May 16, 2022


The Monday Knee Jerk Reaction: AFL Round Nine


Footy is a passion, not some cold hearted, spread sheet dominated rational exercise. 

On a Monday, you want irrational reaction. You want emotion to trump reason.

What you really want is idiotic hysteria.

You've come to the right place.


Collingwood (51) v Western Bulldogs (99)

If we can’t get a good game on a Friday night, then at least give us a Collingwood loss.

And what a loss.

The Pies midfield started the game by lying down on the turf of Marvel Stadium to make it easier for the Bulldogs to run all over them.

It was an offer too good to refuse, and the Bulldogs had put 39 points on the board before Collingwood kicked a goal.

If watching your midfield surrender so quickly the French army in 1940 would have been embarrassed for you wasn’t enough, Collingwood also funded Adam Treloar to destroy them.

Even Collingwood supporters are smart enough to realise paying someone to gather 36 disposals and boot three goals against you is not good.

Bulldogs fans would be thrilled at their midfield’s complete domination, especially Bailey Smith’s 40 possessions.

Smith at one point suggestively flicked his tongue out at the Pies supporters, and I must give him credit for taking the time to learn their language.


Hawthorn (94) v Richmond (117)

Is the dynasty still alive?

Richmond’s dynasty had been declared dead more times than John Farnham has had farewell tours, but now I’m not so sure.

They’ve won three games in a row and are lurking at the bottom of the eight like, well, a Tiger.

The most worrying thing is the Tigers have got back their ability to control games, and they certainly did that here.

Hawthorn didn’t go away but like me at a party, they didn’t leave a lasting impression either.

Sam Mitchell is finding the reality of coaching a bit harder than in the beginning. They’ve now lost four in a row and six of the last seven games.

He’ll want to turn that around, after all, with a coach like Alastair Clarkson floating around, no struggling coach is safe.

North Melbourne (46) v Port Adelaide (115)

A new approach for David Noble this week, delivering his pregame speech in a careful whisper, so as not to upset or spook his men.

He also made soothing, calming noises when near them, and whale song played in the rooms at halftime.

Despite the loss, every player got a participation medal at the end of the game and a voucher for a small McDonald’s fries, and the feedback is that despite the large loss, everyone had a good time and made friends.

Port on the other hand, are now in tenth spot and have won four in a row.

Given they started the season looking like North do now, that’s an impressive turnaround.

Ollie Wines continues his return to form, as the microchip Bill Gates inserted in him starts to calm down, and he had 32 touches and two goals.

Can Port play finals? It’s possible. Wouldn’t it be awful if that terrible start came back to bite them though.?

St Kilda (90) v Geelong (80)

Geelong continued their win one week, lose the next strategy, going down to a Saints team that continues to toy with their supporters’ emotions by winning more than losing.

The first half didn’t really hit any great heights, but the second was very entertaining, with the Saints lifting each time the Cats came at them.

Even more impressive from St Kilda was the fact Jack Higgins had gone off with concussion and Jack Steele ruptured his AC joint which I’m led to believe is in the shoulder.

Amazingly, Steele injured his shoulder in a tackle and then came back on and played out the game.

That’s a pain threshold I can’t comprehend. Mine is much lower, in fact, I wouldn’t call it a ‘threshold’. I’m either in pain or not, a threshold suggests I’d push on with something even when in pain.

Steele is likely to miss up to eight weeks, which is a huge out for them.

Geelong seem to be trending backwards at the moment.

Losses to Fremantle and St Kilda don’t exactly give even the most optimistic Cats fans a lot of hope for September, and has anyone mentioned their stars are ageing before?

Sydney (105) v Essendon (47)

Essendon’s one-win winning streak is over!

Their victory over the Hawks turned out to be a false positive, as they returned to being arguably the softest team in the league.

So soft that opposition players can mock them openly during a game and nothing happens.

Sydney had no problems are all in this game.

It was a competition in the sense watching a kid kick down a sandcastle is a competition, in that it’s not.

At least the sandcastle was fun to build, the current Essendon list can’t make that claim.

The Bombers do so many things badly that it’s hard to single one thing out, and in that sense, they are really putting together a complete season.

If upsetting Bombers supporters was the mission statement of the Essendon Football Club, they would have nailed it for over two decades.

Adelaide (66) v Brisbane (102)

Adelaide might not be the most exciting team in the country, or the best defensively, or offensively, but they also don’t win that much.

I really thought I was going to make an important point with that sentence.

This was the Crows third loss in a row and having to watch former player Charlie Cameron boot four goals would have stung.

Adelaide started well and were up by three at halftime, but the second half saw them venture forward about as often as I enter a gym.

Brisbane woke up in the third, booting six goals to none at one stage and brushing aside the Crows with an ease that was quite boring to watch if you weren’t a Lions supporter.

It left me pretty bored on a Saturday night, but as my mum used to say, you wouldn’t be stuck at home by yourself if you had a personality that was appealing to others.


Gold Coast (69) v Fremantle (33)

The Suns have decided to continue playing beyond April in an exciting new development for the club.

Fremantle, arguably the best team in the AFL not called Melbourne or Brisbane, struggled in the wet and under the Suns pressure.

So great was this newfound pressure, with even Izak Rankine doing defensive things, that the Dockers didn’t score a goal for two quarters.

The Suns however were scoring, mainly because all their young players were living up to expectations.

Fremantle adopted a strange strategy for their forward entries, they would bomb the ball as high up in the air as possible, rather than trying to pick out their own forwards.

Amazingly, this didn’t work at all, but the Dockers kept persisting with it anyway for some reason no one watching could understand.

The worst thing as a footy fan is watching your team do something stupid over and over again, despite anyone with eyes knowing it isn’t working.

Greater Western Sydney (75) v Carlton (105)

Dozens of Giants supporters have turned out to watch Leon Cameron’s final game, only for Carlton to spoil it by winning.

It’s hard to know what Leon Cameron’s coaching legacy will be. He made a Grand Final and constantly made finals, but you could argue he had the most talented list in the competition for many seasons and underperformed.

The only consensus in the media upon his stepping down is that he is a nice guy and I suppose there are worse things people can say about you.

Perhaps the clearest thing about the Giants at the moment is their talent often doesn’t live up to its potential.

Too many name players go missing too often, and that was the case again here.

Carlton are still in the top four and it’s the middle of May, a worrying sign, like the spring rains not arriving.

In fact, they’ve won seven games this year. I remember fondly when they would celebrate that if they did that in a season.

As we enter the last week of the federal election, I hear a lot of talk about the rising cost of living, rising home prices and the rise of China, but I hear nothing about tackling the rise of Carlton.

I feel no party in this country truly understands the Australian people and our concerns.

West Coast (38) v Melbourne (112)

Expansion team West Coast continue to struggle this season but there were some promising signs as they only suffered their biggest loss to Melbourne in their history.

The Demons scored 41 points in the first quarter, meaning they didn’t have to score again, and they still would have won the game.

That’s almost what they did, as the Eagles lifted their intensity and managed to drag the Demons down to their level for long periods of the match.

Melbourne though are like a boxer who tried to win on points, not knockouts.

They do enough to make sure they don’t lose. They can score, but they prefer to let their opponent wear themselves out.

The result of this approach is 16 wins on the trot, a feat I still struggle to comprehend.

I’ve gone decades where it felt like we only won sixteen games.

The thing about sport is you must enjoy the good times because we all know, the bad times are not exactly rare.

You can help support me in producing this ridiculous nonsense I churn out on a regular basis. Find out more here:





May 16, 2022

The Cats mid field are doing adverts for denture creams and suppositories.

Fancy Pants

May 16, 2022

I thought it was nice of Melbourne, as they do, to only field 10 players at any one time during the game yesterday. Surprisingly, no one noticed....

Little Goffy

May 16, 2022

Next week against North, the Demons will be playing to have an equal number of consecutive wins (17) to their entire win total in the four years from 2012 to 2015.

BOWEY-watchers take note: Jeremy Howe played exactly 100 games for the Demons, for 22 wins.

Nth Qld's only Dockers fan

May 16, 2022

Nothing could be more disappoining than driving 1500 km to be stopped by flood waters before getting to see my beloved Dockers... only topped by having to listen to the game on the radio on the 1500 km return journey...


May 16, 2022

Little Goffy, MFC will be playing against North for 17 consecutive wins. The same number of times we lost to them in a row from 2007-17.


May 16, 2022

Mums know best.

Saint Peter

May 16, 2022

Essendon are struggling with confidence at the moment. I understand they are going to recruit Scott Morrison after the election to be the media mgr. He knows how to talk a disastrous situation into a positive one so the Essendon supporters will believe they are on track & the club is exactly where they thought it would be.


May 16, 2022

Titus, as a non die hard Crows fan I say this with an ambivalent feeling towards AFL today - the umpiring in the Crows- Bears…sorry Lions…game was appalling. The rules have decimated the game, and the way the umpires officiate demonstrate they have zero feeling for the game, and more noticeably, zero understanding for the ridiculous rules. The AFL stance of not allowing any dissent from players, coaches, officials or journos demonstrates that they don’t stand by the rules they are making. If they did, they wouldn’t need silence from everyone.
I thought it was the Crows who’d lost my love of the game, but Saturday night confirmed the game itself is as dead as the Crows.

Total Flanker

May 16, 2022

Titus saves his best burns for himself. Respect.


May 16, 2022

Interesting take on Saturday night boredom. I always thought that I didn't go out because I'm such a stingy cheapskate. Maybe it's my anti social personality that keeps me home instead, watch dull footy games and nodding off before three quarter time. 🤔

Mac Hawk

May 16, 2022

Titus, your writing this week was a bit like our Hawks - you knew what they were trying to do but it didn't quite come out the way they wanted every time - nevertheless entertaining.


May 16, 2022

James777: wait until the AFL has stand monitors who report spectators who show dissent. It will be replayed on the big screen, the bunker (or is that banker) will make a decision, and the games will take 4 hours. Think of how many extra pies, beers etc will be sold.


May 16, 2022

Peter. You forgot the midfield commanding huge money from the Metamucil and Over-50s Retirement Village sectors.

simon k

May 16, 2022

love what your mum said mate...hahah so true
Mine said you wont ever get lost if you have a tounge in your head....that gets weirder as I get older...!! WTF!

The g train

May 16, 2022

So many teams are having a Schrödinger's Cat existence this season. Only Melbourne and Brisbane are truly alive; and only West Coast and North Melbourne are truly dead.

When the home team loses by over 70 points and we are told they put up a much better performance this round, you really know that this team is having a tough season.

Titus—you had to find a way to tell us, didn’t you? “16 on the trot”.

The Gold Coast are a different team this season.


May 16, 2022

Whenever I'm watching neutral games, I often find it difficult to determine which team I detest the least; however, Essendon is near the top of my contempt list.

But when I see Shiel get crunched in a tackle and then see Parker get a super soft receive for a goal and then bagging out Shiel, I know who came out of the incident looking like a goose.

Con Cushion

May 16, 2022

Turn It Up Titus .... what about the Italian surrender of 1943 after the fall of Sicily? Surely a softer surrender! Con.

John Pearce

May 16, 2022

So Melbourne can only count their streak at 16 if they ignore the Community Shield loss to the Mighty Blues pre-season? Asking for a friend.

Doggy Dancer

May 16, 2022

to Simon K. My mum told me I would never get lost because there would always be someone happy to tell me where to go.

Running Dog

May 16, 2022

Titus, I sympathise that your mother inflicted such a terrible wound. I don't understand why mothers are even given maternal instincts in the first place if they don't know how to use them. My dear old Ma used to say that if a person had no kind words about anyone they should sit next to her.

Blues Fan

May 16, 2022

John Pearce, thank you for asking. I certainly was celebrating Carlton defeating the last 3 premiers in three games...and that included the Dees!

Merlin's Mother

May 16, 2022

That loss against the Blues in the Community Series doesn't count if :

1. We didn't actually turn up, and /or
2. Jake Bowey didn't actually turn up.

Either way it doesn't count as it is just a training run..........................etc.

I do hope your mother was sent to the Tribunal for that particular episode of child abuse - I would never say such a thing to Merlin, not ever. Mind you he has a terrific personality and a very fluffy tail.

Dees Fan

May 16, 2022

John Pearce.
Carlton got from memory about 8x 50 metre penalties from the pre season game, the comp I refer to as the who cares cup.
From this you scored about 7 goals and beat Melb by not much. (Don't remember the final score as these games are irrelevant)
So stop dreaming

Darren J Ray

May 16, 2022

Love your take on the David Noble rant.

Nikolai Google

May 16, 2022

Spot on about Essendon - from a Bombers member who has finally moved into the “acceptance” stage of grieving. It’s a relief. Mission accomplished Xavier.

Fat Side

May 16, 2022

Titus, when will you start treating the Tiger supporters with the same honourable contempt you treat the Hawks fans with? Surely we deserve some recognition for the 20 month premiership drought we are suffering through? Why, my 5 month old son has hardly seen them win a match, let alone the ultimate prize.


May 16, 2022

I truly believe the AFL are trying to sanitise the game even more by ultimately making it a non-contact sport. Almost every marking contest where there is any form of body contact results in a free kick, regardless of how incidental or negligible that contact is. No wonder people are stopping going and watching.

Tarax Club

May 16, 2022

Unsubstantiated claims related to the competitiveness of the Princess Park Blues. Should be taken with a grain of salt. After recently emerging from obscurity to footy daylight. The blinkers are confusing juggernaut with a maiden voyage straight to an AFL premiership. The phantasy that a ‘collision’ would occur when Carlton field a team against the current title holders. May not be that far fetched. Think rerun of Titanic, Demons will ice the real match.

Footy Fan

May 17, 2022

Santa doesn't exist.


May 17, 2022

Nice one Fat side, you speak for me too!
Love your work Titus, though if Melbourne keep winning its going to get harder to come up with clever quips about their shortcomings. If NARRM wins does that count as number 17? ^^