As a kid growing in Adelaide’s western suburbs, Brodie Smith never thought he would be captaining a football side at any level, let alone the Adelaide Football Club.
In Smith’s own words, the young Port Adelaide supporter in him “probably would’ve told you to get stuffed”.
But a lot has changed since a teenager from Woodville-West Torrens was selected by the Crows at pick No.14 in the 2010 National Draft.
Almost 10 years after his name was called, an “extremely proud” Smith will lead his team out onto Metricon Stadium this Saturday against North Melbourne.
“I absolutely love the footy club and am so happy I got drafted here, even though I was a Port supporter,” Smith told AFC Media.
“I just love the place to bits and that’s why it’s such a huge honour to be the captain this weekend.
“For my mum and dad (too), who have played a huge role at the club here.”
Smith’s mother Tracey will be exceptionally proud, given she has been a passionate Crows fan since the Club’s inception in 1991.
Tracey has experienced the highs and lows of her son’s career up close after becoming a full-time employee at West Lakes the same month Brodie was drafted.
“Mum worked 10 years here, so she knows the place back to front,” Smith said.
“It’s going to be a very proud moment for them and all of my extended family as well.”
One of Smith’s lowlights came in Adelaide’s 2017 Qualifying Final win when he ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament.
Little did he know it would become a major catalyst in his leadership development, using the enforced stint on the sidelines to work on helping others and positively impacting the group.
“When I had my knee injury, I was able to spend a lot of time with the younger guys,” Smith said.
“I got a lot of joy out of helping people which is why I guess I’ve come into this leadership role.”
Smith admitted he was devastated after his side’s narrow loss to Essendon, to the point where he was almost fighting back tears.
He said the entire group has been working incredibly hard since the season restart and are desperate to register their first win for not only the players, but the coaches and fans.
“To get so close in the Essendon game and fall just short was very emotional for the guys because we just want to win so bad,” Smith said.
“Not just for us, as senior guys we want Will Hamill and Andy McPherson to have these wins, get in the middle of the circle. But we also want Nicksy, the coaches and all of our fans. We know how bad they want to win as well.
“I think the emotion after the game was not just individual, it was the collective of the whole footy club just wanting to get that win on the board.”
Despite starting season 2020 with eight consecutive losses, Smith said the Club’s culture remains positive and believes a maiden victory is not far away.
“As much as we’re trying to build this winning culture and we know zero and eight is not acceptable, guys are coming in on their days off doing extra touch to get better, doing extra weights or whatever it is.
“For me, that shows we’re on the right path as a footy club and the win’s just around the corner.”
The Crows take on North Melbourne at Metricon Stadium this Saturday from 2.35pm AEST / 2.05pm ACST.