‘AFL Aficionados!! Not many people know this’, Honest History, 15 June 2017
Jock McHale (Wikipedia)
In 120 years of VFL-AFL premiership competition (1897-2016), 25 coaches have led their clubs to just one premiership each.
Another 25 coaches have led their clubs to more than one premiership each, amounting to 86 premierships altogether. (There were nine other premierships in the early days, when teams did not have coaches.)
The coach with the most premierships is Jock McHale (8 for Collingwood), followed by Norm Smith (6 for Melbourne).
The serving coach with the most premierships is Alastair Clarkson (4 with Hawthorn). No other current coach has won more than one premiership.
Norm Smith (AFL)
Eight coaches have led two different clubs to premierships: Jack Worrall (3 with Carlton, 2 with Essendon), Percy Bentley (2 with Carlton, 1 with Richmond), Checker Hughes (4 with Melbourne, 1 with Richmond), Ron Barassi (2 with Carlton, 2 with North Melbourne), David Parkin (1 with Hawthorn, 3 with Carlton), Alan Jeans (1 with St. Kilda, 3 with Hawthorn), Leigh Matthews (1 with Collingwood, 3 with Brisbane) and Mick Malthouse (2 with West Coast, 1 with Collingwood).
Jack Worrall is generally regarded as the first premiership-winning coach (Carlton 1906, then again in 1907 and 1908, then in 1911-12 with Essendon).
Hawthorn is the only club all of whose premierships have been won by coaches who have only won multiple premierships: John Kennedy 3, David Parkin 4 (including 3 with Carlton), Alan Jeans 4 (including 1 with St Kilda), Alan Joyce 2, Alastair Clarkson 4.
Of the eight original clubs forming the then-VFL in 1897, only three clubs have played in every one of the 120 years of competition (Carlton, Collingwood and St. Kilda). In 1916 only four clubs played, the fourth being Fitzroy.
Alastair Clarkson (AFL)
At the other end of the competition, St. Kilda have ‘won’ the wooden spoon 27 times, North Melbourne 13 times. Despite winning 12 premierships, Melbourne also have been wooden spooners 12 times.
Hawthorn, with 13 premierships, have been wooden spooners 11 times.
Only the two Adelaide clubs have never been wooden spooners.
Does all this help you decide, at the half-way point of this topsy-turvy season, who will win the premiership this year? Nope.
* Geoffrey Winter is a life-long statistician.
Ron Barassi (Age)