Training Camp Opens

After a long and productive off-season, it was finally time to open training camp. It was a great day for Erie Explosion football as our coaches, players, and staff gathered at the Downtown Avalon Hotel for meetings and physicals. Our team will take the field for the first practice of training camp on Saturday March 5th 2011 at Edinboro University. We have an excellent group of talented dynamic athletes assembled who are looking forward to working hard to bring the SIFL Championship to Erie in 2011. The local Erie Media provided excellent coverage to the start of training camp as we were featured on JetTV, WICU, and the Erie Times News, among others. We now begin our journey over the next two weeks to shape our roster leading up to our game vs. the Harrisburg Stampede on March 20th.



Mike Fox will be the Defensive Coordinator of the Abilene Rough-Riders in 2011

Wanted to extend congratulations to two members of our 2010 Erie Storm coaching staff on their recent accomplishments. Defensive Coordinator Mike Fox was recently named to a front office position and the defensive coordinator of the Abilene Rough Riders of the Southern Indoor Football League. Coach Fox will reunite with Head Coach Shon King, who he previously worked with as a member of the Quad City Steamwheelers coaching staff in the AF2. Mike Fox will be greatly missed and I wish him all the best in his latest coaching opportunity. I am very appreciative of all of the contributions that Coach Fox made to our team in Erie during the 2008 and 2010 season. He is a tremendous defensive football coach and was a major part of the success that we shared in Erie during those years. I wish my friend all the best this season, and hopefully our paths will cross on the field this year in the 2011 SIFL Championship Game.

Erie Assistant Coach Jeremy Liotta Led the Harmar Hurricanes to the 2011 PISA Developmental Indoor Championship

A second round of congratulations goes out to my brother Jeremy who led his team to a developmental indoor football league championship this weekend. Jeremy led the Harmar Hurricanes to a 36 – 28 double overtime win in the 2011 PISA Bowl I Championship over the Pittsburgh Rebels. I had the opportunity to view several of the developmental league games over the course of the season and I was very impressed with the level of talent on display each week at the Pittsburgh Indoor Sports Arena. Developmental leagues like this give players an excellent platform to stay in game shape and showcase their talents for indoor and arena franchises. We have a few young players under contract who competed for the Hurricanes and it was great experience for them to learn the indoor game and I was very happy to see the Hurricanes win the league title. Jeremy will be back with us as an assistant coach in 2011 when we open camp on March 4th.


The Road to Training Camp 2011

Well Erie fans it is almost here….48 days until we open training camp. It is a very exciting time of the year as all of our signed players will come together for the first time to work towards the goals that we have set for the 2011 season. It will be a very competitive training camp as we have veteran players competing for roster spots along with the young talent that we have assembled on this year’s team. It will take a tremendous amount of hard work, focus, attention to detail, and some luck along the way for us to reach our ultimate goal of being 2011 SIFL Champions. I feel that the SIFL has some tremendous talent and outstanding coaching, and each week’s opponent will be a fierce challenge for every team in the league.
The north division is shaping up to be a very competitive one with the Harrisburg Stampede and Trenton Steel standing in our way of the division title and playoff spot. Each week will be a tremendous battle as both teams have experienced rosters and coaching staffs leading their respective clubs. We embrace that challenge and look forward to competing with all of the franchises in our league for the right to be called “Champions”.
I will attempt to take you “inside the walls” for an in-depth view of how we are building our team for the 2011 season opener March 20th when we visit the Harrisburg Stampede. It will be a hard-fought three straight weeks for us on the road before we get a chance to return home in-front of our home fans in Erie on Saturday April 9th when we host the Trenton Steel. We look forward to continuing our vision of putting an exciting, high flying, explosive, fan friendly product on the field each week during the season. Stay tuned for more information on player transactions, camp reports, and further insight into our preparation as we work towards the 2011 SIFL Championship.

Erie Explosion Sign QB Adam DiMichele

Quarterback Adam DiMichele

The Erie Explosion have announced the signing of quarterback Adam DiMichele to a contract for the 2011 season. DiMichele (6’2, 202) brings NFL, CFL, and Division I collegiate experience to the Explosion in 2011. As the starting quarterback for Temple, he passed for 5,024 yards and 40 touchdowns, good for 4th on the Owls all-time list. A team captain and Team MVP during the 2007 and 2008 seasons, DiMichele led the on-field resurgence of the Owls football program under Al Golden.

In 2009 DiMichele was signed as a free agent by the Philadelphia Eagles, and finished the preseason 14-22 for 130 yards and a touchdown. Upon his release from the Eagles, DiMichele spent time with the Calgary Stampeders and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian Football League during the 2009 -2010 seasons.

One of the top overall athletes in Western Pennsylvania sports history he finished his career at Sto-Rox High School as the Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic League’s all-time leading passer. DiMichele earned All-State honors in Football, Basketball, and Baseball during his prep career. After signing with Penn State to play football in February 2004, he decided to pursue a baseball career. He was drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 38th round of the 2005 MLB Draft. DiMichele attended Okaloosa-Walton College in Niceville, Florida from 2004-2006 where he played two seasons of baseball as an outfielder and pitcher. The McKees Rocks, PA native has a brother Alex who was named the 2010 NEC Defensive Player of the Year at Robert Morris University, and brother Anthony who was a second team All-Patriot league defensive back at Holy Cross in 2010.

DiMichele will lead Erie’s explosive pass- oriented offense that led the league in total offense, passing offense, and first downs during the 2010 season. “We are thrilled to be able to have Adam lead our franchise in Erie in 2011. He is a perfect fit for our offensive system and we will have some extremely talented play-makers around him to assist in his transition to the indoor/arena game. He has all the tools to excel at this level, and is a proven winner and leader. I am excited to start working with him in camp, and beginning our quest for the 2011 SIFL Championship, “commented Erie Explosion Coach Shawn Liotta.

Erie Explosion Pro Football, proud members of the SIFL will open training camp in March 2011. For more information on the SIFL and the Erie Explosion visit

Baltimore, MD Combine

Just returned from the Gridiron Placement Services combine in Baltimore Maryland on Sunday. There was a tremendous amount of talent on hand, and we are currently in the evaluation process to determine if we will invite any of these men to our 2011 Training Camp. There were coaches or scouts in attendance from the Harrisburg Stampede, Richmond Revolution, Reading Express, Lehigh Valley Steelhawks, Omaha Beef, Winnipeg Blue Bombers, Philadelphia Soul, Tulsa Talons, and Richmond Raiders among others in attendance to evaluate and work with the prospects. I would like to thank Mike Trott of GPS for inviting us to be a part of the combine. This is a very exciting time of the year as we look to put the finishing touches on our 2011 Training Camp Roster. We will hold our final tryout of the year on Saturday December 11th at Edinboro University. We are still actively recruiting all positions for 2011, and we hope to have some excellent talent at our workout on Saturday.


Erie Explosion Press Conference

The Erie Explosion logo was unveiled at a Press Conference at the Avalon Hotel and Conference Center on Friday December, 3rd 2010

It was an exciting day for our franchise as our new logo and name were announced yesterday. After much hard work and preparation by our ownership group and front office the Erie Explosion logo was unveiled at a press conference that was extremely well attended. The press conference was held at the “Official Hotel of the Erie Explosion” the Avalon Hotel and Conference Center in Downtown Erie. I want to thank our ownership, front office, staff, fans, Avalon Hotel and Staff, and all of the media members that covered this event. The response has been outstanding and I feel the excitement building towards the 2011 season. It has been a very busy off-season for our staff as we have been recruiting, evaluating, and signing top level talent to make a run at the 2011 SIFL Championship. Stay tuned for upcoming announcements on the players who will make up our 2011 Erie Explosion roster, as well as other events and information. I am very pleased with where our roster is at this point, and I am excited about the dynamic and talented players who will wear the Erie Explosion uniform in 2011. Our search for talent is never-ending and this week will be a hectic one as I travel Sunday to a player combine in Baltimore, attend an AFL private workout during the week, and host our open tryout at Edinboro University on Saturday December 11th. It will be a busy and fun week as we look to add the final pieces of the puzzle to bring the 2011 SIFL Championship to Erie. Stay tuned to the blog as we bring you all the latest inside information and insight as we head towards training camp in March 2011.


Erie Explosion Open Tryout Saturday December 11th

Erie Explosion Professional Indoor Football announces Open Tryout for the 2011 Season. The tryout will be held on Saturday December 11th , 2010 from 5:30pm-8:00pm. Erie Explosion Head Coach Shawn Liotta and his staff will be conducting the tryout and searching for local talent to add to the 2011 Training Camp Roster. Fresh off their successful 2010 playoff run Coach Liotta will be looking for local talent to make a run at the SIFL Championship in 2011, and this is your opportunity for your talent to be discovered. Coach Liotta will be searching for the best local talent that Erie has to offer and will sign deserving players to 2011 Contracts. The tryout will be held on the campus of Edinboro University in the Zafirovski Sports & Recreation Arena at 219 Meadville Street, Edinboro, PA 16444.
Participants will be tested in the 40 Yard Dash, Broad Jump, and Short Shuttle. Athletes will then be tested in specific positional and group drills. Participants will be expected to wear proper workout clothing and proper footwear (No Spikes or Turf Shoes). All participants must be 18 years of age or older. This is a non-contact camp and no equipment will be required. All participants will be asked to sign a liability waiver prior to the tryout. Players may contact Erie Explosion Head Coach Shawn Liotta at for more information on the tryout.

Erie Explosion Professional Indoor Football – Open Tryout Fast Facts
What: Erie Explosion Pro Football Open Tryout for 2011 Season
“Your Chance to Prove You Can Play Professional Football”

When: Saturday December 11th 2010
Where: Edinboro University – Zafirovski Sports & Recreation Arena
Time: 5:30pm- 8:00pm
Registration Begins at 5:00pm
Registration Fee: $50.00 – Cash or Money Order Only
Questions: Contact Coach Liotta –

The Erie Explosion are proud members of the Southern Indoor Football League. For more information on the SIFL and the Erie Explosion visit

Jovon Johnson Named Outstanding Special Teams Player

Congratulations to former Erie RiverRats DB Jovon Johnson who was named the Winnipeg Blue Bombers’ most outstanding special teams player as selected by voting members of the Football Reporters of Canada and the CFL head coaches.

Johnson finished the season having returned 86 kicks for 912 yards and two touchdowns. The Mercyhurst Prep graduate had a 10.6 yards-per-punt-return average while also returning six missed field goals for 186 yards. Johnson also finished with 63 tackles and two interceptions while playing cornerback for the Blue Bombers, who finished the season 4-14.

SIFL & AIFA Announce Merger

Merger to Change Indoor Football Landscape

DAYTONA BEACH, FL (November 9, 2010) – Southern Indoor Football League (SIFL) commissioner Gary Tufford announced today (November 9,2010) that six teams from the American Indoor Football Association (AIFA) have joined the SIFL as part of a merger between the two leagues.
After engaging in strategic discussions, the two leagues have taken a major step that presents an immediate impact on the national indoor football landscape and creates a league that will stretch from New Jersey to Texas.
“The creation of this alliance is most important to teams that want to play regionally under a business model that more appropriately fits their market,” Tufford said. “In order to accommodate such markets we had to build bridges. Regional play within a league structure makes perfect sense at this level. In a time when everyone is looking to be as trim as possible you have to look for partnerships that make sense. We are truly a regional league playing in divisions that define their territory yet play under a super regional umbrella footprint”.
The six teams – Fayetteville (N.C.) Guard, Richmond (Va.) Raiders, Harrisburg (Pa.) Stampede, Erie (Pa.), Trenton (NJ) Steel and Carolina (NC) Speed will play as part of the SIFL in various divisions. AIFA co-founder John Morris who also owns the Harrisburg team, split up the AIFA between East and West entities, and AIFA co-founder Michael Mink will be the sole owner of the new AIFA West that will operate independent of the merger.
“We are very excited to partner with the SIFL, together we will make each other stronger,” Morris said. “This merger will provide for great indoor football all along the east coast and through the southeast and Texas.”
Both Tufford and Morris are seasoned veterans in the business and bring a wealth of knowledge to the alliance. Tufford is a career long football executive and former pro player and coach who has over 30 years experience in pro football and oversees the SIFL from its Florida office. Morris is a successful business owner and entrepreneur. He will concentrate on his team’s operations and act as a special consultant to the league.
The SIFL was founded by Thom Hager in 2008 out of his desire to create an economic model that allows teams to compete on the field while ensuring long-term viability in the business community. With an economic model heralded as being the future in minor league football, the SIFL enters its
third season. The SIFL has grown from its original six teams to the current 16 teams. Hager is also the owner of the Lake Charles-based Louisiana Swashbucklers, one of indoor footballs most storied franchises.
The AIFA was formed in October, 2006 by Mink and Morris from a combination of teams from existing indoor leagues and expansion markets for the purpose of giving players a platform to excel and work to continue their football careers at a higher level.
“We were proud to see a number of our players fulfill their dreams of playing at the next level,” said Morris. “In its four seasons, the AIFA grew from a regional league to a national entity and also was at the forefront of national television exposure for its league members.”
“Now that we (SIFL) have extended our footprint into a “super regional” that includes the northeast it is imperative that we not only grow these new teams but also nurture our existing ones. We have a responsibility to the teams, fans and the sport itself to create great rivalries, quality entertainment and affordable budgets” said Tufford.
The SIFL will kick off the 2011 season in March with 16 teams in all. The member teams are: Erie, PA, Harrisburg PA, Trenton, NJ, Richmond, VA, Fayetteville, NC, Charlotte, NC, Columbus, GA, Albany, GA, Huntsville, AL, Mobile, AL, Lafayette, LA, Lake Charles, LA, Houston, TX, Corpus Christi, TX, Rio Grande Valley, TX, Abilene, TX.
For more information regarding the leagues log onto

Talkin’ Tryouts

The Sports Blitz Tune in to The Fan weekdays from 5pm to 7pm for your daily dose of The Sports Blitz with Jim LeCorchick. 1330 The Fan - your sports station!

It is my pleasure to be a guest on the Sports Blitz with Jim LeCorchick on Fox Sports Radio this week. Fans can tune in to Fox Sports Radio 1330 on Wednesday October 20th at 6:05pm to hear the interview and find out more information about our 2011 Roster and our upcoming local tryout at Edinboro University on Saturday October 23rd 2010. We are looking for local talent to compete for a training camp spot and help us bring a Championship to Erie in 2011.

Joe Blanks Signs with Tulsa Talons of AFL

Joe Blanks became the second member of the Erie Storm 2010 roster to accept a contract with an Arena Football League Franchise. Blanks (6’3, 315) a graduate of Erie Cathedral Prep and Winston Salem State signed with the Tulsa Talons. In his professional indoor rookie season with Erie, Blanks was part of a pass protection unit that gave up only 20 sacks in 525 pass attempts during the 2010 season. “I am very happy for Joe to get an opportunity to further his career with Tulsa in the Arena Football League. It is always a positive when our franchise can be a vehicle for players to advance their careers to the next level. We have had two players sign AFL deals in the last two weeks and I would not be surprised to see a few more of our players advance in the future,” commented Erie Head Coach Shawn Liotta.

Open Tryout Saturday October 23rd 2010

Erie Professional Indoor Football announces first Open Tryout for the 2011 Season. The first open tryout will be held on Saturday October 23rd, 2010 from 11:30am-2:00pm. Erie Head Coach Shawn Liotta and his staff will be conducting the tryout and searching for local talent to add to the 2011 Training Camp Roster. Fresh off their successful 2010 playoff run Coach Liotta will be looking for local talent to make a run at the championship in 2011, and this is your opportunity for your talent to be discovered. The tryout will be held on the campus of Edinboro University in the Zafirovski Sports & Recreation Arena (219 Meadville Street, Edinboro, PA 16444.
Participants will be tested in the 40 Yard Dash, 10 Yard Dash, and Short Shuttle. Athletes will then be tested in specific positional and group drills. Participants will be expected to wear proper workout clothing and proper footwear (No Spikes or Turf Shoes). There will be no trainer on-hand for player taping, and players should bring plenty of water as none will be provided at the workout. All participants must be 18 years of age or older. This is a non-contact camp and no equipment will be required. All participants will be asked to sign a liability waiver prior to the tryout.
Players may contact Head Coach Shawn Liotta at or at 1-866-786-7620 for more information on the tryout or to pre-register.
Players who wish to send bio or film for evaluation by Coach Liotta may do so by contacting him at

Erie Professional Indoor Football Open Tryout
Date: Saturday October 23rd 2010
Time: 11:30am- 2:00pm
Registration Begins at 11:00am
Registration Fee: $50.00 – Cash or Money Order Only
Questions: Contact Coach Liotta –

Dixon Headed to the AFL

We are pleased to announce that former Erie Storm WR Denayne Dixon has been offered a contract with the Iowa Barnstormers of the Arena Football League for the 2011 season. Dixon a former tight-end at Edinboro University made the transition to WR with us in 2010 and transitioned into one of the most dominant WR’s in the league. He finished the season with 55 catches for 703 yards and 15 touchdowns in only 9 games. The Barnstormers finished (7-9) in their first season of returning to AFL play in 2010. We want to extend a big congratulations to Denayne and wish him all the best as he moves on to a tremendous opportunity to further his career.

Congratulations to David Dinkins

I want to extend a big congratulations to former Erie QB/WR David Dinkins on being selected to the Morehead State Athletic Hall of Fame. Dinkins will be inducted into the Hall of Fame on Friday October 15th, and will have his jersey retired prior to the MSU game vs. Davidson on Saturday October 16th. You can read more about the induction HERE

Dinkins is well known to Erie fans having played for the Erie Freeze from 2005-2006, and earning the 2005 AIFL MVP Award. “Dink” was the first player I signed to a contract for the RiverRats during the inaugural 2007 season and he finished the season as a 1st Team All-League performer at the QB position. Dinkins would go on to play for us at QB/WR with the Erie RiverRats, Wheeling Wildcats, and finally the Erie Storm in 2010. He was known for his electric on-field play and his outstanding personality. Dave was a tremendous player, and an even better person off of the field and in the locker room. “Dink” is moving on to another opportunity in 2011 that is closer to his home and employment and we wish him all the best – his ability and personality will be missed by all. Congratulations!

2010 AIFA League Meetings Wrap-up

BALTIMORE, MD (September 22, 2010) – The American Indoor Football Association (AIFA) completed two successful days of owner’s meeting on September 17th and 18th at dual sites located in Baltimore, Maryland and Reno, Nevada. At the top of the agenda were national sponsors and vendors, revenue opportunities for teams, increased fan interaction, and numerous administrative items including the 2011 divisional alignment and schedule.

“These were the most successful owners’ meetings I have seen in our five years as a league. We had a solid group of owners discussing ways to continue to improve the AIFA,” stated AIFA Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer John Morris.

AIFA owners were presented with a number of briefings from national entities which would increase revenue for the clubs, boost awareness of the AIFA across the country, and lower costs for owners; while providing premier living conditions for out of town players. Presentations included a national organization, which submitted plans for a potential cash sponsorship to the AIFA, proposals for increasing revenue streams through television, webcasting, and web-based team stores from several national syndicators and ad agencies, and a presentation from a national hotel chain, which would provide housing with full kitchens for AIFA teams in their local markets to house out of town players during the season, as well as, a discounted room rate for teams for away games while on the road. National vendors also provided proposals on artificial turf, custom mouth guards, insurance and uniforms. The meetings also focused on increased fan interaction. Creation of an AIFA Fan of the Year contest was discussed, in which one lucky fan would win tickets, transportation, hotel accommodations and meals for two to the AIFA championship game. A proposal to allow fan voting, along with AIFA coaches, for players of the week on offensive, defensive, and special teams as well as all-star players through a independent national voting service was also discussed by AIFA team owners. Video and audio streaming of AIFA games through one of the industries leaders whose clients include the NFL, NHL, as well as, major colleges spawned enthusiastic talks.

Among the administrative items discussed were the AIFA playoffs, divisional alignments, coaches and players’ pay, the 2011 schedule, the league fee structure, services provided by the AIFA, the league television contract, and AIFA operations manual and rule book revisions. The AIFA, which will be entering its fifth season of play, plans to release its divisional alignment and schedule in the near future. “These were highly productive meetings and working with our team owners I am excited for the product we will provide our fans across the country in 2011,” said Morris.

AIFA League Meetings Scheduled for Baltimore, MD

BALTIMORE, MD (September 11, 2010) – The American Indoor Football Association (AIFA), set to kickoff its fifth season in 2011, will host a unique set of owners’ meetings at sites in Baltimore, Maryland and Reno, Nevada on September 17th and 18th. At the top of the agenda for the dual meetings are introduction of a league-wide national hotel sponsorship, other national sponsors and vendors, sales/marketing and profit sharing with teams, increased fan interaction and involvement, a league financed playoff package, and the 2011 AIFA televised Game of the Week. “We topped off a successful 2010 season with over 6,000 fans at AIFA Bowl IV, now we are laying the groundwork for a tremendous 2011 season, in which we will celebrate our 5th year of play,” stated AIFA Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer John Morris. In a unique concept, targeted toward reducing travel time and costs for its member organizations, the AIFA will host simultaneous meetings in Baltimore and Reno. The assemblies will operate independently with portions simulcast between the two locations. Representatives from seven teams will participate in the talks in Baltimore and five will attend the gathering in Reno.

At the top of the agenda are revenue generating and cost saving opportunities for the AIFA members. Included is introduction of a league-wide national hotel sponsorship with over 700 locations. Also numerous national companies will be making presentations on products including equipment, uniforms, insurance, video streaming and more. In addition sales/marketing and profit sharing, as well as, a league financed playoff package will be discussed. Also slated for discussion is increased fan interaction and involvement and a focus on national media including the 2011 AIFA televised Game of the Week. “We’re looking forward to two days of solid talks with our teams and outstanding presentations from some of the top companies in the U.S. These two days, in two great cities, will launch us toward a great 2011 season,” said Morris.

Baltimore Mariners Coach Chris Simpson Resigns

The Baltimore Mariners have announced that Chris Simpson has resigned his position as Head Coach. Coach Simpson in a team issued press release indicated that he will pursue other opportunities for his family. Coach Simpson led the Baltimore Mariners to a undefeated 16-0 record capped with the 2010 AIFA Championship. Simpson led the Mariners to back to back playoff seasons and has a wide range of experience in indoor football. An excellent teacher and motivator, he will not have a difficult time in securing his next coaching job. It was a pleasure to compete against Coach Simpson over the past few seasons and I would like to wish him and his family all the best in his future endeavors.

New Arrival

I would like to announce the arrival of the newest addition of Team Liotta. My wife and I welcomed our daughter Liliana Rose into our family today. Mother and Daughter are doing very well and I would like to thank everyone who has passed along their prayers and well wishes. – SL

From Indoor Football to the NFL

I just wanted to pass along a tremendous story of hard-work, dedication, and never giving up on your dream. The Green Bay Packers recently signed a player Maurice Simpkins who played last season with the IFL’s Green Bay Blizzard. You can read the tremendous story of his journey from the Indoor Leagues to the NFL here . It is a tremendous story and is a tribute to the Green Bay Blizzard organization and coach Rik Richards who does an excellent job year in and year out. This story illustrates why athletes continue to play this game at the professional indoor and arena level, for an opportunity to continue to receive film to showcase their talents to a higher level. Often players will sit around and wait for an opportunity to come to them or expect their agents or coaches to get them an opportunity. This article reinforces the point that this players tireless efforts landed him an opportunity to showcase himself at the games highest level.

Indoor/Arena Football Records Through 2010 Season

Baltimore Mariners public relations director John Wolfe has compiled a list of All-Time Indoor & Arena Football records through the completion of the 2010 season. The top 10 in several categories are listed below, and the Tampa Bay Storm despite losing Arena Bowl XXIII on Friday night remain the winningest program in the history of Indoor and Arena Football.

Most Regular Season Wins (Through 2010)
Team Wins
Tampa Bay Storm 192
Orlando Predators 168
Arizona Rattlers 158
San Jose Sabrecats 136
Tulsa Talons 133
New York Dragons 116
Indiana Firebirds 112
Sioux Falls Storm 111
Omaha Beef 107
Rock River Raptors 104
Quad City Steamwheelers 104

Most Playoff Wins (Through 2010)
Team Wins
Tampa Bay Storm 23
Orlando Predators 23
Arizona Rattlers 21
Sioux Falls Storm 17
San Jose Sabrecats 15
Billings Outlaws 15
Massachusetts Marauders 13
Spokane Shock 13
Tulsa Talons 11
Peoria Pirates 11

Most Total Wins (Through 2010)
Team Wins
Tampa Bay Storm 215
Orlando Predators 191
Arizona Rattlers 179
San Jose Sabrecats 151
Tulsa Talons 144
Sioux Falls Storm 128
New York Dragons 124
Indiana Firebirds 120
Billings Outlaws 116
Rock River Raptors 111

Most Championships (Through 2010)
Team Championships
Tampa Bay Storm 5
Sioux Falls Storm 4
Massachusetts Marauders 4
San Jose Sabrecats 3
Billings Outlaws 3
Louisiana Swashbucklers 3
Spokane Shock 3
Orlando Predators 2
Arizona Rattlers 2
Tulsa Talons 2
Quad City Steamwheelers 2
Peoria Pirates 2
Ohio Valley Greyhounds 2
Mississippi Fire Dogs 2

Most Seasons (Through 2010)
Team Seasons
Tampa Bay Storm 23
Orlando Predators 19
Arizona Rattlers 18
Indiana Firebirds 15
San Jose Sabrecats 14
New York Dragons 14
Cleveland Gladiators 13
Sioux Falls Storm 11
Billings Outlaws 11
Grand Rapids Rampage 11
Omaha Beef 11
Arkansas Diamonds 11
Wyoming Calvary 11
Sioux City Bandits 11

Arena Football League to Return to Pittsburgh in 2011

It appears that the Arena Football League will place an expansion team in the Pittsburgh market for the 2011 season. According to published reports by the Pittsburgh Tribune Review the team will soon announce its ownership group which includes former Pittsburgh Steeler Hall of Fame receiver Lynn Swann. The team would play its games at the new state of the art Consol Energy Center and would be one of four planned expansion teams for the AFL. The league has announced the Kansas City Brigade, Philadelphia Soul, and San Jose Sabercats will return to play in 2011. The AFL in its first year back from a one-year hiatus, will hold Arena Bowl XXIII featuring the Spokane Shock and the Tampa Bay Storm live Friday night at 8:00pm on the NFL Network. The restructuring of the league, and the elimination of the players union has allowed the AFL to keep operating costs down for their ownership groups. The 2010 AFL player salaries were reported to be $400.00 per game with 3 “marketing players” receiving a salary of $1,000.00 per game, and the coaching staff budgets were set at $100,000.00 for the entire staff in 2010. This was accomplished while maintaining a high quality, competitive product on the field, and continuing the fan interaction that the AFL had developed over the past 23 seasons. I look forward to seeing the Arena Football League return to Pittsburgh for 2011, and it places us in the unique position in Erie of having two AFL franchises (Pittsburgh, Cleveland) within 2 1/2 hours driving distance.

Reading Express Moving to IFL

It has been widely reported by several media outlets that the Reading Express are leaving the American Indoor Football Association and joining the Indoor Football League. The Reading Eagle did an in-depth article on the situation here . The Express have planned a 2:00pm press conference today to announce their intentions along with the formal introductions of their new Head Coach Chris Thompson and General Manager Tim Glase. The 2010 season was the first time in five years that the Express failed to make the post-season. I am very saddened to see the Express leave the AIFA as they were a cornerstone franchise of the league over the past 5 years. We have enjoyed many battles with the Express over the years, and were always treated in a first class and professional manner by their front office and ownership.

An interesting side-note on all of this is that the Express were almost named …….The Reading RiverRats?

Logo that was created by Skye Design Studios but never used by the Reading Express franchise. The logo was later altered and adopted by the Pittsburgh (Erie) RiverRats

Yes it is true, in 2006 AIFL President Andrew Haines had several logos to be reviewed for consideration for the new franchise that was being placed in Reading. One of those logos was the Reading RiverRats logo which is shown below. The RiverRats logo eventually lost out to Express branding and the rest is history. The RiverRats logo would later be reworked by Haines and used in the debut of the Pittsburgh RiverRats at a Press Conference in August of 2006. The RiverRats later moved to Erie and played at the Tullio Arena from 2008-2009.

Arena Bowl XXIII Match-up

The match-ups are set for the Arena Bowl XXIII which will be televised live Friday at 8:00pm EST on the NFL Network. The Spokane Shock 60-57 winners over the Milwaukee Iron will host the Tampa Bay Storm for the 2010 Arena Bowl Championship. The Storm advanced to the title game by holding off the Orlando Predators by a score of 56-55 as Predators kicker Carlos Martinez missed a potential game winning last second field goal as time expired. Prediction: I felt when the AFL playoffs began that Tampa Bay could be a sleeper team in the playoffs. The “Lord of the Rings”, Tampa Coach Tim Marcum will add another ring to his collection – Tampa Bay Storm 62- Spokane Shock 53.

High School Football season has started in Erie and around the state of Pennsylvania. I want to wish all of the local players and coaches a productive and healthy Training Camp, and best of luck during the 2010 High School Football Season.

Flashback Friday- Freeze TV Spot

This weeks edition of “Flashback Friday” features a TV Spot from the Erie Freeze. This commercial featuring LB Roosevelt Benjamin was shown on local Erie Television during the 2007 Erie Freeze Season. The 2007 season was the final season in Erie for the Freeze as they finished the season with a 1-13 record.

Flashback Friday – Erie Freeze TV Commercial

Erie Storm Coaches Show

Leading up to to the 2011 season I will be hosting a weekly Coaches Show on UStream. The goal of the show will be to provide you with tremendous insight into our preparation and planning as we work to bring the 2011 Championship to Erie. We will review our previous game, preview our upcoming opponent, have special guests (players, coaches, staff) and even answer some fan questions. We may even have some episodes where we go on location and take you inside the film room or a practice session to give you a true behind the scenes look at our team. During the off-season I will attempt to have a show bi-monthly to update the fans on the formation of our 2011 roster and other exciting news regarding our franchise. The show can be viewed live on the front page of this website or by clicking the Coaches Show link at the bottom of the page. Archived shows can be viewed here . A full schedule will be posted at a later date, but the broadcast is tentatively planned for Thursdays at 7:00pm (Eastern).

Ask The Coach- Favorite NFL Team

With the NCAA/NFL season fast approaching I tackle an NFL question along with a preseason Super Bowl prediction. Keep the questions coming and I will attempt to answer as many as possible.

Question- Coach who is your favorite NFL Team. I figured it is probably the Steelers but just thought I would ask. Do you think they will win the Super Bowl this year.
TJ – Edinboro

Answer- Being born and raised in Pittsburgh I may be one of the few non-Steelers fans in the city. I am a Cincinnati Bengals fan and have been since I was a young boy. Growing up I enjoyed watching the way that the Bengals played the game with one of the most exciting offensive units in the NFL with Quarterback Boomer Esiason, Ickey Woods, and a group of great Wide Receivers. Their coach Sam Wyche was a true innovator with his no-huddle and sugar huddle and had such an impact on the game that the NFL incorporated rules to slow down the Bengals attack. I was very pleased with the season the Bengals had last year after a bunch of lean seasons, and with their recent addition of Terrell Owens to bolster the passing game I look for a big season in Cincinnati. As far as a Super Bowl prediction I will go with the Bengals in the AFC and the Chicago Bears in the NFC. Mike Martz is running the offense in Chicago and has the trigger-man in Jay Cutler to put up some serious points. With that said I am predicting the Bears to be the surprise team out of the NFC, and make it a Bengals vs. Bears Super Bowl match-up. Thank you for the question and keep them coming.- SL

Play of the Week- Rutherford to Dixon 30 Yard TD

Today’s edition of the Play of the Week features a Rod Rutherford to Denayne Dixon 30 yard touchdown pass from our game with the Reading Express on April 25, 2010. This was a key divisional match-up with the Express which we won 41-34 securing a 2-1 series lead over Reading during the 2010 season. This touchdown was a critical play in the game as we were able to score with only six seconds left in the first half to take the lead into the break. Dixon finished the game with 103 yards and three touchdowns.

Play of the Week- Rutherford to Dixon 30 Yard TD

AFL Weekend Playoff Roundup

The Arena Football League showcased their first round playoff games this weekend. The Spokane Shock defeated the Arizona Rattlers for the third time this season by a score of 57-49, spoiling the monster game by Arizona WR Rod Windsor who had 15 catches for 210 yards and 5 touchdowns. The Shock will host the Milwaukee Iron who knocked the banged-up Chicago Rush from the playoffs by a score of 64-54. Rush coach Mike Hohensee showed why he is one of the top coaches in Arena Football with the juggling act he was forced into this season as a result of injuries and players moving on to other opportunities. Many feel that the Rush had one of the top lineups in the AFL to start the season and if they could have kept it together would have competed for the championship in 2010. Milwaukee will travel to Spokane for an 8:00pm kickoff Thursday night that will be televised on the NFL Network.

Veteran coach Tim Marcum led the Tampa Bay Storm to an impressive 68-38 victory on the road over the Tulsa Talons. This will set the stage for a return of the Orlando Predators and WR Bobby Sippio to Tampa Bay only two weeks after they were involved in an alleged altercation with Tampa Bay fans. The Jacksonville Sharks were upset 73-69 by the 4th seeded Orlando Predators as Bobby Sippio caught his 6th touchdown of the game with 8.7 seconds left. Sippio played a monster role for the Predators in this game as the Jacksonville secondary were unable to contain him for most of the night especially in the redzone. The Predators will travel to Tampa Bay to take on the Storm Saturday at 7:30pm.

Flashback Friday- Erie Freeze @ Johnstown Riverhawks 2005

This weeks edition of Flashback Friday features the inaugural 2005 American Indoor Football League contest between the Erie Freeze and the Johnstown Riverhawks. The Freeze were led to their first win in franchise history by QB David Dinkins as they posted a 48 – 27 victory on the road in Johnstown, PA. Erie exploded for a seventeen point lead to start the game and never looked back- sealing the game with several key defensive stops in the second half for Freeze head coach Mike Esposito. This game features many players who would go on to become household names in the AIFL/AIFA over the past five seasons. Riverhawks starting quarterback Chris Thompson is currently the Head Coach of the Reading Express, and Johnstown receiver Quenteen Robinson was recently named the Head Coach of the first year Johnstown Generals of the UIFL.

Flashback Friday- Erie Freeze @ Johnstown Riverhawks – 2005 AIFL Season

Ask The Coach- Open Tryouts

Today I will answer a question from one of our great fans in Erie, PA. I hope you enjoy this feature where I will answer questions submitted directly from our fans. There have been many outstanding questions submitted and I will attempt to personally answer as many of them as possible. One question each month will be selected as the “question of the month” and that fan will receive two tickets to a game of their choice in 2011. You may submit your question directly through this website by following the “ask the coach” link- Keep those great questions coming!

Ask The Coach – August 5, 2010

Question– Coach what do you and your staff look for when evaluating players at your tryouts and when are the tryouts scheduled for next year. – James F. – Erie, PA

Answer– Our open tryouts provide a tremendous vehicle for prospective players to catch the eye of our coaching staff. Although the bulk of our training camp roster is signed through our traditional recruitment methods we value the importance of our open tryouts. The open tryout provides an opportunity for players who may have been “under the radar” the opportunity to showcase their skills to play professional indoor football. Each season we sign several players from our open tryouts to our training camp roster, and we have had several of these players go on to make an impact on our squad over the past several seasons. We get some tremendous local talent at our tryouts and our coaching staff enjoys looking for the true “diamond in the rough” at these workouts. At one of our open workouts players are timed in the 40 & 10 yard dash, pro agility, and put through a variety of position specific drills. The workout concludes with several team periods where we can evaluate how well select players can absorb coaching and fundamental work. Our tryouts usually last about two and one half hours. Our tryout schedule will be finalized over the next several weeks and we are planning to have our first open workout in late September 2010 or early October 2010. Stay tuned to this blog or for complete details on our upcoming open tryouts. – SL

AFL Suspends 2 Players for Altercation with Fans

August 4, 2010

In response to an unfortunate incident the Arena Football League has issued suspensions to Orlando’s Bobby Sippio and Julius Wilson for their involvement in an altercation with fans in Saturday night’s game. Wilson and Predators wide receiver Bobby Sippio were ejected late in the second quarter of their 75-60 victory Saturday night after entering the St. Pete Times Forum stands and getting into an alleged altercation with several fans. It was reported that Sippio had attempted to give a ball to Julius Wilsons father who was subsequently attacked and knocked to the ground by other spectators to get the football. This prompted Sippio and Wilson to come to his fathers defense and prompted the actions that ensued. It has been reported that Wilson struck a fan during the altercation by several media outlets. The AFL has suspended Wilson for 6 games and a monetary fine, and Sippio was suspended one game and fined. Sippio has appealed his suspension to the league and is expected to play in the Predators playoff game this Friday night. AFL Commissioner Jerry Kurz issued the following statement in response to the incident; “The AFL apologizes to their fans for the regretful and unacceptable actions of two of its players during a game this past Saturday. It is not acceptable for our players to enter the stands at anytime during a game, no matter the circumstances.”

The intimacy of the indoor/arena game provides fans with a tremendous experience each week and is part of what makes the game unique. There is a line that simply can not be crossed between fan and player and unfortunately I have witnessed to a lesser extent situations similar to this in the past. It is never a positive situation when a player enters the stands or when a fan attacks a player on the field or throws objects at players on the field or bench area. Both parties must accept responsibility and respect the boundaries that exist between player and fan. Most leagues now including the AFL have adopted rules prohibiting players from leaving the bench area for any reason.

Orlando Predators Altercation with Fans

Play of the Week- Tommie Weatherspoon Int Return for TD

August 3, 2010

In this weeks edition of the Play of the Week we have an interception return for a touchdown by the Erie Storm defense vs. the Baltimore Mariners. Erie Storm linebacker Tommie Weatherspoon takes the interception from Mariner quarterback E.J. Nemeth 10 yards for a touchdown on the first play of the second half. In 8 games played in 2010, Weatherspoon had 23.5 total tackles and 2.5 sacks from the mack linebacker position.

Play of the Week – Interception Return by Tommie Weatherspoon

AIFA All-Star Ballot

August 2, 2010

The 2010 American Indoor Football Association season has come to a conclusion, and it is now time for the league to select their All-Star Teams. I am not sure what this process entails however in past seasons the head coaches, assistant coaches, and owner/general manager were given a ballot to select the respective All-Star teams in their divisions. I have compiled my own un-official Eastern Conference All-Star Ballot for the 2010 season. When selecting an All-Star team I consider several factors including statistics, impact the player has had on the success of his team overall, and the impact the player had in games played against our team. I try to weigh all of these factors together to select the best players possible, and it is a very difficult job because of all of the outstanding talent in the AIFA. Please remember that I can not vote for my own players, and I certainly feel that several members of our 2010 Erie Storm team are worthy of league All-Star recognition.

QB- E. J. Nemeth- Baltimore Mariners
RB- Isaiah Greer – Baltimore Mariners RB- Eugene Goodman- Harrisburg Stampede
OL- Nyere Aymaitre- Harrisburg Stampede
OL-Konstatinos Kosmakos- Baltimore Mariners
OL-Randall Bennett – Harrisburg Stampede
WR-Kevin Marion- Harrisburg Stampede WR- Scorpio Brown- Baltimore Mariners
WR-Jay Jackson- Richmond Raiders WR- Keith Stokes – Harrisburg Stampede
DL-Fearon Wright- Baltimore Mariners
DL-Dayon Benson- Reading Express
DL-Melik Brown- Baltimore Mariners
LB- Adam Goloboski – Baltimore Mariners LB-Mike Woodhouse- Harrisburg Stampede
DB-Jeremy Gray- Harrisburg Stampede DB- Jerome Mann- Richmond Raiders
DB- Richard Johnson- Baltimore Mariners DB- Armar Watson – Baltimore Mariners
Special Teams
PK- J.R. Cipra- Baltimore Mariners
KR- Elliott White- New Jersey Revolution
All Purpose- Walter Ford – Fayetteville Guard
Front Office
Coach of the Year- Chris Simpson – Baltimore Mariners
Executive of the Year- Greg Justice- GM- Baltimore Mariners

Arena Football League Playoff Match-ups Set

August 1, 2010

The Arena Football League playoffs are now set. In the American Conference the Jacksonville Sharks will host the Orlando Predators in the AFL Game of the week, and the Tulsa Talons will host the Tampa Bay Storm. The Storm with veteran coach Tim Marcum could be a sleeper team in the playoffs, however the Jacksonville Sharks have looked very impressive all season. In the National Conference the Spokane Shock will host the Arizona Rattlers and the Chicago Rush will visit the Milwaukee Iron. The Chicago Rush feature a name who may be familiar to some AIFA fans in WR Syvelle Newton who formerly played very briefly for the Harrisburg Stampede. Newton was signed to the the quarterback during the teams initial season and was the starting quarterback for the pre-season All-Star Classic. Newton struggled in that game at QB and was later replaced by A.J. Roque who led the Stampede to the second half comeback victory over the AIFA All-Stars.

Flashback Friday- 2008 Playoff Game vs. Reading Express

July 30, 2010

Flashback Friday- 2008 AIFA Playoffs Erie RiverRats @ Reading Express

Today we will flashback to the 2008 AIFA first round playoff game with the Reading Express. Both teams entered the game with 10-4 records however the Express earned the right to host the playoff game based on their 2-1 regular season advantage. We were faced with the task of playing a very tough opponent on the road and in-front of the loud and boisterous Reading Express fans. Our players did a tremendous job of focusing on the road and we had ourselves in a position to win the game in the last minute. J.R. Cipra kicked a field goal with under 55 seconds to go to give us a 57-54 lead. The final minute of this game was probably one of the wildest and most controversial in league history. At the end of the day the Express escaped with a hard fought 67-57 victory. This was a very hard played and emotional game for both sides and I am constantly reminded by fans who were in attendance that it was one of the best games they had ever witnessed. This is a game that many Erie fans did not have the opportunity to view since it was on the road and not broadcast on local television. I hope you enjoy these scoring drive clips from the game. Stay posted for a future blog where I will post the final action packed minutes of this game in its entirety.

2008 AIFA Playoffs – Erie @ Reading – Selected Scoring Drives

Former Erie Invaders Coach Named SIFL Commissioner

July 29, 2010

Former Erie Invaders Head Coach Gary Tufford has been named the Commissioner of the Southern Indoor Football League. Tufford brings over 30 years of professional football experience to the SIFL as an executive, coach and player, with 20 of those years involved with indoor football. He has previously served as the Executive Director of the Indoor Football League, Commissioner of the World Indoor Football League, and Executive Director of the American Indoor Football League. Tufford led the Erie Invaders to a 6-8 record during the 2000 season. The SIFL will be entering its third season in 2011, the Columbus Lions formerly of the American Indoor Football Association won the 2010 SIFL Championship. For more information on Gary Tufford and the Southern Indoor Football League visit

Jovon Johnson Named CFL Special Teams Player of the Week

July 28, 2010

Erie native and former Erie RiverRats Defensive Back Jovon Johnson has been named the CFL Special Teams Player of the Week. Johnson electrified the home crowd with an 83-yard punt return touchdown late in the fourth quarter that helped the Bombers beat the Edmonton Eskimos 47-21. This game was shown live on the NFL Network as the CFL game of the Week. Johnson also had a 100 plus yard interception return for a TD called back on a roughing the qb call late in the 4th quarter. This is Johnson’s fourth Special Teams Player of the Week award as he previously won for his efforts last year in weeks 14, 15 and 17. Johnson was named one of the top 50 players in the CFL prior to the 2010 season, and the Blue Bombers are currently 2-2 on the season. For more information on Jovon visit

Jovon Johnson Returns a Punt for a Touchdown

Jovon Johnson Erie RiverRat Highlights

2010 AIFA Bowl IV Recap

July 26, 2010

Congratulations to the Baltimore Mariners on defeating the Wyoming Cavalry 57-42 to win the 2010 AIFA Championship. I want to give credit to the entire Mariners organization on an undefeated 2010 season. Here are a few random thoughts on the championship game; The crowd at 1st Mariner was solid, I would guess a legit 4,500 or so in attendance….The Mariners gameday staff and General Manager Greg Justice did an excellent job with the in-game presentation, there was a lot of activity going on during the game and it was all done in a very slick and professional manner….Tremendous job by the Mariners coaching staff sticking with their game-plan throughout the contest and capitalizing on Wyoming’s mistakes….Excellent game-plan coming into the game by Wyoming coach Dan Maciejczak they were in a position to win the football game throughout….Wyoming receiver Jasonus Tillery was a force on Sunday with 170 yards and 5 touchdowns and the Mariners secondary consistently struggled to cover him down the field….The Mariners defensive line was quiet early but came up big with several key sacks of Wyoming QB Matt Strand during the second half….Baltimore Kicker J.R. Cipra was a deciding factor in the game with a big field goal before the half to cut the Wyoming lead to seven points and drilling several uno’s to back the Wyoming offense up….Many fans have blasted the Wyoming strategy of not using a kicker and going for two throughout the game and this strategy backfired because the Cavalry did not convert on several key 2-pt conversions in the 2nd half, however had the Cavalry been able to convert on a few more of these it could have been a different game, an example of this was early in the game when Wyoming was up 16-6 after Cipra missed his first PAT had Wyoming been able to score again and add the 2pt Conversion they would have stretched their lead to a three score margin….With that said it will be interesting to see if Wyoming adds a kicker to the mix for next season….The Indoor Football off-season has now begun as each of the respective leagues have completed their Championship Games.

Baltimore Sun photo by Barbara Haddock Taylor

2010 AIFA Bowl IV Broadcast

July 25, 2010

The 2010 AIFA Championship Game between the Baltimore Mariners and the Wyoming Cavalry is set for today. The culmination of the 2010 season will occur at 4:00pm EST from the 1st Mariner Arena in Baltimore, MD. Baltimore is looking to finish the first undefeated season in league history with their first ever championship; while the Cavalry will be looking to erase the sting of two consecutive AIFA Championship game losses. I will have a complete wrap-up following Sunday’s game.

Click Here for the Live Broadcast of the AIFA Championship Game Sunday July 25, 2010 4:00pm Eastern

AIFA Bowl IV Video Preview- Final Predictions

July 24, 2010

The final AIFA Bowl IV Preview Video is complete and provides a an overall review of the game and provides a prediction on the final score. I hope that you enjoyed the video blogs leading up to this game between two outstanding teams. Our fans in Erie can look forward to seeing further video blogs as we get closer to the 2011 season and during the regular season as I will give you an insiders look at how we are building our team to compete for the 2011 Championship. I again want to thank everyone who has visited the site and all of the great questions and feedback we have received from our fans. I encourage you to continue to check this site daily for all the latest information.

AIFA Bowl IV Preview- Final Predictions

AIFA Bowl IV Video Preview- Part 4

July 21, 2010

The Baltimore Mariners had one of the most efficient passing games in the AIFA in 2010. In the AIFA Championship Game they will have to contend with an opportunistic and physical group of defensive backs from the Wyoming Cavalry. This should be a tremendous match-up on the field, and I hope you enjoy the video blog breakdown of these two exceptional units. Keep checking the blog all week as we will have a breakdown of the special teams units, and an overall breakdown and prediction video still to come. I would also like to congratulate Chris Thompson who was named the Head Coach of the Reading Express today. Chris served as an assistant for the Express for 3 seasons before taking over as the interim Head Coach for the final four games of 2010.

Baltimore Pass Offense vs. Wyoming Cavalry Defense

AIFA Bowl IV Video Preview- Part 3

July 20, 2010

Today I continue with my preview of the 2010 AIFA Championship Game with an look at the Wyoming Cavalry Passing Game vs. the Baltimore Mariners Pass Defense. Both units ranked among the leaders in most AIFA statistical categories during the 2010 season. This will be a tremendous chess match between Mariners Defensive Coordinator Steve Gaunt and Wyoming Head Coach Dan Maciejczak. I hope you enjoy the video and keep checking the blog daily for the latest news and updates.

AIFA Bowl IV Preview- Wyoming Cavalry Pass Offense

AIFA Bowl IV Preview- Baltimore Mariners Pass Defense

Columbus Lions Win 2010 SIFL Championship

July 19, 2010

I want to thank everyone for visiting the site, we have had a tremendous amount of traffic here over the past week. I urge you to continue to visit the blog each day for the latest updates, and please take the time to enter your email on the right hand side of the page to receive notification of the latest updates. I have received some outstanding questions submitted from fans, and I will get to answering those in the near future.

Congratulations to the Columbus Lions on winning the 2010 SIFL Championship with a dominating performance over the La. Swashbucklers. Columbus coach Jason Gibson is one of the top coaches in the game, and his coaching staff do a tremendous job each season. On Saturday night the Billings Outlaws captured their second straight IFL Championship by defeating the Sioux Falls Storm 43-34 in what was a tremendous game between two outstanding teams.

AIFA Bowl IV Video Preview- Part 2

July 18, 2010

Today we have the second in a series of previews of the 2010 AIFA Championship Game between the Baltimore Mariners and the Wyoming Cavalry on Sunday July 25th at First Mariner Arena in Baltimore, MD. These two previews will take you inside the film room to examine the Mariners Run Game and Pass Protection units vs. the Wyoming Cavalry defensive front five. Hope you enjoy the video’s and continue to check the blog all week for future updates.

Baltimore Mariners Running Game vs. Wyoming Cavalry Defensive Front

Baltimore Mariners Pass Protection Unit vs. Wyoming Defensive Front

AIFA Bowl IV Video Preview – Part 1

July 17, 2010

Today we have the first in a series of video previews leading up to the 2010 AIFA Bowl IV on Sunday July 25 at First Mariner Arena in Baltimore. I will take you inside the film room to analyze these two outstanding franchises and illustrate some of the key strengths and weaknesses of each individual unit. This preview will not be appearing on “ESPN” or “ESPN the Ocho” any time soon, but I hope that you find the video enjoyable and informational.

Wyoming Run Game/Pass Protection Unit vs. Baltimore Defensive Front

IFL & SIFL Championship Games Set for this Weekend

July 16, 2010

There are two indoor football championship games on tap for this weekend. They are both going to be webcast for free on the net, and both should be good games. The SIFL Championship between the Columbus Lions and the Louisiana Swashbucklers is set for Sunday July 18, 2010 at 6pm (eastern). The IFL will hold its second United Bowl Championship game featuring the Sioux Falls Storm vs. the Billings Outlaws on Saturday at 9pm (eastern). The game will be hosted at the SportsPlex in Billings, which has served as the home field for the Outlaws throughout the playoffs after their home arena had its roof torn off by an F2 Tornado. It is absolutely amazing how the Outlaws from an operational standpoint have been able to transform their practice facility into a site that will host the league championship.

Click Here to Watch the IFL Championship Game Saturday July 17, 2010 at 9:00pm Eastern

Click Here to Watch the SIFL Championship Game Sunday July 18, 2010 at 6:00pm (Eastern)

Flashback Friday- Erie Invaders 2000 Season

July 16, 2010

Flashback Friday- Erie Invaders
I have uploaded a few vintage clips of the Erie Invaders vs. Bismark Blaze from the 2000 IFL Season. It is fun to take a look at how the game has progressed over the past decade; from the style of play, the quality of player, and the uniforms. Enjoy this brief clip including a halftime interview with Invaders Coach Gary Tufford, and unfortunately for Erie a touchdown drive by the Blaze. The Invaders were defeated by the Blaze in this home contest as they struggled to move the football and had a difficult time in stopping the powerful Bismark running game. The game features several coaches currently serving as Head Coaches in the IFL. Bismark Blaze Head Coach Collins Saunders is currently the Head Coach of the Colorado Ice, and Blaze Defensive Coordinator Rik Richards is the Head Coach of the Green Bay Blizzard. Video Clip is courtesy of the Image Sports Network


July 15, 2010

The AIFA Championship Bowl IV is scheduled for Sunday July 25 at First Mariner Arena in Baltimore. Over the next week I will give my situational analysis comparing these two squads leading up to this great match-up for the AIFA Title. We had the pleasure of competing against this outstanding Mariners squad this year and spent time reviewing film of the Wyoming Cavalry during the 2010 season. I will attempt to deliver tremendous insight on these two talented teams leading up to next weeks game. You can look forward to breakdowns of the following key match-ups over the next week.

Saturday July 17th
Wyoming Running Game/Pass Protection Unit vs. Baltimore Defensive Front
Sunday July 18th
Baltimore Running Game/Pass Protection Unit vs. Wyoming Defensive Front
Monday July 19th
Wyoming Passing Game vs. Baltimore Defensive Coverages
Wednesday July 21st
Baltimore Passing Game vs. Wyoming Defensive Coverages
Thursday July 22nd
Special Teams Analysis
Saturday July 24th
Team History & Analysis/ Coaching Philosophy/ Predictions

Billings Outlaws QB Chris Dixon

July 14, 2010

In an example of how volatile and unpredictable things can be at this level of professional indoor football I give you the case of Billings Outlaws QB Chris Dixon. For those of you who have possibly been living under a rock for the last few years, Chris Dixon has established himself as one of the premier Quarterbacks in the indoor game. He is a perennial All- League , MVP Candidate, and currently has the Outlaws ready to face off with the Sioux Falls Storm in search of their second consecutive IFL Championship. Well it seems the week of the biggest game of the season Dixon has decided to pull a sort of LeBron James and declare himself a free agent after the season. Essentially every player in indoor football is a free agent after the season, so that in itself was not a shocking revelation. Also if every team in the league is playing by the rules; the pay scale for each player is the same. What some consider shocking about the announcement was that it occurred during the week of the championship game. It appears that he also has a planned press conference to announce his intentions later in the year. You can not fault Dixon for planning to explore his options for next season as the UFL and AFL would certainly mean a higher payday, and I can respect his decision to see what opportunities exist; however the timing of the announcement the week of the championship game is unfortunate. Dixon makes his point clear that he is not unhappy in Billings, but he feels the need at this point in his career to explore other options. He has certainly earned this right over the past several years with his on-field play. The Billings Outlaws organization is one of the best in professional indoor football, and I am sure they will do what is necessary to bring back their on-field leader for 2011. It is possible however that fans of the Outlaws, and of Indoor Football may be watching the end of an era on Saturday night.

You can listen to the full interview with Chris Dixon Here

Chris Dixon Highlights – Provided By VidSwap