Do you think a week of work experience in sport can change your world? Find out.

by frank-stuart

Blake Griffin knew he wanted to pursue a career in sport, but it’s a big industry and how do you decide where to put your focus? For Blake, inspiration came during a week of work experience with the NSW Waratahs.

“I spent a week working with Anthony Wakeling, who is the high-performance analyst with the NSW Waratahs,” Blake said.

“He provides technical, analytical and statistical support to the whole team. Anthony is an expert and he’s the reason I got into sports analysis.

“I learnt so much in that one week and I saw where I wanted to be. Anthony put me on my path to becoming an analyst.”

Blake was studying a sports science degree that was focused more on health than sport. When he started looking to transfer to a more sports-oriented college, he discovered ACPE taught Gamebreaker – a sports video performance analysis software that he uses frequently in his job.

“I work as a sports analyst for Newington College, an independent boys school located in Stanmore,” Blake said.

“I started coding the game statistics using Gamebreaker software with the first and second rugby teams and then used Hudl software for the basketball program.

“My job is to the film the games and then code and analyse them. This means tagging the incidents – tries, passes and other metrics the coach wants to review. These statistics help improve the team and individual performance by identifying strengths and weaknesses.”

Blake Griffin

The school teams are performing really well. In the two years Blake has worked with the basketball, they were undefeated in their GPS premiership in 2016 and have continued this trend in 2017. In rugby, over the past five years, they’ve won three premierships, including one undefeated.

“It’s important for independent schools to be successful in sport,” Blake said.

“If your top sporting teams are winning, everyone is more willing to support them – in kind and financially.”

Since his work experience with the NSW Waratahs, Blake has kept a strong connection with the team and in 2014 they won their first ever Super Rugby premiership. For the past seven years, he has worked as a casual assistant high-performance analyst, filming home games and trials in the Sydney area.

During his time at the NSW Waratahs, he has also filmed training sessions and games for their Under 20s development program.

“I love sport and I love filming – this work combines the two,” Blake said.

Once he completes his Bachelor of Sports Coaching and Administration, Blake’s goal is to be a high-performance analyst for a professional team or an elite athlete. It’s a career that may take him around the world.

“I’d like to work in the United Kingdom in rugby or in the United States, where basketball is really big,” he said.

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