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The complete history of the Mighty Magpies

Ron Wearmouth

Ron Wearmouth

1969-1981
5
Other Guernsey Nos.
35, 48

186 CFC Games Played

127 CFC Goals

Date of Birth
17 July 1950
Recruited From
Noorat
Collingwood Debut
Round 14, 1969
Height:
175cm
Weight:
71kg

Biography

Think Ron Wearmouth, and the Collingwood rover’s trademark features immediately spring to mind for those Magpie fans who remember him fondly.

His blond, flowing locks; his energetic bursts from contests; his cheeky on-field manner that could sometimes get him into trouble; and a knockabout nature that endeared him to teammates and those in the terraces.

If a measure of a footballer’s popularity comes from such trademarks, Wearmouth was surely one of the club’s great characters, not to mention a player of serious note.

He could well have played his league football elsewhere. His father, Dick, played 100 games for Footscray in the 1940s and early 1950s, and his son could have followed him under the father-son rule. Fitzroy was also an option for a young Ronnie Wearmouth, as it controlled the zone around Terang, where he played some senior football in 1968.

But Dick was happy for his son to play with Collingwood, the club controlling the zone for Noorat, the tiny town where Ronnie played his first senior football, and where his family ran a dairy farm.

Part of the reason for choosing Collingwood was that the club’s vice-president and 1936 premiership player Jim Crowe had coached Wearmouth’s father at Footscray.

“Dad suggested I play at Victoria Park because of its stronger and more stable administration,” Ron would recall.

He joined Collingwood in 1969, and it is no surprise his hairstyle drew as much attention as his football ability in first year. As detailed in Michael Roberts’ A Century of the Best, one night at training Magpies coach Bob Rose “came out, pinned him to the ground and gave him ‘one of the best basin cuts you’ve ever seen'”.

Des Tuddenham recalled saying to the teenager from Noorat: “You can’t look like a girl, son, if you’re going to play a man’s game.” Wearmouth wouldn’t listen. He grew his locks back as soon as he could.

Wearmouth made his VFL debut in round 14, 1969, against Melbourne, wearing the No.48 jumper, having 11 disposals. Doug Gott was the other debutant in the Magpies’ two-point victory over the Demons.

It would be his only senior match that season. He wasn’t surprised, saying later: “To be honest, I was a little out of my depth. I wasn’t conditioned and I was skinny and not ready for a game of senior football.”

Wearmouth was demoted to the supplementary list for a period in 1970, with concerns over his capacity for hard work and training. But, now wearing the No.35 jumper, he won his way back into the seniors for six games in the second half of the season, though he lost his place for the finals.

Inconsistency and a lack of discipline at times cost him in his early years at Collingwood. A few suspensions earned him the reputation of being a “hothead”, but he was at least elevated to the No.5 jumper for the 1972 season when Neil Mann took over as coach. He rejected the advances of other clubs, with his father urging him to stay. Wearmouth decided to knuckle down as best as he could.

The arrival of Murray Weideman as coach brought another transformation for Wearmouth. In some ways, he was a kindred spirit to the coach, and he was given more time on the ball as rover, and less time in the forward pocket. While the two seasons Weideman coached Collingwood proved to be a tumultuous time, Wearmouth established himself as one of the club’s most consistent and determined players.

He played 11 games in Weideman’s first year in 1975, but flourished the following year as one of the few highlights in what was a gloomy season. He finished third in the Copeland Trophy in that wooden spoon year.

Wearmouth took his game to a new level when Tom Hafey joined the club as coach in 1977. He said: “Hafey put consistency into my game and under him I played something like 70 to 80 games in a row.”

He became fitter and seemingly more explosive under the strict training regimen. He may not have had the aesthetics of some of his more gifted teammates, but he more than made up for it with grit and determination.

He missed only one game in 1977, with one of his finest performances coming with 31 disposals and a goal in the second semi-final win over Hawthorn. He was a solid performer in the two Grand Finals that season, but the fairytale that Collingwood fans had been hoping for sadly didn’t eventuate. After a drawn Grand Final, the Magpies were no match for North Melbourne in the replay.

Sadly, for Wearmouth, and his team, there would be more heartache to follow. The 1978 season ended in the preliminary final; and two more Grand Final losses followed in 1979 (by five points) and 1980 (81 points).

Injuries cost him the chance to make a play for another Grand Final slot in 1981. He played only eight games in his final AFL season, with his final game coming against Richmond in round 20.

It was his 186th and last VFL match, with his career closing only a month after his 30th birthday, and after 13 seasons in black and white.

His greatest regret, as expected, was never winning a premiership: “We came close that many times but could never manage to win one.”

He played for and coached a number of clubs in country Victoria and Queensland, losing further grand finals for Port Fairy and Western Districts. “For a while I thought it was me who was jinxed. But I finally broke the drought when I played for Caloundra in Queensland,” he said in 1990.

No one would have begrudged him finally tasting premiership success, even if it was at a local level. For everyone seemed to love Ronnie Wearmouth.

He has remained in touch with some of his Magpies teammates, who adored his personality and love of a good time. Just as strong has been his bond with the Collingwood army, who still fondly recall him to this day.

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Statistics

CFC Career Stats

Season played Games Goals Finals Win %
1969-1981 186 127 20 63%

CFC Season by Season Stats

Season GP GL B K H T D Guernsey No.
1969 1 9 2 11 48

1969 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 14 Melbourne W 9 2 11 48 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1970 6 2 5 73 21 94 35

1970 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 12 Western Bulldogs W 2 19 4 23 35 View match >
Round 13 Richmond L 17 5 22 35 View match >
Round 14 Hawthorn L 2 2 16 2 18 35 View match >
Round 15 Geelong W 1 12 3 15 35 View match >
Round 16 Melbourne W 7 6 13 35 View match >
Round 21 St Kilda W 2 1 3 35 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1971 14 8 5 162 56 218 35

1971 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 5 North Melbourne W 1 1 2 35 View match >
Round 6 Melbourne W 6 2 8 35 View match >
Round 9 Sydney W 1 14 6 20 35 View match >
Round 10 Hawthorn L 1 12 3 15 35 View match >
Round 11 Carlton W 2 17 4 21 35 View match >
Round 12 Western Bulldogs L 1 12 3 15 35 View match >
Round 13 Richmond W 16 7 23 35 View match >
Round 14 Essendon W 1 1 2 35 View match >
Round 16 North Melbourne W 15 5 20 35 View match >
Round 17 Melbourne W 1 14 6 20 35 View match >
Round 18 Geelong L 2 3 15 6 21 35 View match >
Round 19 St Kilda L 1 1 13 3 16 35 View match >
Round 20 Sydney W 10 4 14 35 View match >
Semi Final Richmond L 16 5 21 35 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1972 18 17 17 207 68 275 35, 5

1972 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Richmond L 1 11 1 12 35 View match >
Round 2 Carlton D 7 3 10 35 View match >
Round 3 Melbourne W 1 2 15 4 19 35 View match >
Round 4 St Kilda L 1 2 20 4 24 35 View match >
Round 9 Geelong W 2 10 3 13 5 View match >
Round 10 Sydney W 4 12 5 17 5 View match >
Round 11 Essendon W 2 1 16 4 20 5 View match >
Round 12 Richmond W 1 6 3 9 5 View match >
Round 13 Carlton L 2 2 10 8 18 5 View match >
Round 14 St Kilda W 1 9 4 13 5 View match >
Round 15 Melbourne W 1 18 1 19 5 View match >
Round 16 North Melbourne W 8 5 13 5 View match >
Round 17 Hawthorn W 3 3 12 7 19 5 View match >
Round 18 Fitzroy W 1 1 12 5 17 5 View match >
Round 19 Western Bulldogs W 3 4 7 5 View match >
Round 21 Sydney W 1 15 2 17 5 View match >
Round 22 Essendon L 7 2 9 5 View match >
Qualifying Final Richmond L 1 1 16 3 19 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1973 13 5 9 177 64 241 5

1973 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 6 Melbourne W 12 2 14 5 View match >
Round 7 Carlton L 13 3 16 5 View match >
Round 11 Essendon W 5 7 12 5 View match >
Round 15 Geelong W 2 17 3 20 5 View match >
Round 16 North Melbourne L 1 16 5 21 5 View match >
Round 17 Melbourne W 1 1 13 10 23 5 View match >
Round 18 Carlton W 1 2 19 10 29 5 View match >
Round 19 Fitzroy W 15 1 16 5 View match >
Round 20 Richmond L 1 10 5 15 5 View match >
Round 21 Hawthorn W 1 22 22 5 View match >
Round 22 Essendon W 1 19 4 23 5 View match >
Semi Final Carlton L 1 2 13 11 24 5 View match >
Preliminary Final Richmond L 3 3 6 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1974 17 5 4 186 103 289 5

1974 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 2 Hawthorn W 15 6 21 5 View match >
Round 3 Western Bulldogs W 9 6 15 5 View match >
Round 4 Fitzroy L 13 3 16 5 View match >
Round 5 Carlton W 5 1 6 5 View match >
Round 6 Melbourne W 1 7 4 11 5 View match >
Round 7 St Kilda W 1 14 5 19 5 View match >
Round 8 Geelong L 12 5 17 5 View match >
Round 9 Richmond W 13 14 27 5 View match >
Round 11 Sydney W 14 6 20 5 View match >
Round 12 Essendon W 14 6 20 5 View match >
Round 13 Hawthorn W 10 4 14 5 View match >
Round 14 Fitzroy W 11 7 18 5 View match >
Round 15 Western Bulldogs W 1 1 8 3 11 5 View match >
Round 19 Geelong W 1 12 7 19 5 View match >
Round 20 Richmond L 7 5 12 5 View match >
Elimination Final Western Bulldogs W 2 1 13 15 28 5 View match >
Semi Final Hawthorn L 1 9 6 15 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1975 11 14 7 125 51 176 5

1975 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Sydney W 20 7 27 5 View match >
Round 2 Carlton L 1 5 4 9 5 View match >
Round 4 Geelong W 1 2 2 5 View match >
Round 5 Western Bulldogs L 1 14 8 22 5 View match >
Round 6 Richmond L 1 1 12 1 13 5 View match >
Round 9 St Kilda W 1 10 4 14 5 View match >
Round 12 Sydney W 2 13 3 16 5 View match >
Round 19 Essendon W 1 2 14 9 23 5 View match >
Round 20 St Kilda W 2 9 9 18 5 View match >
Round 21 Hawthorn W 1 2 11 3 14 5 View match >
Elimination Final Richmond L 3 2 15 3 18 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1976 14 9 11 177 86 263 5

1976 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Carlton L 7 3 10 5 View match >
Round 5 St Kilda L 10 6 16 5 View match >
Round 9 Western Bulldogs L 2 6 6 5 View match >
Round 10 Essendon L 1 1 11 6 17 5 View match >
Round 13 Sydney L 1 10 5 15 5 View match >
Round 14 Richmond L 9 5 14 5 View match >
Round 15 Hawthorn L 1 11 5 16 5 View match >
Round 16 St Kilda L 2 11 9 20 5 View match >
Round 17 Geelong L 2 3 18 7 25 5 View match >
Round 18 North Melbourne L 2 1 19 4 23 5 View match >
Round 19 Fitzroy L 1 9 5 14 5 View match >
Round 20 Western Bulldogs L 1 22 10 32 5 View match >
Round 21 Essendon W 1 1 12 14 26 5 View match >
Round 22 Melbourne L 22 7 29 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1977 24 22 16 300 156 456 5

1977 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Western Bulldogs W 2 11 9 20 5 View match >
Round 2 North Melbourne L 1 13 5 18 5 View match >
Round 3 Essendon W 2 11 7 18 5 View match >
Round 4 Richmond W 2 12 6 18 5 View match >
Round 5 Geelong W 1 1 8 1 9 5 View match >
Round 6 Carlton W 8 4 12 5 View match >
Round 7 Fitzroy W 1 13 8 21 5 View match >
Round 8 St Kilda W 2 15 8 23 5 View match >
Round 9 Hawthorn W 2 1 13 6 19 5 View match >
Round 10 Sydney L 2 2 11 6 17 5 View match >
Round 11 Melbourne W 6 11 17 5 View match >
Round 12 Western Bulldogs W 16 5 21 5 View match >
Round 13 North Melbourne W 2 14 7 21 5 View match >
Round 14 Richmond W 13 10 23 5 View match >
Round 15 Essendon W 1 10 4 14 5 View match >
Round 16 Geelong L 2 1 10 6 16 5 View match >
Round 17 Carlton W 2 3 17 5 22 5 View match >
Round 18 Fitzroy W 1 12 11 23 5 View match >
Round 19 St Kilda W 1 12 10 22 5 View match >
Round 20 Hawthorn L 1 1 11 6 17 5 View match >
Round 22 Melbourne W 2 13 5 18 5 View match >
Semi Final Hawthorn W 1 23 8 31 5 View match >
Grand Final North Melbourne D 0 0 16 3 19 5 View match >
Grand Final North Melbourne L 1 0 12 5 17 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1978 20 12 12 195 152 347 5

1978 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Geelong W 15 13 28 5 View match >
Round 2 Essendon W 1 13 6 19 5 View match >
Round 3 Sydney L 1 1 5 View match >
Round 4 Hawthorn L 1 13 8 21 5 View match >
Round 5 North Melbourne L 1 10 8 18 5 View match >
Round 6 Fitzroy W 4 6 10 5 View match >
Round 7 Carlton L 1 1 15 8 23 5 View match >
Round 8 Western Bulldogs W 1 1 13 7 20 5 View match >
Round 9 Richmond W 7 10 17 5 View match >
Round 10 St Kilda W 2 14 10 24 5 View match >
Round 11 Melbourne W 2 2 17 13 30 5 View match >
Round 12 Geelong L 4 6 10 5 View match >
Round 13 Essendon W 1 2 10 3 13 5 View match >
Round 14 Hawthorn W 10 14 24 5 View match >
Round 15 Sydney W 9 5 14 5 View match >
Round 18 Carlton L 1 6 3 9 5 View match >
Round 19 Western Bulldogs W 1 11 11 22 5 View match >
Round 20 Richmond W 6 5 11 5 View match >
Qualifying Final Hawthorn L 1 1 5 5 10 5 View match >
Preliminary Final North Melbourne L 1 3 12 11 23 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1979 21 21 16 242 140 382 5

1979 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Fitzroy L 1 10 6 16 5 View match >
Round 2 Hawthorn W 2 1 9 3 12 5 View match >
Round 3 North Melbourne L 1 7 4 11 5 View match >
Round 4 St Kilda W 4 4 5 View match >
Round 7 Geelong W 1 1 14 7 21 5 View match >
Round 8 Sydney W 3 1 16 6 22 5 View match >
Round 9 Richmond W 1 3 15 10 25 5 View match >
Round 11 Melbourne W 2 10 8 18 5 View match >
Round 12 Fitzroy L 1 10 12 22 5 View match >
Round 13 Hawthorn W 1 5 8 13 5 View match >
Round 15 North Melbourne L 10 7 17 5 View match >
Round 16 Western Bulldogs W 13 6 19 5 View match >
Round 17 Essendon W 2 1 12 8 20 5 View match >
Round 19 Sydney W 13 5 18 5 View match >
Round 20 Richmond W 1 17 3 20 5 View match >
Round 21 Carlton W 2 1 12 4 16 5 View match >
Round 22 Melbourne W 1 10 6 16 5 View match >
Qualifying Final North Melbourne L 3 2 17 10 27 5 View match >
Semi Final Fitzroy W 1 2 13 11 24 5 View match >
Preliminary Final North Melbourne W 1 19 7 26 5 View match >
Grand Final Carlton L 1 0 10 5 15 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1980 19 11 11 147 117 264 5

1980 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Carlton L 1 5 4 9 5 View match >
Round 2 North Melbourne W 1 16 6 22 5 View match >
Round 3 Hawthorn L 1 1 5 View match >
Round 4 Richmond L 1 1 7 8 15 5 View match >
Round 5 Essendon W 1 9 6 15 5 View match >
Round 6 St Kilda W 1 12 10 22 5 View match >
Round 7 Sydney L 8 13 21 5 View match >
Round 8 Fitzroy D 1 2 13 9 22 5 View match >
Round 9 Geelong W 2 1 11 6 17 5 View match >
Round 11 Melbourne W 1 6 11 17 5 View match >
Round 12 Carlton L 1 6 2 8 5 View match >
Round 14 Richmond L 1 6 3 9 5 View match >
Round 15 Essendon W 5 2 7 5 View match >
Round 21 Western Bulldogs W 6 7 13 5 View match >
Round 22 Melbourne W 1 1 10 8 18 5 View match >
Elimination Final North Melbourne W 1 1 5 View match >
Semi Final Carlton W 1 7 11 18 5 View match >
Preliminary Final Geelong W 3 16 5 21 5 View match >
Grand Final Richmond L 1 0 3 5 8 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1981 8 1 3 52 31 83 5

1981 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 9 North Melbourne W 1 12 6 18 5 View match >
Round 10 Richmond W 1 16 9 25 5 View match >
Round 11 Hawthorn L 1 1 11 4 15 5 View match >
Round 12 Western Bulldogs W 4 4 8 5 View match >
Round 13 St Kilda W 1 2 3 5 View match >
Round 15 Melbourne W 4 4 5 View match >
Round 16 Carlton W 1 2 3 5 View match >
Round 20 Richmond W 3 4 7 5 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
Totals 186 127 116 2052 1047 3099
Avg/Game   0.68 0.62 11.03 5.63 16.66
Legend
  • GPGames Played
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • TTackles
  • DDisposals

Key Facts

CFC Debut Number

706

Total AFL Games
186
Total AFL Goals
127
CFC Debut
Round 14, 1969
CFC Last Game
Round 20, 1981
Recruited From
Noorat
Full Name
Ron Wearmouth

Awards

  • Life Members
    1978
  • Most Courageous Player
    1978
  • Third Best and Fairest (J.J. Joyce Trophy)
    1976
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