G’day Supercoaches! Welcome back for another year! I’m kicking off my 2018 Pre-Season campaign in similar fashion to last season……..with a look at the season-long loophole options…….
The season-long loophole option is an important strategic move for many Supercoaches. With the continued success of Dusty & Dangerfield throughout 2017, Luke Strnadica of Fremantle became one of the most popular choice of Captain each week (as predicted here last year).
In a perfect world, we’d be able to select enough rookies to fill up each position. The AFL Coaches have other ideas unfortunately and don’t take the Supercoaches into account at the selection table. (One day, my friends, one day….) 😉 The perfect loophole option is part of a team that plays ‘late’ each weekend (predominantly Sundays plus Queens Birthday & Anzac Day). By sacrificing one spot for the entire season, this gives us up to six games to find the perfect Vice Captain option before triggering our loophole option and maximizing our score each week.
The ideal loophole player is a youngster that won’t see any game time for the season. In the best case scenario, this youngster would also have a Dual Position Status to add flexibility to the team structure (very useful when planning ahead with trades). So let’s run an eye over the fixtures………..
Adelaide – Four Sunday games, seven games scheduled for Thursday or Friday. Not the best choice for loophole
Brisbane – Six Sunday Games, no Thursday/Friday games. Could do worse for a loophole option.
Carlton – Six Sunday games with five coming after the Bye. Five Thurs/Fri night games. Not ideal.
Collingwood – Seven Sunday games plus Queens Birthday & Anzac Day. Just the three Friday night games. Sneaky option.
Essendon – Six Sundays & Anzac Day to close out the Round. Five Thurs/Fri night games, majority of which are late in the season. Viable option, but better elsewhere……
Freo – Ten Sunday games, no early games at all! One of the top choices…..
GWS – Five late games, one early game. Better options elsewhere….
Geelong – Six late games, five Thurs/Fri games which are mainly after Bye. Looking good to capitalize on Danger/Selwood/Ablett as Captain/VC options….but loophole option? No…….
Gold Coast – Three Sunday fixtures, the rest all Saturday. Not an early game all year, viable option……
Hawthorn – Eight late fixtures including Rds2-5, surprisingly just the one early game. Rough chance…..
Melbourne – Ten Sunday games plus Anzac Day Eve Tuesday & Queens Birthday Monday. Eight late starts before the Rd13BYE. Only slight negative is the one early game directly after the Bye. Looks the best option.
North – Ten Sunday games, six of which come after the Rd13BYE. Only one early game. Strong loophole option.
Port – Five Sunday games, three early games all after their Rd10BYE.
Richmond – Six Sunday games plus Anzac Day Eve Tuesday, eight Thurs/Fri night games. No…….
StKilda – Only three Sunday games, four Friday games. Looking elsewhere…….
Sydney – Four Sunday games, seven early fixtures which rule out the Swans loophole option.
West Coast – 12 Sunday games plus two early games directly after their Rd12BYE. Good option!
Western Bulldogs – Seven Sunday fixtures including the first three weeks, five games played on Thurs/Fri. Not bad, not good……………………
Judging by the fixture, our best options for VC/C loophole come from Melbourne which has twelve late games for the season, eight of which will be played before their Rd13Bye. The Perth teams come in close behind with the Eagles a tick ahead of the Dockers who don’t have an early game for the entire season. North are also in the mix with their ten Sunday appearances and only one early schedule.
Much will be dependant on the naming of Rd1 Teams and the rookies that will play from the get-go. Depending on team structure coming into Rd1, the following players should be decent loophole options over the course of the entire season.
You might be hearing more of Spargo (left) & Crowden (right) this year, but only for their Supercoach Captaincy performances.
Harrison Petty (MEL) $117 300
Josh Rotham (WCE) or Francis Watson (WCE) $123 900
Taylin Duman (FRE) $123 900
Tom Murphy (NTH) DEF/MID $124 900
Charlie Spargo (MEL) MID/FWD $117 300
Callan England (WCE) $102 400 or Jack Petruccellee (WCE) MID/FWD $117 300
Stefan Giro (FRE) $102 400 or Mitch Crowden (FRE) MID/FWD $117 300
Kyron Hayden (NTH) $117 300
Lachlan Filipovic (MEL) or Mitchell King (MEL) $123 900
Tony Olango (WCE) $102 400
Scott Jones (FRE) or Lloyd Meek (FRE) $117 300
Tom Jeffries (NTH) $102 400
Oskar Baker (MEL) $117 300
Ryan Burrows (WCE) $111 400
Hugh Dixon (FRE) $117 300
Gordon Narrier (NTH) $102 400
It was all so straight-forward in 2017 with Strnadica and his dual position status. There was solid back-up in the Forward line with Paddy Ryder and each big score from Dangerfield was banked fairly early with the loophole option.
The good people at Champion Data have toughened things up a bit in 2018. There is no standout-season-long- loophole-option at this moment. It will all come down to Rd1 selections and the amount of decent rookies on each line.
At this early stage, I’m leaning towards Spargo (MEL) or Crowden (FRE) with their dual position movements. They look like being handy M11 bench warmers. However, if there are no viable rookie Ruck options coming into the season (R3), then I might just start with Olango (WCE) or Jeffries (NTH) at their rock-bottom price and use the cash (wisely…..hopefully) elsewhere.
A couple of likely lads at R3 for the loophole option…….Tony Olango (L) & Tom Jeffries (R)
How do you rate the loophole situation for 2018? Feel free to comment below or join in the conversation on Twitter (@SC_Talk , @SchwarzwalderSC). It’s good to be back…………All the best for the Supercoach season!
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