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USFL Tweaks


WideRight
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Hi everyone.  As some of you may recall, I am running an alt-history simulation of the USFL (https://apsbertsche.wixsite.com/mysite) and we are now well past the actual 3 years that the league ran.  It is in 1988 right now, but as we move along, teams would normally start tweaking their look, some may relocate, we will have expansion.  So I am looking for some advice.  I have 3 questions for you which will help guide me into the 90's.  I will post updated designs here, such as the one below.  But first the questions.

 

1. Which USFL logos or uniforms would benefit from some minor tweaks?  And what tweaks?  A few thoughts I have are:  

  • Adding some black to the blue/silver Orlando Renegades (BFBS? or because it is in the logo?)
  • Adding some black to the Memphis Showboats (more BFBS)
  • Modernizing the LA Express logo.
  • Swapping the original Pittsburgh Maulers logo for the NFLE Berlin Thunder logo in purple, orange and metallic grey.
  • Either adding some detail to the Birmingham Stallions logo, or swapping it for the CFL's Baltimore Stallions logo in red/gold. 

 

2. Are there any USFL teams that you could see doing a major color change to be more "Xtreme" and adding teal or purple in the 90's?

 

3. Are there any NFL Europe, CFL USA, or Arena Football logos/identities which you believe would fit alongside the USFL teams if we expanded.  My goal is not to create all new logo identities from scratch, but to make use of "real world" designs in a new format or with a USFL team since the WLAF/NFLE, CFL expansion, and maybe Arenaball would likely not exist in a world with a strong and ongoing USFL. 

 

OK, those are the questions, and here, to show you what I am doing, is the first non-original USFL logo to enter the league.  In the simulation, the Chicago Blitz, rather than folding end up relocating to Baltimore after the Colts bolted.  So we have the Baltimore Blitz, who look almost identical to the 1983 Chicago Blitz, but Chicago cannot be without a team.  The USFL approved an expansion team in Chicago in 1987 (along with Orlando, San Antonio, and Oklahoma).  Here is what came out of that, a good example of repurposing an identity that would appear a few years later in another league for another city, but with a couple of tweaks (color change).   The Chicago Machine.  

 

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I have one other "imported" team which I will post soon, the merger of 2 USFL teams to form a new team.  But I am hoping to get some advice based on the questions above before I get too much further into the "new history" of the league. 

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1 hour ago, WideRight said:

 

2. Are there any USFL teams that you could see doing a major color change to be more "Xtreme" and adding teal or purple in the 90's?

Probably the Breakers would be a team that did this. Especially if they stayed put in New Orleans. 

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5 minutes ago, neo_prankster said:

Will the Portland Thunder wear neon green?

 

If San Diego eventually does get a team, I wanna see the Amsterdam Admirals' identity repurposed for America's Finest City.

 

Do you mean like this? 

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1 minute ago, WideRight said:

 

Do you mean like this? 

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Yeah, like that.

 

Now for branding ideas I'd like to suggest...

 

Cincinnati or Charlotte would be great places for the London Monarchs' brand.

 

Barcelona Dragons: Maybe Seattle like in the new XFL? Or St. Louis if the Cards move to Arizona? How about Anaheim?

 

Frankfurt Galaxy: Maybe in Las Vegas for Area 51? Or New Mexico for Roswell?

 

Minnesota Pike would be a good name without the "Fighting" part in the name.

 

The NY/NJ Knights chess piece can pretty much go anywhere. Kansas City maybe? 

 

Arizona Rattlers brand? Albuquerque or Vegas.

 

Scottish Claymores sword logo...Not so sure. Maybe it can be a secondary logo for whomever uses the Knights' chess piece? Or a 90's version of the Battle Hawks? Or an earlier Tennessee Titans squad? Maybe an Omaha squad?

 

LA Express...maybe new ownership comes in and changes the name to the Avengers?

 

Raleigh-Durham Skyhawks logo: Could be repurposed for a team where the Air Force has a huge presence. Or maybe Paramount decides to cash in on Top Gun?

 

Amsterdam Admirals logo: San Diego or Norfolk/Hampton Roads/Virginia Beach.

 

Orlando Predators scratch logo: Maybe it could be a secondary for the Michigan Panthers?

 

Unused Jacksonville Jaguars logo: Mexico City if the USFL decides to go global? Or maybe LA if the Express decide to change their name.

 

Birmingham Barracudas logo: Maybe San Diego if the Admirals are in VA. Or if one of the Florida teams undergo an ownership change, like maybe Richard DeVos, Disney or MCA/Universal buying the Orlando Renegades?

 

Shreveport Pirates: Could go to Charlotte and become the Carolina Corsairs?

 

Sacramento Surge: Keep in SAC or maybe Seattle if the Oakland Invaders claim territorial rights to SAC.

 

Sacramento Gold Miners pickaxe: Maybe a secondary for the Denver Gold?

 

Ohio Glory eagle logo: Maybe a rebrand for the Baltimore Blitz or Washington Federals in the Nineties?

 

The one team I could see doing Purple and Teal would be the Oakland Invaders, because the blue and gold, along with the lightning bolt logo, could've easily been the San Diego Chargers in an alternate reality.

 

Rhein Fire logo: Atlanta or Indianapolis maybe?

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8 hours ago, WideRight said:

Hi everyone.  As some of you may recall, I am running an alt-history simulation of the USFL (https://apsbertsche.wixsite.com/mysite) and we are now well past the actual 3 years that the league ran.  It is in 1988 right now, but as we move along, teams would normally start tweaking their look, some may relocate, we will have expansion.  So I am looking for some advice.  I have 3 questions for you which will help guide me into the 90's.  I will post updated designs here, such as the one below.  But first the questions.

 

1. Which USFL logos or uniforms would benefit from some minor tweaks?  And what tweaks?  A few thoughts I have are:  

  • Adding some black to the blue/silver Orlando Renegades (BFBS? or because it is in the logo?)
  • Adding some black to the Memphis Showboats (more BFBS)
  • Modernizing the LA Express logo.
  • Swapping the original Pittsburgh Maulers logo for the NFLE Berlin Thunder logo in purple, orange and metallic grey.
  • Either adding some detail to the Birmingham Stallions logo, or swapping it for the CFL's Baltimore Stallions logo in red/gold. 

 

2. Are there any USFL teams that you could see doing a major color change to be more "Xtreme" and adding teal or purple in the 90's?

 

3. Are there any NFL Europe, CFL USA, or Arena Football logos/identities which you believe would fit alongside the USFL teams if we expanded.  My goal is not to create all new logo identities from scratch, but to make use of "real world" designs in a new format or with a USFL team since the WLAF/NFLE, CFL expansion, and maybe Arenaball would likely not exist in a world with a strong and ongoing USFL.


1) The Arizona Wranglers primary mark could use an update. It's always struck me as a bit busy. I'd suggest something along the lines of an evolutionary mid-point between the original USFL Wranglers primary and Dane Storrusten's proposed design for the A11FL's Dallas Wranglers

As for the thoughts that you had: 

  • I'd jettison the Orlando Renegades identity entirely. In my opinion, it was amongst the worst of the USFL's team names and marks. The logo looks like a mash-up of randomly combined clip-art elements. Perhaps you could repurpose the Arena Football League's Grand Rapids Rampage name and logo for the market? There's something about the flow of Orlando Rampage that I like. If you're inclined to go with a blue/silver/black color scheme in Orlando, I think that would work just as well with the rhino-themed Rampage identity as the red/black/silver palette the actual AFL team employed in Grand Rapids.
  • I don't know that the Memphis Showboats identity would be improved by the addition of "black for black's sake". My gut reaction is that it wouldn't, but I'd have to see what you have in mind to be sure. Truth be told, the Showboats primary logo is in need of an update. It's fine as a secondary mark/helmet device, but a true primary logo needs something more.
  • The LA Express logo definitely needs to be modernized.
  • Ditto for the original Pittsburgh Maulers logo, which always resembled something a 13-year-old sports fan would come up with in his spiral-bound notebook. At the very least, it needs to be fine-tuned by a talented graphic designer such as yourself. Simply replacing the USFL Maulers logo with that of NFL Europe's Berlin Thunder leaves me a bit cold, as the lightning bolt element that's incorporated into the Berlin Thunder logo - while quite fitting in a team mark that's meant to tie into the Norse/Teutonic god Thor - doesn't conjure up images of the iron and steel processing for which Pittsburgh has historically been famous. Now, if that lightning bolt could be replaced by a trail of flame, you'd be on to something.
  • The Baltimore Stallions logo would definitely makes for a bolder, more detailed primary mark for your USFL's Birmingham franchise. That said, the stars and stripes could stand to be eliminated from the logo, as their ties to "The Star-Spangled Banner" would no longer fit the host market. If the stars were removed from the Baltimore Stallions logo, the namesake animals' neck were rendered in a manner that didn't include the stripes, and the resultant mark were then placed between the arched BIRMINGHAM and horizontal STALLIONS in the USFL team's logo, that would result in a solid update

2) Could I envision one of your USFL teams adding purple in the '90s? Absolutely... along with the adoption of an Arena Football League name and logo package. The New Orleans Breakers name and logos should be retired and replaced with the vastly superior - and more locally relevant - New Orleans VooDoo identity.

3) As for other NFL Europe, CFL USA, and/or Arena Football League identities that I think are worthy of inclusion in your take on the USFL, I'd recommend:

  • The (London) Monarchs identity could be shifted to the Carolinas if your USFL beats the NFL to Charlotte.
  • The  (Frankfurt) Galaxy identity could serve your Orlando-based franchise, as Kennedy Space Center - the epicenter of Florida's Space Coast - is approximately 50 miles from central Orlando. Then again, perhaps the Galaxy identity beats Major League Soccer to Los Angeles and replaces Express as the name of your SoCal USFL franchise.
  • Speaking of Los Angeles, both the Cobras and Avengers identities ably served the market in the Arena Football League and could be revived to grace said city's entry in your USFL. Or, either - though Cobras strikes me as particularly fitting (you'd need to flip the 'A' in the logo) - could adorn a Las Vegas-based USFL franchise. 

I really like the Chicago Machine and I can't wait to see what else the future holds for your take on the USFL.

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One more of the current (1988) USFL adaptations.  I decided that since the San Antonio Gunslingers had major financial issues and the Oklahoma Outlaws were doing all they could to find another city to play in (apparently 1980's Tulsa was not exactly a prime location), I would merge the two, rather than fold one and have the other merge with Arizona.  i like the Wranglers' identity too much to ditch it.  So, the result is that the Oklahoma Outlaws move to San Antonio, take on a lot of the roster of the Gunslingers (with several key Outlaws mixed in) and the USFL adds Portland instead (see above). 

 

The combined team is the Texas Outlaws.  They keep the Gunslingers basic colors and uniform scheme (to save money) but add black instead of silver to the colors and their new logo is a combination of the Outlaws logo with the Gunslingers logo.  You may recognize it as a modified version of the CFL's foray into Texas, the San Antonio Texans.  This merged team will play 7 games a year in San Marcos at Texas State's small but modern Bobcat Stadium and 1 game in another Texas city (Ft. Worth, El Paso, Austin). In 1990 or 1991 they will relocate to the newly completed Alamo Dome.  

 

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I've been following the wixsite almost daily for updates, patiently waiting for NJ to have that breakthrough season but I've found myself pulling for the TX Outlaws after their great start with the legend himself at QB. I also like what you did with the Chicago identity. As far as identities that could fit in, I always like to bring up that Felix Sabates led an expansion bid for a Charlotte USFL Franchise before the league went under. Same man was a part owner of the Charlotte Hornets (WFL) and that brand would have worked in the USFL, depending on if the NBA team exist in this universe.

 

I agree on the Renegades branding being weak, although I think it would have lasted until around modern times where folks would have realized that Renegades was a slightly tamer version of Savages and not an appropriate nickname. I think two XFL brands would work for the 90s/00s, the LV Outlaws longhorn skull for Texas (spade shape in the nose can go if they remain in Texas) and the LA Xtreme logo as a modernized (extreme) Express logo. 

 

For arena, the Vegas Galdiators were always a personal favorite. Gladiators is not a name you see used too often but it would make a cool pro sports brand.

 

 

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Oh man, I have bookmarked that website to read through it. I have such fond memories of the USFL...watched all I could and attended many Tampa Bay Bandits games back in the day. Still miss that league to this day...curses to Trump and his push to go to the fall.

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I would like to add that he Baltimore Madauders logo from the failed NFL expansion bid would make a great update for the Blitz. 

 

I also like the bit about Jersey having an inferiority complex to Philly, I could see them moving away from their current colors to build on that storyline. Maybe a Forest Green & Silver combo to line up more with a US Amry general but I do like that they have a chip on their shoulder about Philly.

 

For LA, it would predate the actual MCU and Marvel acquisition of Disney but the Avenegers arena branding and colors would be a way to tie them to the Angels colors with them moving to Anaheim, unless that's temporary. I am aware that the LA Avengers had no ties to Disney but it would have a nice bit of flavor for the irrelevant LA franchise. 

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2 hours ago, qckgnc said:

I would like to add that he Baltimore Madauders logo from the failed NFL expansion bid would make a great update for the Blitz.


While the silhouette of a Martin B-26 Marauder was featured on the proposed logo of the Baltimore-based NFL expansion bid in 1993, the team was to have been named the Baltimore Bombers. 

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4 hours ago, Skycast said:

curses to Trump and his push to go to the fall.

Curses to the jury members that found in favor of the USFL in the antitrust suit and then awarded the league just $1 because they misunderstood the judge's instructions. 

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Orlando renegades and New Orleans breakers both need to turn into their arena football counterparts, the predators and the voodoo.

 

Id personally like to see the Baltimore Bombers and for the St. Louis Stallions, the failed nfl failed expansion teams, to make their way to the USFL. Idk how you go about making that happen with the current landscape but that is up to you.

 

The XFL also have a few very solid logos and names but I think those should still wait for a good decade. You’re only in the early 90s at this point still. This is the time for the CFL American teams and for the NFL Europe teams to make their logos/names into the USFL.

 

Arizona Rattlers getting into the USFL would also be fitting. Great name, look and logo. A few of the other logos need to be updated.

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On 4/3/2021 at 11:31 AM, neo_prankster said:

I love the use of the blue and green.

 

I think the San Antonio Riders (WLAF) branding could be used for another Texas squad. It's too good not to use in my opinion. Maybe for the Houston Texans if the Oilers leave in your timeline?

I agree. Houston Oilers move to Tennessee, and the USFL capitalize by moving the Texas Outlaws to Houston as the Houston Texans and then bring in the San Antonio Riders.

 

I’m also a big fan of that logo and the names attached to it. 

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Expect some minor changes for the late 80’s as Russell and Champion are the main uni providers, but once Nike gets into the game, all bets are off, including logo changes.  
 

I really don’t expect to change away from USFL team identities unless a team is relocated and another takes it’s place, like we see with Chicago.  
 

And just how the CFL would move into the USA will be a big difference in a world with the USFL in place.  The WLAF may also be dead in the water as the NFL cannot waste time on a d-league while they lose 30%-50% of top tier rookies to the USFL every year.  
 

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On 4/2/2021 at 6:39 AM, WideRight said:

Hi everyone.  As some of you may recall, I am running an alt-history simulation of the USFL (https://apsbertsche.wixsite.com/mysite) and we are now well past the actual 3 years that the league ran.  It is in 1988 right now, but as we move along, teams would normally start tweaking their look, some may relocate, we will have expansion.  So I am looking for some advice.  I have 3 questions for you which will help guide me into the 90's.  I will post updated designs here, such as the one below.  But first the questions.

 

1. Which USFL logos or uniforms would benefit from some minor tweaks?  And what tweaks?  A few thoughts I have are:  

  • Adding some black to the blue/silver Orlando Renegades (BFBS? or because it is in the logo?)
  • Adding some black to the Memphis Showboats (more BFBS)
  • Modernizing the LA Express logo.
  • Swapping the original Pittsburgh Maulers logo for the NFLE Berlin Thunder logo in purple, orange and metallic grey.
  • Either adding some detail to the Birmingham Stallions logo, or swapping it for the CFL's Baltimore Stallions logo in red/gold. 

 

2. Are there any USFL teams that you could see doing a major color change to be more "Xtreme" and adding teal or purple in the 90's?

 

3. Are there any NFL Europe, CFL USA, or Arena Football logos/identities which you believe would fit alongside the USFL teams if we expanded.  My goal is not to create all new logo identities from scratch, but to make use of "real world" designs in a new format or with a USFL team since the WLAF/NFLE, CFL expansion, and maybe Arenaball would likely not exist in a world with a strong and ongoing USFL. 

 

OK, those are the questions, and here, to show you what I am doing, is the first non-original USFL logo to enter the league.  In the simulation, the Chicago Blitz, rather than folding end up relocating to Baltimore after the Colts bolted.  So we have the Baltimore Blitz, who look almost identical to the 1983 Chicago Blitz, but Chicago cannot be without a team.  The USFL approved an expansion team in Chicago in 1987 (along with Orlando, San Antonio, and Oklahoma).  Here is what came out of that, a good example of repurposing an identity that would appear a few years later in another league for another city, but with a couple of tweaks (color change).   The Chicago Machine.  

 

spacer.png

 

I have one other "imported" team which I will post soon, the merger of 2 USFL teams to form a new team.  But I am hoping to get some advice based on the questions above before I get too much further into the "new history" of the league. 

I really like this one and is a huge upgrade over your original Machine uniform which was too close to the Houston Oilers.  

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