A 16-year-old AFL fan has accused celebrity football commentator and Collingwood Football Club President Eddie McGuire of copying his research and using it on The Footy Show without credit.
Melbourne teenager James Bradley, 16, looked into the history of Richmond losses to Geelong ahead of the qualifying finals, and posted statistics to the AFL section of social media platform Reddit.
The Herald Sun ran the figures on Monday and credited the teenager’s Reddit username for the research.
McGuire quoted similar statistics on Wednesday night’s The Footy Show on Channel Nine. He also referenced the figures on his Triple M radio show Hot Breakfast.
James, a “long-suffering Tigers supporter”, wrote a follow-up post on Thursday morning to claim McGuire used his work without credit.
The Year 10 student said he would have appreciated being credited.
Speaking to The New Daily, McGuire said it was “a bit of a stretch” to say he’d lifted the stats from the teenager.
“I have no idea about it, to be perfectly honest,” McGuire said. “I’ve never seen his post, from the start.”
He said he was “at pains to quote sources”. He said he’d seen the Herald Sun article, and could have “inadvertently” used the statistics from there.
“There’s no drama in that,” he said. “You’ve not researched Wikipedia for any information along the journey?”
He said he and James had used “readily available figures”.
“I don’t think he’s cracking the code on anything. I don’t think Richmond’s lack of success in the finals hasn’t been a constant theme on Hot Breakfast for about eight years,” McGuire added.
“We were making a point, it was a bit of humour. I didn’t think we were doing a tax audit.
“I think people might be just being a bit silly.”
McGuire recited figures to The New Daily on Richmond losses to show his knowledge on the subject.
Watch Eddie McGuire list the stats below:
— The AFL Footy Show (@AFLFootyShow) September 6, 2017
He said he started out as a statistician as a 13-year-old.
“Stats and data is exactly what I do.”
The 52-year-old said he was nevertheless “happy to give the kid a run”.
“I’m more than happy to give the bloke credit. Good on ya, James Bradley.”
He encouraged James to get in touch with him so he could “give him some homework to do for me”, McGuire said.
James said it wasn’t “that big of a deal” and said it was “pretty cool” for a media giant like Channel Nine to run his research.
Read James Bradley’s Reddit post
“I was watching the show [Wednesday] night, and I saw Eddie begin basically reciting the facts I’d found,” James said.
“More than anything I was just surprised, I think you can imagine from my perspective, a Year 10 student who just loves football.
“My best friend was also watching at the time and he immediately texted me, ‘I think the Footy Show copied your Reddit post’,” James said.
He said he was grateful to the Herald Sun for crediting him.
“It probably would’ve been nice if Channel Nine had indicated where they attained the list, just by adding something small like my Reddit username.
“But the reality is these facts are out there and aren’t too difficult to find, so it’s hard for one individual to take credit for them.
“I’ll just take it as a compliment.”
He said he was feeling nervous and excited about Friday’s qualifying final between the Tigers and Cats.
“I come from a family of long-suffering Tigers supporters, and at the moment I’m very excited but very nervous,” he said.
“I have tickets for [Friday] night, and I hope they can go all the way and win the flag this year, as it’s been a long time coming.
“I’m praying for a good win … although after our performance against Geelong a few weeks ago, I think they may run away with it which will be devastating.”
The New Daily has contacted Channel Nine for comment.
*CORRECTION: The name of Mr Bradley’s school has been removed from this story.