Main content

The complete history of the Mighty Magpies

Barry Price

Barry Price

1966-1975, 1979
5
Other Guernsey Nos.
2, 3, 32, 35

158 CFC Games Played

59 CFC Goals

Date of Birth
8 March 1949
Recruited From
Ararat
Collingwood Debut
Round 2, 1966
Height:
175cm
Weight:
73kg

Biography

In these days of team defence and zoned structures it seems quaintly old-fashioned, but few sights electrify fans more than that of a player streaming through the centre of the ground and planting a pinpoint pass on to the chest of a leading full-forward. It feels like old-fashioned footy: simple, yet beautiful.

Rarely has that scenario been played out more frequently, or more adroitly, than by Barry Price and Peter McKenna during Collingwood’s heady days of the late sixties and early seventies. McKenna and Price formed a lethal combination that became the bane of opposition defences.

McKenna was, of course, a famously good lead. But it was Price’s delivery of the ball which made those leads effective. McKenna only needed the smallest break and he knew Price would put the ball in exactly the right position. With other, less talented midfielders, the margin for error might have been too small. But not with Price.

“He could find you with a 60-metre low pass,” said McKenna, “which made it impossible for opponents. Once you led to a Price pass there was no way a full-back could stop you. And there was no way you could miss it unless the ball bounced off your chest. Price used to hurt me with his magnificent drop kicks and drop punts — sometimes the lacing of the ball would hit my chest so hard I would have red marks there for days.”

Barry Price was born and grew up in Ararat and, though he was Collingwood-mad from an early age, rarely made it to Melbourne to see games. From the time he was old enough to walk, Price and his football were inseparable. He would kick with his father, his brother (who was good enough to earn trials with both Collingwood and Geelong), with his mates and by himself (when he would pretend to be Murray Weideman).

His parents were among a group of locals who started the town’s first organised under-16 team, and the 11-year old Price soon became a member. He did well over the next few years and by the time he was 16 was playing with Ararat’s senior side in the strong Wimmera League. In his first and only year with the seniors, 1965, Price won the team’s best and fairest award and kicked 60-odd goals. Performances like that soon had eight VFL clubs beating a path to his door.

Price and his parents had decided League football was out until the end of his schooling, and that is what they told all eight clubs. Then came the ninth club — Collingwood — and all resolve disappeared. Fittingly, recruiter Jack Burns found Price practising in the backyard, aiming his already deadly kicks at a jam tin he had suspended on a line strung between two posts.

In his first practice match in 1966 the kid nicknamed ‘Bubba’ because of his lack of size lined up on the notorious Duncan Wright, who was still trying to live down the odium of the Somerville incident the previous season. Price survived that experience and kicked three goals, and eventually made the senior list. And he was in the senior side after just one round, playing as a forward pocket/rover against Fitzroy. He lasted only a few games before being dropped but, back in the reserves, was tried in the centre and just “clicked”. When he returned to the seniors late in the year it was in the pivot position, and he did well enough to hold his place right up to the death knell, being dropped from the winning second semi-final side.

Things stagnated a little over the next two years: 1967 was reasonable, but torn ankle ligaments restricted him to just five games in 1968. But a tortuous pre-season that began in October — almost unheard of in those times – saw him jumping out of his skin by the time season 1969 rolled around. He played brilliant football that year to win the Copeland Trophy, and became so convinced of the merits of the intense pre-season that it sparked a lifelong commitment to the values of physical fitness.

The 1969-70 period was probably Price’s best, his play in those days earning him a reputation as one of the game’s most talented footballers. In addition to his kicking he was highly skilled in other areas of play as well. His handball could not be faulted, and his general ball-handling was superb. He was a decent mark for his size and had immense courage, never flinching from the battering his small frame took over the years.

Price also had wonderful evasive skills, especially a body feint which would often send opponents the wrong way. He had an unusual way of running with the ball; his arms extended as if preparing to kick, his hands holding the ball and moving it in small circles as he ran. He would run at a player, looking like he was going to kick, then dip his shoulder and change direction in a flash. The sidestep would just take him out of the way of the oncoming opponent, and Price would take a quick bounce (another great skill) and look upfield.

Price never really lost his natural reserve, and was regarded as one of the quiet men of the team. But the admiration for him among his teammates was universal. “He was one of the most gifted players at the club, but also one of its true gentlemen,” said Terry Waters. “He was very quiet both on and off the field but by hell he could play, said coach Bob Rose.”

Following more good years in the early seventies, Price’s form began to falter. Although still only 26 he was jaded and felt he needed a new challenge. So at the end of 1975 he enrolled in a physical education course in Western Australia, and began a three-year stint with Claremont. He came back in 1979 but a pre-season ankle injury interrupted his preparation and kept him to just one senior game (though he was part of the night Premiership). He spent two years with East Burwood in the Eastern District Football League and one season at Prahran before returning to Collingwood as skills coach and fitness adviser from 1983-85. He also became a long-standing coach of football teams at Scotch College.

It seems hard to believe that the VFL career of one so fanatical about the game all but ended at age 26. There were many at Collingwood who would love Barry Price to have had a longer stay — not least the forwards whose careers would surely have flourished by being on the receiving end of his passes.

– Michael Roberts

Statistics

CFC Career Stats

Season played Games Goals Finals Win %
1966-1975, 1979 158 59 14 68%

CFC Season by Season Stats

Season GP GL B K H T D Guernsey No.
1966 8 7 11 81 13 94 35

1966 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 2 Fitzroy W 1 5 15 2 17 35 View match >
Round 3 Essendon L 1 1 8 1 9 35 View match >
Round 12 Hawthorn W 1 1 35 View match >
Round 15 Richmond W 2 1 14 3 17 35 View match >
Round 16 North Melbourne W 2 2 11 11 35 View match >
Round 17 Melbourne W 1 15 4 19 35 View match >
Round 18 Western Bulldogs W 1 11 3 14 35 View match >
Semi Final St Kilda W 1 6 6 35 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1967 17 15 8 182 52 234 5

1967 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 2 North Melbourne W 7 2 9 5 View match >
Round 3 Essendon W 1 1 8 5 13 5 View match >
Round 4 Western Bulldogs W 1 11 3 14 5 View match >
Round 5 Sydney W 1 16 4 20 5 View match >
Round 6 Carlton L 3 3 5 View match >
Round 7 St Kilda W 2 11 2 13 5 View match >
Round 8 Richmond W 4 1 14 4 18 5 View match >
Round 9 Fitzroy W 3 16 1 17 5 View match >
Round 10 Hawthorn W 1 6 2 8 5 View match >
Round 11 Melbourne W 1 10 7 17 5 View match >
Round 12 Geelong L 1 12 2 14 5 View match >
Round 13 North Melbourne W 2 1 11 11 5 View match >
Round 14 Essendon L 2 10 8 18 5 View match >
Round 15 Western Bulldogs L 9 1 10 5 View match >
Round 17 Carlton W 1 15 1 16 5 View match >
Round 18 St Kilda L 11 4 15 5 View match >
Semi Final Geelong L 12 6 18 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1968 5 5 5 54 25 79 5

1968 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 12 Richmond W 1 11 3 14 5 View match >
Round 17 Essendon L 9 4 13 5 View match >
Round 18 Carlton L 2 1 13 3 16 5 View match >
Round 19 Melbourne W 3 13 6 19 5 View match >
Round 20 Sydney W 3 8 9 17 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1969 22 4 9 320 104 424 5

1969 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Hawthorn L 1 1 16 16 5 View match >
Round 2 Richmond L 1 9 2 11 5 View match >
Round 3 Melbourne W 21 8 29 5 View match >
Round 4 Carlton W 14 4 18 5 View match >
Round 5 St Kilda L 1 13 1 14 5 View match >
Round 6 Western Bulldogs W 10 3 13 5 View match >
Round 7 Fitzroy W 1 18 3 21 5 View match >
Round 8 Sydney W 1 2 15 7 22 5 View match >
Round 9 North Melbourne W 20 7 27 5 View match >
Round 10 Geelong W 16 4 20 5 View match >
Round 11 Essendon W 14 6 20 5 View match >
Round 12 Hawthorn W 12 6 18 5 View match >
Round 13 Richmond L 21 6 27 5 View match >
Round 14 Melbourne W 14 5 19 5 View match >
Round 15 Carlton L 1 16 5 21 5 View match >
Round 16 St Kilda W 18 5 23 5 View match >
Round 17 Western Bulldogs W 17 7 24 5 View match >
Round 18 Fitzroy W 1 8 7 15 5 View match >
Round 19 Sydney W 1 12 3 15 5 View match >
Round 20 North Melbourne W 13 5 18 5 View match >
Semi Final Carlton L 10 5 15 5 View match >
Preliminary Final Richmond L 1 1 13 5 18 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1970 20 3 9 343 124 467 5

1970 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Western Bulldogs W 1 20 10 30 5 View match >
Round 2 Richmond W 1 18 4 22 5 View match >
Round 3 Hawthorn W 19 3 22 5 View match >
Round 4 Geelong W 17 5 22 5 View match >
Round 5 Melbourne W 21 6 27 5 View match >
Round 6 North Melbourne W 2 15 6 21 5 View match >
Round 7 Fitzroy W 9 5 14 5 View match >
Round 8 Carlton W 14 3 17 5 View match >
Round 9 Essendon L 12 8 20 5 View match >
Round 10 St Kilda W 1 1 20 4 24 5 View match >
Round 11 Sydney L 1 19 2 21 5 View match >
Round 12 Western Bulldogs W 16 15 31 5 View match >
Round 13 Richmond L 2 18 4 22 5 View match >
Round 16 Melbourne W 1 14 7 21 5 View match >
Round 18 Fitzroy W 1 18 2 20 5 View match >
Round 19 Carlton W 16 7 23 5 View match >
Round 20 Essendon W 22 14 36 5 View match >
Round 22 Sydney W 1 23 9 32 5 View match >
Semi Final Carlton W 15 5 20 5 View match >
Grand Final Carlton L 0 0 17 5 22 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1971 19 4 4 315 157 472 5

1971 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Western Bulldogs W 1 20 4 24 5 View match >
Round 2 Richmond W 1 26 10 36 5 View match >
Round 3 Essendon D 6 3 9 5 View match >
Round 4 Fitzroy W 1 29 23 52 5 View match >
Round 5 North Melbourne W 14 3 17 5 View match >
Round 6 Melbourne W 15 13 28 5 View match >
Round 7 Geelong W 18 5 23 5 View match >
Round 8 St Kilda L 9 4 13 5 View match >
Round 9 Sydney W 1 21 5 26 5 View match >
Round 10 Hawthorn L 1 18 4 22 5 View match >
Round 11 Carlton W 18 13 31 5 View match >
Round 12 Western Bulldogs L 17 15 32 5 View match >
Round 13 Richmond W 16 13 29 5 View match >
Round 17 Melbourne W 17 14 31 5 View match >
Round 18 Geelong L 12 5 17 5 View match >
Round 19 St Kilda L 1 9 4 13 5 View match >
Round 20 Sydney W 23 8 31 5 View match >
Round 21 Hawthorn L 1 13 6 19 5 View match >
Semi Final Richmond L 1 14 5 19 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1972 21 5 5 266 100 366 5

1972 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Richmond L 16 4 20 5 View match >
Round 2 Carlton D 18 8 26 5 View match >
Round 3 Melbourne W 1 17 5 22 5 View match >
Round 4 St Kilda L 14 2 16 5 View match >
Round 5 North Melbourne W 3 3 5 View match >
Round 7 Fitzroy W 10 4 14 5 View match >
Round 8 Western Bulldogs L 1 11 6 17 5 View match >
Round 9 Geelong W 17 6 23 5 View match >
Round 10 Sydney W 13 3 16 5 View match >
Round 11 Essendon W 18 11 29 5 View match >
Round 12 Richmond W 1 9 4 13 5 View match >
Round 13 Carlton L 12 7 19 5 View match >
Round 14 St Kilda W 1 11 2 13 5 View match >
Round 15 Melbourne W 13 7 20 5 View match >
Round 16 North Melbourne W 19 8 27 5 View match >
Round 17 Hawthorn W 1 1 13 5 18 5 View match >
Round 18 Fitzroy W 7 2 9 5 View match >
Round 20 Geelong L 2 12 5 17 5 View match >
Round 22 Essendon L 1 11 6 17 5 View match >
Qualifying Final Richmond L 11 3 14 5 View match >
Semi Final St Kilda L 1 11 2 13 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1973 21 7 6 282 105 387 5

1973 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Sydney W 1 20 5 25 5 View match >
Round 2 Western Bulldogs W 9 6 15 5 View match >
Round 3 Geelong W 1 14 6 20 5 View match >
Round 4 St Kilda W 1 1 17 10 27 5 View match >
Round 5 North Melbourne W 2 2 5 View match >
Round 8 Fitzroy W 1 14 3 17 5 View match >
Round 9 Richmond W 18 8 26 5 View match >
Round 10 Hawthorn W 2 23 6 29 5 View match >
Round 11 Essendon W 15 7 22 5 View match >
Round 12 Sydney W 9 3 12 5 View match >
Round 13 Western Bulldogs W 1 11 7 18 5 View match >
Round 14 St Kilda W 1 14 5 19 5 View match >
Round 15 Geelong W 1 10 2 12 5 View match >
Round 16 North Melbourne L 14 5 19 5 View match >
Round 17 Melbourne W 18 7 25 5 View match >
Round 18 Carlton W 19 4 23 5 View match >
Round 19 Fitzroy W 10 3 13 5 View match >
Round 21 Hawthorn W 2 19 5 24 5 View match >
Round 22 Essendon W 1 11 5 16 5 View match >
Semi Final Carlton L 9 5 14 5 View match >
Preliminary Final Richmond L 8 1 9 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1974 16 4 5 241 71 312 5

1974 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Essendon W 1 15 6 21 5 View match >
Round 2 Hawthorn W 18 5 23 5 View match >
Round 3 Western Bulldogs W 1 1 20 6 26 5 View match >
Round 4 Fitzroy L 1 1 22 5 27 5 View match >
Round 5 Carlton W 11 4 15 5 View match >
Round 9 Richmond W 1 12 5 17 5 View match >
Round 14 Fitzroy W 13 4 17 5 View match >
Round 15 Western Bulldogs W 14 1 15 5 View match >
Round 16 Carlton L 8 6 14 5 View match >
Round 17 Melbourne W 20 4 24 5 View match >
Round 18 St Kilda L 1 17 4 21 5 View match >
Round 19 Geelong W 1 20 6 26 5 View match >
Round 20 Richmond L 16 6 22 5 View match >
Round 21 North Melbourne L 3 2 5 5 View match >
Elimination Final Western Bulldogs W 16 5 21 5 View match >
Semi Final Hawthorn L 1 16 2 18 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1975 8 5 5 97 15 112 5

1975 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Sydney W 1 2 13 3 16 5 View match >
Round 2 Carlton L 1 18 1 19 5 View match >
Round 18 North Melbourne L 14 1 15 5 View match >
Round 19 Essendon W 1 13 3 16 5 View match >
Round 20 St Kilda W 2 11 1 12 5 View match >
Round 21 Hawthorn W 2 15 3 18 5 View match >
Round 22 Melbourne W 1 5 1 6 5 View match >
Elimination Final Richmond L 8 2 10 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1979 1 3 8 11 5

1979 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 7 Geelong W 3 8 11 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
Totals 158 59 67 2184 774 2958
Avg/Game   0.37 0.42 13.82 4.90 18.72
Legend
  • GPGames Played
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • TTackles
  • DDisposals

Key Facts

CFC Debut Number

674

Total AFL Games
158
Total AFL Goals
59
CFC Debut
Round 2, 1966
CFC Last Game
Round 7, 1979
Recruited From
Ararat
Full Name
Barry Price
Nickname
Bubba

Awards

  • Life Members
    1976
  • Most Consistent Player
    1969
  • Best Finals Player (Bob Rose Award)
    1970
  • Best Clubman (Darren Millane Memorial Trophy)
    1973
  • CFC Hall of Fame
    2009
  • E.W. Copeland Trophy (Best and Fairest)
    1969
Provide feedback Ask the Experts