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4/30/2021 2:33 pm  #251


Re: Escalian Football League

Congrats to the Anchors on their first championship


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4/30/2021 4:51 pm  #252


Re: Escalian Football League

Congrats to the Anchors

 

4/30/2021 5:00 pm  #253


Re: Escalian Football League

Congrats to the Anchors! I mostly just didn't want the Miners to win again.


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5/01/2021 5:09 am  #254


Re: Escalian Football League

Alright!  Nice to see the new champions!  The Anchors making the nice comeback to win is fun to read, though that has to hurt if your a Miners fan.  Given how good they've been for so long now, it's possible you have to wonder if the window of opportunity is going to start closing soon.... or if they can pull a New England Patriots and find ways to stay highly competitive for years to come!


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5/02/2021 10:55 pm  #255


Re: Escalian Football League

Respect to the anchors, just too bad my Pirates fell off this year, they kinda remind me of Washington State University with their colors and uniforms which is the main reason I'm a fan of them.


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5/03/2021 1:04 pm  #256


Re: Escalian Football League

1973 UFL Season: 

While the UFL’s first season was marred by a severe lack of funds that nearly shut down the league, the second season seemed more promising. Just after the 1972 season, league owner and commissioner George Curtis was approached by businessmen Adrian Lye and Michael Townsends for a whopping $6.5 million dollar investment into the league. Lye and Townsends were the founders of the largest investment firms in the nation, Lye,Townsends & Associates, and were growing at a huge rate. Curtis didn’t hesitate at the opportunity, and gave the duo, along with some of their associates, a minor stake in each of the teams and a stake at the league’s ownership. This financial stability helped bring the 6-team league down to par, with the top 4 all within 2 games of each other. Colnica topped the table once again, spurred by giving another title to QB Terry Rogers in his last season as a pro. Last year’s runner-up in Arcanfall fell to .500 after a slew of injuries destroyed their main core. The Roosters rose in their place, using the old Adelaide method of focusing on a powerful defensive unit, led by DL Brandon Welch and LB Frazier Mayo. The Whales got over .500 with a 6-4 record, with RB Albert Smith showing incredible promise as a rookie. Great Horn performed slightly better, but were running into a bit of financial trouble even with the new investment into the team. The Explorers were square at the bottom, with owner Carlito Escarcega proving that he should not step near another football team with how poorly he managed the team. Lye bought the team off Escarcega with the intent to move the team to another location next year. The second United Bowl would be a defensive upset by the Roosters over the Stars, who took advantage of an old Rogers while keeping the game way too close for comfort. The Roosters took home their first United Cup 17-9 while the league looked stable for the first time in its young but turbulent history.

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5/03/2021 1:30 pm  #257


Re: Escalian Football League

Nice to see some financial stability to the UFL, that should help the league grow.

I still love the Stars' look, and regardless of what happens with the UFL long term, I want to see the Stars be around for some time.


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5/06/2021 10:47 pm  #258


Re: Escalian Football League

1973-74 Offseason

The UFL Goes Belly-Up:

On February 15, 1974, just weeks before the EFL draft, federal authorities arrested new investors Adrian Lye and Michael Townsends for mail fraud after it was found out their entire business was a pyramid scheme. Without their major investment, the UFL was bleeding money once again, even more so since commissioner George Curtis found out they were running the scheme when they approached him and had fully invested in it. With Lye and Townsends in jail and their business foreclosed, he had lost nearly 70% of his money in the scheme and had to sell his team, the Colnica Stars, his ownership of NTV, the 3rd largest TV station in the nation, and declared the league defunct. Lye’s team that would have moved to Blackmoore ceased to exist, and so left the remaining 5 teams in a state of limbo. Saint Blaise minority owner Bruno Harper bought the remains of the Stars and, with permission from commissioner Cullen, talked with the remaining teams about a possible merger with the EFL. All but 1 UFL owner, Great Horn’s Chris Matheson, agreed to the proposal, and so all 5 teams came under the EFL umbrella. The teams would not merge with the EFL this year, and Cullen and the Owner’s Council would debate in the next offseason over how many teams they would admit and the other logistics needed. Most speculated that anywhere from 2 to 4 teams would be admitted next year. While the situation was being deliberated, the 5 teams would have their operations temporarily suspended with no teams allowed to make any transactions between themselves or with the 16 EFL teams.

1974 EFL Draft:
1st - Orcaster (From Sarnia): WR James Nelson
2nd - Fort McLeod: S Shaun Cobb
3rd - Sarnia: OL Craig Wilkins 
4th - Saint Blaise: LB Jesse Skinner
5th - Augusta: LB Miguel Moore
6th - Kierport: DL Roy Wills
7th - Wrauport: DB Christopher Cooper
8th - Pattalia: WR Piers Gill
9th - Adelaide (From Sarnia via Orcaster): OL Walter Wagner
10th - Ellesby: LB Tyrone Belcher
11th - Norfolk: TE Henry Lane
12th - Hadley: QB Dennis Moon
13th - Duvall: TE Benjamin Murphy
14th - Homestead: LB Geoffrey McCormick
15th - Ashonta: S Erik Giles
16th - Orcaster (From Tallokope City): S Alan Hagen

Transactions:
Even though Sarnia originally had the number 1 pick, they were shopping to move down for a few more draft picks. Orcaster was the first to respond, and sent over a massive haul. They received OL’s Leon Hyde and Clayton Leonard, the number 1 overall pick this year and a 3rd round selection, while Sarnia received the number 9 pick, a second round selection, and a first round pick in 1975. With their new haul, the Sparks moved right back up to pick #3 by trading with Adelaide. Along with the #3 pick, the Sparks got DL Eugene Eccelstone, while the Owls got the #9 pick, the 2nd rounder originally held by Orcaster, and a 4th round selection.

The other major draft transaction was between Hadley and Ashonta. The ‘Keepers received DL Chris Drake to help their defensive line while the Miners got a 2nd and a 3rd round pick. 

No other teams made any other transactions, trying to keep what they had before the salary cap hits next year.


Retirements:
Hadley’s Jack Reuter highlights this year’s retirement class. His 18 years with the Gatekeepers marks the longest time a QB has spent at the starting spot with one team. Duvall’s WR tandem of Abram Radcliff (1954-1973) and Alvin Paul (1955-1973) called it a career as well, highlighting the offensive players retiring this year. On defense, Ellesby’s Dennis Riley (1961-1973) and Norfolk’s Tim Traviss (1956-1973) were some of the best players that called it quits on the other side of the ball. 

Coaching Carousel:

It was Adelaide’s turn to clean house after only having 2 seasons over .500 since HC Jeb Thompson’s hiring. The Owls poached Augusta’s DC Wesley Miranda to be their next head coach, while they promoted QB coach Sam Stafford and DB coach Brian Stuart to be their OC and DC, respectively. Duvall also let go of DC Gary Carver after their disaster of a Semi-Final and season, and promoted LB coach Joe Gibbons to the position.

Hall of Fame Class of 1974:
6 new players were introduced into the Hall of Fame in Hadley, with the 6 new inductees being:

Paul Dane (QB 1953-1968, Kierport)
Gavin Parent (S 1954-1966, Kierport)
Joseph Haley (DB 1955-1967, Ellesby)
Jesse Wechler (DL 1956-1965, Augusta)
Gabriel Sydney (RB 1956-1968, Orcaster, Augusta)
Ozzie Gosselin (LB 1956-1966, Norfolk)

Uniform Changes:
The only team to make a uniform change were the reigning champions in Tallokope City, who added an 8 pointed star on their collars to commemorate their first Escalian Cup win. Adelaide and Augusta are expected to get rebrands next year, and both are expected to be brand overhauls.

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Other News:
Just before the Miners were set to open their new stadium, owner Michael Warrick suffered a massive stroke and tragically died at the age of 68. The rest of his family, including his wife Gloria and eldest son Ron, took over ownership, and named the new stadium Warrick Stadium in his honor. The new stadium will seat around 56250 fans, making it the 3rd largest stadium in the league. The new ownership is set to look for a bid for the Escalian Cup when they can make a bid.

1974 Season Power Rankings:
Norfolk Lumberjacks
Ashonta Miners
Tallokope City Anchors
Homestead Reapers
Ellesby Mariners
Hadley Gatekeepers
Kierport Knights
Wrauport Pirates
Orcaster Racers
Augusta Bulls
Fort McCleod Generals
Pattalia Grizzlies
Adelaide Owls
Saint Blaise Angels
Sarnia Sparks

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5/07/2021 3:30 pm  #259


Re: Escalian Football League

Quite the offseason. It'll be interesting to see who gets added to the EFL

Also nice to see Dane and Parent get inducted into the HOF. Maybe the Knights will be good again one day.


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5/19/2021 2:10 pm  #260


Re: Escalian Football League

1974 EFL Season:

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North Division
For the third time in three years, the North has someone new sitting atop of it. Adding on to that streak, the Kierport Knights are back in the playoffs for the first time since 1964. QB Arnie Kruger had his best year yet and proved that he could lead the team, even with injuries to starting RB Robert Underwood and LB Thomas Rowe that were supposed to drag the team down. Kruger almost single-handedly led the Knights to the playoffs, and deservedly took home MVP honors as a result. While the Mariners had the best divisional record this year, they struggled after the departures to their RB and LB cores. With former QB Jack Reuter retiring, the Gatekeepers could not find the right replacement, with former backup Noel Windsor putting up solid numbers after their first rounder Dennis Moon floundered in games he started. The Angels were the same Angels they have been over the past couple of years, as for now they hold the first overall pick before the league decides what to do with the UFL teams.

East Division
As with last season, Ashonta and Homestead were locked in a battle for East Division supremacy. Both teams entered week 13 tied at 8-4, and all the Reapers had to do to clinch the East was win the game. In a defensive grudge match, Ashonta took the cake off of 2 TD’s from RB Leonard Arts to win 14-10, and would eventually take their third straight East division title. Homestead would once again finish second in the division, but took the 5th seed again on top of a Defensive Player of the Year win for veteran DB Jon Cole. Fort McCleod surprisingly finished at .500 this year, with the help of first-time All-Stars in D-Linemen Homer Huff and Steve Cooper. Sarnia’s still going for the draft picks, even though they lost the battle for the bottom they have an immense amount of cap room for when the salary cap hits next year.

South Division
The defending champion Anchors roared back into first place in the South. While QB Errol Haberkorn and his young receiving core had another solid year, it was RB Mitchell Gallagher who stormed into the spotlight. The third year star blasted into the spotlight and proved that the Anchors’ time in the limelight will not be short lived. The Dragons had high hopes this season, starting 5-2-1 and looked to be in contention for the division title. However, the 34 year old QB Harold Bauer showed his age in the last half of the season as Duvall didn’t win another game and quickly fell out of the playoff hunt. Adelaide performed a bit better than in the past, but they finished second in the division due to the rest of the division imploding. Pattalia took up the mantle of basement dweller in the South, as they will look to the future to improve.

West Division
After being taken out by injuries last year, QB Nathan Slezak and the Lumberjacks reclaimed western dominance and comfortably took the Western Division title. They’re not much to talk about, but they are way over the cap for next year and may be on one final title run with their current core. The second team that made the playoffs after a long absence are the Racers, making their first playoff appearance and over .500 season since 1961. A young receiving core in Steve Franco and Rookie of the Year James Nelson paired well with a young QB in Fred Pond to get over that hump. Wrauport couldn’t rekindle their first season magic as they fell below .500 for the first time in team history. Augusta finished just about where they have been for the past few seasons as they also look to a rebuilding process in their stadium move next year. 

Awards:
Most Valuable Player: QB Arnie Kruger (KIE)
Most Valuable Coach: Lyall Parsons (KIE) (x2)
Most Outstanding Offensive Player: RB Mitchell Gallagher (TCA)
Most Outstanding Defensive Player: DB Jon Cole (HOM)
Most Outstanding Rookie: WR James Nelson (ORC)

First Round Preview:

Because there was a 4-way tie for the top seed, several tiebreakers had to be implemented. Ashonta got the top seed thanks to their head-to-head matchup wins against Kierport and Norfolk, and Tallokope City was put in last due to losses to both the Knights and Lumberjacks. Norfolk ended up getting the #2 seed over Kierport due to a divisional record of 4-2 over Kierport's of 3-3.

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#3 Kierport Knights vs. #6 Orcaster Racers
Previous Matchups: 1973 W12: KIE 6-26 ORC

Both of these teams are entering new identities for themselves: Kierport now has a franchise quarterback to revolve around and Orcaster has a solid young core to work off of. Both rely heavily on offense, but Kierport has star LB Thomas Rowe coming back for this game which may be the edge they need to get the win.
Escalian Sports Magazine Prediction: Both teams are extremely raw, but Kierport has more experience overall and may be all that is needed to win the game. 21-14 KIE

#4 Tallokope City Anchors vs. #5 Homestead Reapers
Previous Matchups: 1973 SF: HOM 13-34 TCA

And the last time these two teams met were in the playoffs last year, and the face off once again in the First Round. Homestead has looked relatively the same on the defensive side of the ball, but the Anchors have improved on the offense. RB Gallagher has made the Anchors an offensive powerhouse, but the Reapers secondary looks to get revenge and shut down the high-flying Tallokope City team.
Escalian Sports Magazine Prediction: The defending champions ride their momentum right on into Ashonta for a rematch of last year’s Escalian Cup. 28-17 TCA

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