White Hills has landed the biggest recruiting coup of the off-season by signing former Carlton and Adelaide midfielder Sam Kerridge as coach.
Kerridge played 27 games with Adelaide and 42 with Carlton in seven seasons at AFL level before being delisted by the Blues.
With Kerridge having strong links to Bendigo from his two seasons with the Bendigo Pioneers, the Demons pounced and secured the 25-year-old on a one-year deal.
"I have a few good connections with the club and having done Year 11 and 12 in Bendigo I have some good friends still here,'' Kerridge said.
"The club had a chat with me and I spoke to a few people I know. I was keen to come back and have a kick and a catch.
"I'm keen to help the club get some success."
Kerridge welcomed the challenge of coaching a senior side for the first time.
"Coaching was something that was always in me, but was it something that I really focused on while I was playing footy? Probably not,'' he said.
"I always thought if the option came up that I wouldn't be afraid to jump in head first and have a crack at it.
"Lucky enough, this opportunity came up and here we are. It should be a fun year."
Originally from Mildura, Kerridge relocated to Bendigo to complete VCE at Catholic College in 2010 and 2011.
He had two standout seasons with the Bendigo Pioneers in the TAC Cup and was selected by the Crows with pick 27 of the 2011 Natioanal Draft.
The highlight of his career with the Crows was a six-goal haul against North Melbourne in round nine of the 2013 season.
At the end of 2015 he was traded to Carlton in a deal that included Troy Menzel crossing to the Crows.
Kerridge spent his AFL career playing under Brenton Sanderson, the late Phil Walsh and Brendon Bolton.
He said his experience under those coaches would play a key role in the style of footy he wants to implement at the Demons.
"When I first came into the AFL it was all about that contested style of finals footy,'' Kerridge said.
"Now the game is opening up a bit and everyone wants that fast paced game.
"I'll sit down with the club and have a talk about it and sort a few things out."
At 25, Kerridge is still in the prime of his footy career, but he won't put any expectations on himself ahead of his first Heathcote District Football Netball League season.
"I really want to have a fun year and bring some enjoyment to the players and the supporters,'' he said.
"This is not about me. It's about the White Hills Football Club. I'm really looking forward to it."
Kerridge poured cold water on speculation that his former Carlton team-mate Jed Lamb would join him at White Hills.
"Cross fingers for Jed that he'll be playing AFL next year,'' Kerridge said.
"He's training with Carlton and, hopefully, the Blues pick him up in the rookie draft.
"He's one of my best mates, and I'd love to be playing footy with him next year, but hopefully he's got more footy to play at AFL level."
The Demons expect to announce more signings in the next few weeks.
The club's AGM will be held at White Hills Oval on November 21.