Nick's Collingwood Page

by Mountains Magpie


Darren “Pants” Millane was born on the 9th August, 1965 and originally wanted to play for St Kilda. He was playing with VFA club Dandenong and was residentially bound to the Swans. He trained at Hawthorn but was eventually picked up by Collingwood. Making his debut in 1984, Millane won Collingwood’s Best First Year Player award.

The awards continued with Most Improved and a state guernsey in 1986 followed by a Copeland Trophy for Best And Fairest in 1987. He appeared for Victoria in 1988 and 1989, kicking a lone goal in the 2nd match against Western Australia in July, 1988.

The crowning glory in Millane’s eight season career was the premiership in 1990. Playing the entire semi-final series with a now legendary broken thumb, he stitched Greg Anderson up and was one of the Magpies best on the ground.

A year and a day after this historic win, Millane was tragically killed in a car accident in Melbourne’s Albert Park. An estimated 8000 people attended his funeral in Dandenong and he is resting in Springvale Cemetery. Collingwood’s Best Clubman trophy is named in Darren’s honour.

Why is it then that this man is so revered by the Collingwood faithful ? Our current president co-wrote Millane’s biography in 1994. His guernsey number, 42, is retired and is likely to remain so. Why does this man invoke so much emotion ? His untimely death is certainly part of the reason but it has more to do with the way he lived his life.

On the field, he asked for and gave no quarter, highly skilled, a footballer first and then an athlete, an excellent mark, good vision, tough as teak and protective of his team mates. Players with these traits have the ability to rally their fellow players like no other and Darren was no exception. Off the field, he lived his life to the fullest. He had a deep loyalty to his family and friends and left a lasting impression on all those he met.

These are the traits we not only look for in other people, we look for them in ourselves, because they are rare qualities. We look to people like Darren when we need inspiration and encouragement. People like Darren have the ability to bring out the best in people. To not have him here makes these things so much harder and we are all certainly much poorer for his loss. We can only try to emulate him in standing together always and staying true to the cause through thick and thin.

Rest In Peace, Darren Millane, 2006 Collingwood Hall Of Famer.