Western Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge was revealed as the Monjon Allan Jeans Senior Coach of the Year for the second year running at the 2016 AFL Coaches Association Awards on Tuesday night.
Beveridge edged out Sydney Swans coach John Longmire and GWS Giants’ coach Leon Cameron to claim the award three days after leading the Bulldogs to their first grand final since 1961.
The 46-year-old accepted the award, voted for by more than 180 of his peers and named in honour of coaching icon Allan Jeans, in front of more than 380 guests at Peninsula in Docklands.
Beveridge was deemed to be the best performed senior coach throughout the home and away season, up to and including the preliminary finals and having regard for current season’s performance, available resources, player talent and team management.
This is the first year the voting has taken place following the preliminary finals to give greater consideration for the coaches who reach the grand final.
AFL Coaches Association CEO, Mark Brayshaw praised Beveridge’s ability to make such a big impact on the industry in just two seasons.
“Luke’s is a terrific story. Apart from being a first class person who’s admired by his peers, he’s also a well-qualified professional who worked successfully outside AFL circles having coached his own team in the Victorian amateur competition before entering the AFL system,” said.
“Luke’s efforts this year – with great help from his coaching panel – are rightly acknowledged by the association.”
Several other awards were announced throughout the evening, most notably former Footscray, West Coast, Collingwood and Carlton coach Mick Malthouse’s induction as the PwC Coaching Legend.
Malthouse, who holds the AFL/VFL record for games coached, joined fellow greats Kevin Sheedy, Leigh Matthews, David Parkin, Allan Jeans, Tom Hafey, Ron Barassi and John Kennedy Snr on the prestigious list of coaching legends.
In continuation of honouring long-term coaching legends, Port Adelaide premiership coach Mark Williams was presented the Lifetime Achievement Award on stage by former pupil and colleague Matthew Primus.
Primus paid tribute to Williams’ contribution to coaching over more than two decades, headlined by Port Adelaide’s first and only AFL premiership in 2004 and more recently with the Greater Western Sydney and Richmond Football Clubs.
The Atlantic Group Assistant Coach of the Year Award went to Sydney Swan’s Stuart Dew ahead of Hawthorn’s Damian Carroll and Melbourne’s Simon Goodwin.
St Kilda’s Danny Sexton and Richmond’s Andrew McQualter were both rewarded with the La Trobe University Career and Education Award for furthering their coaching credentials through study and career development.
The coaches chose Gerard Whateley for the AFLCA Media Award for his work on Fox Footy and ABC Radio for the third year in a row. Gerard was presented with the award by AFL360 Monday night regular Chris Scott, who spoke about the industry’s respect for Gerard because of his professionalism, insightful coverage and commitment to the game.
In rounding out the evening, the Best Young Player of the Year and Champion Player of the Year were recognised.
The Best Young Player Award, which is based on the players’ performance in his first two seasons of AFL, went to Sydney Swans young gun Isaac Heeney, who finished the season with 539 votes, taking out a strong win over Melbourne’s Jesse Hogan on 337 votes and young Crow Jake Lever on 315 votes.
Patrick Dangerfield was again recognised for his outstanding debut season with the Geelong Cats in being named Champion Player of the Year, an award voted by the 18 senior coaches on a 5,4,3,2,1 basis after each home and away game.
Taking out the title on 121 votes, Dangerfield was a clear winner ahead of former Adelaide Crows teammate Rory Sloane on 93 votes and Richmond’s Dustin Martin on 90 votes.
Monjon Allan Jeans Senior Coach of the Year
1) Luke Beveridge – Western Bulldogs
2) John Longmire – Sydney Swans
3) Leon Cameron – GWS Giants
4) Don Pyke – Adelaide Crows
5) Alastair Clarkson – Hawthorn Hawks
Assistant Coach of the Year
1) Stuart Dew – Sydney Swans
2) Damian Carroll – Hawthorn Hawks
3) Simon Goodwin – Melbourne Demons
4) Adam Kingsley – St Kilda
5) Josh Francou – Sydney Swans
Best Young Player
1) Isaac Heeney – Sydney Swans (569 votes)
2) Jesse Hogan – Melbourne Demons (337 votes)
3) Jake Lever – Adelaide Crows (315 votes)
4) Caleb Daniel – Western Bulldogs (285 votes)
5) Darcy Moore – Collingwood Magpies (253 votes)
AFLCA Champion Player of the Year
1) Patrick Dangerfield – Geelong Cats (121 votes)
2) Rory Sloane – Adelaide Crows (93 votes)
3) Dustin Martin – Richmond Tigers (90 votes)
4) Marcus Bontempelli – Western Bulldogs (88 votes)
5) Luke Parker – Sydney Swans (86 votes)