Mason Cox

Mason Cox (born March 14, 1991) is an American professional Australian rules footballer who plays for the Collingwood Football Club in the Australian Football League (AFL). Playing as a ruckman and key forward, he first played Australian rules football in April 2014 before making his AFL debut just two years later in April 2016. Cox had previously played basketball for Oklahoma State University in the Big 12 Conference and was the tallest player ever to complete athletic testing in AFL conditions.[4]

Mason Cox
Mason Cox 2018.1.jpg
Cox playing for Collingwood in August 2018
Personal information
Full name Mason Cox
Nickname(s) American Pie,[1] Coxzilla[2]
Date of birth (1991-03-14) March 14, 1991 (age 29)
Place of birth Highland Village, Texas, United States
Original team(s) Oklahoma State University (Big 12)
Draft No. 60 pick, 2015 rookie draft
Height 211 cm (6 ft 11 in)[3]
Weight 110 kg (243 lb)
Position(s) Ruckman / forward
Club information
Current club Collingwood
Number 46
Playing career1
Years Club Games (Goals)
2015– Collingwood 66 (82)
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of round 17, 2020.
Career highlights

Neale Daniher Trophy (2018)

Sources: AFL Tables, AustralianFootball.com

Early lifeEdit

Cox was born in Highland Village, a suburb of Dallas, Texas, USA[5] to parents Jeanette and Phil.[6] He attended high school in Flower Mound, Texas. Cox was a student at Edward S. Marcus High School, and was part of the school's state championship winning soccer team.[7] Boston Celtics player Marcus Smart attended the same school and he and Cox would later be teammates at college.[8]

Cox studied engineering at Oklahoma State University, graduating in 2014.[9] While studying, he started playing basketball as a hobby.[10] He initially joined the Oklahoma State Cowgirls' "scout team" to simulate Brittney Griner, former Baylor University basketball player.[11] After being noticed by former head coach Travis Ford, he was asked to join the university's men's basketball team as a walk-on.[8] He played a total of 57 minutes for the Cowboys, scoring seven points. One of his highlights while playing NCAA Division I basketball was shutting down future National Basketball Association star Joel Embiid while defending him.[10]

AFL careerEdit

Cox was invited to attend the 2014 US International Combine for potential Australian rules footballers, in Los Angeles in April 2014. After impressive performances in the skills testing[12] he traveled to Australia for a second combine and on May 30, 2014, was signed by the Collingwood Football Club.[13][14] AFL teams Port Adelaide, North Melbourne, Richmond, and Fremantle were also reported as having shown interest in recruiting Cox.[9]

Cox played for the Collingwood reserves team in the Victorian Football League (VFL) throughout the 2015 season whilst learning the game and improving his skills.[15]

After playing well in the opening two games of the 2016 VFL season,[15] he made his AFL debut on April 25, 2016 in the annual Anzac Day match against Essendon. Within the first 80 seconds of the match, he took his first mark and scored the game's first goal with his first kick in the AFL.[16] Collingwood went on to win the match by 69 points.[17]

On September 11, 2017, despite interest from other clubs, Cox signed a three-year contract extension, keeping him at Collingwood until the end of 2020.[18] Cox continued his good form in the 2018 season, kicking a career-high 5 goals in the Queen's Birthday match at the MCG and was awarded the Neale Daniher trophy as Best on Ground.[19]

In the 2018 Preliminary Final against Richmond Football Club he played a man of the match performance kicking three goals consecutively and taking many contested marks, Bruce McAvaney remarked "what has Collingwood unleashed" when talking about Mason's performance.

In the 2018 Grand Final he kicked 2 goals during the 3rd quarter and took many contested marks, while playing in Collingwood's loss.

Cox was seeking permanent resident status on a path towards Australian citizenship to fulfill his desire to live the rest of his life in Australia, committing to a multi-year contract at Collingwood.[20] At the end of March 2020, he was accepted to become an Australian citizen.[21]

StatisticsEdit

Statistics are correct to round 1 of the 2020 season[22]
Legend
 G  Goals  B  Behinds  K  Kicks  H  Handballs  D  Disposals  M  Marks  T  Tackles  H/O  Hit-outs
Season Team No. Games Totals Averages (per game)
G B K H D M T H/O G B K H D M T H/O
2015 Collingwood 46 0
2016 Collingwood 46 11 17 7 50 32 82 30 24 79 1.6 0.6 4.6 2.9 7.5 2.7 2.2 7.2
2017 Collingwood 46 9 10 5 38 32 70 29 23 145 1.1 0.6 4.2 3.6 7.8 3.2 2.6 16.1
2018 Collingwood 46 24 25 12 148 89 237 119 38 164 1.0 0.5 6.2 3.7 9.9 5.0 1.6 6.8
2019 Collingwood 46 14 19 10 78 49 127 60 11 56 1.4 0.7 5.6 3.5 9.1 4.3 0.8 4.0
2020 Collingwood 46 1 2 0 5 4 9 4 0 7 2.0 0.0 5.0 4.0 9.0 4.0 0.0 7.0
Career 59 73 34 319 206 525 242 96 451 1.2 0.6 5.4 3.5 8.9 4.1 1.6 7.6

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Walsh, Courtney (April 26, 2016). "Collingwood lean on their American Pie Mason Cox in Anzac Day thrashing". The Australian. Retrieved May 22, 2016.
  2. ^ McGowan, Marc (April 13, 2020). "'I was so s**thouse': An American story with seven 'Coxzilla' twists". Australian Football League. Telstra Media. Retrieved June 11, 2020.
  3. ^ "official Bio". Archived from the original on July 28, 2018. Retrieved October 2, 2018.
  4. ^ http://www.afl.com.au/news/2014-04-28/taller-than-sandi-cox-shines-at-international-combine
  5. ^ "Mason Cox bio, stats". espn.go.com. ESPN Inc. Retrieved April 30, 2016.
  6. ^ "American Mason Cox kicks goal with first touch in AFL". Seven Sport. April 25, 2016. Retrieved April 30, 2016.
  7. ^ Magelssen, Tommy (April 26, 2016). "Former Flower Mound Marcus soccer standout, Oklahoma State basketball player Mason Cox makes debut for 'Dallas Cowboys' of Australian rules football". The Dallas Morning News. Retrieved May 1, 2016.
  8. ^ a b Hines, Kelly (April 27, 2016). "Former OSU basketball player Mason Cox scores opening goal in Australian Football League debut". Tulsa World. Retrieved May 1, 2016.
  9. ^ a b Quayle, Emma (May 21, 2014). "Could Mason Cox be the next really big thing?". The Age. Fairfax Media.
  10. ^ a b Hines, Kelly (April 28, 2014). "Does OSU's Mason Cox have a future in Australian Rules Football?". Tulsa World. Retrieved May 1, 2016.
  11. ^ Hines, Kelly (February 15, 2014). "OSU walk-on Mason Cox in spotlight after big game against Texas". Tulsa World. Retrieved May 4, 2016.
  12. ^ Twomey, Callum (April 28, 2014). "Taller than Sandi: Basketballer shines at US combine".
  13. ^ Higgins, Ben (May 30, 2014). "Collingwood snares 211cm US prodigy Mason Cox as an international rookie". Herald Sun. Retrieved April 25, 2016.
  14. ^ Chiarelli, Simon (May 30, 2014). "Magpies sign 211cm US athlete". collingwoodfc.com.au. BigPond.
  15. ^ a b "Mason Cox". Inside Football. Archived from the original on April 25, 2016.
  16. ^ Baldwin, Adam (April 25, 2016). "Collingwood's American import Mason Cox boots first goal with first kick on ANZAC Day". Fox Sports.
  17. ^ King, Travis (April 25, 2016). "Ruthless Pies smash Bombers in Anzac Day fizzer". AFL.com.au. BigPond.
  18. ^ Laughton, Max (September 11, 2017). "American ruck/forward Mason Cox signs new three-year deal at Collingwood, rebuffing interest from other clubs". Fox Sports.
  19. ^ "'It is a remarkable story': American recruit Mason Cox shows why Collingwood has invested so much". Fox Sports Australia. June 12, 2018.
  20. ^ Ralph, Jon (November 7, 2017). "Mason Cox wants to become Australian citizen - and cement place in Collingwood line-up". Herald Sun.
  21. ^ Cox, Mason [@masonsixtencox] (March 30, 2020). "Well I have been accepted to become a citizen. Only need to be sworn in. Is it possible to do that from the comfort of my living room? Also what is the best fact about Australia I should know before becoming one of y'all" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  22. ^ "Mason Cox". AFL Tables. Retrieved May 31, 2020.

External linksEdit