The Ricky Stuart Myth
Fact: Ricky Stuart is a tough, no-nonsense coach. He’s prickly and arrogant, whiny and obnoxious, but he gets results.
Something here is not quite right; can you spot the myth?
In his past 5 seasons of NRL coaching, Stuart’s coaching record reads like this:
That’s a win percentage of 43% – hardly inspiring stuff. In spite of this, NRL clubs were recently clambouring over each other for Stuart’s signature.
Sure, Stuart had a couple of great seasons with the Roosters at the beginning his career – but, the truth is, the Roosters had a fantastic roster and, in Brad Fittler, a supremely talented leader at the peak of his powers. Since then, Stuart has failed to achieve any great success as a coach and, perhaps more significantly, left both of his former clubs in disarray.
“But what about his origin feats!?” you cry. Well, again, let’s look at the stats:
Played 9 3
Won 4 1
Lost 5 2
There’s no doubt that in 2010 and 2011 Stuart has come up against against a formidable Queensland outfit. Nevertheless, it is still quite incredible that following consecutive series defeats the public remain convinced that he is the NSW messiah.
Stuart is the king of deflection; nothing is ever his fault. He uses the media superbly and crafts his image meticulously. Stuart is always coaching the “battlers”, proud of his valiant toilers from Cronulla or NSW.
Ricky Stuart joins Parramatta in 2013. The Eels should no doubt improve following a horror 2012 campaign. Of course, if things don’t go to plan, Stuart will lament his roster, disparage the referees and remind us all of the fact that he brought passion back to the NSW jumper. Many of us will nod, silently perpetuating the Ricky Stuart myth.