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Potential Changes to the AFL Season


titan_uranus

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Michaelangelo Rucci has written an article saying Demetriou and the AFL are preparing to look at changes to the AFL season, including:

  • No more NAB Cup - there will be two pre-season games (essentially just for warming up) instead
  • Starting the season 3 weeks earlier (there's no mention of how this is going to happen, what with the cricket grounds being in use etc.)
  • Making the season 26 weeks long, instead of the current 24 (24 games + two byes)
  • Change the finals to five weeks - week one gives the top 6 a bye whilst 7 v 10 and 8 v 9 play wildcard games; in week 2, it reverts to the current finals system

Rucci's been quite humorous and slid in two MFC gags in the article, which is here: http://www.foxsports.com.au/afl/afl-premiership/the-afl-is-reportedly-prepared-to-extend-the-season-and-finals-while-introducing-a-top-10/story-e6frf3e3-1226645046985#.UZWOqSv88i5

I'm not a fan of a top 10 rather than top 8, but other than that, I would be in favour of all these changes. The NAB Cup is pointless, it shouldn't exist. If it's possible to start earlier and run the season a bit longer, I'd like that too.

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FCS talk about rewarding the undeserving. 55 percent of the teams would play "finals"!!! Way back, "when we were good" it was 33 percent. This would certainly cheapen "we made the finals".

One possible way of maintaining interest of those not achieving, and also spinning a few bucks for the AFL would be for those not reaching the top 8 of the competition to "play off" (AD would surely like those words with their American connotations) in some sort of round robin arrangement over maybe 2 or 3 weeks, certainly not 4 which would clash with the GF, maybe 9-13 and 14-18 for draft order,with the better performed getting the pick......certainly would put the concept of tanking to rest and provide a little interest late in the season for the under performers, whilst till giving the bottom five teams the pick of the draft,andthenext five the next five picks but not rewarding total failure or tanking.

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Scrapping the NAB Cup makes sense, but at the same time it doesn't bother me if it stays, however I think the current format is poor. Go back to the groups of 3 for first round (each team plays 2 matches on the one night) and then the best 8 advance in a knock out comp. Better then the way it works now.

I agree that I don't see how starting the season 3 weeks early is possible? One week earlier should be more then enough and help fund the upgrade of Junction Oval for CV.

Don't see the need for 26 rounds (24 games & 2 byes). There's enough uncompetative games and teams out of the finals race already. 24 rounds (22 games & 2 byes) should be plenty.

Top 10 is to many finalists in an 18 team competition. No one from lower then 5th has ever won a premiership and no one from lower then 6th has ever made a Grand Final. I'd go top 9 at best and keep it at 4 weeks. 1st, 2nd & 3rd get first week and home quarter finals. First week of finals 4v7 and 5v6 to work out their rankings from 4-7 and 8v9 in an elimination final with the winner taking on the minor premier in the 2nd week of the finals away.

The only other change that I'd make which I've mentioned previously in another thread is:

Have every team play eachother once and have a bye each over the first 18 rounds, meands 9 teams have 9 home games & 8 away, 9 teams have 8 home games and 9 away.

19th week of the season all clubs have a bye. Perhaps have the EJ Whitten match on the Friday Night this weekend and maybe an All Star U18 match on the Saturday Night (Vic Merto & Country v The Rest). This week off allows the AFL some time to work on the fixture over the coming 5 weeks.

Over the last 5 weeks split the comp into 3 sections, 1st to 6th (top 4 group), 7th to 12th (finals race group) and 13th to 18th (draft pick group).

Of the first 17 games played, only the 5 against the teams in your group carry forward putting you into your new ladder position.

Over the last 5 weeks of the season you play everyone in your group again. You can't finish any higher then the top spot of your group (1st, 7th or 13th) or any lower then bottom (6th, 12th & 18th).

Over those last 5 weeks of the season everyone in the top 4 group is obviously playing out for ladder positioning and trying to secure a top 4 spot. Everyone in the middle group is fighting it out for the last few finals spots and everyone in the bottom group for the number 1 draft pick. Whoever tops the bottom 6 group gets pick 1, bottom of that group pick 6.

This then makes every game mean something going forward and should keep them somewhat competative as they're against teams in similar ladder positions.

I'd imagine it would be difficult to pull off, but I think it's do-able and makes the draw as fair as possible. The following year the team who had 8 home games in the intial part of the season gets 9 and vice versa.

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Michaelangelo Rucci has written an article saying Demetriou and the AFL are preparing to look at changes to the AFL season, including:

  • No more NAB Cup - there will be two pre-season games (essentially just for warming up) instead
  • Starting the season 3 weeks earlier (there's no mention of how this is going to happen, what with the cricket grounds being in use etc.)
  • Making the season 26 weeks long, instead of the current 24 (24 games + two byes)
  • Change the finals to five weeks - week one gives the top 6 a bye whilst 7 v 10 and 8 v 9 play wildcard games; in week 2, it reverts to the current finals system

Rucci's been quite humorous and slid in two MFC gags in the article, which is here: http://www.foxsports.com.au/afl/afl-premiership/the-afl-is-reportedly-prepared-to-extend-the-season-and-finals-while-introducing-a-top-10/story-e6frf3e3-1226645046985#.UZWOqSv88i5

I'm not a fan of a top 10 rather than top 8, but other than that, I would be in favour of all these changes. The NAB Cup is pointless, it shouldn't exist. If it's possible to start earlier and run the season a bit longer, I'd like that too.

As far as the AFL is concerned the NAB is not the cash cow it might have been.

Two more full rounds and a couple of Faux Finals would make for a much healthier bottom line.

That's all that matters really. Never mind a bit of Draft Equalisation.

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I like that new proposal. But why must he put those MFC comments in.

If i was President of the MFC i would hound that one, but Mclardy will say nothing.

Imagine if Eddie just let that comment ride.

They gave me a smile wyl.

Lighten up a little he is only stating the obvious.

I would prefer an 18 games season.

Less time to suffer

Edited by old dee
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The season is too long. I'd like an 18 round season with one match against each of the other teams and one "derby/traditional rivals". The versus each team could rotate H&A venue year on year and if the team is playing say WC away then get Freo at home. There could be 2 byes with 6 matches a week like there currently is for the single bye. The final 8 is enough - I realise that only gives 24 weeks of football, results in less TV revenue and doesn't help the fight against RL early start - but I do think there's a glut of meaningless matches. I got turned off cricket for that reason. I used to live in the US and the 16 week NFL regular season had me hungering for the football season - I realise that the winter weather is a factor there. When I arrived I in the US liked baseball more than football but the absolute glut of baseball turned me off it too, but I left with an enduring love of NFL. Less is more.

That or two divisions with promotion and relegation (two finals series), which I think is the real answer to a fair and full fixture (play each team in your divison twice and in the other divison once) and retaining interest - but I realise this is a bridge too far for most people.

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i have a solution.

its confusing so read carefully.

two divisions of 9. top and bottom.

each team plays all the other 17 teams once and everyone from their division twice. 24 games (with no NAB cup)

the top 6 from the top division and the top 2 from the bottom play off in the current top 8 finals system for the flag.

the top 2 teams from the bottom division also automatically go into the top division for the following year.

teams 8 and 9 from the top division automatically drop out of the top division.

teams 3 and 4 from the bottom 9 play off in the first week of finals. they then earn the right to play the 7th placed team in the top division in the 2nd week of finals - the prize is a spot in the top division the following year.

this means that at the end of the year everyone has something to play for, except the 5 bottom teams at the bottom of the bottom division. (although even team 5 would be fighting to make the play off to play 7th)

it also means that everyone has a chance of winning the flag still and it means that teams would play more games against teams of a similar quality.

the most games you could play in a season would be 28 including finals.

as for the draft - just order it on the total number of wins in the last 5 years.

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i have a solution.

its confusing so read carefully.

two divisions of 9. top and bottom.

each team plays all the other 17 teams once and everyone from their division twice. 24 games (with no NAB cup)

the top 6 from the top division and the top 2 from the bottom play off in the current top 8 finals system for the flag.

the top 2 teams from the bottom division also automatically go into the top division for the following year.

teams 8 and 9 from the top division automatically drop out of the top division.

teams 3 and 4 from the bottom 9 play off in the first week of finals. they then earn the right to play the 7th placed team in the top division in the 2nd week of finals - the prize is a spot in the top division the following year.

this means that at the end of the year everyone has something to play for, except the 5 bottom teams at the bottom of the bottom division. (although even team 5 would be fighting to make the play off to play 7th)

it also means that everyone has a chance of winning the flag still and it means that teams would play more games against teams of a similar quality.

the most games you could play in a season would be 28 including finals.

as for the draft - just order it on the total number of wins in the last 5 years.

Not a bad system. Although it will be 25 games, not 24. (All 8 teams in your group twice and the other 9 once).

Reckon this one could have legs if they are keen to start the season early to run along side the NRL.

As far as finding venues that don't clash with the cricket venues you'd have to move matches to:

MCG: Etihad, Launceston or Darwin

SCG: Homebush

GABBA: Metricon or Cairns

Adelaide Oval: AAMI Stadium

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The season is too long. I'd like an 18 round season with one match against each of the other teams and one "derby/traditional rivals". The versus each team could rotate H&A venue year on year and if the team is playing say WC away then get Freo at home. There could be 2 byes with 6 matches a week like there currently is for the single bye. The final 8 is enough - I realise that only gives 24 weeks of football, results in less TV revenue and doesn't help the fight against RL early start - but I do think there's a glut of meaningless matches. I got turned off cricket for that reason. I used to live in the US and the 16 week NFL regular season had me hungering for the football season - I realise that the winter weather is a factor there. When I arrived I in the US liked baseball more than football but the absolute glut of baseball turned me off it too, but I left with an enduring love of NFL. Less is more.

That or two divisions with promotion and relegation (two finals series), which I think is the real answer to a fair and full fixture (play each team in your divison twice and in the other divison once) and retaining interest - but I realise this is a bridge too far for most people.

Agree with everything here only I'd go for a 17 game season, I don't see the need to have an additional "rivalry round" - and who would our rivals be anyway? North, Bulldogs, St. Kilda??

Your comments about the NFL are spot on every year a month or so after the Superbowl I can't wait for the next season to start again, less definitely is more and this will be the case with the TV rights also. The AFL just needs to take the long term rather than short term view.

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How about the powers that be just leave the game alone for a couple of years. I don't understand this constant need to change things. With the recent introduction of two new teams we just need to leave it as is. Splitting the comp in to divisions/conferences of any description is the worst thing that could happen to this game.

Edited by Al's Demons
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How about the powers that be just leave the game alone for a couple of years. I don't understand this constant need to change things. With the recent introduction of two new teams we just need to leave it as is. Splitting the comp in to divisions/conferences of any description is the worst thing that could happen to this game.

Indeed, two Conferences (another Yank terminology) would almost be a compromise upon the VFL, SANFL, WAFL etc comps of days gone by.

Probably wouldn't do the Gate much good either. A fair distribution of the Vic clubs between 'Conferences' would be a nightmare.

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I agree conferences would be too difficult but no reason we couldn't have everyone playing each team once (with two byes thrown in) alternating home and away each year and playing in each state once per year (eg Freo home, WCE away one year changing the next).

Either that or dividing up the ladder from the previous season (1, 4, 7, 10, 13, 16; 2, 5, 8, 11, 14, 17; 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, 18) to determine the return games for the following year in a 22 game season. Only way to have some semblance of fairness and transparency in the draw.

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