|Full name||Craig McRae|
|Date of birth||22 September 1973|
|Place of birth||South Australia|
|Original team(s)||Glenelg (SANFL)|
|Draft||No. 22, 1993 Pre-season Draft, Brisbane Bears|
|Height||176 cm (5 ft 9 in)|
|Weight||72 kg (159 lb)|
|Current club||Collingwood (head coach)|
|1995–1996||Brisbane Bears||39 (56)|
|1997–2004||Brisbane Lions||156 (176)|
|Representative team honours|
|International team honours|
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of 2004.
3 Coaching statistics correct as of round 21, 2023.
|Sources: AFL Tables, AustralianFootball.com|
Craig McRae (born 22 September 1973) is a former Australian rules footballer and the current senior coach of the Collingwood Football Club.
McRae played for Glenelg Football Club in the SANFL from 1993 until 1994, for a total of 41 games and 59 goals.
McRae was drafted by AFL club Brisbane Bears as the 22nd pick in the 1994 draft and had an immediate impact, kicking two goals in his first game in 1995, and played every game of that year. McRae was known for his ability to kick goals from beyond the fifty-metre line, and for his scouting of the ball spilled from the hands of taller players. He played for the Brisbane Bears from 1995 until 1996 for a total of 39 games and 56 goals.
At the end of the 1996 season, when Brisbane Bears merged with Fitzroy Lions resulting in the formation of the Brisbane Lions, McRae was one of the players from the Bears to join the Lions. He played for the Brisbane Lions from 1997 until 2004 for a total of 156 games and 176 goals. He was a member of Brisbane Lions' 2001, 2002 and 2003 premiership sides. He was known for his determination and fierce tackling skills. The small forward/goalsneak retired from professional football after the 2004 Grand Final loss to Port Adelaide.
In 2007, McRae served as assistant coach in the role of Player Development Coach with the Richmond Football Club under senior coach Terry Wallace. Midway through the 2009 AFL season, McRae took up the head coaching position at Richmond's VFL affiliate club Coburg, when their former coach and fellow Richmond AFL assistant Jade Rawlings was appointed caretaker senior coach at Richmond, after Wallace resigned in the middle of the 2009 AFL season after Round 11, 2009.
In 2010, McRae took up an assistant coaching position in the role of development coach position at the Brisbane Lions, returning to his old playing club under senior coach and former teammate Michael Voss.
McRae joined Collingwood as an assistant coach in the role as head of development in 2011 under senior coach Mick Malthouse and then under senior coach Nathan Buckley from 2012. He remained at the club for five seasons.
He returned to Richmond at the end of the 2016 season, serving as an assistant coach under senior coach Damien Hardwick and head coach of the club's reserves side in the VFL. He took the side to a winning grand final in 2017, before winning a premiership in 2019 in the same year he won the VFL's coach of the year award and the AFL coaches' association's assistant coach of the year award.
In 2021, McRae joined the Hawthorn Football Club as an assistant coach in the role of forward line coach under senior coach Alastair Clarkson.
In September 2021, McRae returned to the Collingwood Football Club, when he was appointed as senior coach ahead of the 2022 AFL season. McRae replaced caretaker senior coach Robert Harvey, who replaced Nathan Buckley, after Buckley stepped down in the middle of the 2021 season. In just his first season as senior coach, he led Collingwood to success, winning 16 games and finishing the 2022 season in 4th place, after they finished 17th the previous season. Out of their wins, 10 were by less than two goals. In the finals series, Collingwood reached the preliminary finals, where they lost to Sydney by one point after trailing by 23 points at the beginning of the last quarter.
|Season||Team||No.||Games||Totals||Averages (per game)||Votes|
Updated to the end of round 19 of the 2023 season.
|W||Wins||L||Losses||D||Draws||W%||Winning percentage||LP||Ladder position||LT||League teams|
Prior to his appointment as Collingwood Football Club senior coach, McRae was a part-time kicking and catching coach with the Melbourne Storm.
Until the end of the 2006 season, McRae was involved in a sports administration business and various football broadcasting roles including radio station Triple M, where he hosted a football programme with former Brisbane teammate Jason Akermanis.
It's because he's so seldom called Craig. His name is "Fly", from before he was drafted.
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