|1972 VFL premiership season|
12th minor premiership
|Brownlow Medallist||Len Thompson (Collingwood)|
|Coleman Medallist||Peter McKenna (Collingwood)|
|Total attendance||3,526,848 (25,373 per match)|
The 1972 VFL season was the 76th season of the Victorian Football League (VFL), the highest level senior Australian rules football competition in Victoria. The season featured twelve clubs, ran from 1 April until 7 October, and comprised a 22-game home-and-away season followed by a finals series featuring the top five clubs – an increase from the four clubs which had contested the finals in previous years.
The premiership was won by the Carlton Football Club for the eleventh time, after it defeated Richmond by 27 points in the 1972 VFL Grand Final.
In 1972, the VFL competition consisted of twelve teams of 18 on-the-field players each, plus two substitute players, known as the 19th man and the 20th man. A player could be substituted for any reason; however, once substituted, a player could not return to the field of play under any circumstances.
Teams played each other in a home-and-away season of 22 rounds; matches 12 to 22 were the "home-and-way reverse" of matches 1 to 11.
Once the 22 round home-and-away season had finished, the 1972 VFL Premiers were determined by the specific format and conventions of the McIntyre "Final Five" system.
Main article: 1972 VFL Grand Final
Carlton defeated Richmond 28.9 (177) to 22.18 (150) in front of a crowd of 112,393 people. (For an explanation of scoring, see here.)