Norman Bernard Dare
10 September 1948 (age 74)
Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 19y 342d
Last game: 28y 267d
Height and weight
Height: 183 cm
Weight: 73 kg
Fitzroy: 46, 2, 9
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The adopted doyen of coaches in Queensland, Norm Dare was named Queensland Coach of the Century in 2003 after a massive contribution at club and state level.
Originally recruited from MacLeod-Rosanna, Dare was a solid contributor for Fitzroy in 70 games over a seven year period from 1968 to 1974, playing mainly on the wing. He moved to West Torrens in the SANFL in 1975, and although he played with the club for only two seasons, is still remembered for an incident in a match against West Adelaide when he jumped the fence and hide amongst the crowd to prevent Torrens from being penalised in a head count - some say he was covered by a blanket to make the subterfuge complete.
After a return to Fitzroy, where he added a further two games to his senior tally, Dare was appointed coach of the Fitzroy Reserves, and so began a long and successful career in the coaching 'hot seat'. After two seasons in the Fitzroy job, he moved to Queensland and tasted premiership success with Kedron in his first season, before relocating to the Gold Coast in 1982 ahead of Southport’s entry to the then QAFL competition in 1983. In six years with the Sharks Dare coached them to three premierships, in 1983, 1985, and 1987, in the process setting up the club for long term success.
He joined the Brisbane Bears as assistant-coach under Peter Knights in 1989 and in 1990, after the departure of Knights and his immediate successor Paul Feltham, served as the Bear's senior coach before voluntarily stepping down to make way for Robert Walls, although he stayed on as an assistant-coach for a further three years. Lured back to Victoria by Denis Pagan, Dare served as the latter's assistant at North Melbourne from 1996 to 2000, sharing in two premierships. After a stint under new coach Mark Thompson at Geelong, Dare returned to his adopted state, and old club Southport, in 2004 and added another flag to his list in 2005 before retiring from football.
A man credited with a key role in elevating the status of Queensland football, Dare was also Queensland coach from 1980 to 1984, leading the Maroons to two mighty Escort Cup victories in 1983 and 1984 and a famous State of Origin win over Victoria at the Gabba in 1991.
Author - Adam Cardosi