Michael Long

Whether you’re familiar with Australian sports or not, you’ve probably heard of the name Michael Long. Long is an Australian indigenous activist and athlete within the AFL

Bringing awareness to racism in football

In American football, the name Colin Kaepernick is brought to mind when discussing the battle against racism. The iconic moment of him taking a knee during the national anthem is still something that is hotly debated to this day. In Australian football, the historic name to fight against racism is Michael Long. He was the first indigenous player to shed a light on the issue within the sport. He went on to make headlines in 2004 when he walked from Melbourne to Victoria and finally ended in Canberra, which was later known as the Long Walk. It was to make a statement about Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander racist issues and Long was pushing for the government to act. 

Athlete, Activist and Hall of Famer

Michael Long’s career in the AFL began in 1989 when he was recruited to Essendon Football Club. Within one year, he was named the Best First Year Player. And in 1993, Long went on to establish himself as one of the greats by winning the North Smith Medal in the AFL Grand Final.