Jaidyn Stephenson has won the NAB AFL Rising Star award,polling 52 votes to beat Adelaide defender Tom Doedee on 42 votes.
This makes Stephenson Collingwood’s first ever player to win the Rising Star award after the forward kicked 34 goals as well as being a big factor for the Pies finishing third on the ladder.
The Pies a currently on a roll with this award in both male and female competitions with Magpie Chloe Molloy winning the AFLW Rising Star award earlier in the year.
Stephenson was nervous leading up to the draft as he wasnt to sure what how his heart condition would affect where he places in the draft.
“Obviously leading up to the draft was a tough time for my famly and I,” Stephenson said.
“I wasnt sure if I wasn’t going to get drafted or not with my heart problem.
“I said when Collingwood picked me that I had to repay them. This is just two per cent of that.”
Stephenson went on to thank his family for all the support they have shown throughout the years leading up to where he is at now.
“It’s a little bit embarrassing but I wrote some people down on a serviette. I didn’t want to miss anyone,” Stephenson said.
“Ever since I was five or six I wanted to play football. My family have barely missed a game. They’re such a great support for me and I love them very dearly.”
Stephenson has had a big season for a first year player and looks set to make an impact in this years finals as the Pies aim to win it all.
Doedee, Alex Witherden, Jack Higgins and equal fifth Oliver Florent and Jack Henry rounded up the top five.