Veras

History of a Fictional Football League (1989 – 44th Victory Bowl)

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I've changed my mind about tanking.

 

Trust the Process, Whales!

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89r2g1detvsmil_by_verasthebrujah-dc8ws2c

The general consensus was that the team that made the fewest mistakes would come away with the win, and the game plans of both teams reflected that throughout the first half.  Knowing that the only way that the Milwaukee offense would be a threat is if they were given a short field, the Gladiators took an extremely conservative approach, repeatedly feeding the ball to RB Johnny Hewitt in an attempt to protect the ball.  He was reasonably effective thanks to the phenomenal play of FB J.C. “Crusher” Kraushar, who was able to keep All-Stars DT Jeff Marenghi and LB Gabriel Rose away from his running back.

 

It would be Milwaukee turnovers that defined the first half, as QB Ray Oram threw a pair of picks.  The first came just minutes into the game, and set up a 7-yard touchdown drive; while the second came late in the second quarter and allowed K Willie Sluder to knock down a 47-yard field goal with one minute remaining in the half.  The Wolves managed a field goal in between, so at halftime, the score was a competitive 10-3.

 

The Gladiators would blow the game open midway through the third when Ron Pryce recorded his second interception of the day.  It set up a field goal, but the Gladiators then forced a 3 and out, Johnny Hewitt ended the next drive with a touchdown run.  He would score again five minutes into the final quarter, this time on a pass from John Lewis, to put the home team up 27-3.  The Wolves would score a touchdown in garbage time, but it could not stop the Gladiators from becoming the first team since the 1980-1981 Centennials to go to back-to-back Victory Bowls.

 

89r2g2houvstb_by_verasthebrujah-dc8ws3d.

The Hurricanes had been heavy favorites in the quarterfinals because of QB Tom Hudson, and they won despite his poor play.  Unbeknownst to the football world, his bad game was the result of a torn rotator cuff that he had suffered on the lone series that Houston’s starters had played in week 17.  Hudson had refused to even complain to the team medical staff about the injury, fearing that doing so might result in his being forced out, so he played through the pain.  For the second week in a row, his passes were off-target and frequently underthrown.

 

With Hudson playing like an average quarterback instead of the star that he was, the game was very even in the first half.  The Bobcats jumped to a 7-0 lead late in the first on a 3-yard run by Wayne Lee, and had every opportunity to extend it in the second.  CB Huslu Green picked off Hudson at the Houston 22, and made it all the way back to the 1 before being forced out of bounds.  Bobcats fans felt that Green should have been credited with a TD, and their displeasure was multiplied two plays later when Lee made it into the end zone, only to have the score invalidated by a holding penalty.  On the next play, disaster struck when there was a miscommunication between QB Bobby Davis and WR Deacon Cross, which resulted in a pass going directly to CB Michael Divers, who sprinted 102 yards for a touchdown to tie the game.

 

Tampa blew the game open in the second half.  On the second play of the third quarter, WR Sylvester McNeese split the safeties and Davis hit him in stride for a 76-yard score.  They added a field goal five and a half minutes later to make it a 10-point game.

 

On the ensuing Houston possession, DE Steven Perdue sacked Hudson hard, slamming him to the turf on his injured shoulder.  What had been a minor rotator cuff tear was ripped cleanly in two, and Hudson was replaced by the untested fourth year backup from Connecticut, Paul Dreibelbis.  The home crowd was silent as they wondered if the backup whose name they couldn’t even pronounce could lead a comeback.  The odds got longer in the final minute of the third quarter when McNeese was able to get behind the Houston defense again for a 96-yard touchdown catch.

 

The stadium was dead silent when Dreibelbis took the field again, but he quickly got the crowd back into things by hitting Mark Ellison for a 69-yard touchdown.  Then, with 4:18 to play, the Hurricanes kicked a field goal, making it a 7-point game.  Sadly, that is as far as the comeback attempt could go.  Davis, always better in high-pressure situations, led the Bobcats on a 77-yard touchdown drive that ended with Wayne Lee diving for the pylon to put the Tampa lead at 31-17 with just over 2 minutes to play.

 

The clock ran to 0:00, and the Bobcats earned the right to play in the Victory Bowl for the first time in their 9-year history.

 

1989_afa_postseason_by_verasthebrujah-dc

Victory Bowl Preview

 

The Bobcats are a team defined by their scrappiness.  They’re tough, are known for come-from-behind victories, and they often get the job done against stronger opponents.  That’s good for them, because the Gladiators are defined by their talent.

 

The Bobcats should be able to put up some points against a good Gladiator defense, but it is virtually inconceivable that they will be able to slow down Detroit’s offense.  John Lewis and Johnny Hewitt are the game’s premier QB/RB combo, and the Tampa secondary doesn’t have anyone who matches up well with speeder WR Angelo Caro on the outside.  Unless the Gladiators agree to let the Bobcats use 12 or 13 men on defense, we’re probably looking at yet another Victory Bowl blowout.  Detroit wins, 30-17, and becomes the first team to repeat as Victory Bowl champions since the 77-78 Washington Wasps.

 

This is Detroit’s 9th Victory Bowl appearance, which is second only to Pittsburgh’s 12.  They won the 16th (defeated Pittsburgh), 17th (New Orleans), 19th (Buffalo), and 43rd (St. Louis) and lost the 15th (Pittsburgh), 18th (Pittsburgh), 20th (Colorado), and 21st (Pittsburgh).  A win will give them sole possession of the second most titles with 5, once again trailing Pittsburgh’s 9.

 

This is Tampa’s 9th season and they have never before played in a championship game.

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I'm definitely going to be rooting for Tampa Bay. Hopefully they'll break out of their den and force the Gladiators to retreat.

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One of the 1981 Expansion teams is playing a Victory Bowl in the home of the other 1981 Expansion team. Kind of funny to me.

 

Looks like you forgot to put the teams and scores in the tournament graphic for the semifinals.

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THE BOBCATS ARE GOING TO THE VICTORY BOWL!!!!!!!!!!!!! YESSSSSSSSSSSSSAIKGHLFDILJKGY^KIYSBNDHIXDUKLSGFMHSDFGTJGHCSBDMQDJGHSKLS;FSTNLMHNBGLDFVGFADVFA

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*sighs* Hope this isn't the end of the Wolves' resurgence...

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5 hours ago, Red Comet said:

One of the 1981 Expansion teams is playing a Victory Bowl in the home of the other 1981 Expansion team. Kind of funny to me.

 

Looks like you forgot to put the teams and scores in the tournament graphic for the semifinals.

That is pretty interesting.  Actually, the fact that both of those teams made it to the final four would make for an interesting storyline, even if the game were being played somewhere else.

 

9 minutes ago, MBurmy said:

*sighs* Hope this isn't the end of the Wolves' resurgence...

Their defensive core is young and extremely talented.  They have the potential to develop into one of the great defensive units in the history of the game over the next few seasons (assuming they can keep everyone around).  At the same time, they need to build on offense if they're going to have a real shot at a title.  They know it too:  they've been linked to a number of quarterbacks around the league, including Donny Minor in New Orleans and John LeBell in Philadelphia.  They're also courting Louisville's Manny Rowe, who has dominated the USFA.  Rowe might be a tough get, though.  He started his professional career as a backup with the Wolves in 1982.  He alternated between the bench and practice squad, and was cut after the 1983 season.  He has a chip on his shoulder and would very much like to show the team that they made a mistake.

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Welcome Detroit Pain City Bobcats Detroit Will Destroy The Bobcats Because Detroit Is The Reigning Defending Victory Bowl Champion Tampa Bay

 

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Detroit all the way. Its great seeing the Gladiators back in the Championship game

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Well I certainly hope this VB is at least entertaining. If not, and the USFA championship game is another classic, that could be an interesting twist. I am not a Tampa fan at all, but I really hope they perform a sort of Super Bowl 3ish upset! 

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44th_victory_bowl___detroit_vs_tampa_bay

 

In a game that was expected to be extremely lopsided, the scrappy Bobcats managed to keep it close… for three quarters.

 

The Gladiators scored first on a swing pass to FB J.C. Kraushar on the game’s opening drive, but the Cats tied it at 7 five minutes later.  LB James McDuffy slipped past the blockers and blew up WR Angelo Caro on a wide receiver screen, and CB Bob Cooper came up with the loose ball at the Detroit 18, which set up a touchdown reception by rookie sensation Deacon Cross.

 

A field goal late in the second would allow the Gladiators to take a 3-point lead into the half, and they then opened the third quarter with an interception at the Tampa 32.  This allowed them to score then own touchdown off of a turnover, and extend the lead to 17-7.  Once again, however, the Bobcats refused to go down without a fight.  With just over four minutes remaining in the quarter, they drove all the way to the Gladiator 1.  Detroit forced a 4th and goal, but the always-aggressive Bobcats kept the offense on the field.  QB Bobby Davis faked the handoff to RB Wayne Lee, and then hit TE Barry Threadgill in the flat for the touchdown.

 

Detroit wasted no time in reasserting control.  The ensuing drive ended with a 16-yard touchdown pass from John Lewis to Angelo Caro on the first play of the fourth quarter.  They extended the lead to 13 on a 24-yard field goal midway through the quarter, and the final nail in the coffin came when SS Eddie Kosakowski picked off an overthrown ball and returned it 65 yards to the end zone with 1:07 to play.

 

The clock ran out, and with the score at 34-14, the Gladiators were able to hoist the Victory Cup for the second consecutive year.

 

44th_victory_bowl__kansas_city__ks__by_v

 

1989_afa_postseason_by_verasthebrujah-dc

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On 2018-04-15 at 8:03 PM, Veras said:

That is pretty interesting.  Actually, the fact that both of those teams made it to the final four would make for an interesting storyline, even if the game were being played somewhere else.

 

Their defensive core is young and extremely talented.  They have the potential to develop into one of the great defensive units in the history of the game over the next few seasons (assuming they can keep everyone around).  At the same time, they need to build on offense if they're going to have a real shot at a title.  They know it too:  they've been linked to a number of quarterbacks around the league, including Donny Minor in New Orleans and John LeBell in Philadelphia.  They're also courting Louisville's Manny Rowe, who has dominated the USFA.  Rowe might be a tough get, though.  He started his professional career as a backup with the Wolves in 1982.  He alternated between the bench and practice squad, and was cut after the 1983 season.  He has a chip on his shoulder and would very much like to show the team that they made a mistake.

Hopefully the Wolves can do something 

Also,conglaturation Detroit

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Lol, they won it all last year. You had better be careful with the use of the word “finally.” There are some Captains, Royals, and Whales fans on here who have been waiting since the the 40s and 50s!

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Honestly, I'm having a hard time remembering when the last competitive Victory Bowl was. I think '84 with the Ghosts and the Whales?

 

Still, I'm looking forward to seeing Tampa Bay continue to get better and for someone to challenge the supremacy of the Northern Division.

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As a Panther fan in the real world...any failure by New Orleans, Tampa or, Atlanta is always a welcomed site. Thank you Detroit.

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Always entertaining, Veras. 

 

Can you update where the next few Victory Bowls will be? I know the next is in Hollywood, Florida, but I don't know the stadium name. I don't have any more after that. 

 

Thanks. 

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1 hour ago, rjrrzube said:

Always entertaining, Veras. 

 

Can you update where the next few Victory Bowls will be? I know the next is in Hollywood, Florida, but I don't know the stadium name. I don't have any more after that. 

 

Thanks. 

 

On 11/8/2017 at 3:21 AM, Veras said:

The Miami Suns will kick off their season in the brand-new 70,020-seat Ryder Stadium, located in Hollywood, FL.

 

I may be wrong but , I'm not sure Veras mentioned the next Victory Bowl location.

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Oh no, we've gone back to 1962!

I'm putting money now on the Miners somehow breaking another Gladiators three-peat.

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