If you’re new to SuperCoach and looking for a few tips to get you through the season, search no further. Here are a dozen pearls of wisdom to print out and stick on the fridge or the back of the toilet door to get you on the road to SuperCoach success in 2016.
1. Trades are gold
Remember, you only get 30 trades for the season. This always appears a relatively large number in the early stages of the season, but when push comes to shove, the best coaches utilise their trades more efficiently than the rest, knowing that trades are scarce. Clever trading is one of the keys to success. Don’t be overawed – there will always be an army of SuperCoach Talk community members ready and willing to provide answers on your trade queries each and every week here on the site. Trade Talk is what keeps many office workers sane on a Monday.
2. Nail your starting rookies
It’s so easy to concentrate on your gun selections and get carried away getting the right starting premiums, that rookie considerations get left to the last second. Some just pick the cheapest rooks to fill their bench – this is the quickest way to SuperCoach misery. In short, it’s rare that you won’t want all your stocks playing in round 1, even those warming the pine for your team. The best rookies appreciate in value the fastest, and will beef up your team with premiums the quickest. You need to consider both scoring potential and job security when picking your starting rookies. Juddlow Express will be taking us through the Rookie Reviews this year, and I for one am excited for the gold he will uncover for us.
3. Evaluate the NAB Challenge wisely
The NAB Challenge can provide some of the most valuable insights into how a lot of players are tracking ahead of Round 1. It’s especially helpful seeing how the first year players fare in their first taste of AFL and gives us a glimpse of what to expect from them if selected in the Home & Away season. Be wary of removing your big ticket stars from your squad just because they haven’t dominated the pre-season competition – most of them don’t get out of 3rd gear until Round 1 comes around. Be smart about the way you analyse the NAB Challenge.
4. Avoid trading your premiums
One of the biggest mistakes I see in new SuperCoaches (and some experienced ones!) is that many are too quick to hit ‘TRADE’ on their highest quality SuperCoach stocks just because the have an off game in exchange someone who has just had a blinder. Remember why you picked your stars in the first place, that’s right, you shell out a lot of coin for a reason – they’ve shown that they are consistent high-performing SuperCoach jets. Don’t trade out Gary Ablett if he doesn’t ton up Round 1 – you will regret it and quite frankly, you just don’t have enough trades to be doing so.
5. Be wary of chasing last week’s points
This point goes hand-in-hand with the last. Try to resist getting sucked into the hype of an in-form player. I will never forget the 2010 season when Jared Brennan 125, 97 and 121 in the first three rounds. Coaches were trading him into their sides in droves, only to receive an average of 71 for the remaining matches. (Sorry to pick on you, Jared if you’re reading!). Remember, last week’s points are not added to your score, only future points. Form can give a good indication on short-term performance, but always be aware that you could be buying yesterday’s hero, but tomorrow’s zero. Look out for Schwarzwalder’s Flavour of the Week articles where he gives you a weekly run-down of those who are being traded in en masse.
6. Captaincy is vital
The Far Canal will be assisting us with captaincy write-ups in 2016 and will help you find a winning skipper each week. Captaincy is an underrated aspect of the SuperCoach competition. It can net you hundreds over the course of the season if you are smart (or lucky!) with your selections. You won’t get it right all of the time, but you’ll need to be getting it right most of the time.
7. Injury prone players can provide season-long frustration
Try to steer clear of players who consistently fail to play all 22 games in any given season. The name Shane ‘Sausages’ Mumford immediately springs to mind. A handful of trades (and points) can be saved by finding guns who will stay on the track.
8. Don’t let your team colours bias your selections
There will always be someone in your league who picks way too many Carlton players because their looking through Navy Blue spectacles (am I right Motts?). We know you love picking players from your own team, but it will come at a cost to success when your boys get flogged.
9. Trade your cashed up rookies for undervalued blue chip premiums and fresh blooded rookies on the bubble
This trading technique is most commonly used amongst those who have some experience in the artform of SuperCoach. Your rookies start cheap, grow in value before it’s time to cull them for some new cheap rookies and bank the cash to upgrade another fattened rookie to a premium that under their true value. It all sounds a bit complicated if you’re new to the game, but it won’t take long for you to get the hang of it. Father Dougal is the expert in this area and will be analysing the ideal time to cull your cash cows as they mature in his weekly piece – Cow Talk. I will be bringing back my Fallen Premium post again this year to help nab those undervalued guns.
10. In your starting squad, maximise the number of players you’ll want to hold for the whole year
Try and pack your team with guys you will want when it’s all said and done at the end of the season. It will save you a ton of trades trying to upgrade all your mid pricers that don’t go on to become scoring machines. It’s that simple.
11. Utilise dual position players
Dual position players (or DPPs as you’ll hear them referred to) are those that can be selected in two different positions. Take Dusty ‘Chopsticks’ Martin for example. You can get him in the forward line or the midfield. It will give you more flexibility later in the season when it comes to injuries if your team is scattered with DPPs.
12. Don’t beat yourself up for your mistakes
It’s never a good time to throw in the towel. Even the most seasoned of veterans make costly mistakes in hindsight. Even last year’s winner, The Night’s Watch started the season with Nick Malceski (the most expensive defender in 2015), holding him until Round 18! He only scored above 70 three times in that period, hitting 100 in the last two rounds after giving him the axe. Mistakes, we all make them. The most important thing you can do, is learn from it.
Good luck in 2016. I hope you all go in armed with the confidence of facing a successful season. We will commit to being with you every step of the way.
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