|Full name||Jay Schulz|
|Date of birth||18 April 1985|
|Place of birth||South Australia|
|Original team||Woodville-West Torrens (SANFL)|
|Draft||#12, 2002 National Draft, Richmond|
|Height/Weight||193cm / 95kg|
|Current club||Port Adelaide|
142 (213)71 (58)
1 Playing statistics correct to end of 2013 season.
Jay Schulz (born 18 April 1985) is an Australian rules footballer with the Port Adelaide Football Club in the Australian Football League (AFL). A forward, 1.93 metres (6 ft 4 in) tall and weighing 95 kilograms (209 lb).
As a 17 year old, he played for the All Australian under 17 side against Ireland in the International Rules series. He won the Ron Barassi Medal as best player for Australia during the series. Schulz was drafted in the 2002 National AFL Draft, No. 12 overall, traded by Adelaide for Jason Torney, No. 2 (Daniel Wells), No. 18 (Kris Shore) and No. 32 (Luke Jericho) for the Richmond Tigers. He debut in the 2003 AFL season. Jay attended Concordia College in Highgate, South Australia for his high school.
Richmond career (2003–2009)
Early career (2003–2004)
He made his debut in 2003 against Essendon and only saw two minutes of action. Schulz had a promising start to his career at Richmond, including a 6 goal game against the Brisbane Lions in 2004, that earned him a Rising Star nomination.
2005 was a year to forget for Schulz after breaking his ankle twice. He played 4 games for the season. After playing the first two games of the season in 2006, he hurt his shoulder and missed a few months. He returned in Round 13 and kicked 3 goals against Collingwood. He had a career high 8 tackles against the Western Bulldogs a few games later. Schulz kicked 16 goals in the last 9 games of the season. He was used in a variety of positions, highlighting his ability to play multiple roles. However, he will be looking to cement a permanent spot, either forward or back, to give some stability to the Tigers structure. Schulz started the 2007 season very well, kicking 9 goals in the first 4 games. However, he couldn't hold his spot for the entire season. He finished the year with 14.14 from 12 games.
Jay Schulz was also on the verge of being traded to then Grand Finaliest, Port Adelaide in a bid to return to his home state, and to start afresh his football career, however Richmond rejected the offer from the club, and opted to retain Schulz on the list as there was still time on his contract.
After being close to leaving Richmond during the Trade Week in 2007, Schulz had his most consistent season at Richmond in 2008. He played mainly at centre half back and also went forward to pinch hit. Schulz started the season well and even lead the Richmond Best & Fairest after the first few rounds. He had a career high 29 disposals and 17 marks in round 20 against Hawthorn. At the end of the 2008 season, Schulz signed on with the Tigers for a further two years. He had a disappointing 2009 due to injury and average form. Jay played in both the backline and forward line, kicking 3 goals in 4 matches.
Port Adelaide career (2010–present)
Career high (2010–present)
On October 8, 2009, Schulz was traded to the Port Adelaide Football Club in exchange for Mitchell Farmer. Once he arrived at Alberton, he was given the number 28 guernsey previously held by Toby Thurstans.
Jay made his Port debut in round 1 against North Melbourne and showed his hardness at the ball by going off the field twice with the blood rule (Port went on to win easily). He laid 6 tackles for the game and many lead to goals for the Power. Schulz played the first 3 games of the 2010 season in the forward lines and displayed good goal sense and defensive pressure. He kicked 3.3 in those three games but was ruled out of the Round 4 clash against Geelong after a minor knee injury. He returned to the team in Round 5 and contributed up forward, kicking 2.1 against top-placed St Kilda, and then a goal in a quiet game in the Showdown the following week. He was omitted from the Port Adelaide team for the Round 7 match against Essendon in Melbourne. Schulz played his best game in Round 13 against North Melbourne, kicking 7 goals. Schulz's seven-goal haul was the equal second highest for the Power and one shy of the club record held by former captain Warren Tredrea. In round 18, Schulz took 6 contested marks and kicked 4 goals to help Port Adelaide win by 8 points over Hawthorn. In Round 21, he kicked 5 goals making him the leading goal-kicker for Port Adelaide with 33 goals. He finished top 10 in the John Cahill Medal. He also got 5 votes in the Brownlow Medal.
He was voted into the Leadership group for the 2011 season. Schulz suffered a serious knee injury during the round 1 clash against Collingwood. He twisted his right knee in a clinch with Magpie Luke Ball on the city wing of the ground early in the game. He returned to action in round 7 against the Hawks. Schulz equalled his career best of 7 goals in round 15 against the Brisbane Lions. He finished the season on 31 goals, just one goal short of being the leading goal kicker, for the second year in a row.
Jay Schulz's consistency, workrate and courage in 2012 were a shining light at a club that has been accused of lacking all three.
With Robbie Gray only playing two games before succumbing to an injury, John Butcher suffering from hip injuries and the second year blues, Justin Westhoff and Brett Ebert failing to perform consistently and Mitch Banner stuck in the SANFL, Schulz was almost a lone hand in the Port Adelaide forward line this year. Faced with this challenge, he performed admirably. Jay was arguably the most consistent forward in the competition, only scoring less than 2 goals twice in the 15 games he played this season (and in one of those games he was subbed off with injury before half-time) despite taking the No. 1 defender every week. He averaged 2.8 goals for the season, putting him at sixth in the AFL with only stars of the competition like Buddy Franklin, Taylor Walker, Tom Hawkins, Matthew Pavlich and Jack Riewoldt ahead of him. While his accuracy wasn't as good as last year in which he was rated by Champion Data as the most accurate kick for goal in the competition, his record of 42.21 for the year was still impressive. He finished the season as Port Adelaide's leading goalkicker by a wide margin despite missing 7 games.
His best game for the season came against North Melbourne in Round 8, in which he kicked 7 goals straight (his third 7 goal haul in three years at the Power). His 4 goals in the final quarter were the driving force behind Port Adelaide coming back from 32 points down with 10 minutes to go to score a huge upset win.
His performance alone wasn't the only thing that endeared Schulz to Port Adelaide faithful. His unwavering attack on the ball is second to none in the AFL, sometimes to his detriment. He missed a large chunk of the season due to a collision with teammate Justin Westhoff in which he suffered a potentially life-threatening rib injury. Many players would have second thoughts after such a serious injury, but upon his return he had the same kamikaze attack on the ball that he always had.
In 2013, Port Adelaide made the finals for the first time since the 2007 119-point grand final loss to Geelong. They finished the season with a 12-10 win-loss record in his best season in his career, booting a high 49 goals throughout it and becoming 3x Port Adelaide Leading Goal Kicker. He regularly kicked more than 2 goals a game and sometimes got the Power over the line. In his first final against Collingwood, Schulz kicked 3 goals and got his team over the line by 24 points. Port Adelaide then advanced to a Semi-Final against arch rivals Geelong which sparked many bad memories. The team got off to a great start but the Cats got a run-on, which was when Schulz really stepped up to the plate and kicked 2 amazing goals. Although losing by 16 points, Schulz ended his season in style and bravery.
Jay Schulz also worked up the ground a lot in the 2013 AFL Season which got the eye of commentators and had him improving his game by collecting more disposals and making him more noticed by Power fans. It also helped him creat his best season in his 11 season history.
- Jay Schulz's profile on the official website of the Port Adelaide Football Club
- Jay Schulz's statistics from AFL Tables