Australian Football Celebrating the history of the great Australian game


Key Facts

Full name
Robert Rose Snr

Known as
Bob Rose

7 August 1928

7 July 2003 (aged 74)

Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 18y 10d
Last game: 27y 41d

Height and weight
Height: 178 cm
Weight: 74 kg

Senior clubs

Jumper numbers
Collingwood: 22

Recruited from
Collingwood (1956)

Family links
Bill Rose (Brother)Kevin Rose (Brother)Ralph Rose (Brother)Robert Rose Jnr (Son)

Bob Rose

ClubLeagueCareer spanGamesGoalsAvgWin %AKIAHBAMKBV
Wangaratta RoversOMFL1956-1962

Pre 1965 stats are for selected matches only

AFL: 5,625th player to appear, 1,275th most games played, 367th most goals kickedCollingwood: 496th player to appear, 95th most games played, 28th most goals kicked

Bob Rose made a sterling contribution to the Collingwood Football Club for much of his adult life. As a player he was tough, powerful, quick, well balanced and highly skilled. He won a then unprecedented four Copeland trophies for the club's best and fairest player in 1949 and from 1951-3, played 15 consecutive interstate matches for the VFL, was chosen in the inaugural All Australian team in 1953, and was a member that same year of the Magpies' winning Grand Final team against Geelong.

His extraordinary toughness was a legacy of his notorious side-line as a prize fighter, in which he enjoyed a fair amount of success. A superb drop kick, he was said to rove "like a ruckman"¹, and often sustained needless injuries by preferring to crash through packs rather than dodge his way out of trouble.

After leaving Collingwood, Bob Rose enjoyed an auspicious seven-season career as captain-coach of Ovens and Murray League side Wangaratta Rovers, winning two Morris Medals for the best and fairest player in the competition, as well as four club champion awards. He also steered the team to four Grand Finals for two wins.

Rose returned to coach Collingwood for eight years from 1964 but, despite having many fine players available to him, had to endure the heartache of three losing Grand Finals by a combined total of only 15 points. Between 1972 and 1975 he was coach of Footscray, and in 1974 steered the Bulldogs into their first finals series in 13 years.

With Collingwood in dire trouble financially he returned briefly as coach in 1985 in a bid to 'steady the ship'. After a horror start to the 1986 season, however, he handed over the reins to his acolyte, Leigh Matthews, who would go on to mastermind the club's first flag for three decades.

Bob Rose continued to have an impact on the club behind the scenes, and his importance to Collingwood goes well beyond the overt achievements listed here.

Author - John Devaney


  1. Football's 50 Greatest by Greg Hobbs and Scot Palmer, page 31.


Full Points Footy Publications


* Behinds calculated from the 1965 season on.
+ Score at the end of extra time.