THE incredible run Mullumbimby High School had with its open boys' rugby league team last year has proved to be the catalyst in attracting a prominent first-grade coach to the Giants for the Northern Rivers Regional Rugby League this year.
Former Australian, New South Wales and Manly fullback Graham Eadie, who now lives at Tweed Heads, was so impressed with the team making it as far as the semi-finals of the Statewide University Shield knockout that he couldn't help but put his hand up for the job.
"I've been mixed up with Mullumbimby for a few years and attended junior presentations," 'Wombat' Eadie said yesterday.
"Mullumbimby always have a lot of young blokes coming through and I'm eager to work with some of the guys from that high school team last year."
While he is looking forward to it, Eadie knows he will have his work cut out, with the Giants expected to field a young side this season.
The departure of halfback Matt Mulchay to the Wests Tigers National Youth Cup team won't make it any easier.
However, Eadie is confident he can get the job done after coaching a South Tweed Under-18 team in 2007.
"Discipline is a big thing in my book," Eadie said.
"You need to have respect for the other players in your team and the people involved in the club.
"I've seen the passion of the people at Mullumbimby and even though we didn't go well last year, the passion is still alive.
"And if we lose two or three kids to the NRL at the end of the season, I'll consider my job done."
While Eadie was thrilled to see Manly take out the NRL premiership in 2011 he was disappointed with the aftermath when coach Des Hasler was sacked with a year remaining on his contract.
"I think the club handled it the best they could," Eadie said.
"I don't think coaches should be allowed to negotiate until the final year of their contract."
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