In the late seventies the Rugby League introduced a rule that in order to coach at any level - from school and juniors to representative and international - you had to be qualified with a coaching accreditation.
There were three grades - 1,2 and 3 and, basically, for anything serious, you needed a grade 2.
They wanted me to coach Country Seconds that year and so I found myself having to do an extensive training course which took place over a period of months (and included gaining a refereeing ticket) before sitting an exam.
Doing the course with me was Jack Gibson. The Jack Gibson. Can you imagine the League requiring Jack Gibson to sit for an accreditation to coach a football team? Ridiculous.
I mention it merely to point out that the NRL head office having "kangaroos in the top paddock" is not really that unusual - there's a lot of form.
Which brings us to the latest lunacy - this weekend's rule changes they're throwing at us in a round which, in the games that don't count, will be an experimental novelty exercise.
Admittedly it's born of good intention, and it shows that they are at least aware of some of the game's problematic areas, but this proposed bunch of "fixes" strike me as a very seat-of-the-pants tinkering with tradition with far better, simpler alternatives available.
They're attempting to fix the problem of the scrums by having less of them. The problem, of course, is that the scrums have become an uncontested joke. You have to either bugger them off entirely or turn them back into a battle for possession.
And if you decide on the latter then you don't need any new rules for that. There's already one in the book: the halfback has to put the ball into the middle of the scrum! That's it. All you have to do is enforce it.
They also want to introduce something about only forwards being allowed to pack into the scrums, presumably to stop a front rower swapping out to, say, the centres, for a scrum, in order to have a run at the smaller players.
Given that, with the game's modern physical uniformity, the centres are as big as the front rowers, this rule looks to me to be a lot of unnecessary trouble to go to.
Off-sides will be given six-again rather than penalties.
The problem, of course, is that the scrums have become an uncontested joke. You have to either bugger them off entirely or turn them back into a battle for possession.
Have you seen a game of touch football lately? Remember when touch looked a lot like football? And then as it got more competitive they realised the way to win was just lightning quick play-the-balls, relentless one-outs and the game became all about who can run backwards the fastest?
This new rule has real potential, I reckon, to send league in a similar direction, and surely we don't want that.
There are various modifications aimed at speeding up the Bunker, which is probably a good thing - but the question is what takes them so long in the first place?
We, in our lounge rooms, always know well in advance of any Bunker decision.
The obvious solution would seem to be to install some form of "bat-phone" between the Bunker and the commentary box... It may improve their accuracy too...
A lot of these changes are aimed at reintroducing an element of fatigue into the game with the purpose of lessening the dreadful injury situation.
Fatigue was once a huge factor in football.
Panno used to train our great Maitland side to within an inch of our lives, the result being that we only had to be in the game with 10 minutes to go and we'd just run over them, because we were fitter.
You couldn't go off for a breather back then: If you did go off, to get quickly stitched up or something, there was nobody taking your place on the field, and if there was then you were off for good.
You want players to get tired? Fix the interchange.
The big problem, the elephant that none of this stuff really addresses, is concussion.
And there is a misconception that the head injuries are being caused by big fast opposing players relentlessly running into each other.
The actuality is that it's the defenders banging heads with their own team-mates!
Football has developed an across-the-board tactical uniformity which means that for the first four plays there'll be a one-out forward being tackled by three opposing forwards; they're all tackling high to control the ball, and the tacklers are bashing their heads together.
You want to fix something? Fix that.