Kane Cornes has unveiled his radical plan to help this year’s Draft hopefuls catch the eye of talent scouts.
Given junior matches across the country have been put on hold or cancelled, and club recruiters stood down due to the coronavirus pandemic, Cornes said AFL clubs would be heading into this year’s AFL Draft “blind”.
In a bid to give the next batch of talented youngsters a chance, Cornes put forward his proposal.
“The players that aren’t selected in the best 22 (in the AFL)… I feel for them this year,” he said on SEN.
“You’re trying to prove your spot if lists are reduced, but if you’re not getting a game, where do you play?
“I wonder if the AFL can say ‘Here’s the best 50 in the country, the best 15-year-olds; let’s put three at each club’ and these three can play in the scratch matches when the other players not in the best 22 play.
“So if it’s the second lot of North Melbourne and Geelong players playing each other, plus you top up with the best kids to be drafted, recruiters can go along.”
While Cornes understood his proposal was not currently feasible due to the AFL’s tight restrictions on top up players, he said something needs to give.
“We’re going to be drafting these players blind,” he warned.
“Most recruiters don’t have a job… it’s a bit of a mess.”
Player agent and SEN panellist Liam Pickering voiced his concerns about junior football, and called for the AFL to make a decision.
“These kids that are eligible to be drafted… what is the plan?” he questioned.
“These are the best kids in the country, where the majority of the talent comes from. Regional managers have been stood down… we’re not even selling hope to these kids.
“This should be a high priority.
“The elite kids in Victoria are not getting a look at it… it staggers me.
“Start prioritising junior footy…. Or don’t say we’re going to have a Draft.”