The Darling Downs Crows have a long history of filling the gap between early-age football and senior football in the Darling Downs.

The Crows program returned in 2021 following a challenging period due to the COVID pandemic and re-launched the Darling Downs Crows as an Under 16 Boys program through AFL Queensland, playing in the South East Queensland junior competition. The Crows went on to win the Under 16 Division 3 Premiership that year which was a huge achievement with a newly formed team and a brand that was still building visibility.

The 2022 season was difficult with limited numbers of players signing on and a move up to Division 2, however, the Crows saw success as the season progressed and finished the year strong, winning three of their last four games. In 2023, the program expanded with 29 players fielding a team made up of Under 17s and Under 15s players.

Andrew Foley is proud of the success of the Crows program since he joined the Darling Downs executive group in 2011 and became Head Coach of the Crows in 2022 and 2023.

“I moved to Toowoomba in 2010 when the Crows had an Under 18 team. I then joined the Darling Downs executive in 2011, including spending two years as President. I’m proud of the growth we had in that period, which included localised Under 16s, and starting the women’s competition in the region,” he said.

“I’m pleased to be able to play a part in the continued development of the Darling Downs Crows program. What makes the Darling Downs Crows unique, is the fantastic team culture, positive environment and support from the families involved.

“This is built from a foundation of junior football, where most of the boys played football either in the same team or against each other in the Darling Downs Competition or through the Darling Downs representative teams.”

The Crows program provides a pathway to senior football in the Darling Downs, with current senior players offering their support to junior players, and access to guest coaches who share their experiences and knowledge.

“Many of the current senior players are often at the Crows’ games and offering support,” Mr Foley said.

“We have also used guest coaches in our training program throughout this season, who have been involved with local seniors, helping to raise our profile with the senior clubs. It offers our junior players a new learning experience in a professional environment to help them grow and develop into senior players.”

The Darling Downs Crows are now taking expressions of interest for the 2024 season through the EOI form below. For more information, please contact Competition Manager, Jana Anderson.

2024 AFLQ Darling Downs Crows EOI (cognitoforms.com)

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