milk bar for Woods for resigning the coaching position.
    The information supplied by Luke Reynolds is correct. Thus Bervyn Woods will complicate the equation. Was McRae Collingwood’s 16th Coach (assuming he lines up for round 1 next year) or the 16th Coach appointed. If we are talking appointed then he would be the 17th !!!!!

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