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8/07/2021 2:17 pm  #281

Re: Escalian Football League

1975 Season

Preseason rankings had the Knights running the table in what seemed to be an unstable North. Kierport ran out to a 8-2 start to the year, with amazing performances by QB Arnie Kruger, who almost won his second straight MVP, and defensive all-stars LB Thomas Rowe and DB Jon Cole. However, a 1-4 run going into the final week put them into crunch time with two other teams in the North. One of those teams were the Mariners, who came back striking with a vengeance after a disappointing .500 season last year, with free agent acquisitions RB Phillip Lynch and LB Jim Hardin putting in solid performances to help the team enter week 16 with a 10-5 record and a win over division rival Saint Blaise at home would punch their ticket to a division title and the #3 seed. However, that Saint Blaise team was one of the biggest surprises all year. Something clicked within that team, with help from Breakout Player of the Year WR Donald Funk and ROTY runner-up Ryan Overton to push them over the edge and be one win away from sealing the division title on a three-way tiebreaker if Kierport were to win over the lowly Gatekeepers. Kierport would close out a close game against Hadley 13-9 to put themselves in playoff position. The Angels would come in and finally prove that they are ready for the big show, as they pummeled the Mariners 31-19 to clinch their first ever division title in their existence and their first winning season since 1970. With the division race so tight all year long, Hadley was mostly forgotten about. RB Terrance Cockburn, once the bright spot on the team, vastly underperformed on a team that still hasn’t moved past the retirement of QB Jack Reuter 2 years ago. Hadley may go into full rebuild mode while the rest of their division fights tooth and nail to get to the playoffs. 

The 4 UFL teams weren’t expected to win very much in their first season among the big boys of the EFL. Most expected the division winner to come out of either Colnica or Montagrada, however issues plagued both teams. The Roosters had an incredibly tough schedule outside of the East, and failed to live up to expectations after beating the Stars in the final United Bowl in 1973. The Stars, on the other hand, came up oh so close this year. QB Eugene Rankin performed well enough to live up to the hype of former QB Terry Rogers, and the rest of their offensive unit of RB Thomas Amsel and WR’s Peter Travis and Sandy Giraud putting up solid numbers. They only finished 1 game back from the eventual division winners, but 6 out of their 7 losses were by 7 points or less. Those division winners would be the Minola Whales, who were quietly putting together a great team of misfits while still in the UFL. Their receiving core of Eddie Nolan, Guilherme Florencio, and Jerry James paired up quite nicely with QB Simão Rocha to put up some of the biggest receiving numbers all year, with RB Albert Smith making a nice complementary piece to the puzzle. Arcanfall fell off from their United Bowl appearance in the UFL, with a rough schedule not helping the team get adjusted with the EFL.

This division was even more cutthroat than the North, which was complicated by the fact that 3 time MVP Harold Bauer decided to come to Fort McLeod to complicate things between the already bitter rivals of Ashonta and Homestead. These three would fight all season just to clinch the Central, which by the time the season was coming to a close would prove to be the final playoff spot. Ashonta QB Daniel Haumann had a bit of a down year after the departure of WR Jordan Samson, but still put up solid numbers with new #1 WR Marty Farmer and TE Spencer Maddison. They stumbled into week 16 at 9-6, effectively clinching the Central Division even if they lost to rival Homestead, who they would beat on tiebreakers. Homestead limped their way into week 16, with the injury of DL #1 Cliff Moore stunting their potential for this year, but RB Gerhardt Derby had one of his best seasons yet had put them in position to potentially snag up a playoff spot if other teams were to lose. The Reapers managed to beat the Miners 29-20, but that was not enough to put them in the playoffs. Bauer tried to make his new team of the Generals competitive, but the current Generals didn’t have as many weapons as he did back in Duvall, with only RB Ben Blakesly and WR Kevin Weber to play off of. As a result of that and an incredible tough division, they went .500 for the second year in a row. Sarnia was a complete mess for the first 12 weeks, going 1-11 and solidly held the top spot for next year’s draft. However, they caught fire at the absolute wrong time and won their remaining 4 games of the season to put themselves at the 3rd overall pick. Dispersal draft pick QB Albert Gordon had the best 4 games of his life after an absolutely abysmal first 12 games, which could either get him a place on the chopping block for next year or a new contract in order to help the Sparks get past the identity of the EFL’s worst team.

With the South Division as weak as it already is, everyone thought that the division would have been wide open with Anchors QB Errol Haberkorn taken out for 11 weeks with an injury to his non-throwing arm in week 3. With TC already out to a hot 3-0 start, backup QB Simon Dillon had to live up to the hype of Haberkorn as well as starting games for the first time. He managed to live up to some of the hype, helping the already injury-riddled Anchors cruise to a division title and locked up the #3 seed come week 16. However, TC hasn’t really been at full strength offensively since week 3 and is regaining RB Mitchell Gallagher in the quarterfinals after going down in week 14 with a minor leg injury. That didn’t stop them from racking up plenty of receiving yards, with dispersal draft addition WR Clemente Barreto putting up amazing numbers and gave him All-South Division and 2nd team All-Star team nods. Duvall looked to be on their way to a playoff berth this year, with RB Conor DuBois carrying the team to relevance, including a record-breaking 260 yard performance in week 1 against the Grizzlies. However, their playoff hopes were for naught, as DuBois suffered a broken leg in week 11 and would not return for the rest of the season, dooming the Dragons to a mediocre 7-9 record. Pattalia didn’t have a great year either, going 6-10 after a somewhat hopeful .500 campaign last year. Their lone bright spot was rookie TE Bruno Marella, who was one of three players on the Grizzlies to make the All-South Division Team, the other two being LB Gene Dobson and DL Stephen Scott with Scott being named to the 2nd team All-Star roster. The Owls were the other team fighting for last place with the Sparks, and they weren’t as lucky (or unlucky depending on how you look at it) as Sarnia. They actually tanked better than the worst team in the league and secured the #1 overall pick for next year as Adelaide now has to decide to go all in or continue to tank to potentially do better in the future.

While the Angels were the feel-good story of the league, the real surprise of this year was Wrauport. Rookie QB Stephen Calhoun had a lot of expectations on him for a first year starter, but he sure made it count. With everyone expecting Norfolk to run the table, the Pirates made it a dogfight all season with the Lumberjacks. Calhoun put up record-breaking numbers for a rookie, with some of those records being set by Harold Bauer in the 1961 season, leading the Pirates to a stunning division title over the Lumberjacks on a tiebreaker and winning Calhoun Rookie of the Year. Norfolk looked a bit weaker in the receiving game with the departure of WR Craig Farmer to the Pirates, but MVP winner RB Bruno Fontaine absolutely made up for it, almost single handedly carrying Norfolk to the #2 seed and one of the frontrunners for the Escalian Cup. Orcaster was a disappointment after last year had a lot of promise, with an unexpectedly strong division and tough schedule potential culprits for why the Racers had a below .500 season with such a strong team. The Bulls were more or less pretty mediocre for the entire season, with their young defense showing some promise with LB’s Sean Guthrie and Miguel Moore both making the All-West Division Team. They might need to think for the long run as the West may become a bit more competitive than they think.

C&C Appreciated! How'd your team do? Any predictions for the playoffs?
Founder of the EFL and the AFL

8/07/2021 4:46 pm  #282

Re: Escalian Football League

Loving the new standings graphic!  Looks really nice!

The Pirates might have surprised the Lumberjacks  in the West Division, but I still see Norfolk making it further this year.  Going with the Saint Blaise Angels to win the league this year, something definitely is clicking with this team and I'm betting that they complete the underdog story told from Earth to the Heavens, (that wasn't dramatic or anything, lmao!).   I think they beat Norfolk in the finals.

8/07/2021 6:38 pm  #283

Re: Escalian Football League

Hell yea, Dire! Love the slight changes in graphics to simplify the look. Really like seeing the helmets next to the ranking, but I'd maybe adjust colors for some teams because the text and box tend to bleed together for a few. It is mostly the Stars and teams using green/red for me, but that is such an easy fix. I'd say the same for the division team presentation. Maybe drop the opacity a little bit for the background, or even drop the color boxes leaving the text free floating. It would make it harder for viewers to read by division if you did that, but it isn't like you couldn't just space the divisions a little more and make each name the color of the division they are in.

Just because I got to see the helmets all at once, I will say that I am a sucker for the Angel's halo and really like what the Stars and Miners have.

Last edited by Thehealthiestscratch (11/22/2021 11:36 am)

8/07/2021 10:20 pm  #284

Re: Escalian Football League

Loooooove the new graphics! As others have said, maybe adjusting the text color in some boxes may help. Honestly can't say I have a favorite team - is there a city in Escalia that's similar to Charlotte for me to pull for?

8/09/2021 6:18 pm  #285

Re: Escalian Football League

The updated graphics are fantastic. Less fantastic is Kierport bumbling away the division title. That playoff matchup with Saint Blaise is gonna be fireworks for sure.
AHS Admin. Creator of PUCH and the THL.

8/26/2021 5:23 pm  #286

Re: Escalian Football League

Thanks everyone for the great response for the new format! I've been working on it for some time and figured this year would be the year to change it up.

Scratch: I can see what you mean about some of the text bleeding together, since for the most part the color schemes for the teams' presentations were copied over from my reference sheet. That will surely be fixed whenever I get around to doing the next season

QCS: The closest city to Charlotte would most likely be Orcaster, since I imagined it as a cross between Charlotte and Detroit. It's the auto racing capital of the country, and the home of the country's stock car and open-wheel racing series. 

With that out of the way, here's the quarterfinals!

1975 Quarterfinals

(just as a note the quarterfinals writeups are going to be shorter than the normal playoff writeups, which will return for the semifinals)

Ashonta Miners @ Wrauport Pirates

The Miners came into Port Stadium as the underdog, but they played like they were top contenders against the Pirates. Both teams traded TD’s on their first possession, with Ashonta scoring first with QB Daniel Haumann finding WR Marty Farmer on a short pass and Wrauport taking it slow with RB James Radcliff eventually punching the ball in to tie the game back up at 7. A string of field goals lead to a 19-10 Pirates lead by the end of the first half, but Ashonta put up 6 for the first time since the first quarter with another Haumann TD, this time on a bomb to WR Clay Ewing to put the game within 1 score when they entered the locker room for halftime. The Pirates offense continued to slow down in the second half, as they failed to score any points on their drive for the first time all game, punting it back to the Miners. Haumann pulled off some more playoff magic, leading Ashonta on a drive that was capped off with a slant to Ewing to put themselves in the lead for the first time all game. OPOY QB Stephen Calhoun struggled all game in front of his home crowd, with the playoff jitters getting into his head. That Miners TD in the third would be the last TD of the game, as Wrauport would never reclaim the lead and the Miners getting their revenge by upsetting the top seed to advance to the semifinals.

Ellesby Mariners @ Tallokope City Anchors

One of the best defenses in the Mariners traveled to TC to take on one of the best offenses in the Anchors. Ellesby’s defense stopped the Anchors to only 6 points in the first, but their offense struggled to get going and were held scoreless in the first. The Mariners did get some offense going, with RB Phillip Lynch finally punching one in for Ellesby to finally take the lead, although it was cut short on the Anchors’ next drive with a field goal to retake the lead. Lynch’s TD was the only touchdown the Mariners would get, as they would still remain snakebitten in the playoffs not being able to retake the lead for the rest of the game.

Kierport Knights @ Saint Blaise Angels

The only divisional matchup in the playoffs had two teams that were looking to get out of a slump one way or another. The Angels made the playoffs for the first time in franchise history, while the Knights were looking to get back on top after a long period of mediocrity. It was a long grind at the beginning of the game, with Kierport edging through a long drive on the first possession of the game to chew off most of the clock in the first, ending in a plunge into the endzone by RB Robert Underwood. Saint Blaise made it a game with a TD from QB Willis Lincoln to WR Donald Funk, but that sparked something within the Angels as they went on to score 21 unanswered points before the Knights finally got back in the game before the first half ended with a pass from QB Arnie Kruger to WR Andrew Padmore to at least keep it close. Neither team could find the endzone in the third quarter, and the Angels still held an uncomfortable 7 point lead over their division rivals. Unfortunately for Knights fans, they could not find the endzone, and all it took to put the game away was Lincoln threw another TD to Funk for the Angels to win their first ever playoff game.

Minola Whales @ Norfolk Lumberjacks

Pretty much everyone was expecting the defending champion Lumberjacks to absolutely run away with the win over the Whales, but this game was anything but a pushover. Norfolk did manage to get on the board first, but RB Bruno Fontaine’s 5 yard rush came on their third attempt in the quarter. The Lumberjacks held the Whales off on offense, but the Whales surprised them on defense and held surprisingly strong. A late charge by Minola tied up the game with only a few minutes with a WR Guilherme Florencio TD. Norfolk pulled off some magic at the end of the game, with K Isaac Brandt nailing a 47 yard field goal with 5 seconds left to escape the upset and move on to the semis.

(note: teams have been reseeded, with the highest remaining seed taking on the lowest remaining seed, and the other two teams playing each other)

C&C Appreciated!
Founder of the EFL and the AFL
     Thread Starter

8/26/2021 5:32 pm  #287

Re: Escalian Football League

Why does every team I like that's named the mariners suck?

9/01/2021 10:24 pm  #288

Re: Escalian Football League

1975 Semifinals:

Ashonta Miners @ Norfolk Lumberjacks

After upsetting the #1 seeded Pirates the week before, the Miners got off to a rocky start against a raucous Norfolk crowd, giving them the ball after immediately going three and out. Norfolk QB Nathan Slezak took advantage of Ashonta’s sloppiness, and marched the ‘Jacks on down field to score 6 points on a pass to TE Henry Lane. The ‘Jacks’ drive stalled out the Miners’ momentum for most of the quarter, as they punted on their next three drives of the quarter, only getting past midfield once. Fortunately, the Miners did get some offensive momentum going with QB Daniel Haumann finding his receivers to eventually get past midfield and into scoring range, but their first quarter momentum ran out quickly after getting into scoring range and nailed 3 points to the scoreboard to at least keep the game within 1 possession.
END OF Q1: 7-3 NOR
Norfolk struck back quickly on their next drive, but could only muster another three points to ensure that they had a 7 point lead. Ashonta still had trouble on offense, as although they did manage to get into scoring range on both of their drives this quarter, they failed to reach the endzone both times but luckily put up 3 points both times to keep the game close. Slezak and company didn’t want to get upset by the Miners, so he ended up throwing a bomb to WR Milton Stuart for 87 yards to extend the Lumberjacks lead to 9. Ashonta tried to get one last drive going before the end of the half, but the clock struck 0 before they could get anything going.
END OF Q2: 17-9 NOR
The Lumberjacks continued their dominance over the Miners on an extremely quick drive led by a 34 yard run by RB Bruno Fontaine, and they looked like they couldn’t be stopped and would continue to steamroll over Ashonta. However, Ashonta’s front 4 stopped Fontaine just short, with DL Ollie Clifton forcing a fumble on third down to stop the ‘Jacks from scoring any more than 3 points on their drive with another field goal. With that fumble by the rookie, something sparked within the Miners on their next drives. Immediately after the Lumberjacks’ field goal, Ashonta RB Leonard Arts busted out on a 68 yard run, beating out the Norfolk secondary to score the Miners’ first touchdown of the day, and it wouldn’t be their last of the quarter either. After miraculously holding Norfolk to just a 5 play drive, Haumann put together some magic and threw an absolute dime to WR Marty Farmer, who beat out DB Matthew Collier one-on-one to score a 75 yard to take the lead for the first time all game. Norfolk didn’t get stopped short on their next drive, however they did stall out past midfield and punted the ball back to the red hot Miners. Ashonta had a bit of a slower drive, as it took them 5 plays for Haumann to reconnect with Farmer for 37 yards to score one last TD for the quarter and to take a commanding lead entering the 4th quarter
END OF Q3: 30-20 ASH
After spending pretty much all of the third quarter sleeping, the Lumberjacks finally awoke and decided that they didn’t want to get taken down by the 8 seed. Norfolk seemed to have made it a game again with a Slezak throw to WR Jim Adams who went 59 yards to the house. However, Adams was called for holding and the play was called back, cutting off most momentum that the Lumberjacks would have had. They limped their way past the 40, and nailed in another field goal to put the game within 1 score. Ashonta took their time after seeing Norfolk with their heads in the clouds for most of the second half, deciding to score a field goal with less than a minute left to secure their win after holding off the Lumberjacks in the remaining seconds in the game. Ashonta got hot at the right time, upsetting the top two seeded teams on their way to a chance to win their 3rd Escalian Cup
FINAL: 33-23 ASH

Saint Blaise Angels @ Tallokope City Anchors

The Angels got off to a great start against the rowdy Anchors crowd, slowly and methodically driving down the field and carving up the TC defense while doing so. RB Benny Baird capped off the drive with a 6 yard plunge into the endzone to take the early 7-0 lead. TC attempted to get a drive going, but it seemed as if their offense was still stuck on the previous week and didn’t show up, going three and out on their first 2 drives of the quarter. Saint Blaise had slightly better luck, although they punted the ball away on their first possession, they managed to get a drive together on their second attempt but could only come away with three after failing to convert on a 3rd and inches at the 14. 
END OF Q1: 10-0 STB
The Anchors’ offense still was in last week and was way off from the offensive powerhouse that they were all year. QB Errol Haberkorn had aggravated his left arm in last week’s win over the Mariners, and relied a bit too much on RB Mitchell Gallagher to make up for his injury. The Angels continued to stuff last year’s OPOY, much to the surprise of fans everywhere, with planning from DC Max Meyer to prevent the Anchors from doing much of anything. The Angels punted away their first drive of the quarter, but their second was a lot more successful. Baird took the reins once again, getting the ball on each of the 7 plays on their drive to dive into the endzone on an 11 yard dash to increase their lead to 17. TC still struggled as they limped their way into the locker room to retry in the second half.
END OF Q2: 17-0 STB
Unfortunately for the Anchors, they could not get anything going on the offense. Fortunately for them, their defense stepped up and forced two interceptions off of STB QB Willis Lincoln, as they held the Angels to 0 points the entire quarter. The Angels’ luck didn’t transfer over to the Anchors, as TC failed to score anything in this uneventful and sloppy quarter.
END OF Q3: 17-0 STB
Saint Blaise quickly ended the sloppiness of the third quarter with a quick score, though it wasn’t the touchdown they were hoping for. Baird did rack up another impressive drive, but fell just short of getting a crucial first down that would have put them right at the goal line, but they settled for 3 instead as TC couldn’t get anything going. Luckily for the Saints, the Anchors’ woes stayed until the end of the game, as QB Willis Lincoln torched the Anchor secondary with a pass to WR Lyle Schaffer that sealed the game in favor of the Angels to send them to their first ever Escalian Cup.

C&C Appreciated! Any picks for the Escalian Cup?
Founder of the EFL and the AFL
     Thread Starter

9/13/2021 9:20 pm  #289

Re: Escalian Football League

16th Escalian Cup: #8 Ashonta Miners @ #4 Saint Blaise Angels

Fort McLeod has seen some raucous crowds before in its short time in the big leagues, but it had never seen the hoards of Miners and especially Angels fans swarming into the stadium for the league’s biggest game. Saint Blaise, while they narrowly cruised through the playoffs, got stumped by the much more experienced Ashonta fanbase. On the first drive of the game, rookie DL Ollie Clifton pancaked QB Willis Lincoln and forced a fumble, which was scooped up by DL Calvin Stuart and taken back 34 yards to take the early 7-0 lead for the underdog Miners. The Angels were rattled for the rest of the quarter, getting held to just 1 first down in the first quarter and punting the ball away three times throughout the quarter. Ashonta had slightly better luck, with a long 11 play drive to cut away nearly 6 minutes of the clock, with former MVP QB Daniel Haumann dicing through the inexperienced Saint Blaise defense, leading the Miners down to the 2 before tossing a quick pass to WR Adolph Abel to increase their lead to 14 while the Angels began driving to end the first quarter.
END OF Q1: 14-0 ASH
That same drive the Angels started in the first quarter continued into the second, with RB Benny Baird carrying the team downfield intercut with a Lincoln pass to WR Donald Funk. Baird set up the Angels at the 5 yard line, where Lincoln threw one to WR Marcelos Paiva to put the Angels on the scoreboard for the first time all game. Ashonta got right back into action after that drive, with Haumann throwing up a dime to WR Clay Ewing on the second play of the drive for 47 yards to put their lead back up at 14. With a few punts in between, Saint Blaise had the ball again and wanted to make it a game and not get shown up by one of their expansion brothers. Baird carried the rock for a few plays, but he didn’t find the endzone on this drive. Instead, Lincoln threw up a jump ball for his #1 target all year, WR Donald Funk, where Funk beat his man and waltzed into the endzone for a 58 yard score to put the difference back at 7 at halftime.
END OF Q2: 21-14 ASH
A high-flying second quarter gave way to a slower and more methodical third, with Saint Blaise feeding the rock to Baird on 7 of their 11 plays on their drive to begin the third quarter. Baird finally found the endzone on a 2 yard plunge to tie up the game at 21. Both teams then had a rough bit during the third quarter, as they traded stops on defense without really making much progression down field. The furthest any team got during that time was Ashonta, but they were stopped on the 40 and chose to punt instead of taking a risky field goal. The Miners did get another shot of moving past the 40, but a crucial stop on 3rd and 3 on the 33 by the Angels prevented them from going any further, and K Mariano Montaña nailed it through the uprights to retake the lead at the end of the third.
END OF Q3: 24-21 ASH
Saint Blaise had never led at any point in this game, but Lincoln and Baird were determined to end that on their next drive in the 4th. Lincoln set the Angels up perfectly on a 33 yard pass to Funk to put them within scoring range and possibly tie the game with a field goal. Baird didn't want to settle for only 3 points, and carried the ball 20 yards for a TD to finally take the lead for the Angels. The Miners got down field surprisingly quick after the Saint Blaise TD, but they were held strong by the Angels and HC Isidor Engel decided to go for it on 4th down and very short with about 5 minutes left in the game. Haumann handed the ball off to RB Leonard Arts, where Arts was almost immediately stopped short of the first down by a tag-team of defensive linemen Alexis Correy and Willard Riddle. The Angels began to run out the clock after that, but Baird found one too many openings through the weakened Miners defense, as he broke through on a 65 yard run to effectively seal the game away for another 7 points on the board. Ashonta put together a garbage time drive that ended well before the endzone as Angels players and fans flooded the field to celebrate their first ever Escalian Cup victory.
FINAL: 35-24 STB

Although most of his flashy plays were in the second half of the game, RB Benny Baid was nonetheless named Escalian Cup MVP with a 189 yard, 2 TD game that helped Saint Blaise become the last original expansion team to break through and win an Escalian Cup. This will go down as one of the largest turnarounds for a team, as the Angels went 2-11-2 last year and had not had a winning season in over 5 years, their sole winning season before this year came in 1971. Whether or not this season will be a fluke like the 1964 Augusta Bulls, Angels fans will cherish this team and season for many years to come.

And that's a wrap on the 1975 season! I'll be starting the offseason process soon so now is a good time to submit prospects! I've gotten 111 prospects so far, which is amazing since last time around I only received around 30! Thanks to those who have submitted already, and to those who wish to submit, the link is on the front page or click the link to take you there if you don't feel like going back lol. C&C Appreciated!

Founder of the EFL and the AFL
     Thread Starter

9/13/2021 9:41 pm  #290

Re: Escalian Football League

And the Cinderella Miners run ends. Congrats to the Angels!

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