You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content
Michael Morgan tackles new career with Townsville

Former Queensland Maroons great Michael Morgan will venture into the world of coaching, with the experienced playmaker bringing his wealth of knowledge to the Townsville Blackhawks next season.

Morgan, who donned the Maroons jersey 12 times in his career, will take on the role of assistant coach for 2023, after head coach Aaron Payne reached out to him.

It was an unexpected phone call from Payne, but also a welcome one for Morgan.

The former North Queensland Cowboy retired in April 2021 at the age of 29 due to ongoing issues with his right shoulder but has recently been looking for a fresh avenue back into the game.

While coaching was not something he had seriously considered, he is ready for the challenge ahead with the Blackhawks and to see if this is where his future lies.


We’re thrilled to welcome Michael Morgan to the club 🤩 The Former Cowboy, Maroon & Kangaroo has taken up an Assistant...

Posted by Townsville & Districts Mendi Blackhawks on Monday, October 31, 2022

“It was quite random for me,” Morgan said of his call up.

“Payney gave me a call out of the blue and asked what I was up to and if I would be interested in coming on board as the Blackhawks assistant coach.

“It was perfect timing. I’ve been wanting to get back into footy in some way so when he called, I gave him an answer straight away.”

Since he hung up the boots, Morgan has turned his attention towards his young family, including his two-year-old daughter, Penelope, and three-week-old son, Noah.

He has done some work in radio and is studying a Certificate IV in Elite Athlete Wellbeing Management, with working in rugby league welfare still a future career option for Morgan.

But for now his focus will be on the Blackhawks and seeing what he can achieve as a coach.

“I didn’t know when I finished if I’d still have a career in rugby league,” Morgan said.

“It’s all I’ve ever known. It’s my passion, my main interest. Lucky the opportunity has come about with Payney.

“While I was playing, I never thought I’d be interested in coaching at all. I still don’t know if I’ll go on to be a head coach or anything like that. It’s way too early to say.

“But I’m excited to initially get back into footy and that environment again. It’s a new challenge. It will give me a chance to see if I like it and enjoy it, and I think I will.”

Payne said the Blackhawks identified in their season review that they were probably “a coach short” throughout 2022 and that’s why they reached out to Morgan.

Given Morgan’s experience in the halves and as a fullback, his initial focus will be on Townsville’s attack.

But the former Cowboys skipper will also play a part in helping the younger members of the Blackhawks squad come through the ranks, especially those with NRL aspirations.

“It’s great we get to give him that opportunity to get a taste of it and see if he likes it,” Payne told Townsville Blackhawks media.

“It’s exciting to have someone of Mick’s calibre to come on board.

“I know he hasn’t done a lot of coaching but given his position amongst the Cowboys and his senior role there, in a lot of ways he would have been doing a lot of coaching without even knowing.”

In the final year of his career, Morgan definitely felt he was able to take some of the younger players at the Cowboys under his wing and he can see how that will transfer through to his new role.

But he said it will also take time for him to understand his coaching style as he works throughout the season.

“There’s a culmination of guys in these teams - young guys who want to pursue a career, maybe go to the NRL, but then there are some guys who are happy to play in the (Hostplus) Cup and that’s all they want to do,” he said.

“It’s quite a good mix of players. If I can help with the young guys and further their careers, and we can have a good season, that would be good.

“That’s the priority of any team is to have a good year.”

Acknowledgement of Country

Queensland Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

Platinum Partners

View All Partners