D.C. Gets Indoor Football Team
As my friend, neighbor and countryman Dave McKenna has often noted, Daniel Snyder owns the local franchise rights for the Arena League, but this country is too big for just one or even two indoor football leagues. Personally, I haven't been able to get enough of the American Indoor Football Association ever since I joined my first AIFA survivor pool (Hint: always bet against the Utah Saints [1-13 last year], and you'll be right there.)
Luckily, we'll all be able to follow our AIFA fantasy players in person starting next year, when a franchise arrives at the D.C. Armory. Called, um, the D.C. Armor. Presumably starring a mascot named D.C. Arm. With team flights, obviously going in and out of D.C.A.
A loyal Bog reader and AIFA fan (seriously) actually told me about the D.C. Armor weeks ago, but I kept forgetting to break this news, and then the Washington Business Journal beat me to it today:
Beginning in April, the D.C. Armor will play at least two pre-season games, seven regular season games and an exhibition game on an artificial turf field to be constructed in the Armory. There could be two to three playoff games if the team advances....
The [investment] group went through 400 or 500 team names before settling on the D.C. Armor, which [lead investor Corey] Barnette said brings to mind both the location of the field and the competitive nature of the sport. "It's hard-hitting, it's attack and defend. And that's what armor is. People that come to our games and come to play us should expect to get scored on," he said.
People who come to their games will get scored on? Well, that's certainly a marketing ploy the Redskins haven't tried yet. Should bring out an interesting clientele. And tey went through 400 or 500 team names before settling on D.C. Armor? Wonder how far down the list "D.C. General" landed.
Anyhow, it's easy to be cynical about these upstart leagues, but just go ahead and read the AIFA's mission statement and tell me you can't get behind this outfit.
It is the Mission of the American Indoor Football Association to provide a vision and an environment that is necessary for independently owned companies and the League's teams to become successful in the operation of an Indoor style Football Organization. The League will provide a dynamic style of play so unique and exciting that fans and communities not only enjoy, but desire the sport in any and all geographic area of the United States.
Not only enjoy, but desire? This league is making me sweat, especially when I realized that they hand out 10-yard penalties for "entry of a player during a play." Yikes. Further perusal of the rule book reveals that, unlike the NFL, there is clarity in the fine structure. For example, the fine is $25 for a second offense of improper equipment, $1,000 for lacking the AIFA logo in designated areas of the field, $100 for an incomplete signature on an All-Star ballot, $5,000 for not using the Official AIFA Football, and $300-$500 for hitting, striking or punching a fan. Which would be worse than getting scored on.
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