John Kennedy Snr performed for Hawthorn, he coached the Hawks to their first three premierships, he was their inspiration for greater than half a century and for longer than that he was the mannequin of decency within the recreation he cherished and served.
And if not for a sure speech he made to his gamers at halftime within the 1975 VFL grand remaining, and for his trademark gaberdine overcoat, they’re the issues for which he could be greatest remembered.
Kennedy, who handed away peacefully on Thursday aged 91, did not thoughts that his legendary and bombastic “DOOOOO SOMETHING” speech gathered a lot prominence.
He cared extra that it did not do any good.
“These issues develop legs of their very own,” he stated later.
“I really made a couple of speeches that day, however we misplaced the grand remaining by 55 factors, to allow them to’t have been too particular.”
John Kennedy joined Hawthorn in 1950, he was voted best-and-fairest in his first three seasons, he went on to play 164 video games, was captain from 1955 to 1959 after which coached the membership for 14 seasons.
As distinguished as his taking part in profession may seem, Kennedy regarded it as modest.
“You most likely did not need to be that flash to be best-and-fairest at Hawthorn in these days. We had been commonly a great distance down the ladder again then,” he as soon as instructed an interviewer.
Hawthorn had been admitted to the VFL in 1925, however did not make the finals till 1957, with Kennedy as captain.
He retired as a participant in 1959, taking over duties because the Hawks’ coach the next yr, bringing with him the toughness he’d proven on the sector and a coaching regime that led to his groups turning into generally known as “Kennedy’s Commandos”.
The outcomes had been nearly fast with Kennedy teaching Hawthorn to their first premiership in his second season in cost.
His first teaching stint lasted till 1963 when the schooling division transferred him to Stawell in western Victoria the place he was principal of the technical college and coach of the native soccer workforce.
Kennedy Sr elevated to legend standing
Hawthorn recalled Kennedy three years later, on the similar time it acquired future captain Don Scott and the inimitable Peter Hudson.
A yr earlier the membership had recruited the marvellous Peter Crimmins, a yr later got here Leigh Matthews and Peter Knights after which Kelvin Moore.
As Kennedy stated: “We had gamers you’d dream of teaching.”
John Kennedy Sr named AFL Legend
Captained by David Parkin, Kennedy’s workforce of stars completed on high of the ladder in 1971 and got here from 20 factors down at three-quarter time to beat St Kilda within the grand remaining.
Hawthorn subsequent made the finals in 1974, ending third, after which got here the 1975 showdown towards North Melbourne which produced the famous oration.
Kennedy, considerably hesitantly, had been “miked up” for his halftime handle to the gamers, which undoubtedly helped his exhortations obtain such prominence.
The fuller model, emphasis omitted, was: “At least do one thing. Do. Don’t suppose. Don’t hope. Do. At least you’ll be able to come off saying ‘I did this’.”
Kennedy made one other heartfelt speech to his workforce that day, one which was spoken with barely extra reverence, however nonetheless together with his “powerful love”.
It needed to do with Crimmins who was battling most cancers and, though he declared himself match to play, was neglected of the workforce.
“If you are feeling drained simply consider Crimmins,” the coach instructed his gamers.
“He’s dwelling, he is not right here. He introduced his insides up this morning, he is vomiting, he is not right here.”
The following yr Hawthorn once more made the grand remaining, and once more Crimmins was lacking.
Kennedy learn the gamers a telegram from their teammate earlier than the sport, urging them to “do it for the little fella”.
They did, and so they took the premiership cup to his dwelling that evening. Crimmins died three days later.
That 1976 grand remaining by which Hawthorn beat North Melbourne to win their third premiership – all of them with Kennedy as coach – was his final for the Hawks.
Kennedy went to North Melbourne in 1985, teaching the membership to the finals twice in his 5 seasons.
He was later coaxed out of retirement to take up the position of AFL chairman in 1993, a submit he held till 1998.
Less than a month earlier than his demise, Kennedy was formally inducted because the 29th legend of the Australian Football Hall of Fame.