Post by Caballo Diablo on Apr 1, 2010 11:35:35 GMT -5
A Home game!
Week 6 brings the TurfCats 3rd game and 1st Home game of the 2010 season. All 3 of their Byes were in the first 5 weeks, hopefully it won't come back to haunt them down the stretch as most other teams will be able to use their Byes later in the year to rest tired bodies and heal the nicks and dings of the gruling season.
It also brings a homecoming of sorts for the Amarillo Venom's owner Randy Sanders. Mr. Sanders who owns both the Amarillo Gorillas (CHL) and the Amarillo Venom (IFL) was a lontime Austinite and fan of the 50 yd game for many years.
He owned the CHL Austin IceBats through the 2008 season until the Dallas Stars brought their AHL team to area forcing him to relocate. In the end he decide to shelve the IceBats and purchase the Gorillas. Coincidently the `Bats played in the same arena that the Turfcats presently play, starting in 1996 through their first 10 seasons, so Mr. Sanders is very familiar with the venue and the Austin fan base. He always stopped by to chat with me at the Icebat games.
Randy was also a regular at the tailgates for the AFL and af2 Austin Wranglers and bought the Amarillo (Dusters at the time) Venom from Wranglers owner Doug MacGregor.
It'll be good to see him and catch up on the past couple of years but here's to hoping I'm happier than him when the clock hits 00:00 tomorrow night.
Post by Caballo Diablo on Apr 1, 2010 16:16:14 GMT -5
IFL Game of the week
Austin TurfCats vs Amarillo Venom - Friday 4/2/10 7:30pm
Two first year IFL franchises will battle it out in the state of Texas when the Amarillo Venom travel to to face the Austin TurfCats. The Venom are off to an impressive start, sitting at the top of the Lonestar West Division with a 2-0 record. (Austin is in the Lonestar East Div.) The team is led by QB Julian Reese, an Indoor veteran that holds the highest quarterback rating in the league at 134.5. RB Dontrell Moore was impressive in his IFL debut in week five when he rushed for 105 yards on 15 carries adding 4 TD’s in a 55-33 win over the West Texas Roughnecks. The TurfCats have also had success in the early goings of the 2010 season. The team sits at 1-1 after a last second FG propelled them to a 31-29 victory over the Arkansas Diamonds in week four. The team features an emerging star in the IFL, WR Reggie Smith who has totaled 10 catches for 125 yards and a TD so far this season. This Lonestar State showdown provides for an interesting match-up.
Post by Bouncer_Texxx on Apr 3, 2010 1:24:46 GMT -5
0120 Saturday 3 April the game has been over for about 3, 3 and a half hours.
GoIFL.com stats. Nope no score. Game live, nada
check the turfcats website.. yikes, maybe now I see why
71-20 Amarillo Yea that'll win over the crowd.
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Post by Caballo Diablo on Apr 3, 2010 11:46:40 GMT -5
What can I say but, Ouch!
I needed medical attention after the @$$whoopin lastnight. The first half was pretty good but the TurfCats folded at halftime and were outscored 37-0 in the 2nd half. Plus the T-Cats lost two defensive lineman, Kevin Earvine in the first half with a knee injury and Otis Neal in the 2nd half.
The Venom's O-Line dominated and gave QB Julian Reese enough time to sign autographs while his receivers ran forever until coming open. Word on the street is the slowest player in a Venom skill position runs a 4.6 and they've got several players with NFL experience.
Mr Sanders was having more fun after the game than I was but there's always next time. Good thing there was plenty of cold beer at the tailgate to ease the pain.
The crowd was small, Randy said he thought it was ok under the circumstances but it definitely needs to improve. Friday games have never been good draws, then it was good friday and Easter weekend. Severe thunderstorms were predicted, luckily they fizzled. The Texas Relays are underway, South by Southwest had just finished. There's lots of competition in Austin for discretionary income.
Without starting too much of an argument I don't buy the excuses for attendance. This goes for any team in any league. Iowa had more than 12,000 last night on the HOliday weekend with a smaller metro area. All the teams in all the indoor/arena leagues have months to sell games. The GM needs to learn how to market smartly to sell better. Like I said no fight but tired of excuses.
Post by Caballo Diablo on Apr 3, 2010 13:48:47 GMT -5
I agree with you, the small crowd was unacceptable. I wasn't excusing it, just pointing out a few bits of reality. Austin has never fared well in attendance for any 50 yard league compared to the rest of the teams. And there have been at least seven different leagues that have played in the Austin area. And that doesn't include the semi-pro leagues which Austin currently still has at least three playing now.
The size of the metro area isn't as comparable as other factors. The makeup of the populace and the other entertainment options within the area I feel are more important than just the raw population figure. It seems easier to attract larger crowds in smaller areas with less options.
There has been almost no advertising and a punitive media ignoring the sport. Of course you get non stop coverage of the University of Texas, but the media seems to also fawn over the other teams/sports here. You always see articles on the other teams and even have a daily spot in the sports section for this weeks upcoming games for UT, Texas State, the Austin Aztecs FC (soccer - affilliated with the Monterrey Rayados), Texas Stars(AHL- Dallas Stars), Austin Toro's (NBAD - San Antonio Spurs), Round Rock Express (Triple-A for the Houston Astros)
All of those have always out performed the 50 yard game for attendance and received love from the media. The AFL Wranglers couldn't even get a mention when they were here. The fan base has tried for many years to get the media to recognize the sport and the sports editors have told us flat out they could care less about the sport.
I'm just happy to still have a team to watch in person. Our owner lives in San Antonio, a new arena is being built behind the Alamo and is trying to attract a team. The TurfCats should still be here next season but possibly with new ownership as the current one stays closer to home. Another current owner is in talks to build an arena in San Marcos (south of Austin) for a second team and wants to add at least two more teams to his portfolio.
Several teams across the varying leagues are scouting options for next season whether it's for a venue, market, or different league. Too early to speculate but it's amazing how many are looking for a change next season. A huge reason fans need to support the sport itself, a failure in one sector affects them all in the perception of the masses. Plus you never know if you'll still have a team or what league they'll be in.
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