Crio’s Q: Who are/were the coach’s pets?

by Chris Riordan

“Will Leon Davis get picked?”
“Yeah, Malthouse loves him!”
Teacher’s Pet apparently.
Kevin Walsh carried the same banner for years.
Vindicated or not…supporters reckon some players get a charmed run.


  1. Sheedy also had a man-crush on Shane Heard.
    Remember the clandestine smuggling of him over the border for a state game?

  2. You can’t mention Kevin Walsh without also mentioning Dean Wallis. :)

  3. And it looks like Wallis is returning with golden Jimmy Hird.

  4. Whilst on the Sheedy theme, and I know it’s a stretch but….
    He once aimed the “throat-slitting” motion at Mitchell White.
    The same Mitchell White of whom Mick Malthouse once said he would
    attempt to win a third flag at West Coast for, because he was such
    a wonderful individual.

  5. Sandy Roberts. How did he keep a gig at channel 7

  6. Could make a whole team of McAvaney’s pets. What’s more, the umps wouldn’t touch em.

  7. I seem to remember another Walsh, Phillip, who kept getting games at Collingwood and Richmond despite the fans hating him to the point that they booed him when he went near the ball.

    Then he went to Brisbane and no-one cared whether he got a game or not.

    Back to Kevin Walsh, I always thought the criticism of him was generally unwarranted. He was a far better player than most gave him credit for.

  8. Richard Jones says

    Bluey McGrath. Who was the Kardinia Park coach who kept him in the side ?
    Was it Ayres-y.

    Currently, Mark Blake. Does Bomber r-e-a-l-l-y think he’s better than Shane Mumford?
    Blake: can’t kick, can’t mark, can’t make decisions.

    Ah well, until either the reluctant Sainters or the FlagPies actually win the thing this Sat., the Mighty Catters are STILL the reigning premiers.

  9. Gigs,
    I reckon you are a bit tough on Phillip Walsh. From memory he only played one year at the Pies and would have won the Rising Star if such an award existed back the. unfortunately it all went downhill for him from there as he got caught in the middle of the great Collingwood/Richmond war and not many survived that.
    Sheedy has had a few pets over the years including Aaron Henemann, Kepler Bradley, Mark Bolton. These guys were list cloggers for more years than they deserved.

  10. Disagree about Blake – Thompson uses him as scapegoat all the time. Gets dropped the second he kicks the ball. Geelong wanted him to go last year, he wanted to go, but was still in contract and Sydney could not be persuaded to take him.

    In the end, Mumford ditched the club against the wishes of all.

    Selwood is Thompson’s golden boy, but he clearly deserves his spot.

    *cough*TommyHawkins*cough*. Sorry, had to clear my throat.

  11. Budge, that’s probably right about Walsh at Collingwood. I do remember him being booed by his own, so it must have been Tiger fans doing it.

    The Brisbane comment is a dig at how few supporters the Bears had.

    I certainly make no judgment on him as a player. (I would have barely seen him play.) Just that he used to get games (before he went North) to the frustration of fans.

  12. Aker seems convinced Johnno was “protected”…Rocket’s basically admitted he was a favourite.
    Wilbur won’t get the same sentiment!

  13. Hmm where do i begin?
    First off i think it’s safe to say that Mick’s favoritism is keeping Davis in and the likes of Medders and Tarks out.
    i wouldn’t be surprised if Fraser magically came into the team.
    I don’t know how Mick feels about Dawesy BUT he missed four shots at goal, how many of those ended up out on the full?
    I mean atleast Travis can miss and come away with ONE point! We are being slammed for inaccuracy so now is that time to bring back the straightest kick in the team, Jack Anthony. Now for those of you who will say- ‘he can’t lead effectively’ or that ‘he doesn’t get enough of the ball’- atleast when the ball is in his hands he is a gazillion times better chance than Dawesy to get 6 points.


  14. Danni,
    Mick would bristle at the very suggestion that he plays favourites, but some reckon Craig Turley and Chris Mainwaring were pets at the Coasters – good footballers notwithstanding.

  15. Terry Wallace. Jordan McMahon. Cost us $1 million over 3 years and Callan Ward.

  16. Tony Shaw loved Jason Wild so much that he gave him his number. No one I knew at Collingwood in the nineties could see why.

    Other players who have worn #22 at Collingwood in the last fifty years include Bob Rose, John Greening, Tony Shaw, Rhyce Shaw and Steele Sidebottom. Jason Wild did not belong in this group.

  17. Peter Schumacher says

    What sbout Fevola at the Lions. Surely he has to be the ultimate coach’s favourite. No one else in their right mind would have looked at him. Sure he got a lot of goals for the number of matches he played but again, anyone else showing the sort of petulance he displayed many times wouldn’t have been given another game. Oh I forgot. We paid gazillions for him.

  18. Peter, I think Fev’s cured Voss of the affliction by now. :)

  19. Not even Mick could save you this week Leon.

    Thanks for the entertainment. All the best for your future.

    Go pies ….

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