Bailey Rice is a medium midfielder/defender hybrid who is renown for his speed and power. The young athlete was recruited at pick 49 in the 2015 national draft. Rice has a thick bloodline in the AFL world, his father, Carlton premiership player, Dean Rice, was a star athlete for both the Carlton and St Kilda Football Club. Bailey had the choice of either club ahead of his recruitment, opting for the Saints.
As a junior footballer, Bailey played for the Dandenong Stingrays in the TAC CUP. His 2014 campaign was very impressive, averaging 21 disposals and 5 rebound 50s per game. His ability to read the play and execute the ball off the half-back line is incredibly encouraging. His size as a medium, fast-paced athlete allows him to play in various positions on the ground, proving himself to be a very capable and versatile player for his team. Bailey has played two successful VFL campaigns, totalling 15 and 16 games respectively across the 2016 and 2017 seasons. 2017 saw him nominated as the senior emergency in round 13. Bailey has faced a few injuries, including in the shin, a broken finger and concussion over his 2 years.
Rice made his AFL debut in Round 9 of the 2018 season where he impressed with his presence and composure in St. Kilda’s backline. Collecting 17 disposals, Rice successfully completed 2 rebounds, took 4 marks and tackled well. He was a key player in St. Kilda’s backline and will look to further develop his game in coming weeks. A very promising start to his AFL campaign.