Get to know our draft hopefuls - Jamison Ugle

Tuesday, October 13, 2020 - 3:09 PM by Matthew Ogg

It has been said that not all heroes wear capes, and young Swan Districts Colt, Jamison Ugle, most definitely fits this category.

An exciting and extremely talented footballer whose name has been thrown around in AFL draft circles this season, his name is now synonymous with his off field heroism that quite literally saved another man’s life earlier this year.

Coming to the rescue of 20-year-old Matthew Henson, who had been viciously attacked at a Perth train station, Ugle literally offered the shirt off his back and turned it into a pillow for the seizing young man, while friend Edward Booma Lyndon ran to get help.

Outside of football, Ugle also regularly volunteers at a local soup kitchen and helps teach young Noongar children about their culture and where they came from.

After a solid 2020 season where he averaged 15.3 disposals, almost 4 tackles and 3 inside 50’s a game, we caught up with Jamison to talk about all things footy, family and more.

 

Have you always played footy?

Yeah I have. I grew up in a little town called Beverley, which is about 50kms out of Perth, near York. I played all the way through Auskick and up until now. Footy is a really big thing there. People love it.

 

Did you only play in Beverley before coming to Swan Districts?

I played juniors there before moving out to York where I played for a season or so with the York Roos. I was living with my Nan and Pop and moved to the city with my parents after my mates started going to Perth schools. I played at Bassendean Football Club and then with the Swans.

 

How old were you when you came to the Swans?

I was 14 and have played right through all the development squads. So I played 14s, two years of 16s and then went straight into the Colts side.

 

When did you start thinking you’d like to pursue footy as a career?

It wasn’t really until I first got into one of the development sides for Swans. I started thinking that if I put my head down and do the work I could probably take my footy further. That’s when I started taking my footy seriously.

 

Did you play in any of the 16s carnivals?

Yeah I did. I played in the 16s carnival 2 years ago, when I was 15. I went alright but I was a bit smaller back then and got pushed around a bit… but not anymore.

 

What position do you prefer to play in on the footy field?

I enjoy spending some time up forward but love to run a lot, so the wing and more in the middle is where I really like playing. I’ll play anywhere on the field though, just as long as I’m out there.

 

You spent time training with both the Colts and the League side. What did you find were the main differences between the two?

During the preseason, the League side invited me to come and train with them, which I was really excited about. The thing I noticed straight away was that they were a lot harder and a lot smarter with the football. There was also a lot more skill based drills during their sessions. In the Colts it’s all about the development of your skills and footy knowledge, but the League side are a lot harder on you, which is good. I learnt so much that way.

 

How do you use what you learn with the League side at Colts level?

When I’d go back and train with the Colts, I’d take it as an opportunity to be a leader and teach them what I’ve learnt. Colts training can sometimes be a bit slower because you might have some of the younger boys that haven’t really played anywhere other than amateurs, so it gives me the opportunity to teach them what the League boys are teaching me.

 

There has been some chat around the possibility of you being looked at for this season’s AFL draft. Did you feel that pressure during the season to perform?

Sort of. It just made me think that every week I had to be consistent both on the field and off the field. It is exciting and would be a dream come true if I was given the chance to play AFL. It’s something my whole family has tried to do and I’m hopeful I can do it for all of them that didn’t make it. 

 

The name Ugle is quite a famous surname in footy. Do you think that is a blessing or a burden for you regarding other people’s expectations around the name?

I get it a lot actually. Whenever people ask me for my last name and I say Ugle, they usually reply with something along the lines of ‘good footy name’ and then they ask if I play footy too. My Uncle Keren played for the Dockers and South Fremantle, Pop Troy played at Swan Districts and the Eagles. My cousin Gerald was at GWS and Kirk played with Swan Districts and Collingwood. Potentially having the Ugle name on an AFL list again would mean a lot to me and my family.

 

You’ve won quite a few awards so far as a teenager. Can you tell us what they were?

In year 8 I won my first main footy award and that was for ‘Most Consistent’. In year 9 I won both the teams fairest and best at Bassendean Football Club and the central conference fairest and best. Year 10 I was runner up but only played a couple of games and in year 11 I played every game at the Swans in my first year of Colts and won the ‘Encouragement Award’ with them. It’s good to win individual awards every now and then to help me get my name out there a bit more, but it’s what we achieve as a team that means so much more to me.

 

What strengths do you bring to the field?

I bring a lot of knowledge, leadership and teamwork, especially for the younger guys. I get around them and help them. If they stuff up, I won’t be hard on them, I’ll get around them and encourage them to forget about their mistake and tell them to keep going. In regards to actual playing, I bring ball skills and like to help with our structures by showing boys where to go. I am trying to increase my ball pressure and tackling at the minute, but feel I do a lot of the 1%ers, particularly when I don’t have the ball.

 

Let’s imagine its draft night and your name is called out. What does that mean to you personally?

It’ll be a dream come true. I know my family is backing me with everything and anything they can for my footy. To see the Ugle name on an AFL list again would bring so much pride and joy to my family.

 

There has been a lot said about you off the field in relation to Matt Henson, after finding him in a bad way at a local train station. How do you find that attention?

It really shows what sort of person I am off the field. Me and my mate were just at the train station at the right time and we were able to save him, which feels really good. He has messaged me and said he’s doing fine and I would love to meet up with him again soon. 

 

You also spend time volunteering in soup kitchens and helping out in other ways around the community. How did you get into that?

Through the Girrawheen Clontarf Academy, we do a lot of volunteering around the community. We help out in a soup kitchen, gardening at schools and a lot of things like that.

 

You also spend time teaching young Noongar kids about their culture? What does that mean to you?

It’s really important for them to know about their culture and where they come from. It’s good for anyone to learn something knew about other people and their culture and find the similarities and differences between them. Me and some of the other older boys also help teach the younger boys our traditional dances and usually perform them during NAIDOC week, which is really good.

 

Finally, what AFL team have you grown up barracking for?

The Dockers. Even still now. My Pop is Dockers but my Dad is Eagles so we are really divided when it comes to who we support.

 

What 2020 Colts Coach, Simon Bergin, has to say about Jamison?

“Jamison is a super talented player and a sensational young man. His teammates and the club absolutely love him. He is great to watch on field, especially if he gets himself into some space. There is definitely an X-Factor about him.”

 

With the men’s draft scheduled for Monday the 7th December 2020, make sure you get behind Jamison as he looks to live his AFL dream.