Why Cousins should be inducted into the hall of fame

January 19, 2024 BY

Waiting for the call: Ben Cousins is yet to be added to the Australian Football Hall of Fame and one pundit reckons it’s time. Photo: BOHDAN WARCHOMIJ/ AAP IMAGE

Now is the time for one of the greatest talents to ever grace the game – Ben Cousins – to be inducted into the Australian Football Hall of Fame.

That’s the opinion of Kane Cornes, who believes the West Coast Eagles great deserves to be recognised alongside some of the biggest names in the sport.

Cousins has been eligible for the Hall of Fame since 2013. He last played in 2010 and amassed 270 games in a storied career that also included the 2006 premiership.

Despite Cousins’ somewhat public battle with drug use and other off-field issues, he has earned his right to be inducted, said Cornes.

“It’s time. There are others in the hall of fame who have had checkered history off the field and it’s time,” Cornes declared on SEN Breakfast.

SEN Chief Sports Reporter Sam Edmund wasted little time agreeing.

A Brownlow Medal winner, Cousins was one of the players of his generation in also claiming six All-Australian blazers at the Eagles.

Cousins resigned from the West Coast captaincy in 2006, the year it was revealed he also had a substance abuse problem.

He spent time in rehab that year and moved to Richmond prior to the 2009 season, where he would play two more years.

The now 45-year-old saw his life spiral in the public eye with numerous scandals after retiring but has been on the road to recovery for some time.

Since being released from custody back in December 2020, Cousins has committed to sobriety.

He took an expanded newsreader role with Channel 7 last year and also played in an exhibition legends’ game at Optus Stadium.

It was following that match that Eagles great Glen Jakovich stated a Hall of Fame induction should be imminent for Cousins.

“West Coast has just had a Hall of Fame event which he didn’t make. They wanted to wait another 12 months. So if not this year then next year from an AFL perspective,” Jakovich said at the time.

“He has had a bloody good 18 months. He works for Channel 7, he works for a mining company and he goes to a lot of mining sites and speaks to them and basically says don’t end up like me.

“His biggest commitment is to his kids. He has gone from no access to good access and has had to tick boxes with the authorities. So that is a really big tick for ‘Cuz’.”

Dean Cox, Jakovich, Chris Judd, Dean Kemp, Peter Matera and Guy McKenna are among Cousins’ Eagles teammates who have previously been inducted in the Australian Football Hall of Fame.