There has been talk in recent years of fresh blood being needed on Noreside – particularly after Kilkenny legend Henry Shefflin took the reins with provincial rivals Galway this season – but Mullane believes that Cody has stuck a pin in such commentary as he continues to soar in his 24th season at the helm.
“This finally puts to bed all the c**p talk that’s out there that Brian Cody is holding back Kilkenny hurling, they’re drawing up comparisons between him and Mickey Harte in Tyrone,” Mullane told ‘The Throw-In podcast’ on Independent.ie.
“We saw with Tyrone when Mickey Harte left that they pushed on and won the All-Ireland. I mean, look what Cody has done. It’s remarkable, 17 All-Ireland finals out of 24 years and he’s building a new team.
“He’s thrown in an influx of players. He’s found a gem in Mikey Butler, Cian Kenny the same. There’s a picture in the aftermath of Saturday’s game and there’s Cian Kenny and Mikey Butler looking up at Cody and they’re in absolute awe of him.”
Mullane is adamant that Cody, who turns 68 next Tuesday, is a role model to everyone both inside and outside of the GAA as he eyes a 12th All-Ireland crown against John Kiely’s three-in-a-row chasing Limerick later this month.
“Kilkenny are back in an All-Ireland final and there’s one sure thing about a Kilkenny team managed by Cody going into Croke Park and I’ve been consistent on this, if you’re going to beat a Cody Kilkenny team in Croke Park, you’re going to have to perform,” the five-time All-Star said.
“Brian Cody is 67 years of age and not alone is he an inspiration to all of us within the GAA, he’s an inspiration to the older generation that are out there. You go into a doctor and they tell you that 70 is the new 50 and the older generation are looking on at this man and he’s an inspiration.
“It’s three years now since Kilkenny beat Limerick and I think Kilkenny are now a better team so we’re in for one hell of a final to look forward.
“I’m so happy for Brian Cody, he didn’t deserve any of that talk that was out there the last number of years and it’s remarkable what he’s done. You wouldn’t back against him in this final either.”