Moses is famous for his divisive actions, but did you know that he was also homophobic? He is not the first of his kind to stigmatise homosexuality, and he may not be the last. NRL player Mitchell Moses was once sanctioned for homophobic comments and has earned himself a nomination for The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame.
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. NRL player Shaun Kenny-Dowall won the inaugural medal in 2015, while AFL player Elijah Taylor 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.
Moses was given a two-match ban for directing a homophobic comment at a Queensland player during a junior State of Origin match in 2014. Mitchell called Luke Bateman a “fucking gay cunt” and his slur was picked up by the TV microphone. Viewers heard it loud and clear.
The comment is not quite in the same league as Australia’s most famous homophobe, Israel Folau, but it introduced young Moses to the big time and to the NRL Integrity Unit. Will Moses go down in history as one who divided, and will he join the greats in The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame?