Category Archives: CIF

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Indoor Football League Suspends 2020 Season

This afternoon the Indoor Football League announced they would follow the lead of various other leagues and suspend the season.

The IFL is the first of the three remaining Indoor/Arena leagues to postpone their season due to the COVID-19 outbreak, coming after only one full week of play.

In their statement, the IFL has stated that games in Oakland and San Diego will be played as normal, however without fans in attendance.

Currently no statement has been made on Champions Indoor Football, whose season begins this month, or the NAL whose season begins next month.

The full press release from the Indoor Football League can be found below:

In response to the coronavirus pandemic and the postponement of this weekend’s games in Frisco and Sioux Falls, along with the state of California’s limit on the size of crowds due to the pandemic, the Indoor Football League will be postponing its season until further notice following Saturday night’s games in Oakland and San Diego.

Both games are still scheduled to kick off at 6:05 PT, but will be played with no fans in attendance. Each game will be broadcast live on Youtube.

“This is an unprecedented situation that we are taking very seriously,” said IFL Commissioner Todd Tryon. “We are monitoring this on a constant basis and are working with the local municipalities and arenas in all of our markets. Our goal is to resume play as soon as possible. The health of our players, coaches, staff, fans, and sponsors is of utmost importance to our teams and to the league, and we will not compromise on those values.”

The IFL will continue to evaluate ongoing events and the safety of our players and will rely on the guidance of public health experts and our league’s Board of Directors in determining when to restart the 2020 season.

UPDATE: The CIF has announced that they will also delay the start of the 2020 Season.The post Indoor Football League Suspends 2020 Season appeared first on Last Word on Sports.

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Ameer Ismail hired as newest Iowa Barnstormers Coach

The search for the Iowa Barnstormers newest head coach is over, the team announced on Thursday, as they have hired Ameer Ismail to take the reins in Des Moines.

Ismail becomes the eighth head coach in Iowa Barnstormers history and will follow the most successful coaching stint the team has seen in Dixie Wooten.
Ameer Ismail hired as newest Iowa Barnstormers Coach
The former NFL and arena league player brings experience from all over the place, including stints with the NFL’s Kansas City Chiefs and Jacksonville Jaguars as well as the AFL’s Jacksonville Sharks (Pre-NAL) and a plethora of IFL teams.

“It is such an amazing honor to be named the new Head Coach of the Iowa Barnstormers, the most prestigious and historic team in all of indoor or arena football,” Ismail said in a press release from the team. “[Barnstormers Vice President and COO] John Pettit and I have known each other and maintained a great relationship over the years despite being on different teams or even in different leagues.”

Ismail started off his coaching career with assistant roles in the IFL in 2014. He spent time with the Cedar Rapids Titans, Tri-Cities Fever, and Spokane Empire.

In 2017, Ismail took his first head coaching job with the Champion Indoor Football league’s Bloomington Edge, where he would lead his team to a 7-6 record and a berth in the CIF Playoffs.

The next year, Ismail packed up shop and accepted the head coaching position for the newly formed Massachusetts Pirates in the east coast’s National Arena League.

There, Ismail led his team to an 11-6 record and another berth in the playoffs. He was also named NAL Coach of the Year during that time.

In 2019 Ismail took a break from head coaching in the arena league to take a spot coaching the outside linebackers at Albion College.

Now, he’ll return to the indoor ranks carrying an 18-12 record as a head coach and a resume that includes two playoff appearances in as many seasons.

“To be able to work with someone of his expertise and experience is another major reason why I wanted to be here,” Ismail said in the release. “We will continue the winning ways with tremendous positive culture for our community and fans. I am very grateful for the opportunity and can’t wait to bring another championship to Des Moines.”

Expect the Barnstormers as well as other teams in the Indoor Football League to start announcing player signings soon as well as an announcement regarding Iowa’s assistant coaching staff.The post Ameer Ismail hired as newest Iowa Barnstormers Coach appeared first on Last Word on Sports.

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Norling: IFW – Playoff Races are Coming to a close

Playoff races are coming to a close all over indoor football – and as usual, Ashle Norling has the wrapup on everything you need to know for this weekend.
IFW – Playoff Races are Coming to a close
Games (Home Team in Bold)
Champions Indoor Football:
Salina Liberty 57, Sioux City Bandits 54
Omaha Beef 71, Oklahoma Flying Aces 51
Duke City Gladiators 123, North Texas Savages 6

Three games, well two real ones, took place this past week in Champions Indoor Football as teams hunt for a playoff spot. If the CIF had decent streaming or archival services I would definitely say to watch the Salina/Sioux City game, but they don’t. With a first quarter that saw a combined 36 points the next two combined only saw the teams manage a total of 40. The final frame saw Salina complete the comeback win at home to push them into 2nd in the North. If the season ended today Sioux City would miss the playoffs for the first time in CIF history and their first time overall since 2010, the last season they played in the IFL.

Omaha was, minus for one quarter, a car wreck for Oklahoma. Outside of the Flying Aces scoring 24 points in the 2nd Quarter they were outscored 54-27. The end result is the only thing that mattered as the Omaha win sealed Oklahoma’s fate on missing the playoffs. Amarillo and Duke City have officially made the playoffs in the Southern Division and will just battle to decide who plays at home. Speaking of Duke City they took a giant dukey on their replacement opponent the North Texas Savages. In the end the game doesn’t matter as they were officially given a forfeit win over the now defunct Texas Revs and only played to make sure they had a home game for their fans.

Indoor Football League:
Iowa Barnstormers 65, Bismarck Bucks 35
Quad City Steamwheelers 43, Nebraska Danger 37
Arizona Rattlers 62, Tucson Sugar Skulls 47

Two of the three games really weren’t surprises. Iowa kicked the living s*** out of Bismarck for most of the game in Des Moines on Friday night. Though Bismarck did actually hold a lead for part of the game. On Saturday Arizona did the same to Tucson, with the Sugar Skulls only putting up a fight in the final quarter. I would not be surprised if we see Arizona host Iowa in the United Bowl this July.

On the other hand the Nebraska/Quad City game was a fight to the death. Every quarter, every play, every second was a f*****g battle. The game itself was a war from the opening kick to the final whistle. Do yourself a favor and watch the damn game! I absolutely can’t do it justice and as of now this is far and away the Indoor Football Game of the Year.

National Arena League:
Orlando Predators 74, Carolina Cobras 69
Massachusetts Pirates 70, New York Streets 51

When the schedule came out for the season only one game (Carolina/Orlando) was scheduled for this week. Well after the Streets were unsurprisingly not able to play at MSG they moved their game to Memorial Day in Westchester. Both games were a what in the f*** just happened as two of the best teams in the league hosted the two worst. Orlando was coming in off a 60-7 ass kicking by Jacksonville the previous week while the Pirates just suck. Well they shut me up by winning on the road in one of the toughest (Carolina) and dumbest (NY) arenas in the NAL.
Holy sh*t there is actual news for the first time in a few weeks to report! OMFG! As a background, last week, an um “altercation” (according to the CIF) took place during the Omaha-Oklahoma game which resulted in play being stopped for an extended period of time.

The end result was a blanket unsportsmanlike conduct penalty being placed on both teams, which resulted in three Beef players being disqualified for their second penalty. Needless to say fans were not happy about the debacle.

Yesterday the CIF released a statement (which you can read here) that said the players who were ejected will not be suspended and just adds to the clusterf*ck.

I don’t see a reason for the blanket penalties being issued and this just makes the CIF looks more unprofessional. Especially waiting until damn near game day to issue a statement on the ensuing week.The post Norling: IFW – Playoff Races are Coming to a close appeared first on Last Word on Sports.

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Norling: IFW – The Hunt for the Playoffs really begins

The Games (Home Team in Bold)
Champions Indoor Football:
Omaha Beef 70, Wichita Force 33
Sioux City Bandits 79, Amarillo Venom 71

Only two actual games took place this week since the Texas Revs folded earlier this month, that resulted in Oklahoma taking their first win in franchise history via forfeit. Odd way to take a W but they’ll take, even though they have no shot at the playoffs.

Wichita was shocked by the Beef at home this past weekend. Omaha came out with a hot start scoring 22 unanswered points before Wichita could even manage a score. While the second quarter was a bit closer the 3rd would see more of the same from the first with Omaha leading 63-20 after 3 frames. Both teams slowed down in the 4th which had Omaha finish the beating with a 70-33 win on the road to move to 6-1.

On the other hand the Bandits/Venom game was an old school, high scoring, fight to the finish kind of game. The teams quite literally traded scores almost the entire game with each team getting a single stop in each half of play along with Sioux City holding Amarillo to a FG on a drive in the first half and the reverse happening in the second. The end result was Sioux City taking a 79-71 win at home over the Southern Division leading Venom.

Indoor Football League:
Quad City Steamwheelers 48, Cedar Rapids River Kings 29
Tucson Sugar Skulls 52, Bismarck Bucks 40
Sioux Falls Storm 57, Nebraska Danger 56
Iowa Barnstomers 56, Green Bay Blizzard 49
Arizona Rattlers 84, San Diego Strike Force 63

A battle between Eastern Iowa and Western Illinois opened the weekend as Quad City hosted the Cedar Rapids River Kings. The ‘Wheelers managed a nice 27-9 halftime lead but Cedar Rapids would score two unanswered touchdowns to make it a respectable game in the third. E.J. Hillard would lead the Steamwheelers on a scoring spree in the final quarter, leading the team with a passing TD and rushing TD himself to finish out the game.

Bismarck would host Tucson in the second game of the weekend, the visiting Sugar Skulls would kick off the game with a 14-3 lead after 15’. Between the second and third quarter Tucson attempted to give away the game to Bismarck being outscored 34-26 by 4 seconds into the fourth quarter. The Sugar Skulls barely managed to come back and win, holding off the Bucks to keep them out of the playoff hunt.

Sioux Falls/Nebraska is a game where I’d recommend to go and re-watch (which you can catch here) as a recap doesn’t do this game justice. After swapping scores for pretty much the entire game Nebraska was called for pass interference with no time left on the clock. Since the penalty was in the endzone the ball was placed on the 2 yard line which allowed Brandon Sheperd to run the ball in for a Storm TD to end the game.

Green Bay/Iowa was another game with teams swapping scores for practically the entire game, and another I’d recommend to re-watch (which you can watch here). Iowa just like Sioux Falls would win with little time remaining when Daquan Neal hit Jazeric Peterson on a 26 yard pass with 30 seconds left for the Barnstormers to sneak out of Green Bay with a win. Arizona that night was not as nice as they pounded the hosting San Diego Strike Force all night long. This one ended with Jabre Lolley running in an unnecessary touchdown for the Rattlers to take an 84-63 win on the road.

National Arena League:
Carolina Cobras 60, Columbus Lions 32
Jacksonville Sharks 61, Orlando Predators 7

Both games in the NAL last week were absolute and complete slaughters. On Friday in Greensboro “The Snake Pit” was lethal for the Lions as Carolina led 21-6 after one quarter and never looked back. “The Shark Tank” in Jacksonville was even more deadly for the Predators as their only score of the game came on a 27 yard pass from Bryan Hicks to Rob Brown in the middle of the second quarter.
The Hunt for the Playoffs really begins
The CIF will have, technically speaking, three games this weekend though one of them is in name only. Salina takes on Sioux City in what is a huge game for the second place in the Northern Division, the winner of this game will take the lead in the standings for a shot against Omaha in the playoffs. Also in the North, the division and league leading Beef host the hapless Oklahoma Flying Aces. Oklahoma absolutely has to win this game or they will be effectively eliminated from playoff contention on the back of a tiebreaker with Duke City. Duke City on the other hand in name only will host the North Texas Savages as a replacement for the Texas Revolution, though they will officially be awarded a forfeit win over the Revs for standings purposes.

6 teams are in action this weekend in the Indoor Football League as on Friday night Iowa hosts Bismarck and Nebraska hosts Quad City. Saturday night sees Tucson host Arizona. While all three have playoff implications (as Bismarck has not been mathematically eliminated) only the Danger/Steamwheelers game holds major significance. Iowa and Arizona have both clinched their playoff spots and are expected to win their games handily. Grand Island plays host to two teams on the edge of the playoff race. Our own Connor Ferguson has done a great look in on the IFL playoff races, which you can check out here for more detail.

Carolina hosts Orlando in the only National Arena League game this weekend. The Cobras and Predators are coming in off opposite sides of two different blowout games last weekend. The Preds look to win in Greensboro in an attempt to right the ship while the Cobras look to continue their dominance in the NAL.The post Norling: IFW – The Hunt for the Playoffs really begins appeared first on Last Word on Sports.

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Norling: IFW – Teams on the move, possibly to the Graveyard

This week in indoor football saw the news of a pair of teams on the move, spanning multiple leagues.
The Games (Home Team in Bold)
Champions Indoor Football:
Sioux City Bandits 70, Wichita Force 30
Salina Liberty 29, Duke City Gladiators 22
Omaha Beef 42, Oklahoma Flying Aces 23

Champions Indoor Football is in quite a fix right now, but we’ll touch on that a little later.The league did surprise us on field as well in two separate games. In Sioux City the hometown Bandits took the ball out of the air and ran with it against Wichita. The Bandit defense allowed no more than 10 points in a quarter and scored two pick sixes two rouges. The offense also had a great night scoring double digits in three of four frames.

In Salina with the Liberty hosting the Gladiators, Duke City came out hot and had a 22-7 lead over the Liberty with 10 minutes left in the third. After holding Salina scoreless for 28:54 the Liberty would go on a roll for the rest of the game scoring 22 unanswered points to win at home.

The Oklahoma/Omaha game was very similar as the Beef started the game with 5 unanswered points and kept that into halftime. In the second half they fell flat and allowed the Flying Aces to take off with 23 unanswered point, Omaha would score once more to end the game and hang on to a 42-23 win.

Indoor Football League:
Arizona Rattlers 56, Nebraska Danger 46
Green Bay Blizzard 48, Bismarck Bucks 39
Iowa Barnstormers 43, Cedar Rapids River Kings 18
Sioux Falls Storm 59, Quad City Steamwheelers 46
Tucson Sugar Skulls 54, San Diego Strike Force 34

After a scoreless first quarter the Rattlers offense went into high gear taking a lead of 42-26 over Nebraska after 45 minutes of play. The Danger attempted a comeback but fell just short losing by 10 in Phoenix.

At Green Bay’s Resch Center another game was closer than expected as the Blizzard hosted the Bucks. Bismarck held a 20-13 lead in the 2nd Quarter before giving up 28 unanswered point to Green Bay. The Bucks stopped that streak and scored 19 straight of their own before Green Bay scored a final TD to cap off the game.

My words deceived me again this past week. Last week, I touted the close games that Iowa and Cedar Rapids have played this year. Well that was not the case this past Saturday night.

The Barnstormers struggled to start losing the ball on the opening kick return but held Cedar Rapids and then proceeded to pummel the River Kings.

Daquan Neal led the Barnstormers offensive attack with 186 passing yards, 43 rushing yards, and 5 touchdown’s (4 passing, 1 rushing). Ben Wilkerson struggled against the Barnstomers defense going 8-20 with 93 yards throwing 1 TD and 3 INT’s.

The $2 Beers weren’t needed as much as I thought they would be as the Steamwheelers played a tight game against Sioux Falls. Quad City’s defense never really was able to stop the Lorenzo Brown led offense as he went 20-26 with 294 yards passing.

Quad City’s offense was no slouch either as QB E.J. Hillard went 13-24 with 186 yards and five players combined for 58 rushing yards. The lack of defense is what kept tQC from winning and pushing them up in the playoff hunt.

Tucson hosted San Diego in another closer game with a really unsurprising result. The Sugar Skulls dominated most of the game against the Strike Force. San Diego had some spurts but weren’t able to pull off the W, In fact I doubt they win again this year.

Columbus Lions 63, Orlando Predators 22
Jacksonville Sharks 55, Massachusetts Pirates 36
Carolina Cobras 48, New York Streets 33

On the NAL side our own Brandon Russell did a great recap of this weekends games you can check out here.
The “News” – Teams on the move
On a lighter note as we reported earlier this week that the Arizona Rattlers will be moving for the next two seasons due to arena renovations.

It’s about time they renovate that place, hopefully it’ll be better for Indoor Football when they’re done with it but I doubt it. Besides, only the New York Streets absolutely need a new arena.

On more of a dark side the Texas Revolution have one foot in the grave and one on a banana peel. As we reported here yesterday the Revs are no longer playing at the Ford Center and are likely to either fold or become a travel only team.

This is the second straight year this has happened in the Dallas-Fort Worth area for the CIF. At this point the CIF is on f****** life support and probably won’t make it into next year unless they pull a miracle out of their ass like the IFL.

Duke City has had ownership controversy and may have issues financially based on what was reported before the season. Oklahoma is awful on field and plays in the middle of nowhere in Oklahoma so who knows if they’ll be back.

Salina always seems to be a coin flip if they’ll come back, while their Kansas rival Wichita also has been reported to have financial issues.

Sioux City, last year, was also said to be folding if Omaha went to the IFL. My understanding is there is still a personal rivalry between the Sioux Falls and Sioux City ownership.

That really only leaves Amarillo and Omaha as stable franchises both of which, if possible, should join the IFL. Omaha would be natural with the Midwestern teams in the league while Amarillo would be a good fit in the IFL’s Southern/Western expansion.

So, CIF fans man the lifeboats and prepare to abandon ship or be ready to pull of a miracle like we’ve never seen.The post Norling: IFW – Teams on the move, possibly to the Graveyard appeared first on Last Word on Sports.

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BREAKING: Texas Revolution done at Ford Center

This past weekend, the Texas Revolution officially stated they were trying to reschedule their game against the Amarillo Venom that had been set to take place May 4 at the Ford Center at The Star in Frisco, TX.

That game has not been rescheduled and the team website states it has been cancelled while Champions Indoor Football’s (CIF) stats site shows it was only postponed.

The Revolution have since deleted all of their upcoming games on their Facebook page. Shortly thereafter it appeared that the Ford Center had done the same, deleting the remaining games off their website.

We at Last Word on Sports reached out to the Ford Center and Texas Revolution for comment. While, as of publishing this piece, the Revolution have not gotten back to us, the Ford Center has.

“Thank you for reaching out to us here at Ford Center. The remainder of the Texas Revolution season will not be played at Ford Center. For any further questions about their season, you would need to reach out to their front office.”

This absolutely confirms speculation that the Revs are completely done playing at Ford Center this season and no longer have a home arena.

There are a few arenas small enough to hold the team and while nothing has been said about what will be done with the team it is possible that the Revs either fold or become a travel only team to finish out the rest of the 2019 season.

If this situation seems eerily familiar to you, that’s because it is. This happened last season with the CIF’s Dallas Marshals.

Last year the Marshals moved from the Mesquite Arena to the State Fair Coliseum and eventually were removed from playing their and folded before the completing the year.

LWOS will keep updating this story as more details become available.The post BREAKING: Texas Revolution done at Ford Center appeared first on Last Word on Sports.

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Norling: IFW – A full week ahead

There’s a full week ahead when it comes to indoor football across the four leagues that we cover. Ashle Norling has it taken care of in another edition of Indoor Football Weekly.
The Games (Home Team in Bold)
Champions Indoor Football
Amarillo Venom 88, Duke City Gladiators 62
Omaha Beef 48, Texas Revolution 34
Wichita Force 61, Oklahoma Flying Aces 34
Salina Liberty 51, Sioux City Bandits 49

Indoor Football League
Nebraska Danger 66, Cedar Rapids River Kings 42
Arizona Rattlers 63, Sioux Falls Storm 50
Iowa Barnstormers 61, Tucson Sugar Skulls 58
Bismarck Bucks 51, Quad City Steamwheelers 48

National Arena League
Massachusetts Pirates 45, Orlando Predators 12

My words betrayed me this week, a few weeks ago I touted the competitiveness of most CIF games and that really wasn’t the case this past week. Starting in the second quarter the Venom manhandled the defending champion Duke City Gladiators ending with a 26 point victory for Amarillo.

Omaha had a slightly more competitive game with Texas only winning by 14 but had defensive dominance shutting out the Revs in the 1st and 4th quarters. Wichita took the biggest win of the night, 27 points, against the hapless Oklahoma Flying Aces.

Last up in the CIF was Sioux City/Salina, a game that ended in weird fashion when the Liberty QB Andrew Jackson threw a pass that the Bandits Henry Livingston picked off but lost the ball before he hit the ground. Easy call that should have been an incompletion but was called intercepted by the officials with 11 seconds remaining. The oddities didn’t stop there as Bandits QB Dillon Turner was sacked by Salina’s Travis Taylor with 6 seconds left on the clock to give the Liberty a W.

The IFL on the other hand had two and a half fairly competitive games that started out with Nebraska owning Cedar Rapids the entire first half en route to a 24 point win. Arizona would outscore Sioux Falls 37-21 before having a dogfight in the second half leading to a 13 point Rattlers win.

In Tucson the Sugar Skulls held the defending Champion Barnstormers down for three quarters, leading 31-20 at the half and 37-20 in the middle of the third quarter. Tucson couldn’t hold on and gave up 34 points in the fourth to the high powered Iowa offense who took the game by 3 points.

Last up in the IFL was a game that I personally thought was a safe bet as the Steamwheelers traveled to Bismarck to take on the Bucks. The Bucks kept the game close the entire night and with 6 seconds left (seems to be a good time to win a game last week) Bismarck QB John Gibbs hit Eric Lauderdale with a 25 yard TD pass to not only win but put the Bucks on a 2 game winning streak.

On the NAL front our own Brandon Russell did a great recap of the Pirates/Predators game that you can check out here.
Quick Hits
In the CIF kicking off on Friday Night it’ll be the battle of the bottom (of the North) as Sioux City (1-3) looks to break a two game losing streak against Wichita (2-4). Saturday sees three games in the CIF starting with Salina (3-2) looking to extend their winning streak to three games hosting defending Champion Duke City (3-2) who also looks to break a two game skid.

Omaha (3-1) travels to Enid, OK to take on the Flying Aces (0-4) in an attempt to keep themselves at the top of the Northern Division, while Oklahoma will look to gain it’s first win in franchise history over a very good Omaha Beef team.

In the Indoor Football League all 10 teams will be in action this week and all will kick off around the same time. Arizona (8-0) hosts Nebraska (5-4) at the Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix. The Danger are pushing for a playoff spot in the last half of the season and a win would much help while the Rattlers will defend their unbeaten record and the Snake Pit.

The Green Bay Blizzard (5-3) host the Bismarck Bucks (2-6) at the Resch Center on Saturday night. Bismarck will head into GB looking for a third straight win for a team that two weeks ago was 0-6. Green Bay on the other side looks for win number six, which will tie the most wins they’ve had (2015) since they went 11-3 back in the 2012 season.

The third and final game of the 2019 Iowa Bowl series finishes up in Des Moines on Saturday night as the hometown Barnstormers (7-1) take on their arch rival in the Cedar Rapids River Kings (1-8). In the two earlier games the River Kings gave the Barnstormers a scare in almost beating them before dropping the game in the 4th quarter each time. This time they look to get over the hump in Des Moines. The Barnstormers haven’t been the most polished team this year but always come out with a strong second half and look to keep winning at home where they play 5 of their final 6 games.

In Moline, IL the Quad City Steamwheelers (3-5) host the Sioux Falls Storm (6-2) on $2 Beer night. The ‘Wheelers look to give the QCA something to cheer about as massive flooding has wreaked havoc on Downtown Davenport, IA across the river. Knowing the how the Storm are, especially after losing, the Quad City fans will probably need a lot of those $2 beers.

Last up is an 8PM kickoff between the Tucson Sugar Skulls (3-5) and the San Diego Strike Force (1-7) in Tucson, AZ. Sugar Skulls fans are not happy with a no call on the play that Iowa won the game on last weekend and the team will attempt to redeem themselves from that. San Diego on the other hand, well head coach Burt Grossman probably doesn’t give a f*** about what happens.

The CIF games can be caught on Pluto TV while the IFL and NAL games are available on YouTube.The post Norling: IFW – A full week ahead appeared first on Last Word on Sports.

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Norling: IFW – What in the Streets is going on in the NAL!?

The Games (Home Team in Bold)

Champions Indoor Football:
Amarillo Venom 70, Sioux City Bandits 69
Salina Liberty 50, Wichita Force 22
Texas Revolution 60, Duke City Gladiators 55

Indoor Football League:
Bismarck Bucks 40, Cedar Rapids River Kings 25
Nebraska Danger 47, Green Bay Blizzard 40
Sioux Falls Storm 36, Iowa Barnstormers 32
Quad City Steamwheelers 72, Tucson Sugar Skulls 54
Arizona Rattlers 52, San Diego Strike Force 14

National Arena League:
Jacksonville Sharks 48, Columbus Lions 24
New York Streets 70, Orlando Predators 31
Carolina Cobras 50, Massachusetts Pirates 22

Kicking off in the CIF, the week was highlighted by the home team winning all three games for the second straight week this season.

Amarillo and Sioux City took things down to the wire. The Bandits held a five-point lead after a FG with under a minute left but the Venom managed to sneak in a touchdown with 13 seconds to play to finish out the game and send the Bandits back to Sioux City without much to show for it except a long bus ride home.

In Salina after a close first half, the Liberty blew the door opened and never looked back en route to a nice 28 point win over fellow Kansas team, the Wichita Force.

Lastly in Frisco at the hideous setup inside The Star at Ford Center the Revs tried, who led by as much as 29, tried to give the game to Duke City but ended up scraping out a win at home to keep them on top in the South.

In the IFL, the football gods decided to strike me thrice this week, first in Cedar Rapids where the Bucks managed to pick up a win after I said last week it would take a miracle. I guess a sh*tty River Kings team also works. Green Bay then fell to Nebraska in a tough game breaking the Blizzard’s four game winning streak.

The biggest game of the week took place in Sioux Falls with the Storm hosting the defending champion Iowa Barnstormers. The Storm used some of that ole’ Sioux Falls magic to come away with the win over Iowa.

Quad City also managed to break a three game losing streak with a fantastic home win over Tucson, the ‘Wheelers will look to keep that going next week in Bismarck.

Wrapping up the IFL was an unsurprising beat down of the Strike Force by the soon to be 14-0 Arizona Rattlers. The most surprising thing about the game was the night it was played and that’s it.

The NAL on the other hand has been surprising so far. Columbus is now 0-2 after a loss at home to the Sharks. Carolina has started 2-0 with two very convincing wins over the Pirates, and the New York Streets seem to be (so far) in contention for an NAL Championship with wins on the road over Jacksonville and a blowout home win over Orlando.
The “News”
Speaking of the New York Streets it would probably be better if they played on a street than their home “arena” in White Plains.

The field is marked for 50 yards plus 8 yard end zones but any comparison shows that’s not even close to true. I’ve been told that the field is actually 38 yards long plus end zones, though my estimate is 33, either way that puts the actual field size end-wall-to-end-wall somewhere between 44 and 50 yards. That’s a ways shorter than the required 66 yards the field is in that same span.

This is a joke as are some things I’ve been hearing such as the Streets renovating the Westchester County Center (their home arena) to hold a full field or moving into the Madison Square Garden for next year.

First off renovating the Westchester County Center is absurd, the building already only seats 3,000 fans for football (according to the team) and 5,000 for basketball (it’s primary sports use). I

n order to make the field usable they would need to demolish all or part of the balcony seats (as it’s also too narrow) which would reduce it’s football capacity to approximately 2,000 and basketball to 3,500-4,000.

Considering how much of an impact it would have on the arenas main tenants (the New York Liberty and Westchester Knicks) and how long it would take this won’t be happening.

Option number two which has had many more people say it will happen is the Streets going to play in the Garden which is batsh*t crazy.

First the Garden, not including potential Knicks or Rangers playoff games will already be booked solid as it is a highly in demand arena.

Second the costs to book that building are even more crazy, a trusted source has stated that one game at MSG would cost the same as the Columbus Lions rent for the teams entire history and the second game would pay for their rent for another 13 years.

The owner has stated he refuses to lose money. Well, playing at MSG guarantees you’ll lose money as you’ll never sell enough tickets at a high enough price to break even. There are reasons why the AFL never lasted at MSG.

The NAL needs to force the Streets to play in a larger building with a regulation field. Every year it has had something to make it look bush league.

Year One was the Corpus Christi Rage and Georgia Firebirds, last year was the uneven schedule, and this year is the Streets arena situation.

You want to be taken seriously? Put you’re f*cking foot down. And New York, go play at Nassau where the only viable arena/indoor team, the New York Dragons, played or just fold.The post Norling: IFW – What in the Streets is going on in the NAL!? appeared first on Last Word on Sports.

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Norling: IFW – Green Bay win highlighted the weekend

The Games (Home in Bold)

Champions Indoor Football:
Omaha Beef 44, Wichita Force 22
Duke City Gladiators 72, Oklahoma Flying Aces 6
Texas Revolution 61, Amarillo Venom 46

Indoor Football League:
Green Bay Blizzard 60, Nebraska Danger 50
Iowa Barnstormers 55, Bismarck Bucks 16
Arizona Rattlers 55, Tucson Sugar Skulls 41
San Diego Strike Force 40, Cedar Rapids River Kings 34

National Arena League
Carolina Cobras 54, Massachusetts Pirates 22
New York Streets 52, Jacksonville Sharks 41
Orlando Predators 42, Columbus Lions 40
Norling: IFW – Green Bay win highlighted the weekend
Last week I raved about the competitiveness of the CIF over the IFL. Well, the football gods showed no mercy and made me eat those words when Duke City murdered Oklahoma 72-6.

On a lesser extent to the ass-kickings in the CIF last week Omaha crushed Wichita by 22 points. Texas also kept themselves unbeaten with a 15 point win over Amarillo at home.

The Indoor Football League continued to show some great – and with some teams god awful – football.

Green Bay, who’s been one of the worst teams in all of indoor football the last few years, took a 10-point win over Nebraska at home to extend their winning streak to 4 games.

Unsurprisingly, Iowa pummeled Bismarck, and unless a f*cking miracle happens the Bucks WILL go winless this season.

Tucson was actually much more competitive against Arizona than I expected, losing by just 14. For being an expansion team playing Arizona 4 times I am pleasantly surprised by the Sugar Skulls.

Wrapping up the week was the Battle of Woes between 0-6 San Diego and 1-5 Cedar Rapids. The game started out really well for the worst two teams in the league playing each other with seven straight drives ending in touchdowns.

The Strike Force would open up the lead with a 45 yard TD pass to end the first half with a 34-21 lead. The River Kings would not be able to get back in the game as San Diego would hit two more field goals in the 3rd quarter bringing the lead to 40-21.

Cedar Rapids would score two unanswered touchdowns, one late in the 3rd and the other late in the 4th to finish the game with a 40-34 score.

Week 1 of the third season of the NAL was actually really surprising as the New York Streets handily beat Jacksonville on the road 52-41 in their inaugural game, a score and result I did not expect coming in.

Another upset saw the Orlando Predators, in front of a very very sparse unannounced number of people, take down the Columbus Lions 42-40 at Amway Center in Orlando.

Orlando using three different sets of graphics bugged the sh*t out of me. The current logo, which is a modified version of their 1998-2000 logo on their uniforms, the turf using their 2001-2010 style, and the transition logo on the broadcast is the black one from 2011-2016.

I can totally understand the turf as that is hard to switch but seriously get your shit straight on the rest of it. Lastly the defending champion Carolina Cobras got a great start with a heavy 32 point win over the Massachusetts Pirates.
The “News”
My biggest criticism of the IFL currently is San Diego and their attendance. I understand that this isn’t the Mid-2000’s anymore and we won’t see 8,000+ crowds anymore, but the Strike Force’s numbers are just embarrassing.

The numbers say they’ve drawn 3,248 to their first game against Tucson. Game 2 against Green Bay saw a reported 1,817 people enter the building and in Game 3 it got worse with only 1,603 coming in.

Yes, the Strike Force were set up late but an average attendance of 2,222.67 is just awful when the Gulls have 5,709 and the Seals NLL lacrosse team, who are also in their first season, have 8,063 fans coming through the gates.

Sadly unless something changes and soon I don’t see the Strike Force surviving in San Diego past the end of the 2019 season.

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