I believe that a club should be responsible for discipline of its players but the AFL should intervene, if the CEO, Andrew Demetriou and the rest of his team consider the team has not been tough enough.
Cousins is to blame for his own situation, but he is not entirely to blame. Both the team and the league have failed Cousins, his family and his fans by not taking a tougher line sooner and because of this lack of action, a career has come to a premature end.
I have just read an article by former AFL player Nick Holland and was amazed to read his outline of Cousins’ indiscretions. I knew there had been a lot and these had occurred over a long period of time but I did not realise just how many or just how long they had been occurring for.
I freely admit that I was glad that Cousins made a comeback this season and his first game back was excellent but with hindsight, I am also certain that he shouldn’t have played.
I hope the Eagles think Cousins made a worthy contribution in his games following his return to the club because their choice to let him play has backfired big time.
Cousins should have been suspended for the entire season and only invited back when he had spent at least six months thinking about his actions, the consequences of those actions and had been drug tested weekly during that period.
One can only hope that Ben can turn his life around with the support of his family, friends and the AFL. However, neither, the Eagles or the AFL should offer financial support. Cousins has the money and he needs to accept responsibility for himself and if he can do this, maybe he can rebuild his life.
If and when he has his life back on track maybe he can use his experience to help others realise that drugs are not the answer and that something positive come out of even the most negative of experiences.
Earlier: As A West Coast Eagles fan ...
Brooke Eastley graduated with an Arts degree from the University of Tasmania in 2006, majoring in journalism and history
The West Coast Eagles have finally made the right decision and terminated the contract of former captain, Ben Cousins. It is sad that it has come to this stage but it has arrived because both the Eagles and the AFL gave Cousins too many chances.