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The complete history of the Mighty Magpies

Stan Smith

Stan Smith

1947-1950
25

46 CFC Games Played

25 CFC Goals

Date of Birth
17 April 1925
Date of Death
8 June 2019
Recruited From
Collingwood Juniors
Collingwood Debut
Round 3, 1947
Height:
175cm
Weight:
73kg

Biography

Stan Smith might not have enjoyed a long career at Victoria Park – though nearly 50 games in four seasons is nothing to be sneezed at – but he did get to experience one of the few perks involved in playing for Collingwood in the late 1940s.

In just his 10th game, the speedy wingman/forward kicked four goals against Hawthorn at Victoria Park. After the game, an elderly gentleman came up to him in the rooms and shook his hand. As the man walked away, Smith realised he had 10 pounds in his grasp. The fan was club benefactor and businessman John Wren.

Smith recalled in an interview more than six decades later: “I didn’t know who John Wren was, he came in and shook my hand and he gave me 10 pounds … to me, it was like it was a thousand pounds.”

Unfortunately for Stan Smith, that was one of the rare times when his performances seemed to merit universal approval. Although he was undoubtedly a fine player, he was often the last-in and first-out, meaning he spent most of his time at the club moving between the seniors and reserves. It must have been frustrating for him – and a far cry from how his career started.

Stan’s family originally came from the Mallee but a move to inner suburban Melbourne brought both Stan and his older brother Ron to the attention of Collingwood scouts.

Ron debuted in 1941 and lasted until 1947, totalling 48 games along the way. Stan joined him in 1947 after showing good form for the Collingwood Juniors, although the brothers only managed to play three games together.

Stan was very nearly a surprise selection in the 1946 preliminary final, but selectors in the end opted for Neil Mann, who went on to become a star. But Stan didn’t have to wait too much longer for his own chance, making his debut in Round 3, 1947, as Collingwood’s 500th VFL/AFL player, against Geelong.

The Age noted in the lead-up that Smith was “a player of the dashing and determined type” and was expected to do well on the half-forward line. And that’s exactly what he did, kicking two goals on debut and generally impressing.

It was the start of the best run Stan Smith would enjoy. He played 16 of the 17 games remaining that season – including the unexpectedly profitable four-goal haul against Hawthorn and the team’s two finals. He kicked 10 goals for the year too, and generally seemed to have a fine career in front of him.

The Argus would describe him in this way: “Fairly solidly built, he has played his best football on the wing, where his pace and his ability in the air have been his greatest assets.”

But Smith’s career stalled after that encouraging debut season. He managed only nine games in 1948, then 13 and eight in the following two seasons – missing games through injury, suspension and form. This was a tough time to be a small man at Collingwood, with guys like Lou & Ron Richards, Bob Rose and Des Healey all making their way, and Stan found his opportunities limited.

He played his 46th and final game in 1950, but continued to play in the reserves hoping for a senior call-up, as he desperately wanted a five-year certificate. Sadly, it never came. He would finish runner-up in the reserves best and fairest the following year and ended up playing 57 games for the seconds. He trained at Hawthorn before the 1952 season but wasn’t picked up and ended up plying his trade in the VFA.

A motor driver by trade, Stan Smith was never quite able to steer his senior Collingwood career as far as he would have liked. But 46 games (plus 57 more in the reserves) and 25 goals – and 10 pounds from John Wren – is still a handy footballing CV.

Statistics

CFC Career Stats

Season played Games Goals Finals Win %
1947-1950 46 25 3 54%

CFC Season by Season Stats

Season GP GL B K H T D Guernsey No.
1947 16 10 0 25

1947 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 3 Geelong W 2 0 25 View match >
Round 4 Sydney W 1 0 25 View match >
Round 5 Melbourne L 1 0 25 View match >
Round 6 Western Bulldogs L 0 25 View match >
Round 7 Richmond L 0 25 View match >
Round 8 Essendon W 0 25 View match >
Round 9 Carlton W 0 25 View match >
Round 10 St Kilda W 0 25 View match >
Round 11 North Melbourne W 1 0 25 View match >
Round 13 Hawthorn W 4 0 25 View match >
Round 14 Geelong W 1 0 25 View match >
Round 15 Sydney D 0 25 View match >
Round 16 Melbourne L 0 25 View match >
Round 17 Western Bulldogs W 0 25 View match >
Round 18 Richmond L 0 25 View match >
Round 19 Essendon L 0 25 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1948 9 5 0 25

1948 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 North Melbourne W 1 0 25 View match >
Round 2 Sydney W 1 0 25 View match >
Round 3 Essendon L 2 0 25 View match >
Round 4 Geelong W 1 0 25 View match >
Round 7 St Kilda W 0 25 View match >
Round 12 North Melbourne W 0 25 View match >
Round 19 Melbourne L 0 25 View match >
Semi Final Western Bulldogs W 0 25 View match >
Preliminary Final Melbourne L 0 25 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1949 13 9 0 25

1949 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 2 Melbourne W 0 25 View match >
Round 3 Fitzroy L 0 25 View match >
Round 4 Hawthorn W 0 25 View match >
Round 11 Sydney W 0 25 View match >
Round 12 North Melbourne L 0 25 View match >
Round 13 Melbourne L 1 0 25 View match >
Round 14 Fitzroy W 0 25 View match >
Round 15 Hawthorn W 2 0 25 View match >
Round 16 Carlton W 1 0 25 View match >
Round 17 Essendon L 2 0 25 View match >
Round 18 Western Bulldogs W 1 0 25 View match >
Round 19 St Kilda L 2 0 25 View match >
Semi Final Essendon L 0 25 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
1950 8 1 0 25

1950 Season stats

Hide Season
RD VS Result GL B K H T D Guernsey No. Match Report
Round 1 Sydney L 0 25 View match >
Round 3 Carlton L 0 25 View match >
Round 4 Hawthorn W 0 25 View match >
Round 5 Geelong W 0 25 View match >
Round 6 Richmond L 0 25 View match >
Round 7 Western Bulldogs W 0 25 View match >
Round 8 Melbourne L 1 0 25 View match >
Round 11 Essendon L 0 25 View match >
Legend
  • #Guernsey
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • DDisposals
  • MMarks
  • TTackles
*Player goal statistics included VFA (Victorian Football Association) results.
Totals 46 25
Avg/Game   0.54
Legend
  • GPGames Played
  • GLGoals
  • BBehinds
  • KKicks
  • HHandballs
  • TTackles
  • DDisposals

Key Facts

CFC Debut Number

500

Total AFL Games
46
Total AFL Goals
25
CFC Debut
Round 3, 1947
CFC Last Game
Round 11, 1950
Recruited From
Collingwood Juniors
Full Name
Stanley Vincent Smith
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