Black is a midfielder with a reputation for hard work and skill. He has the ability to get under the pack to retrieve the ball as well as deliver it with precision to teammates and rarely wastes a possession.
He was drafted by the Brisbane Lions in 1997 from the East Fremantle Football Club, and he debuted in the first game of the 1998 season and immediately showed his class. His numerous awards for his efforts include the 2002 Brownlow Medal, the 2003 Norm Smith Medal and the 2001, 2002, and 2006 Merrett-Murray Medals awarded to the best and fairest player with the Brisbane Lions. His individual awards are accompanied by the three premiership medallions he received as a part of the Lions' hat-trick of premierships in 2001, 2002 and 2003.
Black's individual achievements include a personal best possession count of 39 disposals (16 kicks, 23 handballs) to win the Norm Smith. In his Brownlow year of 2002, he had 20 or more disposals 19 times in the 25 games played, including three occasions where he amassed over 30 possessions. Black's victory in 2002 was confirmed only in the final round, the added intrigue arising as his main rival for the medal, Josh Francou, had opposed him in the final round of the season at AAMI Stadium, a clash the Power won by less than a kick, when Roger James goaled with a minute remaining. He had an uninterrupted run of 109 straight games from 2000 until 2004, when he was suspended for four games due to an incident which arose in the Grand Final loss to Port Adelaide. It has been the only blemish on an otherwise spotless record.
In 2004, Black was made a vice captain of the Lions, a position he retained in 2005. In 2006, he was made a member of the nine-man leadership group of the Lions led by captain Michael Voss alongside senior players Jason Akermanis, Jonathan Brown, Chris Johnson, Nigel Lappin, Justin Leppitsch, Luke Power, and Chris Scott, though disciplinary action against Akermanis and Leppitsch's mid-season retirement due to injury reduced the group to seven. Of these, Lappin and Scott spent the year out through injury; likewise, Johnson and Brown also endured long-term injuries that precluded them from playing much of the season. This left much of the on-field leadership to Black and Power, especially as Voss prepared to step down from the captaincy at the end of the season. Black and Power shared on-field leadership duties, including the coin toss, through the end of the 2006 season. The leadership group was also instrumental in the off-field culture of the club, particularly in the handling of the Akermanis situation.
After Voss retired at the end of 2006, the leadership group of Black, Johnson, Brown, and Power (Lappin being unavailable through injury for all games) acted as co-captains through the 2007 NAB Cup. The club announced on 20th March 2007 that all five players would share the captaincy for the 2007 season.
He has a longterm girlfriend, Catherine Chappell.
Apart from football he co-owns Bank of Queensland Kallangur branch.
He completed a Sales & Marketing Traineeship with Queensland Rail in 1998.