Jul 07, 2022


A highly unhelpful guide to Round Seventeen


The only guide to the round that admits it’s completely unhelpful. What it lacks in insight, it makes up for with wild theories and detours onto unrelated topics.

It’s your unhelpful guide to Round Seventeen.


Geelong vs. Melbourne (GMHBA) 7:20pm Fox/Seven

It’s the last Thursday night game of the regular season, and we have an actual top-notch game!

The floating fixture works! What’s that? They’ve got rid of it?

You mean to tell me the AFL had something the broadcasters liked, but the fans didn’t, and they listened to the fans?

Are they alright?

What other things can we get them to do?

I’d like it if they got the price of taking a family to the footy below three iceberg lettuces.

Geelong didn’t miss Tom Stewart last week, but then they could have sent out five players and probably got across the line against North.

And Stewart is a big out, given last year, the Cats didn’t fare that well against the Dees without him.

The good news for Geelong is they get Joel Selwood back and they got a light, non-contact training session last week.

Melbourne instead are travelling to Geelong after a five-day break off the back of a trip to Adelaide.

As a Dees supporter, I could read a conspiracy into this, but knowing the AFL schedule department, no one there is competent enough to run a conspiracy.

The good news is Max Gawn and Luke Jackson are both returning for the Demons.

That’s 4.07 meters worth of players returning!

Melbourne has not yet hit the heights of last season yet, and Geelong has improved, making this a tough one to pick.

I’m tipping Melbourne.


Sydney vs. Western Bulldogs (SCG) 7:50pm Fox/Seven

Sydney lost to Essendon. Essendon!

I mean, I still can’t really believe it, even though I saw it with my own eyes. Add to that the fact they lost to Port Adelaide a few weeks ago and these are not the actions of someone about to go deep in September.  

And by losing those, they are now in real danger of dropping out of the eight.

Now they face the Bulldogs, who are rueing a bad start to the season, and there’s nothing worse than rueing something.

Why, I rue so many things it consumes about 90 per cent of my thoughts.

If you’re ever wondering (and you never would be), what I’m up to at any point in time, sitting around rueing something would be the correct answer.

These sides are hardly going to give you a sense of confidence if you tip them, they’re like Derek in our office who can’t even use pivot tables in Excel. What a loser!

I’m tipping the Swans.


Collingwood vs. North Melbourne (MCG) 1:45pm Fox

Another win for the Collingwood Football Club, and it’s getting alarming now.

There was further good news for Pies fans this week as Darcy Moore announced there’s no structural damage to his knee.

There are three things in life you don’t want the term ‘structural damage’ used in relation to, your knee, your house, and the economy.

The only thing I want to structurally damage is the patriarchy and institutionalised racism. What a great guy I am! #Ally  

North have decided to bring Jason Horne-Francis back through the VFL after his suspension, a move that could see them lose this game!

I’m tipping Collingwood.

Gold Coast vs. Richmond (Metricon) 4:35pm Fox

Dustin Martin ignored reporters as they attempted to doorstop him this week, leading some media commentators to claim it was disrespecting Tigers fans.

I’ve spoken to a lot of Richmond fans, and they agree, saying the incident has ruined the recent premiership era, their love of Dusty Martin, and has them questioning if they will even follow football anymore.

Such is the respect footy fans hold the footy media in. And why wouldn’t they?

Arguing amongst themselves, constantly reporting on pointless things, mistaking themselves for the story; footy fans are well served by the footy media and won’t have players ignoring them.

If it’s a choice between a three-time Norm Smith Medallist and premiership hero, and a journalist they don’t know, Tigers fans will pick the journalist every time.

The Tigers have more outs this week than the Boris Johnson’s cabinet, with Dustin Martin, Trent Cotchin, Noah Balta and Nick Vlastuin all outs.

My computer keeps trying to autocorrect Gold Coast Suns to ‘Gold Coast Sins’ which I’ve decided is a better name and the club is welcome to it.

The Sins gave Stuart Dew a two-year contract extension this week for stopping them from being completely awful.

Even better it seems players want to stay there, and players are actually improving, revolutionary things up there.

I’m tipping the Sins.

St Kilda vs. Fremantle (Marvel) 7:25pm Fox/Seven

That win against Carlton has turned things around for the Saints, but you can’t rely on your opponent to kick so inaccurately that even Saints fans were impressed.

Fremantle have had issues with goalkicking in recent years but relying on your opponent to self-sabotage, while working more than you think, is not a long-term strategy. Although I’ve seen a few marriages based on this approach.

But a win against Fremantle would do wonders for the Saints as they hang around outside the eight like a bunch of teenagers asking people to buy them alcohol.

Fremantle however are the REAL DEAL this season, with a great defence and Andrew Brayshaw, who they should already be planning a statue for.

The big question here is around the Saints. Are they the side that won last week, or the one that played some of the worst footy of the season a few weeks ago?

A lifetime of experience teaches me that when it comes to backing the Saints, it’s best not to. I’m tipping the Dockers (which a lifetime of experience has also taught me not to tip.

Port Adelaide vs. Greater Western Sydney (AO) 7:30pm Fox Footy

It’s the battle of the two teams who should have done better this year but didn’t.

The ‘I’m no angry, just disappointed cup’.

You could make an argument the Power can still make finals, but that’s a tough argument. Like arguing North should be allowed to play 11 games in Melbourne and 11 games in Tasmania.

You can make it but no one else is taking it seriously.

The Giants focus seems to be who is going to coach them next year.

Alastair Clarkson keeps being discussed and given the Gold Coast has signed Stuart Dew for two years, his options are narrowing.

To me, Hawthorn are the best fit for Clarkson, but would they consider such an untried coach at such a big club?

I’m tipping the Power.


Brisbane vs. Essendon (G) 1:10pm Fox Footy

The AFL tribunal has said for just $2500 you can push a player into an umpire!

That seems a reasonable price for me, given Eric Hipwood used the move to free himself up for a goal.

My hope is we now see that move used constantly, with the money going to a charity the umpires support, like the Guide Dogs.

Essendon are coming off a victory! This is only the fourth time I’ve been able to write that this season.

There’s even talk of Clarko going there. If I remember correctly, Bombers fans love Clarko.

Personally, I couldn’t support Ben Rutten more and the job he’s doing at Essendon.

I can’t see Brisbane being troubled here. The Lions are a top team as long as they’re not at the MCG.

Hawthorn vs. Adelaide (Marvel) 3:20pm Fox/Seven

I’m not normally one for writing serious things, but I was saddened to hear of the passing of Ray Gunston, father of Jack and long-time AFL administrator this week.

Ray was always good for a chat when I saw him, and he and his wife Mandy were a great laugh at AFL functions.

You wouldn’t always know it from these columns, but there are some really good people in footy and we’ve lost one in Ray, and I hope his family is doing as well as they possibly can at the moment, and I offer my sympathies.

Now it’s hard to go from that to making jokes about this game, but luckily, it’s Hawthorn v Adelaide, so I’ll leave it to them to do the comedy.

West Coast vs. Carlton (OS) 4:40pm Fox Footy

West Coast are no longer the instant four points they once were, and for Carlton that’s super annoying.

What was a floating bye is now an actual match which seems unfair.

The Blues are not exactly in free fall, but things have been a little wobbly in the past month.

Last week their goalkicking had their fans tearing their hair out. Losing here would see them tear if all out.

And it’s possible.

The Eagles have got players back and last week there were moments the Tigers couldn’t get a centre clearance.

A month ago, Carlton would have been sure things, but now, I mean who knows?

I certainly don’t, but then my tipping is neither bad enough to always tip against me, and not good enough to always tip with me.

Like everything I do it’s just average and unhelpful.

I’m tipping the Eagles.

You can help support me in producing this ridiculous nonsense I churn out on a regular basis. Find out more here: https://titusoreily.com/support-titus



Jul 07, 2022

100% with you on the Dusty situation. With the geniuses that masquerade as football journalists, and some of the blatant lies and disrespectful things the report on these days, they are just lucky footballers don't simply punch them in the nose on sight. If they are just ignored they should count themselves lucky. Sadly for Kane Cornes I suspect there is little possibility that Dusty could care any less about what he thinks or feels, in fact that is a view I myself share with Dusty.

Doggy Dancer

Jul 07, 2022

Charity the umpires support..... I laughed out loud!!!


Jul 07, 2022

So who is your tip in the Hawks v Crows game? Draw?


Jul 07, 2022

@ SAM:
"With the geniuses that masquerade as football journalists, and some of the blatant lies and disrespectful things the report on these days, they are just lucky footballers don't simply punch them in the nose on sight."

True. And jumping on and off bandwagons may be the only exercise a lot of football journalists get.


Jul 07, 2022

clarko to bombers? really? thats excellent. payback for them taking salmon

Kafka’s Ghost

Jul 07, 2022

The summation of football journalism could sadly apply to pretty much all the MSM these days. Which is why this column is THE go-to column for football, and social/political analysis.

Richmond Pommie

Jul 07, 2022

As a Pom who has lived here for years I still take an interest in politics in Old Blighty
By the end of the day there will be more outs of the Conservative party than an entire footy team
You are funny Titusbut at the momen


Jul 07, 2022

$2,500 for a goal seems an absolute bargain. Why aren't teams budgeting say $50,000 per game for this (less than $1.5m per season)? Since 20 goals will win you the vast majority of games that would have to be a better use of resources than some of the players, backroom staff and other things they spend money on.

Richmond Pommie

Jul 07, 2022

You are funny Titus but at the moment British politics is comedy gold
Tigers to beat the Sins and Prestia to remind them what could have been

Old Bomber

Jul 07, 2022

Titus, I saw Iceberg lettuce @ $2.99ea in Perth yesterday. I'm not sure Gil and his Head Office team could handle a $9.00 family ticket..


Jul 07, 2022

Big news out of Perth is the transition to paper cups for alcoholic drinks at Optus. Cardonay will never taste the same for Dees supporters.


Jul 07, 2022

++++++++ I’d like it if the AFL got the price of taking a family to the footy below three iceberg lettuces.+++++++

Hey, AFL!
You need to see
The website run
By O'Reily,
Whose food for thought's
Laid out for free.
You'd learn a thing
Or two, or three.

KIng Kerley

Jul 07, 2022

Titus, a legendary South Australian footy icon passed away last week. Neil "Knuckles" Kerley left his mark on every level of football played here, as well as being a fierce supporter of State of Origin footy, and he was integral to the expansion of the AFL into South Australia as well. Vale, Knuckles.

Tiger Paul

Jul 07, 2022

Iceberg lettuce for $2.99 in Perth. 15% of lettuces reserved for domestic consumption. forward thinking.

Fat Side

Jul 07, 2022

Iceberg lettuce in Melbourne $6.50, iceberg lettuce in Perth $2.99.
Just a moment while I calculate how many iceberg lettuces I would have to buy to make it worth relocating from Melbourne to Perth and covering the cost of flying back for Richmond home games......


Jul 07, 2022

@Ben "payback for them taking salmon" - I thought Sean Wellman was the payback for Salmon?

@King Kerley - spot on

The g train

Jul 07, 2022

“Like everything I do it’s just average and unhelpful”. Agree, but still really, really, funny.

Titus hated spreadsheets I tell ya
Needed to find a new area
A passion illogic
Irrational and comic
With idiotic hysteria

Con Cushion

Jul 07, 2022

Turn it up Titus ... have you tried scanning an Iceberg lettuce in as entry at the turnstiles? NIGHTMARE. A two pack of zucchini's (or cucumbers) works, but only at Melb games!! Con.

Son of plugger

Jul 07, 2022

“…[journalist] are just lucky footballers don't simply punch them in the nose on sight." In the good ‘ol days, Plugger would throw his crutches at them without any repercussions. I miss those days.


Jul 07, 2022

Titus hated spreadsheets I tell ya
Needed to find a new area
A passion illogic
Irrational and comic
With idiotic hysteria

THE G TRAIN, how about this off-the-cuff edit?:

Titus hated spreadsheets like malaria
And needed to find a new area.
His pathway was comic,
Dispensing with logic,
And falling just short of hysteria.

Pat Connor

Jul 07, 2022


The g train

Jul 07, 2022

Full Moon:

All good!

A vision: “The Titus Effect (or Affect?): a collection of very short nonsensical poems, inspired by Titus O’Reily’s unhelpful guides and knee jerk reactions, and authored by his devoted followers”. How could that not be an outstanding success?

Was just plagiarising Titus himself (I’m all for plagiarism):

“Footy is a passion, not some cold hearted, spread sheet dominated rational exercise.
…you want irrational reaction. You want emotion to trump reason.
What you really want is idiotic hysteria”.


Jul 07, 2022

Thanks Titus.
Bloody brilliant to know all the results before the Round's even started.
By the way, I found the ) missing from the Saints/Freo review.
It was down the back of our sofa with a couple of mysterious Ikea ones.
You're welcome.
All the very best from little ol' Balingup in WA.


Jul 07, 2022

Solution to Tasmania team - merge North Melbourne with Gold Coast and Adelaide and ship all that lot south. Tassie gets a team and the comp goes back to 16 clubs - a win all round


Jul 07, 2022

Just wanted to comment on the Demons living rent free in the Cats (Scotts') head - Police can charge you for being in a building without the owner's permission (trespassing). The owner may call the police to have you evicted immediately. I think Scott needs a phone, 'cos these Cats aren't evicting the Demons.

Rick Wells

Jul 07, 2022

Where’s my book ?


Jul 07, 2022

@Full Moon, your “Hey AFL” poem is excellent work.


Jul 07, 2022

@Warney “Demons living rent-free in Geelong’s head”, well that aged quickly.


Jul 07, 2022

Summed up the footy media perfectly in your sins v tigers prediction 😁

saint peter

Jul 07, 2022

Titus, clearly you are left with no alternative but to select a draw between St Kilda & Fremantle. These 2 teams are traditional rivals ever since the siren gate where the AFL brains trust decided to intervene and award Freo the match after clearly the Saints had won. Who'd have thought the AFL would interfere with the running of the game. Ironic how Sydney get all the big forwards. When one goes they bring in the next. I suppose they will send Max King up to Sydney when Buddy retires just before climate change is fixed in 2030.


Jul 08, 2022

@Woody - think you meant Port Adelaide.....one of three poorest and least supported teams in the comp (if that is what you are getting at...)


Jul 10, 2022

Do you realise Geelong were also coming off a five day break? Duuuh!