AFL star Lance ‘Buddy’ Franklin has been nominated for The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame for mixing alcohol with fame.
The 10-million-dollar man has been reprimanded a number of times during his career for drunken behaviour in public.
The Frownlow Medal is awarded to the player whose off-field demeanour epitomises the values of the modern day footballer and draws attention to the status of footballers as role models to young Australians. It covers Australia’s four major football codes; the National Rugby League (NRL), Australian Football League (AFL), the A-League (Football) and Rugby Union’s Super Rugby competition. Rugby League player Shaun Kenny-Dowall won the inaugural medal in 2015 and ex-NRL player Ben Barba is the most recent recipient.
The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame honours former players and players who received media attention in previous seasons, for similarly scandalous behaviour, and its inductees include Ben Cousins and Julian O’Neill.
The Hawthorn and Sydney forward embroiled himself in controversy when he reportedly verbally abused and physically intimidated a woman during a drunken night out at a bar in Melbourne.
Following reports of his behaviour on social media, Franklin took to social media himself, like any good footballer would do, to tweet a defence of his actions. The woman who accused Franklin of intimidation later accepted Franklin’s personal apology.
The star was again chastised for drunken behaviour, however, in the corporate box at the F1 Grand Prix in Melbourne in 2013. He then embarrassed himself in 2014 when he crashed into a row of parked cars in the exclusive Sydney suburb of Rose Bay.
Franklin’s on-field performances and his multi-million-dollar contract with the Sydney Swans surely put him in contention for induction into the AFL Hall of Fame one day, but has he done enough to earn a place in The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame?