A colossus in every sense of the world, the 125kg ruck giant was a massive contributor to Queensland football after a stellar AFL career with North Melbourne. Originally from Wangaratta, he played 107 AFL games with the Kangaroos from 1973-80, kicking 40 goals and earning the nickname ‘The Galloping Gasometer’ from noted commentator Lou Richards. He was a member of North’s first premiership side in 1975, finishing third in the B&F in a side which included no less than nine future AFL Hall of Famers.
He also played in losing grand finals of 1976 and ’78, and missed the ’77 drawn grand final and the replay win through injury. Rated by Barry Cable as the best palm ruckman he played with, he was sent north to Queensland by then VFL president Allen Aylett to help foster the game in the Sunshine State. And that he did. He was Mayne captain-coach from 1981-85, playing 103 QAFL games and taking the Tigers to what turned out to be their last flag in 1982. He returned as coach from mid-1996-97 when the club was in crisis, and also had a long stint as Chairman of Selectors.
Was also a wonderful servant of State football and a well respected newspaper columnist in the early 1980’s era that was a critical pre-cursor to the establishment of the Brisbane Bears. He played 11 times for Queensland from 1981-84, captaining the Maroons to the first leg of an historic hat-trick of interstate titles against NSW, ACT and Tasmania in 1983 before being in the second leg in ’84. He also coached Queensland in 1987-88, was assistant-coach under Peter Knights at the 1988 Bi-Centennial Championships and likewise under Tommy Hafey at the 1989 Division Two Championships. Also served as a State selector.
Larger than life itself, with a personality to match, he was given a massive send-off by football people from across Australian when he died on 27 May 2008 of cancer.