Main content

The complete history of the Mighty Magpies

Ernie Nunn

Ernie Nunn


5 CFC Games Played

1 CFC Goals

Date of Birth
23 September 1904
Date of Death
11 September 1991
Recruited From
Collingwood Debut
Round 3, 1932


Ernie Nunn was a relatively late starter in VFL football, not making his senior debut with Footscray until he was nearing 25. By the time he made it to Victoria Park he was 27, and though he managed a handful of games for us in his single season, he never managed to quite make the impact he would have hoped for.

He was born in the Victorian country town of Mafeking, near the Grampians, and plied his football trade with a team called Tiega. He made something of a name there for himself in the 1920s, playing mostly as a centre half-forward, and was recruited to Footscray during the 1929 season.

He would play 26 games with the Dogs over the next three years, kicking 19 goals along the way. After kicking a brace against Richmond in 1931, The Sun newspaper wrote: “Nunn is a greatly improved forward who goes after the ball well but who does not always get the best results from his kicking.”

The Dogs let him go at the end of that season, despite having played a dozen games, and the Magpies gave him another crack at senior football. He was well built, reasonably tall and had good hands, so you could see why we were interested. He played one game with the seconds, and then was elevated to the seniors for the Rd 3 game against Essendon. He was named in the back pocket (described as ‘a big man with some dash’) in what was labelled an ‘experimental’ Collingwood team, but still managed to find his way forward and kick a goal while having a run in the ruck.

The Magpies had decided he was most likely to succeed in defence, however, and he followed up with further games on the half-back flank and at centre half-back. After his second game, against Fitzroy, The Herald wrote: “Now doing solid work for Collingwood, Ernie Nunn was at one time tried as centre-forward for Footscray, with whom he played 12 games last season. One of the League’s policemen-footballers, Nunn has good straight-ahead dash for a big man. In defence he infuses plenty of ginger into his work, and his marking against Fitzroy was good.”

Unfortunately it was to be his police commitments that got in the way. He was stationed at Russell Street Police Station during that year, and was also captain-coach of the police football team. He was playing with the police team in the midweek competition on the Wednesday after his third game when he injured his knee. He only missed a week with Collingwood but it was the beginning of the end. He was dropped after his first game back, returned a few weeks later but was once again forced out with a recurrence of the knee injury. He still played some good football with the seconds later in the year, but he never again regained his senior spot.

He returned to Tiega in December to help look after his seriously ill father. He returned to the district again in 1933 but didn’t play footy, and it’s not clear whether he played again.

In the end, Ernie Nunn managed a decent career of 31 games spread across four seasons. And despite the late start to his career, it would still have been interesting to see what might have happened had that niggling knee injury not got in the way.

– Michael Roberts


CFC Career Stats

Season played Games Goals Finals Win %
1932 5 1 0 80%

CFC Season by Season Stats

Season GP GL B K H T D Guernsey No.
1932 5 1 0 0 35

1932 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 3 Essendon W 1 0 0 35 View match >
Round 4 Fitzroy W 0 35 View match >
Round 5 Carlton L 0 35 View match >
Round 7 Melbourne W 0 35 View match >
Round 10 Richmond W 0 35 View match >
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
Totals 5 1 0
Avg/Game   0.20 0.00
  • GPGames Played
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • TTackles
  • DDisposals

Key Facts

CFC Debut Number


Total AFL Games
Total AFL Goals
CFC Debut
Round 3, 1932
CFC Last Game
Round 10, 1932
Recruited From
Full Name
Ernie Nunn
Provide feedback Ask the Experts