Bennett snubs Kevvy in Broncos scheme
WAYNE Bennett's submission to the Broncos' board of directors surrounding his vision for the club's future reportedly overlooks Maroons coach Kevin Walters.
A report from The Daily Telegraph claims Bennett's proposal to Broncos' officials outlines his plans to see out his full contract through to the end of the 2019 NRL season before handing over his position as head coach.
The report indicates Bennett has given his recommendation to Broncos assistant coach Jason Demetriou as the man to fill his shoes.
Bennett, 68, still won't be going anywhere at the end of next season.
The Telegraph reports Bennett has proposed he will pivot to a newly-created position of general manager of football - overseeing the club's entire football operations.
It would establish Bennett in a similar role to the one Panthers supremo Phil Gould fills at Penrith.
Bennett's recommendation for Demetriou to be his successor is the a notable snub to the man many believed was the perfect fit to step into his shoes - Walters.
The Maroons coach returned to the Broncos at the end of the 2017 season, but left earlier this season following a reported difference of opinion with Bennett.
Walters reportedly did not agree with the direction the football department was heading in and instead chose to walk away and devote all his energy into the Maroons' 2018 State of Origin campaign.
It has been widely reported in recent seasons that Walters' decision to return to the Broncos was directly linked to the Maroons' coach's ambitions to one-day take over as coach of the club he won three premierships with as a player.
However, the Broncos snubbed both of them earlier this year when they made a stunning raid to recruit Storm coach Craig Bellamy.
When the Melbourne mentor left the Broncos with egg all over their face, Bennett emerged as the key figure in the club's future plans.
He said all along he was comfortable about seeing out his contract through to the end of 2019 and said he was not surprised when Bellamy knocked the Broncos back.
"And we've talked to other coaches - Jason Demetriou's a really good coach - we talked about Kevin Walters. It wasn't just about Craig," Bennett said when Bellamy made his decision public.
The Broncos' ugly attempt to lure Bellamy was slammed by many NRL commentators, including Brisbane great Chris Johns, who accused his club of treating Walters "like an idiot".
Johns said in May the Broncos had been disrespectful to Walters and it was about time they made their intentions clear about coach Wayne Bennett's future.
Johns was more peeved with Brisbane's treatment of former skipper and assistant coach Walters.
The three-time Broncos premiership winner believed they should have told Walters whether he had a chance to take over from Bennett.
"I think this could have been explained a bit better," Johns said.
"I think this has been very messy and a succession plan should have been rolled out a lot sooner than this.
"The person I really feel sorry for is Kevvie Walters because he has been led around like an idiot."
Johns said he believed Walters was under the impression he was being looked at to replace Bennett.
"I think the real loser out of all this is just the disrespect shown to Kevin," Johns said.
"I'm not saying he should be the next Broncos coach but he should at least be told honestly what they are thinking so he can make career decisions."
Johns said Walters had knocked back a chance to coach the Gold Coast Titans to link again with Brisbane under Bennett this year, with an eye to one day taking over the reins.
Johns' former Broncos teammates Glenn Lazarus said it was karma that Bennett could be replaced after unceremoniously sacking so many people over the years.
"A lot of people, good people, have been kicked to the kerb by the Broncos when Wayne Bennett was head coach," Lazarus told Macquarie Sports Radio.
"And I'll just name a few - Gary Belcher, Kevvie Walters, myself, long-term strength and conditioner and loyal servant to Wayne, Steve Nance, Ivan Henjak.
"And Anthony Griffin was punted so Wayne could come back.
"And all of that was dragged through the media and obviously it was very public and it was hurtful. Now, the tables have turned."
Walters was also sacked by Bennett from his assistant coach role in 2006.
- with AAP