With all GV competitions starting around the same time as the rest of the Australian States, it’s going to be a huge year for everyone involved. This time of the season is generally a little quiet but there has been the announcement or two of coaching appointments.
Craig Wilson will return as Head Coach of the Champion Crusaders but we do see a change at the helm for the Melbourne University Royals. I can also confirm that Jnala Saluni has definitely retired from the game. No more John Farnham esk returns.
Coach John Trana has returned home to the USA and Joshua Faure will take the reins of the Royals. Faure has had previous experience as Head Coach of the Northern Raiders, however the itch to play and the lack of linemen at the Raiders saw him return in a playing capacity. So the question is, and bets (not actual bets as it’s against League rules) will be taken as to when Faure will scratch that itch he will no doubt get again. I give him until week 5 if injuries are a factor on the Offensive Line.
The Croydon Rangers have moved on from Mel Martin who couldn’t bring the success he had with the Pakenham Silverbacks. The Rangers will be coached by American Lee Rose who will come to Melbourne after he finishes his role in Poland with the Warsaw Eagles.
Mel Martin has made a move (Will he ever retire?) to the South Eastern Predators. Can he turn this club into a Championship threat or has the game slowly gotten away from him? Either way, it’s good to see our veteran coach have another go. On a more somber note, Predators import Kyle Martin tragically lost his life in an accident back home in the USA not long after the end of last season. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Kyle’s family and the Predators.
The Pakenham Silverbacks are doing their best with more activity on Facebook than has been seen in previous seasons. I’m sure I speak for everyone when I say we want to see them field a team consistently every week.
In Ballarat, we see that most of the current Falcon’s men’s team will also have coaching roles again this season. Alex Spittle will be the Head Coach with Duncan McIntosh as his assistant.
There has been a big change at the Melton Wolves with Tiffany Lykke stepping down as President and Head Coach. Brad Baker is the new President and he will continue his role as the Offensive Coordinator. Veteran coach Paul Grima has also stepped aside as Defensive Coordinator. A massive loss for the Wolves is Mr Fix it Matthew Krul, due to personal and career obligations. The new Head Coach has just been announced and that will be former NFL player Tony Simmons, who has had extensive playing and coaching experience spanning 21 years. A former 2nd round pick (Pick 52) in 1998 for the New England Patriots, Simmons will arrive in late July.
The Peninsula Sharks have been stepping up their recruitment and fundraising to solidify their future. With the announcement of their home field in Carrum Downs the future is bright for the Sharks.
Another club that has been hard at it recruiting is the newly named Casey Spartans (Formerly Dandenong). They have announced they will attempt to field teams in all levels of competition and have a home base in Endeavour Hills, the old Berwick Miners field. We wish you guys good luck.
The Bendigo Dragons see some changes in the boardroom with Thomas Prince stepping aside for Alice Kielty as club President. They are also looking to field a JV side this year, which is great for the sport in the city of Bendigo.
Geelong Buccaneers are also recruiting hard and with the change of season’s, they are hoping to capitalise on Rugby and Aussie Rules players taking the plunge onto the Gridiron in their offseason.
Not much out of Monash, well not on Social media anyway. Will we see the return of Dom Dearman once again? Veteran Sam Karag has hung up the boots.