Jumping at the Chance

From NBA Hopefuls to AFL Prospects: The Players of the American Experiment
by Gil Griffin

Publisher: Schwartz Publishing Pty. Ltd

Publication Date: June 27, 2016

ISBN: 9781925435115

Binding: Kobo eBook

Availability: eBook

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A wonderful fish-out-of water story about talented US athletes launching their AFL careers.

Talented basketballers Jason Holmes, Eric Wallace, Mason Cox and Matt Korcheck all had decent careers in Division One of the NCAA. But with the NBA out of reach, the dream they shared of becoming professional athletes seemed destined to go unfulfilled. Then came an invitation to a three-day scouting combine in Redondo Beach, California, to learn to play a sport they’d never even heard of before: Australian Rules football.

Fast-forward a couple of years and the four ambitious young athletes were signed to AFL clubs as international rookies, competing to play at the top level of the sport. Some have made it – including Holmes, who played his first senior matches for St Kilda in 2015 and Mason Cox who debuted for Collingwood in 2016 – while others will fail. But all are taking a great leap of faith – in their ability as athletes, and also in their adaptability and resilience.

A captivating book that crosses boundaries in more ways than one, Jumping at the Chance chronicles the AFL’s efforts to draw foreign athletes to Aussie Rules, and tells the colourful stories of these and other young Americans prepared to dream big.

Jumping at the Chance provides a great insight into what drives individuals to succeed … a must-read for anyone aspiring to take a chance to fulfil their dreams in life and sport.’ —Kevin Sheehan, National and International Talent Manager of the AFL

Gil Griffin lives in Playa Del Rey, California, and is a journalist and teacher of English and history. He has written for the LA Times, the Washington Post and the Miami Herald, as well as the AFL’s Football Record. Gil fell in love with footy while travelling in Australia, and is an avid Fremantle Dockers supporter. He is a regular contributor to WA Today’s footy coverage.