AFL 2020: Adelaide – Five Fearless Predictions

What is Hank Ryan expecting from the Crows in 2020?

2019 in a Nutshell

Are Adelaide shit?

Seriously, it’s hard to tell. The Power Rangers, the camp, the Grand Final, the mass exodus and Tex’s leadership style – seriously, are they a down-on-their-luck team ready to ascend to the heights that saw them to the big dance in 2017, or after all that upheaval – are they just shit?

I’m going with the latter. You don’t lose your coach, Cam Ellis-Yolmen (Brisbane Lions), Eddie Betts (Carlton), Sam Jacobs (GWS Giants), Hugh Greenwood (Gold Coast Suns), Alex Keath (Western Bulldogs), Josh Jenkins (Geelong Cats) as well as other Richie Douglas (retired) and all of a sudden become a contender. That’s not to say those players are stars, but they were certainly starting 22 players.

The aforementioned shenanigans has had an impact on the list. I don’t give a rats who says it hasn’t, something was rotten at West Lakes, and Crows fans had better hope that the new headmaster can cut some of it out.

2020 Playing List

 1 Chayce Jones16 Luke Brown31 Patrick Wilson
 2 Brad Crouch17 Will Hamill32 Darcy Fogarty
 3 Riley Knight18 Tyson Stengle33 Brodie Smith
 4 Lachlan Murphy20 Ben Crocker34 Elliott Himmelberg
 5 Matt Crouch21 Rory Atkins35 Fischer McAsey
 6 Bryce Gibbs22 Billy Frampton36 Andrew McPherson
 7 Jordan Gallucci23 Shane McAdam37 Ronin O’Connor
 8 Jake Kelly24 Josh Worrell38 Lachlan Scholl
 9 Rory Sloane (c)25 Ned McHenry39 Tom Doedee
10 Myles Poholke26 Harry Schoenberg40 Ben Davis
11 Paul Seedsman27 Tom Lynch41 Jordon Butts
12 Daniel Talia28 Ben Keays43 Reilly O’Brien
13 Taylor Walker29 Rory Laird44 Lachlan Gollant
14 David Mackay30 Wayne Milera45 Kieran Strachan
15 Kyle Hartigan 
INS: Billy Frampton (Port Adelaide), Fischer McAsey (Sandringham Dragons), Harry Schoenberg (Woodville-West Torrens), Ronin O’Connor (Claremont), Lachlan Gollant (Calder Cannons), Ben Keays (Brisbane), Ben Crocker (Collingwood).
OUTS: Cam Ellis-Yolmen, Eddie Betts, Sam Jacobs, Hugh Greenwood, Alex Keath, Paul Hunter, Andy Otten.

Be sure to check out Crows fanatic Joel Bowes look back at the 1997 Premiership win.

2020 Fixture

The 2020 fixture announcement in October was greeted positively by the Crows. “The 2020 fixture is a good one for our fans,” Adelaide CEO Chris Fagan said. “We’ve got some big Victorian clubs coming including the reigning premiers, Richmond. From a football perspective, the impacts of travel including the number of six-day breaks are similar to previous years which is fine by us,” he said.

With just two double up games against top eight teams from 2019, it is easy to understand Fagan’s satisfaction with the draw. Three Adelaide Oval games to start the season is another positive as is only having to endure one five day break.

They will earn their frequent flyer points though, with the ACT the only Australian state or territory that they won’t visit in 2020. Another point of interest is the timeliness of them hosting Carlton for the second time in 10 years, just in time to welcome Eddie Betts back to Adelaide Oval for the first time.

Be sure to check out who Joel Bowes named in the Crows Team of the 2010s.

Five Fearless Predictions

Rory Sloane has his biggest YTD

That’s putting a lot of pressure on the newly made skipper’s 30 year old shoulders, but it’s true. He needs to show that the Crows are headed back to being competitors, and that the stench that has been hovering is slowly dissipating.

Sure, he has the Brothers Crouch to help out in the midfield, but as far as impact on the game – someone who can take it upon himself to turn the tide. Sloane is it. He needs to show that, and he’ll need to do it often.

Tom Doedee will step up

They lost Lever, they Lost Keath. They weren’t worried though, because they had seen what Doedee was capable of.

Problem is – Doedee is injured, and looks set to miss round 1. The pressure mounts. Doedee needs to come in and stamp his authority as the Crows lynch-pin down back, a lot of pressure for the 23 year old, but the glimpses his shown are evidence that he is capable. Crows fans will be certainly hoping so.

Milera Steps Up

In 2018 I watched Milera take the man on every chance he got. He looked to have that indigenous evasive quality, and was good by foot. 2019 saw some stagnation, whether that was from positional uncertainty, confidence or the “rot”, who knows. I still hold that he has star quality, and I hope even more that he proves me right.

Gibbs Goes

How does a man that has played so much AFL footy (albeit at Carlton) go to looking like an absolute basket case? Was it Pike? Was it the allegations surrounding him? Who knows. I don’t think it’s getting better for him, and my suspicions (that’s all they are) are that he rides off into the sunset. Very happy to be proven otherwise.

Crows begin Rebuilding

If they aren’t already. New coach, new setups, new culture. That is a three-point turn in a troopy with two trailers. Can’t be done, won’t be done. Adelaide oval will still hold some fear for travelling opposition, but the Crows simply don’t have the firepower to contend.

Be sure to check out our fearless predictions for the other AFL teams in 2020.

Ladder Prediction

Unless the club knows something we don’t, this appears likely to be a long season for Crows fans. Adelaide to finish 13th – 16th.

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