WHAT were Jeff Garlett and Mitch Robinson thinking?
By staying out until after 5am and getting themselves in trouble on the weekend, they’ve both cost themselves a chance of playing for Carlton any time soon and, in Jeff’s case, maybe his career?
I know everyone will be quick to point out the fact I made my share of mistakes, which is fair enough, but I’ve always been the first to admit I’d do things differently if I had my time again.
And I’d still be in the AFL if I did.
You live and learn but sometimes you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone.
My old coach Denis Pagan used to have a saying that there’s “no fun after one” or something like it.
I never used to take it that seriously but he was probably right.
What happened to the boys wasn’t necessarily their fault — they haven’t been charged and seem like the ones that got attacked — but they put themselves in that position by being out that late.
I love Jeffy and Mitch, they’re good fellas, but it wasn’t smart.
Especially for Jeff.
There’s only four weeks left in the season and he’s not in the seniors, he’s out of contract and playing for his career.
He doesn’t need to give the club another reason to get rid of him.
There’s too much at stake for him to be out at 5am.
I’m not saying it’s right — as I said, you live and learn — but unfortunately that’s just the way it is for footballers now.
I do miss the good old days.
When I first started playing, there were no mobile phones with cameras around and nobody wanting their two minutes of fame through social media.
But it’s just the world we live in now.
I’m not having a crack at Jeff and Mitch — they’re not the first and won’t be the last — but it was a good reminder for everyone else with the silly season coming up.
I love having a beer as much as anyone but you can’t be too careful these days.
At the time, it might seem like you’re just having a good night out with the boys but as Jeffy and Mitch found out, it doesn’t take much for things to go wrong.
Your career can be taken from you in the blink of an eye.
Unfortunately, I learnt the hard way.