Gil Griffin

Gil Griffin lives in California and is a teacher and journalist. He has written for the LA Times, the Washington Post and the Miami Herald, as well as the AFL’s Football Record. Gil fell in love with footy while travelling in Australia, and is an avid Fremantle Dockers supporter. He writes a weekly column on footy for WA Today.

Follow Gil on Twitter @GilWritesHere.


  • Non-Fiction
    Jumping at the Chance: From the Court to the Field, How NBA Hopefuls are Changing Australian Rules Football
    Gil Griffin



Jumping at the Chance: From the Court to the Field, How NBA Hopefuls are Changing Australian Rules Football
“Gil Griffin has more passion for Australian Rules football and those who play, coach, live and breathe it than people who have grown up surrounded by it. He has been there for every step of the ‘American Experiment’, and his care and respect for his subjects comes through in his writing. The AFL will be an even more exciting sport if he is following them for many years to come.”

Emma Quayle, award-winning sportswriter and author of THE DRAFT: INSIDE THE AFL'S SEARCH FOR TALENT

“Australian Rules is the game played by all Australians, and may derive in part from the Indigenous Australian game of Marngrook. But our African-American brothers have the skills and athleticism to make our game theirs too. Gil Griffin has told the remarkable story of the first American athletes — a number of them African-American — to come to Australia and play in our top leagues. It won’t be long until the floodgates open and more US athletes take up this great game. Nothing would be more exciting than seeing an African-American, as captain of an AFL team, holding the Premiership Cup aloft after a Grand Final at the famous MCG.”

Grant Hansen, creator and host of Australia’s National Indigenous Television network program, “The Marngrook Footy Show”

“It is important for Australian football supporters to understand the few key developments in our game over the years that have made a significant contribution to the way the game has developed. This book describes in vivid detail the pioneering days of one such major developmental change to our game, which saw the influx of international athletes from a range of different sporting backgrounds. These athletes added a new dimension to our game, introducing new skills, a move that today seems such a logical and natural development.”

Ross Oakley, Australian Football Hall of Fame inductee, author of THE PHOENIX RISES: THE AMAZING STORY OF THE SALVATION OF AUSTRALIAN FOOTBALL

“Gil’s knowledge and passion for the game is clearly evident as he expertly articulates the stories of those American athletes brave enough to tackle Australia’s national game [...] I highly recommend JUMPING AT THE CHANCE to anyone who loves sports, anyone who likes to be inspired and to anyone who has dreamt of going ‘all in’ in the pursuit of their dream.”

Peter Bell, Australian Football Hall of Fame inductee

“An extremely insightful piece written by a true believer in US athletes playing Australian Rules football, the toughest game in the world. A must-read for any genuine sports fan.”

Michael Ablett, Australian Football League Academies Development Manager