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Thread: Bob Skilton Medal.

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    Senior Player dejavoodoo44's Avatar
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    Bob Skilton Medal.

    Since the Skilton Medal presentation is on Thursday night, I thought that I’d start a thread, so we can put down a few predictions. According to a couple of articles on the Swans website, there are six main contenders. In alphabetical order, these are; Lloyd, Mills, Papley, Parker, Rampe and Rowbottom. Which is fair enough: although I was slightly surprised that they still rated Rampe as a contender, as he missed six games. Anyway, for what it’s worth, I thought that I’d do my predicted top 10.

    1 – Jake Lloyd. I’ve been very impressed with Lloyd this year. He amassed 439 possessions, which ranked him third in the AFL for the home and away season. While his disposal could at times be a bit more incisive, he relentlessly provided an option for his fellow defenders. When one of them was under pressure, Jake often arrived to present them with a way to relieve that pressure. He also seemed to be a bit more hard-edged, this season. He racked up 104 contested possessions, which was fifth for the Swans and 37 tackles, which ranked eighth. These were both improvements on his Skilton Medal winning year of 2018. In that year, he had 1.61 tackles and 5.38 CPs per game. This season it was 2.18 and 6.12 per game. His 81 marks this season, was also the most by a Swan.

    2 – Luke Parker. Another wholehearted year from the two time Skilton Medallist, in which he shouldered much of the inside midfield load, due to Kennedy missing 5 games and Hewett 11 games. His 84 tackles, 82 clearances and 192 clearances, all topped the Swans stat list. While he had a few anonymous games, he produced enough high quality performances, to probably end up as the top Swans vote getter in the Brownlow.

    3 – Tom Papley. His 26 goals easily topped the goals tally, with the next best being Hayward’s 10. He also spent a bit more time in the middle, with his 21 clearances ranking seventh for the Swans. But I think his clearances were also notable for their effectiveness: instead of a dump kick under pressure, he often emerged from the contest at pace, with ball in hand. However, his season was one of two halves. For much of the first half, people were talking about him as a possible Coleman winner, while for the second half, he could hardly buy a goal. In the first eight games, he kicked 19-10, while in the last nine, he kicked 7-17. Probably worth noting, that after the eighth game, Clarkson labelled him a stager, and after that, I got the impression that umpires were loathe to pay him any frees, not matter how much they were deserved. So, if he doesn’t win the Skilton, perhaps he can blame Alastair the toxic goblin?

    4 – James Rowbottom. Another strong development year for young James, who also shouldered more inside midfield responsibility. He had our second highest number of contested possessions with 128. While his 58 tackles and 51 clearances, both ranked third for the club. Though I think it was more the style of possessions, that consolidated his reputation as a future star. To me, he often looked to be our most dangerous player, with his excellent evasive skills and his ability to select and hit the best attacking option, while under high pressure.

    5 – Callum Mills. Not sure if I would rate Mills as a genuine Skilton contender, as I thought his year was very solid, rather than award winning. His case won’t be helped by playing only 15 games, rather than the 17 of Lloyd, Parker and Papley, and 16 of Rowbottom. While he did spend a small amount of time in midfield, he was probably at his best when playing as a spare man in defence. He took 77 marks, which was second behind Lloyd, and his 49 tackles was our fourth most.

    6 – Dane Rampe. That the Swans site lists him as a contender, when he only played 11 games, is a demonstration of just how good he was in those that he played. Three of those games he played with a broken hand. Until he further damaged his hand in round 12, I had him as clear favourite to make it back to back Skilton Medals. It will be interesting to see, how far in front he will be in the count, at the conclusion of round 12. Don’t expect him to hang on, but hey, stranger things have happened.

    7 – Jordan Dawson. Another productive season, without really starring in any particular role. I was going to say that he may have played every position except ruckman, but I vaguely recall him taking a few centre bounces, without managing to get a hitout. Still seems to be our best field kick, which is emphasised by him topping our goal assists, even though he only occasionally played forward.

    8 – Harry Cunningham. Another key component of our excellent defence. Much like Lloyd, he always seemed to be popping up, to provide an option for a team mate under pressure. Also defended well against small forwards and pacy flankers. One of only five players to play all 17 games.

    9 – Ollie Florent. Another to play all 17 games, he topped the club for inside fifties, with 72. However, while he did have some quality games, he probably didn’t improve as much as most people were hoping.

    10 – Will Hayward. Seemed to lack confidence early on, but he improved after being switched briefly to defence. Was second behind Papley for goals kicked, often provided a leading marking option on the wing and applied some good pressure to opposition rebounders.

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    Just give Parker his Bobby already!

    My prediction looks something like:
    1- Parker
    2- Lloyd
    3- Mills
    4- Papley
    5- Rampe
    6- Kennedy
    7- Cunningham
    8- Dawson
    9- Rowbottom
    10- Sinclair

    There were some matches where Sinclair did really well at nullifying the dominance of his opponents - v Collingwood with Grundy comes to mind. Performances like that will garner him respect of the coaches.

    Kennedy's year is also under rated. Missed five or six matches, but the matches he played he was among our best 2 or 3 players in just about all of them. On the contrary, while Paddlebum might've been our stand-out youth, I can only think of a few occasions where he was one of our stand-out players overall. This will work against him.

    Would not be surprised at all if Ollie or McCartin cracked the top 10 by surprise.

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    My Top 5 Skilton Medal predictions : Llyod(17 games) , Parker(17), Papley(17), Mills(15), Dawson(16). Special mention: Rampe(11- missed too many games), Cunningham(17)

    Rising Star: McInerney (9), Special Mention: Stephens(8)

    Most Improved: Dawson(16), Special Mention: McInerney(9), Rowbottom (16), McCartin (14), Fox(14)

    Clubman: Cunningham(17), or Sinclair (13)

    Players' Player: Rampe (11),
    Last edited by Aaron; 14th October 2020 at 04:35 PM.

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    Senior Player Bloody Hell's Avatar
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    It's a two horse race between Parker and Lloyd, I'd guess Parker.

    Papley will be leading at the halfway mark.
    The eternal connundrum "what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object" was finally solved when David Hasselhoff punched himself in the face.

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    I posted mine on another thread a few weeks ago:

    Lloyd
    Parker
    Papley
    Dawson
    Cunningham
    Rampe
    Mills
    Kennedy
    Rowbottom
    McCartin

    Players Player: Parker
    Clubman: Papley(!)
    Most Improved: McCartin
    Rising Star: McInerney

  6. #6
    Senior Player dejavoodoo44's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron View Post
    My Top 5 Skilton Medal predictions : Llyod(17 games) , Parker(17), Papley(17), Mills(15), Dawson(16). Special mention: Rampe(11- missed too many games), Cunningham(17)

    Rising Star: McInerney (9), Special Mention: Stephens(8)

    Most Improved: Dawson(16), Special Mention: McInerney(9), Rowbottom (16), McCartin (14), Fox(14)

    Clubman: Cunningham(17), or Sinclair (13)

    Players' Player: Rampe (13),
    I was just about to post that there's a few other awards being handed out, but since you have, I'll just do my picks.

    For the Rising Star, I'll go Stephens. The best of our recent draftees and by the end of the season, he was showing huge endurance and plenty of skill.

    Most Improved, I would give to McInerney. At the end of last season, it was debatable whether he could be consistent enough to hold his spot on the list. At the end of this season, he was doing a heap of gut running, taking excellent options and becoming a deadeye shot for goal. Although I guess it does depend on the interpretation of 'most improved'. For instance, Fox improved from a fringe player, who looked like he would only come into side if they were plenty of injuries, to a valued member of a quality defence. Or maybe even Wicks? Who went from somebody who did well to get rookie listed, to somebody who made life hell for high quality opposition rebounders.

    Player's Player. I assume that Rampe's broken hand heroics has got this wrapped up.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheBloods View Post
    Just give Parker his Bobby already!

    My prediction looks something like:
    1- Parker
    2- Lloyd
    3- Mills
    4- Papley
    5- Rampe
    6- Kennedy
    7- Cunningham
    8- Dawson
    9- Rowbottom
    10- Sinclair

    There were some matches where Sinclair did really well at nullifying the dominance of his opponents - v Collingwood with Grundy comes to mind. Performances like that will garner him respect of the coaches.

    Kennedy's year is also under rated. Missed five or six matches, but the matches he played he was among our best 2 or 3 players in just about all of them. On the contrary, while Paddlebum might've been our stand-out youth, I can only think of a few occasions where he was one of our stand-out players overall. This will work against him.

    Would not be surprised at all if Ollie or McCartin cracked the top 10 by surprise.
    Forgot there were other medals awarded

    Rising Star - Rowbottom

    Most improved - Fox

    Clubman - Naismith

    Players player - Rampe

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    My understanding is that the Players' Player award is voted on a game by game basis, rather than an overall "good bloke" award (ie effectively a players' version of the Best Clubman award). If so, that would count Rampe out for the same reason he's not in the run for winning the BS medal. I suspect Parker will take this one out.

    The BS medal I expect to be a two-horse race between Parker and Lloyd, with Parker my tip for this one too though I won't be surprised were Lloyd to win. I think Lloyd has improved several aspects of his game markedly over the past two seasons - I believe he's a better player now, by some margin, than when he won the BS medal. But that won't necessarily mean he earns more BS votes.

    I reckon Rampe will hold a decent lead at the point of the season he was ruled out for the rest of the season. I doubt he'll have enough points by then to hold onto a top 5 spot, but is likely to finish top 10 despite missing all those games. (The club's scoring system strongly favours those who play all, or predominantly all, the matches.)

    I don't think players like McInerney or Wicks are eligible for Most Improved. You have to have actually played in previous seasons. (I don't think McInerney's sole game last year is relevant.) Both would be in the running for Rising Star (Wicks far less likely than McInerney.) I can never remember whether the club has the same eligibility criteria for their Rising Star as the AFL applies (in terms of age and previous games played). I think they are slightly different, and that Rowbottom is eligible. If so, he'll take it out comfortably. If he isn't I think McInerney is the likely winner.

    I have a feeling the Most Improved award is calculated based on BS medal votes this year compared to last. (Not sure whether they adjust that for injuries, however.) I reckon Cunningham has had an excellent, underrated season and should finish in the 6-10 range in the BS voting. (He might even sneak into the top 5.) He didn't feature in the top 10 last year, but that's a bit misleading because he missed a big chunk of the season. Good as he's been this year, it's not like he's jumped out of nowhere. He had already shown himself to be a more than handy player. Still, if he finishes close to the top 5 I think he's a like MI award winner. Otherwise, it's hard to go past Fox, who has gone from a bit-part in-and-out-of-the-side player to a constant and handy presence in our backline.

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    Quote Originally Posted by liz View Post
    My understanding is that the Players' Player award is voted on a game by game basis, rather than an overall "good bloke" award (ie effectively a players' version of the Best Clubman award). If so, that would count Rampe out for the same reason he's not in the run for winning the BS medal. I suspect Parker will take this one out.

    The BS medal I expect to be a two-horse race between Parker and Lloyd, with Parker my tip for this one too though I won't be surprised were Lloyd to win. I think Lloyd has improved several aspects of his game markedly over the past two seasons - I believe he's a better player now, by some margin, than when he won the BS medal. But that won't necessarily mean he earns more BS votes.

    I reckon Rampe will hold a decent lead at the point of the season he was ruled out for the rest of the season. I doubt he'll have enough points by then to hold onto a top 5 spot, but is likely to finish top 10 despite missing all those games. (The club's scoring system strongly favours those who play all, or predominantly all, the matches.)

    I don't think players like McInerney or Wicks are eligible for Most Improved. You have to have actually played in previous seasons. (I don't think McInerney's sole game last year is relevant.) Both would be in the running for Rising Star (Wicks far less likely than McInerney.) I can never remember whether the club has the same eligibility criteria for their Rising Star as the AFL applies (in terms of age and previous games played). I think they are slightly different, and that Rowbottom is eligible. If so, he'll take it out comfortably. If he isn't I think McInerney is the likely winner.

    I have a feeling the Most Improved award is calculated based on BS medal votes this year compared to last. (Not sure whether they adjust that for injuries, however.) I reckon Cunningham has had an excellent, underrated season and should finish in the 6-10 range in the BS voting. (He might even sneak into the top 5.) He didn't feature in the top 10 last year, but that's a bit misleading because he missed a big chunk of the season. Good as he's been this year, it's not like he's jumped out of nowhere. He had already shown himself to be a more than handy player. Still, if he finishes close to the top 5 I think he's a like MI award winner. Otherwise, it's hard to go past Fox, who has gone from a bit-part in-and-out-of-the-side player to a constant and handy presence in our backline.
    You might be right on the eligibility of McInerney and Wicks for the Most Improved. I am not certain either would deserve it as much as Robbie Fox. Wicks came in round 10 and played just seven games, and was dropped for the final round. McInerney couldn't even crack the senior team until round 14 and played out the last five matches. Hardly enough to say his year was comparable to Fox, he'd never played more than five games in a row in a season before. In 2020 he managed twelve consecutive matches, and was very good in all of them, as opposed to a stop-gap player no. 22 like he has been in most games throughout his career. That is the very definition of improvement.

    The Rising Star award depends on the eligibility. I seem to recall Florent won the award at the conclusion of his second season, which would place N.O.B. in the same position. In fact Florent won it with 4 games more to his name than Rowbottom. Hard to envision it going to anyone else. Would make for a very awkward scenario if he was the only of the RS candidates to feature in the top ten of the Skilton, but the RS award went to someone else.

    Do you know the eligibility of the Clubman award? I thought Alex Johnson won it during one of the seasons in which he was on the sidelines with his ACL woes. If you don't have to play a match to be eligible, I find it unlikely Sammy Naismith wouldn't get it. Was dealt the cruelest injury blow of the season shortly after the passing of his sister, but remained a positive presence at the club, and stayed involved throughout the hub with his photography and support from the sidelines. By all reports a popular and loved member of the playing group.

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    I can't see Hayward and Florent in the Top 10.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheBloods View Post

    The Rising Star award depends on the eligibility. I seem to recall Florent won the award at the conclusion of his second season, which would place N.O.B. in the same position. In fact Florent won it with 4 games more to his name than Rowbottom. Hard to envision it going to anyone else. Would make for a very awkward scenario if he was the only of the RS candidates to feature in the top ten of the Skilton, but the RS award went to someone else.
    I hadn't gone to look for recent examples that might shed light on the eligibility rules that the club uses. But you're completely right on Florent. He played 15 games in his first season and won the award in his second, so clearly they don't apply the same 10 game maximum threshold for eligibility. On that basis, it's inconceivable that anyone other than Rowbottom might win the award this year. (McInerney, Wicks and Stevens will all remain eligible to win next year.)

    I don't think the Best Clubman criteria have ever been made explicit - at least not in a definitive way. I guess it's a chance to recognise the non-playing activities of a player each year. I reckon it's impossible for anyone outside the club to be able to reliably predict who might receive the award in any given year since we have very little insight into the non-playing activities.

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    Quote Originally Posted by liz View Post
    ... and that Rowbottom is eligible. If so, he'll take it out comfortably.
    Quote Originally Posted by liz View Post
    ...I reckon Cunningham has had an excellent, underrated season and should finish in the 6-10 range in the BS voting... Otherwise, it's hard to go past Fox, who has gone from a bit-part in-and-out-of-the-side player to a constant and handy presence in our backline.
    +1.
    You have said it better than I could
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