PORT Adelaide's 2004 premiership was the deserved triumph of a team that finally overcame its mental demons.

It was the fourth straight year the Power had finished in the top four, yet it was the first time they had won through to the Grand Final.

But a bit of digging into the team that beat the Brisbane Lions by 40 points in the Grand Final – denying the Lions their fourth straight flag – reveals that the Power might have been one of the most football-savvy teams to win a premiership.

An AFL Record feature this week that looks back at the 2004 premiers reveals that while one member of the side, half-back flanker Damien Hardwick, is now coach of Richmond, there are another seven who work as assistant coaches at AFL level.

They are: Chad Cornes and Dean Brogan (Greater Western Sydney), Brett Montgomery (Western Bulldogs), Josh Carr (Port Adelaide), Brendon Lade (Richmond), Adam Kingsley (St Kilda) and Stuart Dew (Sydney Swans).

In addition, Jarrad Schofield is coach of WAFL club Subiaco, while Josh Mahoney, a former assistant coach at Melbourne, is now that club's football manager.

But it doesn’t end there. Skipper Matthew Primus and star on-baller Josh Francou both missed the Grand Final because of season-ending ACL injuries. A decade on, both also are coaching.

Primus, who succeeded 2004 premiership coach Mark Williams at Port, is now an assistant to Guy McKenna at Gold Coast, while Francou is development manager of the Sydney Swans.

But wait - in the finest tradition of late-night television advertising, there's more.

Alastair Clarkson and the late Dean Bailey were two of Williams' chief lieutenants on that team and both went on to become senior coaches. Bailey coached Melbourne and was an assistant at Adelaide when diagnosed with cancer late last year. He died last month.

Clarkson, with two flags already and on his way to becoming one of the greats, actually finished up with Port before the Grand Final once he was appointed coach of Hawthorn.

"He (Clarkson) played a massive part in our success that year," said Dew. The one sad part of that premiership was that he was not there to enjoy the reward for all his effort."

Williams, who finished with Port midway through 2010, is now head of development at Richmond.

By training he was a teacher and those who played under him in 2004 say he fostered a tremendous learning environment at the club.

Stand-in skipper Warren Tredrea said Williams used to take the first- and second-year players for kicking drills rather than leave it one of his assistants.

"Get out there, get your knees dirty and by doing that, he built a really strong relationship with the players," he said.

Mahoney believes Williams' background fostered a great environment at Port Adelaide because, "it was forced upon you as a player to understand a lot about the game. He educated players about the game and how it was played".

Dew said the 2004 team was full of smart footy brains. "We were blessed with guys who would make the right decisions on the ground. Now that there are so many coaching, that's no surprise."

Hawthorn's Shaun Burgoyne, a third-year player with Port in 2004, said his transition to the AFL was made easier because of the instruction he received from the club's senior players on the field.

"The players we had at Port had a great knowledge of the game. They had played for a number of years and they taught the game very well to us younger players, so it was no surprise to see so many of them go into coaching."

Williams was born to coach. His father Fos is a legend at Port Adelaide, leading that club to nine SANFL premierships as coach. "If you identify the traits we had at Port Adelaide," Mark Williams said, "we were very professional and we worked hard and they were great traits for any coaching group. The players picked up on those things.

"Within the team, if you build trust with the older players and communicate well with them and make them feel important, they will pass down their knowledge to the group and the great footy clubs do that," he said.

Read the full story on Port Adelaide’s 2004 premiership in this week’s AFL Record, available at all grounds.