Frylock Posted May 14, 2003 Share Posted May 14, 2003 It's no big deal, as it was probably one of the worst-kept secrets, but the New Orleans Arena Football expansion franchise has officially announced it's name and logo today.New Orleans VooDooFrom www.arenafootball.comAFL Headlines New Orleans VooDoo kickoff in 2004 Continuing his dedication to providing the best sports entertainment to the New Orleans area, Saints owner Tom Benson has brought an Arena Football League expansion franchise to the city. The New Orleans VooDoo are scheduled to kickoff play at the New Orleans Arena in February of 2004, and the league’s exciting brand of football and economical pricing is expected to make the VooDoo a fan favorite in New Orleans.Benson, Owner of the Saints for the last 18 years, committed to the purchase of an AFL club for New Orleans in 1998, making him the first NFL owner to do so. Since then, several NFL owners have followed Benson’s lead and purchased Arena franchises. After Benson’s commitment, the AFL officially awarded the Saints’ owner an expansion franchise on March 7, 2002. Last spring, fans voted to name the new club the “VooDoo” in an online poll at www.NewOrleansSaints.com.“I remain committed to the greater good of the sports scene in New Orleans, as well as to this city and the Gulf South region as a whole, and bringing in a new Arena Football League franchise is another positive step forward for our community,” Benson said. “The AFL is exciting to me as an owner, and will certainly bring excitement to sports fans in and around New Orleans. We were drawn to the AFL because of its quality ownership, its national television contract with NBC and its strong leadership on top in the form of Commissioner David Baker.”Said Baker: "Tom Benson was the first NFL owner to step forward and join the Arena Football League in 1998," said Baker. "I am thrilled that his vision and support are coming to fruition and that he will be fielding a team in 2004. The VooDoo represent the cornerstone of AFL growth for the 2004 season."That growth is evident in the new teams that are entering the league. Nashville – owned by Tennessee Titans owner Bud Adams – has already been approved to play next season pending it secures an arena-lease agreement. Other markets interested in AFL teams for 2004 are Philadelphia, Boston, Columbus, St. Louis and Washington, owned by Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder. Other NFL owners involved in AFL ownership are Dallas Cowboys/Desperados owner Jerry Jones and Denver Broncos owner/Colorado Crush part-owner Pat Bowlen, who is joined by former Broncos quarterback John Elway in the venture.Often recognized as one of the nation's most affordable and fan-friendly sports leagues, the Arena Football League kicked off its 17th season and first on NBC in February. NBC has provided the AFL with unprecedented exposure by televising up to 70 games, including all playoff contests and ArenaBowl XVII on June 22.Former Saints Director of Regional Sales & Marketing Mike Feder will head the VooDoo as Executive Director. Rita LeBlanc, a Saints employee and Benson’s granddaughter, has been named Director of Marketing and Special Events for the VooDoo. The VooDoo’s coaching staff and football operations officials will be hired through the efforts of Saints Executive Vice President/General Manager of Football Operations Mickey Loomis and his staff. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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