2012 Brownlow Medal

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2012 Brownlow Medal
Date 24 September
Location Crown Palladium
Hosted by Bruce McAvaney
Winner Jobe Watson (Essendon)
30 votes
Television/Radio coverage
Network Seven Network
Fox Footy

The 2012 Brownlow Medal was won by Jobe Watson from Essendon for being adjudged the fairest and best player for the 2012 AFL season. The Brownlow Medal is the most prestigious individual award in Australian rules football.[1] The award was presented on Monday, 24 September, in the week before the 2012 AFL Grand Final.

Leading votegetters[edit]

Essendon's Jobe Watson won the Brownlow Medal,[2] polling 30 votes and becoming the sixth Essendon player to win the award. Midfielders dominated the award, filling the top ten positions. The six players selected in defensive positions in the 2012 All-Australian team combined polled only eight votes.[3]

Player Votes
1st Jobe Watson (Essendon) 30
=2nd Trent Cotchin (Richmond)
Sam Mitchell (Hawthorn)
=4th Scott Thompson (Adelaide)
Dane Swan (Collingwood)
6th Gary Ablett Jr (Gold Coast) 24
7th Patrick Dangerfield (Adelaide) 23
=8th Dayne Beams (Collingwood)
Lenny Hayes (St Kilda)
Josh Kennedy (Sydney)

Voting procedure[edit]

The three field umpires (those umpires who control the flow of the game, as opposed to goal or boundary umpires) confer after each match and award three votes, two votes and one vote to the players they regard as the best, second best and third best in the match, respectively. The votes are kept secret until the awards night, and are read and tallied on the evening.

As the medal is awarded to the fairest and best player in the league,[4] those who have been suspended during the season by the AFL Tribunal are ineligible to win the award; however, they may still continue to poll votes. Notable players who were ineligible this season included, amongst others: former Brownlow Medallists Jimmy Bartel, Simon Black, Chris Judd and Adam Goodes, as well as Fremantle captain Matthew Pavlich.[5]

Effect of Essendon supplements scandal[edit]

The Essendon supplements scandal has led to conjecture over whether Jobe Watson should and will be able to keep the 2012 Brownlow Medal. In February 2013, the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA) and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) began an investigation into the legality of Essendon's supplements program during the 2012 AFL season and the preceding preseason. Thirty four Essendon players – including Watson – were suspected of taking the banned peptide Thymosin beta-4. The review concluded with the players being found guilty in the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), resulting in the suspensions of all thirty-four players. As of February 2016, an appeal has been lodged against that decision in the Federal Supreme Court of Switzerland.

Following the guilty verdict handed down by the CAS in January, it was announced the AFL Commission would meet in February to determine whether Watson would retain his Brownlow Medal;[6] however, this decision is now delayed until the outcome of the Federal Supreme Court appeal is known, expected to be in mid-to-late 2016.[7]


  1. ^ Blake, Martin (24 September 2012). "Reward at last for Dons skipper". The Sydney Morning Herald. 
  2. ^ "2012 Brownlow medal count leaderboard". Smh.com.au. Retrieved 2013-09-04. 
  3. ^ Quayle, Emma; Blake, Martin (24 September 2012). "Brownlow Quirks and Oddities". The Age. Melbourne. 
  4. ^ "About the Brownlow". Afl.com.au. 2012-01-04. Retrieved 2012-09-29. 
  5. ^ "2012 Brownlow Medal: ineligible players". 
  6. ^ Pierik, Jon. "Essendon CAS verdict: Jobe Watson could be stripped of Brownlow Medal, review in February". The Age. Retrieved 2016-01-12. 
  7. ^ Matt Thompson (11 February 2016). "The Essendon 34 appeal: Frequently asked questions". Retrieved 11 February 2016.