After a thorough review of the club’s structure under a new AFL economy and resourcing restrictions, North Melbourne has made the difficult decision not to renew the contract of AFLW coach, Scott Gowans.
North GM Football, Brady Rawlings, said it was another tough decision made in order to further streamline the football department.
“The discussion with Scott was one I truly wish we didn’t have to have, but we’re operating under new rules with less flexibility,” Rawlings said.
“Scott has been a tremendous contributor to the club and our AFLW program. This circumstance has come about through no fault of his own and we sincerely thank him for his passion, commitment and hard work during his time at Arden St.
“Unfortunately for Scott and so many others across the industry, we and other clubs have been forced to make some very difficult and hard decisions.”
Under the restructuring of the football department, Darren Crocker will operate in a dual-capacity as the club’s new AFLW coach from November 1, while continuing his role as Pro Scout for the AFL side.
Rawlings said it has been a tough period for the club and competition, with the need for people to fill multiple roles due to budget cuts and staffing reductions.
“With football department numbers significantly reduced, we’ve had to look at those that can perform multiple tasks and Darren Crocker is one of those with decades of experience and knowledge,” he said.
“Darren has not only tasted premiership success as a player in 1996, he also knows what it takes to lead a team having been a caretaker coach in the AFL system on several occasions.
“We think Darren is the perfect fit and allows the club to adapt and move forward quickly under these trying circumstances, and remain financially strong and competitive.”
Crocker will commence as AFLW coach when pre-season begins.