Corey Enright is one of seven nominees for the AFL Players’ Association Madden Medal, an award that recognises more than on-field performances, with off-field achievements, personal development and community spirit also taken into account.
It’s not surprising that Corey Enright’s ascension to elite status coincided with his understanding of what was on offer to him outside of footy.
The three-time premiership hero earned six All-Australian honours throughout his decorated career, all of which came after the age of 27.
According to the man from Kimba, that was around the time he began to explore his passions away from the track.
“It was until about seven years into my career that I started to get a proper understanding of the things that I wanted to do,” Enright told Aflplayers.com.au.
“Once you identify where you think you want to go; you start looking at things a little bit differently. My philosophy has always been that a number of things make up an AFL player, and playing is only a small percentage of that.”
A lot of factors need to be considered when you talk about performance. Clearly, playing and training can play a big part in the way an athlete performs, but it’s also the relationships formed and the passions that are explored away from the elite environment that can assist this.
Across the latter part of Enright’s career, he began to determine the various studies that encapsulated his interests.
“You can begin to accumulate the studies along the way,” Enright added.
“At Geelong, we were well empowered to go and explore and I was lucky to be helped along the way to complete a few courses in the fitness area and management.”
He completed a Certificate 3 and 4 Sport and Recreation, an Advanced Diploma in Business Management, and sought to get into the coaching fraternity during his last season with the Cats.
“It was in the latter part of my career where I identified that coaching was a path that I wanted to go down. In my last few years playing, I was fortunate enough to upskill myself and get ready. It’s only early days for me, but I’m really enjoying it so far and looking to continue to build and grow.”
“I’ve done some level 1 and 2 coaching courses, and the AFL Sports Ready Next Coach Program — from there I helped coaching some school sides and local teams along the way to get myself ready.”
It wasn’t just individual growth that Enright sought to attain, however, as the 16-year pro used his profile as an AFL player to help to promote Camp Quality — a non-profit organisation that aims to create a better life for children living with cancer in Australia.
“The Camp Quality Geelong contingent has been up and running for a few years now, and I’ve helped to try and create awareness and use my profile to do that.”
“The people that I work with in those charities do so much work behind the scenes and never ask for accolades. Similar to footy, you work together in a team environment and try and reach the desired outcome.”
Enright’s career on and off the field may seem impossible to emulate, but the Cats’ great has some advice for any youngsters coming through on the best way to extract the most out of themselves.
“My understanding of footy clubs these days is that they’re willing to help and assist you, so there’s no request that’s silly and there’s no request that’s too hard,” Enright explained.
“If you want to explore something, make sure you go ahead and it explore it. Our playing careers don’t last forever.”
Corey Enright’s achievements on and off the field:
On Field ACHIEVEMENTS
- 332 AFL Games
- Geelong Premiership Player 2007, 2009, 2011
- All-Australian 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2016
- Geelong Best and Fairest 2009, 2011
- 1 X 3rd Best and Fairest
- AFL Rising Star Nominee 2001
- Pre-Season Premiership Player 2006, 2009
Off field ACHIEVEMENTS
- Certificate 3 & 4 Sport and Recreation
- Advanced Diploma Business Management
- AFL Sportsready Next Coach
- AFL Level 2 Coach
- Work Placement – The Geelong College
- AFL Ambassador
- Camp Quality Ambassador
- After School Care Ambassador
- Geelong FC Games Record Holder
- Geelong FC Life Member
- Geelong FC Leadership Group
- AFL 300 Club