Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Report:Arena Football League to skip 2009 season

The Arena Football League canceled the 2009 season but plans to return in 2010, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported Sunday.

An announcement is expected today.

According to the report, the league's board of directors voted via conference call late Sunday to shut down in 2009 because of financial problems related to the recent economic downturn that already have caused the franchise in New Orleans to fold.

Interim commissioner Ed Policy could not be reached for comment.

Last week, the board voted not to suspend the season. Storm coach Tim Marcum said 10 teams wanted to shut down.

The Plain Dealer reported too many big-name owners or teams in major cities said they would not play, including Dallas Philadelphia, Colorado, Georgia, Chicago and Cleveland. Also, the report said, ESPN, which owns a stake in the league, would not air games for a six- to eight-team league.

Earlier in the day, Marcum said he was optimistic the league would play.

A two-thirds margin is needed to suspend operations. There are 16 teams, and Gridiron Enterprises, which holds the patent for the league, has a seat on the board. So 12 votes are needed to shut down. Marcum said Chicago had switched sides, making it 11-6.

The Plain Dealer report did not say which other team changed its vote, but Marcum said Tampa Bay, Arizona, New York, Orlando and San Jose were committed to playing.

The report did say Cowboys owner Jerry Jones (Dallas) and Falcons owner Arthur Blank (Georgia), expressed a desire to return in 2010 under a new business model.

Times staff writer Keith Niebuhr contributed to this report.

Report:Arena Football League to skip 2009 season 12/15/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, January 13, 2009 4:42pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Gators rally past Kentucky, streak hits 31


    LEXINGTON, Ky. — For the second week in a row, Florida found itself storming the field in a game that came down to the last second. A 57-yard field-goal attempt by Kentucky kicker Austin MacGinnis came just a few feet short of making history and snapping a 30-year losing streak, as the No. 20 Gators escaped a …

    Florida wide receiver Brandon Powell (4) scores a touchdown during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Kentucky, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017, in Lexington, Ky.
  2. Pen makes it way too interesting as Rays hang on for 9-6 win


    A couple of home runs provided the news pegs of the night for the Rays, but it was more topical to talk about what nearly happened as they hung on for a 9-6 win over the Orioles.

    Lucas Duda's three-run homer in the third inning was the Rays' record-breaking 217th of the season, as well as his …

  3. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Saturday's Rays-Orioles game

    The Heater

    RHP Jake Odorizzi admitted he probably should have gone on the DL sooner than late July for the back stiffness that was keeping him from throwing the ball where he wanted to. He has since found an impressive groove, with another strong outing Saturday.

  4. Matt Baker's takeaways from Florida State-N.C. State


    RB Cam Akers still looks like a former high school quarterback at times. His first two touches (30 yards) were special, but the freshman juked instead of powering ahead on his third (an unsuccessful third-and-1 rush). That's why the Seminoles are easing him in, as they did with Dalvin Cook three years ago.

    Running back Cam Akers carries for a first down during the third quarter as FSU eases the freshman into the college game.
  5. An attempt to project what Rays will look like in 2018

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — We know what the Rays look like this year: a team that had enough talent but too many flaws, in construction and performance, and in the next few days will be officially eliminated from a wild-card race it had a chance to win but let slip away.

    Adeiny Hechavarria, high-fiving Lucas Duda, seems likely to be brought back.