24 May 1904
Place of birth
Footscray, VIC (3011)
2 July 2001 (aged 97)
Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 20y 343d
Last game: 30y 114d
Height and weight
Height: 175 cm
Weight: 75 kg
Footscray: 29, 33, 2, 1, 8
State of origin
Rupe Hopkins (Brother)
|Club||League||Career span||Games||Goals||Avg||Win %||AKI||AHB||AMK||BV|
|VFA||1923-1924, 1935, 1939||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
Pre 1965 stats are for selected matches only
Footscray's first Brownlow Medallist, albeit only retrospectively, Allan Hopkins also finished as a runner-up in the award on two occasions, and fourth once.
Hopkins began with the Tricolours in 1923, when they were still members of the VFA, and was a prominent member of premiership teams in his first two seasons in senior football. In 1924 he played in the famous Footscray side which defeated Essendon for the championship of Victoria.
Notoriously ungainly of gait, and rather slow for a centreman or on-baller, Hopkins was nevertheless devastatingly effective, and opponents who underestimated him were quickly made to look like mugs. A regular, and almost invariably successful, Big V representative (20 appearances), at the 1930 Adelaide carnival he was voted player of the series. Somewhat surprisingly, given that he was often seen to be carrying the load for many of his less talented team mates, Hopkins only won Footscray's top player award once.
After 151 VFL games for Footscray between 1924 and 1934 Hopkins made the short move to Yarraville, where he was appointed captain-coach for the 1935 season. It was a stunningly successful appointment as the Villains reached their first ever VFA Grand Final, beating Camberwell by nine points after a topsy-turvy tussle. Hopkins' form as a player was consistently good all year, and he finished runner-up in the Recorder Cup.
After three seasons away from the game, Hopkins returned to Yarraville in 1939 for one last stint as a player. Despite being one of the oldest players in the VFA, he showed that he had lost none of his class and poise.
Author - John Devaney