Boys On The Bubble: Round 10, 2008

Another important week for bubble boys this week, as several popular rookies have hit the top of the rollercoaster, including Kurt Tippett, Ryan Gamble and maybe even David Myers.

Backpocalypse

Matt Riggio, KAN BAC. DT: 5224 selections, $112,900, -24 BE, 54.5 avg. SC: 3421 selections, $203,900, 1 BE, 61.5 avg.
Kepler Bradley, FRE BAC, FWD. DT: 4056 selections, $196,500, -5 BE, 76.5 avg. SC: 10649 selections, $177,000, -33 BE, 70.5 avg.
Scott McMahon, KAN BAC, FWD. DT: 1505 selections, $236,200, 52 BE, 63 avg. SC: 2275 selections, $361,100, 76 BE, 71.5 avg.
Jason Roe, BRL BAC. DT: 1658 selections, $246,700, 75 BE, 55.5 avg. SC: 804 selections, $428,500, 129 BE, 65.5 avg.
Tom Williams, WBD BAC. DT: 598 selections, $202,500, 88 BE, 32.5 avg. SC: 1399 selections, $261,600, 108 BE, 25.5 avg.
Nick Malceski, SYD BAC. DT: 1068 selections, $377,100, 189 BE, 47.5 avg. SC: 819 selections, $541,600, 247 BE, 41 avg.

I’ll include the two BAC/FWDs in the backs since there’s a lot less quality to be had in the backs this year – not that it matters since you’re not going to be considering either of them. No, not even with Kepler Bradley’s big negative breakeven. This is Kepler Bradley we’re talking about here, people! He is a spud of the highest order. You can not seriously consider Bradley. Like Marcus Drum, Chris Mayne and Ryan Murphy before him, the third tall slot on the Dockers forward line is good for a few weeks of decent scoring at most, after which sanity prevails.

Riggio is the only player amongst this lot that should interest fantasy coaches. Working against him, however, is the implacable hatred of Kangaroos coach Dean Laidley that fantasy coaches have worked up over the last two years. Laidley has consistently mucked about with his rookie backs, to the point where just about every one of you must have been burned by a Lachie Hansen, Scott D. Thompson… even Riggio himself last year. You just can not trust Laidley to leave Riggio in the North 22 long enough for him to be a decent backup.

Tim Houlihan and Beau Wilkes hit the bubble next week. I’d be much more inclined to wait a week to see how they stack up in the Eagles structure.

Centrageddon

Trent Cotchin, RIC CTR. DT: 14061 selections, $119500, -25 BE, 57.5 avg. SC: 19537 selections, $139200, -61 BE, 73 avg.
Brent Reilly, ADE CTR. DT: 844 selections, $327400, 92 BE, 77.5 avg. SC: 1483 selections, $382300, 98 BE, 67 avg.

Cotchin is the real deal, which makes him Bubble Boy of the Week. He is particularly a must in Super Coach. Craig Bird, Bachar Houli, Travis Tuck, Cale Morton, Tim Callan, Kieren Jack (in DT only)… all these centre rookies are ripe for the plucking, and Cotchin is the man to get.

Ruckolocaust

Chris Bryan, COL RUC. DT: 995 selections, $220600, 35 BE, 65.5 avg. SC: 1556 selections, $267700, 54 BE, 54.5 avg.
Ivan Maric, ADE RUC. DT: 2093 selections, $207700, 76 BE, 40.5 avg. SC: 2018 selections, $284300, 56 BE, 58.5 avg.

No and no.

Forwardystopia

Shane Valenti, MEL CTR, FWD. DT: 12480 selections, $72600, -62 BE, 58.5 avg. SC: 13249 selections, $83400, -83 BE, 67 avg.
Ryan Davis, WCE FWD. DT: 4813 selections, $72600, -20 BE, 37.5 avg. SC: 4696 selections, $83400, -24 BE, 37.5 avg.

Valenti looks like the standout option here, but there is still the problem of which rookie Melbourne is going to demote once Jack Grimes returns to the senior list in three weeks’ time. Austin Wonaeamirri is undoubtedly the more exciting player, and the Demons fans desperately want someone to barrack for each week, so Valenti may very well be the odd man out. Davis might end up playing more games, although at his current scoring rate he doesn’t look like a fantasy option. The only other pre-bubble forward rookie who played in round 9 was Jarryd Morton, and as Molly said on the Coaches Box podcast this week, there’s no guarantees on Morton getting a decent run of games with the Hawks’ injury/suspension list set to shorten again soon. It’s a tricky situation, and with most coaches feeling a desperate need to downgrade the aforementioned Tippett and/or Gamble this week there is not much to downgrade to. The decision that most will make is to go with Valenti and hope that another Demon goes down with injury in the next two or three games. If I was Brad Miller, I’d be very wary of blokes carrying 4x2s in the MCG carpark for the next little while…

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