Player Profile: Alex Herd
Nerdy, congratulations on your 100th game at Old Geelong, it's a tremendous effort and you are now a life member of the Club.
When you first turned up in 2010 as a 19 year-old, did you ever consider that you would reach the 100 game mark?
Not at all. I thought I could be a Miss OGs champion but I didn't think I would become a life member. Now I have accomplished both. The last box to tick is 100 goals in a season.
You've spent a large portion of your career in the Senior side, what do you put your consistency down to?
Some of you might have noticed that MC Herd sponsor the Club, and have been more active since Richard and I came in 2010. What most of you probably haven't noticed is the large meat truck that swings by the coaches’ house each Sunday. Depending on how I played is how much meat they receive but it is not uncommon for a whole beast to be lumped onto the front door after the team having a bad loss. (Also, thank god Sherly [Rich Herd] has retired, it took a lot to keep him in the Twos).
Despite having spent the majority of your career at full-back, you have managed to kick three goals. I'm sure you can remember them all, how did they happen?
Well two of them were in one match. One was kicked from about half a foot away from the goal line. The other was crumbing a pack and kicking it from about 15 metres out. The last I am not sure about so I might just make it up.
After the opposition kicked a point Colby kicked in from the square to a pack. From about eight people deep I have clunked on of the best hangers you will see. After waking up a little concussed I gave a quick one two to Rupert de Crespigny (who knows the game plan). Six bounces later I have kicked a sausage from 55 out on the boundary.
There have been plenty of great wins for the OGs over your time, which one stands out as the best and why?
The greatest win was keeping Como Park and getting back our liquor license. The first cold beer after our year off was delicious.
When you first came down to the Club, you were stepping into the shadows of your older brother Rich, who has played 150 games. Did Rich's presence make those early years easier or harder for you?
Well there wasn't really a presence at all. He used to wake up two hours earlier, drive up earlier, and play earlier. I guess he did a lot of cheering after he played while watching the ones.
There was a very limited amount of games we played together, however he did make it quite hard for me when he lost his license. He made me the designated driver and the game of 'how many cans can I drink between Melbourne and The City of Dreams' got very old very quickly.
How would you describe the differences between you and Rich, both as people and footballers?
Well we have a few similarities and few differences. The tortoise and hair comes to mind when you talk about speed. To his credit, running further than 5km the tortoise would normally have a victory, however as you can imagine a tortoise on the footy field isn't ideal.
- The height difference is roughly 16 cm.
- I play in defence, Rich calls himself a 'Utility'
On the other hand we have some similarities.
- Neither of us miss a target
- Both very hairy (apart from Miss OGs day)
- Both played 100 (almost) or more games for the club.
Over the last couple of years there has been an increasing presence of man-buns in the Club. Is this something that you started?
Kids look up to me and copy things I do. You have to look no further than Harry Graham on game day. With a trademark Herd blistering dash followed by a trademark Herd shank.
The long locks took some time to grow, as it got longer the more I got noticed around the ground. The reason Carl "Hansel" Joyce and Hugh McKay joined the club was because they kept on seeing me train while driving down Alexandra Avenue and thought we should all unite. Joycey wanted to start a boy band but it never ended up working.
One of the great off-field highlights at the Club was your performance at the recently-retired Miss OGs in 2013. Channeling Lady Gaga, you appeared in a meat dress and later released doves from your bosom. Can you tell us a little bit about that night and how much effort was put in?
When I learnt I was going to be in Miss. OGs, I thought there is no point doing this half-arsed. I made sure I finished Miss OGs a champion. I thought long and hard about my routine, i prepared weeks before the big day. I performed many, many practice walks down the hallway in my outfits.
It also took me months to train those pigeons to sit nicely in my D cup bra inside that beautiful wedding dress.
Over your career you've seen three Senior coaches come through the Club, each were different in their own right. Do you have any specific memories of each?
Nick’s most memorable moment was his Arnold Schwarzenegger impersonation on the bus going to Miss OGs.
One of Frank's best assets was being funny without meaning it. Often making up new nick names on the spot or changing existing ones, for example:
- Tristan "Squeek" Mountjoy - Squizz, Squizzel or Tristian (rhymes with Christian)
- Jeremy "Jez" Mountjoy - Jesh, Jesse or Jessa
- Xav "Sheilsy" Sheils - Shela
- Colby "Colbs" O'Brein - Oby
- Jack "Belly" Bell - Jingles
John has probably spent a lot more time and bonded more with the players. The OGs boys learnt pretty quickly that Knighta wasn't the best at some drinking games and probably should avoid them in the future. If only he was a little bit younger he could show us how good he tells us he was. Or Colby could let us know as he was playing at the same time.
You've also played with plenty of characters over your six years; do any stand out in your mind for any particular reason?
The Betts boys were always entertaining on and off the field. Likewise with the Legoes, they were always good value on the Footy trips
As one of the few players who live in Geelong, you must be sick of the Geelong Road. Are you looking forward to autonomous driving?
Let’s just say I am looking forward to playing at Geelong Grammar for one of our home and away games this year.
Who's the best player you've seen play at the Club in your time?
- Best forward - Ryan Mcavoy
- Best mid - Sammy Long or Tristan (Squizzel) Mountjoy
- Best defender - Apart from myself of course, either Colby or Henry Legoe.
What do you see as the most crucial factor that needs to improve/change if the OGs are to move up the grades?
Taking down Uni Blues/Blacks