Thirteen years have elapsed since Ben Cousins was awarded the Brownlow Medal in 2005 as a member of the West Coast Eagles.
The 39-year-old native of Geelong played 270 games over the course of 14 seasons in the AFL, the last 32 as a member of the Richmond Tigers.
During his career, along with the Charlie, he was the AFL Rising Star, a six-time All-Australian, four-time Eagles best and fairest and Leigh Matthews Trophy winner.
Things have not gone nearly so well for Cousins since leaving the game.
Apparently, life after football has not been the hero riding off into the sunset we all hope for all our heroes.
He was absent from view of late after rejoining the Eagles in a part-time role and it would seem that, amongst any other issues, the Goey has got its hooks into him.
Cousins was out from behind bars on parole after convicted of stalking and violations of a Violence Restraining Order.
When arrested, he was in possession of eight grams of meth; a quantity his lawyer claimed was just a four-day supply.
The Eagles threw him a life preserver, with a club spokesman saying at the time, “We believe (the role) will have mutual benefits for both parties. This has been a particularly hard time for Ben and his family and we look forward to him beginning the next phase of his life.”
Unfortunately, many sports stars are often unceremoniously discarded after their value as players is used up, and Cousins is just one example of a player who chose the wrong path after the glory and adulation ended.
Cousins was equally prolific at defying his court-imposed sanctions as he was at playing football. Court records reveal that he called former partner Maylea Tinecheff more than 2000 times between October of 2016 and February of 2017.
As far as illicit drug abuse is concerned, the prognosis for those who fall prey to methamphetamine is one of the most dismal, but we hope nothing but the best for Cousins and his family.