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VFLW: Preview - Invitational

Melbourne Uni will take on the GWS Giants in a match not for premiership points, but for development.

11:59am Jun 21, 2019

North joeys' big jump

With the emergence of a crop of young Joeys, there is plenty to be excited about at North.

10:31am Jun 21, 2019

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After spending the past four years coaching at the Sydney Swans, two in charge of the NEAFL side and the final two as a senior assistant, Rhyce Shaw joined the North Melbourne coaching ranks at the end of 2018.

Shaw played 237 games for both Collingwood and Sydney between 2000 and 2015, and brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to Arden Street.

He knows what it takes to be successful, having been a member of the Swans’ 2012 premiership side.

In his short coaching tenure, Shaw has been extremely successful.

During his two years in charge of Sydney’s NEAFL side, Shaw coached the team to two consecutive minor premierships and Grand Final appearances.

Shaw will coach North Melbourne until the end of the 2019 season, following the departure of Brad Scott.

Gavin Brown

After a decade as either an assistant (Collingwood from 2002-2007, Carlton 2011-2013) or match day coach (Collingwood VFL 2008-2010), Brown made the switch to the development ranks when he arrived at Arden Street following the 2013 season.

“My real passion is not necessarily really working with those guys who have been there and done that,” Brown said after his appointment.

“What really excites me is watching young people develop and grow and live their dream and that’s what I’m passionate about now and really enjoy.”

Darren Crocker spent 14 years as a North Melbourne player, notching 165 games throughout an injury-interrupted career. Playing in almost any position on the ground, he was a valuable utility.

After retiring at the end of the 1998 season, Crocker started his coaching career at Port Melbourne in the VFL. He spent one year at the Borough as an assistant before moving to Richmond.

Crocker was also an assistant coach at the Tigers and spent four seasons at Punt Road. At the end of 2004 he returned to the Kangaroos.

Taking up a position as the midfield coach, Crocker held the position for 12 years, save for the second half of 2009 where he was the caretaker senior coach following the resignation of Dean Laidley, and in 2015 when he was again caretaker coach in Brad Scott's absence due to a back operation.

Crocker was appointed as North's Director of Coaching ahead of the 2016 season, and is set to also work closely with the club's midfield group throughout 2018. 

Coach's sponsor: John Aaron & Sam La Spina

Appointed at the end of 2015, Loader arrived from North Ballarat Rebels in the TAC Cup.

He spent nine years at the Rebels, the last five as head coach. Prior to that, he had coached in the Mininera Football League.

Loader worked alongside Ben Dyer (Development Manager) and Gavin Brown (Senior Development Coach), before becoming the club's inaugural VFL Senior Coach. 

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After spending the past five seasons at Port Adelaide as head of football development, Aaron Greaves joins North Melbourne as head of player development.

North will be Greaves’ third AFL role, after being an assistant midfield coach at Melbourne for the 2012 season.

Prior to that, he was a senior coach for the Geelong Falcons in the TAC Cup.

As a player, Greaves was a VFL player at North Ballarat and Geelong.

Moore played 68 games for Sydney and was a member of its leadership group in his final season, 2012.

He arrived at North Melbourne soon after as a development coach, working closely with the club's emerging youngsters.

At the end of 2015, Moore moved into an assistant coaching role as a midfield/stoppages coach.

Leigh Tudor joined North Melbourne at the end of 2013 as the midfield/transition coach.

After spending time at Sydney, St Kilda and Geelong, Tudor signed a three-year deal to return to Arden St, where he started his playing career in 1989.

Upon his appointment, Tudor was clearly looking forward to the role.

“I really loved my time at Sydney but it was time to come home for family reasons and I’m thrilled to be coming back to where it all started,” Tudor said.

“I respect the way North has gone about it over the past few seasons and they’re clearly on the rise so I can’t think of a better place to be, it’s exciting for sure.”

Tudor moved to forwards' coach at the end of 2015.

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After ten years as a player at Hawthorn, Brendan Whitecross is looking to share his experiences from one of the most successful clubs in the modern era, joining North Melbourne as a development coach.

Whitecross played 111 games for the Hawks, however it could have been more if it wasn’t for two ACL injuries in as many years.

The defender was a member of Hawthorn’s 2018 VFL premiership.

In addition to his role as a development coach, Whitecross will also be a player for North’s VFL side.