16 February 1936
17 February 2021 (aged 85)
Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 17y 173d
Last game: 27y 203d
Height and weight
Height: 187 cm
Weight: 96 kg
Collingwood: 16, 27, 1, 2
Hall of fame
Australian Football Hall of Fame (2007)
|Club||League||Career span||Games||Goals||Avg||Win %||AKI||AHB||AMK||BV|
Pre 1965 stats are for selected matches only
Probably best remembered today as Collingwood's much-loved (and much-loathed) 'enforcer' of the late 1950s and early 1960s, during the early part of his career Murray Weideman was actually more renowned for his aerial ability. He made his VFL debut in 1953, and was on the bench for that year's Grand Final, in which the Magpies downed Geelong.
Weideman's more brutal side only really emerged later in the 1950s as he filled out physically and began to assume more of an on-field leadership role. When regular Collingwood skipper Frank Tuck was injured and unavailable for the 1958 Grand Final against Melbourne, Murray Weideman stepped into his shoes and took to the responsibility as though born to it. His deliberate and continuous intimidation of his star Melbourne opponent Ron Barassi was a major factor in the Magpies eking out a shock three-goal win.
Weideman was much more than just the footballing equivalent of a hitman, however. He won the Copeland Trophy for Collingwood's best and fairest player in 1957, 1961 and 1962, and was regularly among the Magpies' best performers in important games. In 1964, after 180 VFL games and 262 goals, he accepted a job captain-coaching Albury in the Ovens and Murray Football League.
After four seasons there, during which he steered his side to the 1966 premiership, he accepted a similar job with West Adelaide, which had been in the doldrums since the early 1960s. Weideman promptly got the Blood 'n' Tars into the finals, but they bowed out at the first hurdle against North Adelaide. They did slightly better in 1969, reaching the Preliminary Final before losing to Glenelg, but then Weideman opted to retire as a player. Without his inspirational on-field presence, Westies seemed to lose their way, finishing sixth in 1970, and eighth in 1971, after which 'The Weed' packed his bags.
Weideman made a brief return to coaching in 1975 with his old club Collingwood, but after a solid debut season which spawned an 11-9 record and fifth place on the ladder, the wheels fell off in spectacular fashion in 1976 as the club plummeted to its first ever wooden spoon.
It is as a player, however, that Murray Weideman will be best remembered, and his selection at centre half forward in Collingwood's official 'Team of the Twentieth Century' should help ensure that his feats continue to be celebrated for many years to come.
Author - John Devaney