Stawell Warriors Football Netball Club has announced its junior football coaches for 2020.
Rhett Mellor will take the role of the under-14 coach while Nick Oliver will lead the under-17 team.
Oliver coached juniors at Lake Wendouree in Ballarat in 2018 and feels making a move into coaching is a way to make sure he keeps involved with the game.
Moving to the region in 2019 as a teacher at Stawell Secondary College, Oliver feels his profession puts him in good stead for the coaching role.
Undergoing two knee reconstructions and in the 2019 season sidelined with a hand injury, Oliver said he has taken on multiple coaching roles within schools and university to keep involved in the game.
"I'm probably past my best before date in terms of playing football," he said.
"I really enjoy coaching and it's a good way to be involved with the community outside of school and interact with my students in a different environment.
"Coaching keeps me involved at a different level and I can see myself being involved in a coaching capacity within football rather than playing in the future.
"I feel I'm about one big injury away from calling it time on playing."
Under-17 is an important time in a player's development. Oliver said his key focus is ensuring players receive the best possible transition from junior football to senior football possible.
"I'll be working on trying to create a culture of support within the playing group," he said.
"I will try and push a very disciplined culture and being accountable. Many expectations the senior group at the club have, we will try and emulate in the juniors to give them a taste of senior football expectations.
"Country football is a really good opportunity for junior players to get a taste of senior football from a young age."
Oliver said another key focus was to build both on and off-field skills for the players.
"It's a crucial time in life for the under-17 age group," he said.
"I grew up around a football club and know first-hand how beneficial and the role a football club can play in a young person's life.
"Stawell Football Netball Club is a fantastic family-friendly run club and to be able to in some way be a role model and help these players develop is really exciting."
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