2012 Norm Smith: Avenue of Legends

UNVEILED: September, 2012
LOCATION: Near Jolimont Station

Norm Smith was a very talented player and the Melbourne Football Club’s greatest coach.But more than that, he represents an era of football that did much to form the modern game.

He was a canny yet brilliant full forward during a 227-game career with Melbourne (210 games) and Fitzroy (17) between 1935 and 1950 that included 572 goals.

He played in four premierships at Melbourne (1939, 1940, 1941 and 1948), winning two best and fairest awards and was leading goal kicker on four occasions.

He captained Melbourne (1945-47) and Fitzroy (1949-50) and twice represented Victoria.

He took that talent from the field into the coaches box. He expected no less from his players than what he had expected from himself – integrity and purpose, drive and putting the team ahead of the individual.

He led Melbourne through its most successful era, winning six premierships (1955, 1956, 1957, 1959, 1960 and 1964) before he was sacked – and reinstated – in 1965.

After leaving Melbourne in 1967 he coached South Melbourne from 1969 to 1972.

He was named full forward and coach in Melbourne’s Team of the Century and was given the ultimate honour of coach of the AFL Team of the Century.

Since 1979, the best player in the grand final receives the Norm Smith Medal.

From MCG Australia Post “Avenue of Legends” site.