A teacher who is watching Jamarra Ugle-Hagan develop into an AFL draft chance believes the teenager will dominate the Associated Public Schools competition next year.
Scotch College’s Rob Smith, who runs the Melbourne-based school’s indigenous scholarship program, said the South Warrnambool footballer was a player to watch.
Ugle-Hagan is in the AFL Academy as a bottom-age prospect, played TAC Cup as a 16-year-old this year and is already entrenched in Scotch College’s top football team.
“Generally (the firsts side is for) boys who are in years 11 and 12 but if there are exceptional boys in year 10 then some of those will play,” Smith said. “I think this year we had three year 10 boys play and he was one of those.
“In fact, he finished second in our best and fairest so he did really well.
“He settled into playing centre half-back for us this year so we’re thinking he’ll dominate games from there over the next couple of years.”
Smith said Ugle-Hagan, who already stands at 193cm, had the attributes AFL clubs looked for.
“If he keeps working at it, which he will, he certainly has the potential to go on and get drafted,” he said.
“He’s got an amazing jump and a couple of weeks ago he won his age group in our interschool athletics comp for high jump.
“He plays a lot of basketball so he’s an exceptional mark and reads the play really well.”
Smith said Ugle-Hagan, who returned home to play in the Warrnambool Seaside Junior Basketball Classic at the weekend, was quiet and took everything in his stride. He moved to Melbourne to board at Scotch College at the start of year nine.
“He laps up whatever (information) is available,” Smith said. “He’ll eat it up, take advantage of it and learn as much as he can. He’s a really steady sort of a mature kid. He’s a real leader among the other boys.”
Have you signed up to The Standard's daily newsletter and breaking news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in the south-west.