Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Mark Harvey (born June 11 1965) is a former player and current assistant coach of the Essendon Australian Rules football team. He played 206 games from 1984 to 1997, kicking 190 goals, and has been an assistant coach since 1998.
Harvey was originally known as a skilful forward, playing that role in the 1984 and 1985 premiership sides, including kicking four goals in the 1985 premiership win. However, injuries in his later career (particuarly to his ankles) meant he was used more as a defender, which reduced the stress on his body. In his role as a defender he often played as center half-back against much taller opponents, making up for his lack of height with his aggressive attack on the football.
Harvey finished in the top five of the Essendon best-and-fairest on four occasions, winning the award in 1992. He was named in the All Australian Team in 1985 and 1993; he also played in premiership sides both those years as well as in 1984. He was also the side's leading goalkicker for the 1985 season, an unusual feat for a medium-sized forward in a premiership winning team. In 2002 he was named as the 18th greatest player to play for the club in the "Champions of Essendon" list.
Harvey retired in 1997 after realising injuries had taken their toll on his body and he could no longer contribute to the side in the way he would like. He remained at Essendon as their assistant coach under Kevin Sheedy, and in the years since has often been talked about as a possible senior coach. At the end of the 2004 season Harvey was a front-runner for a number of coaching jobs, but either wasn't offered or chose not to take each of them, preferring to stay on at Essendon. Speculation remains whether he will one day take a senior coaching role elsewhere, or perhaps wait until the retirement of Sheedy in the hope of taking over at Essendon.
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