July 22, 2008 - Intense Football League (Intense)
CORPUS CHRISTI, Tex./ OMAHA, NEBRASKA (July 22, 2008) - In a historic move that will bring both credibility and stability to indoor football, two of the sport's most stable business organizations will combine strengths and resources beginning in 2009.
The United Indoor Football League and the Intense Football League announced their plans to merge today, creating a partnership that will insure the long-term growth of the sport.
Both leagues will have concluded their fourth season of play and will stage a joint championship on Saturday August 2 when the Sioux Falls Storm hosts the IFL champion in the National Indoor Bowl Championship game.
"Today is one of the best days, if not the best, for indoor football,'' said IFL president Chad Dittman. "What the merger of the NFL and the AFL did for professional football in the 1960s, this partnership will do for us. It can and will lead to bigger and better things."
UIF Executive Director Paul Aaron echoed Dittman's sentiments.
"Today is the dawn of a new era for our sport," Aaron said. "We now have a solid base and strength in both quality and quantity of existing franchises. We can now move forward and accept the challenges of growing our sport as a collective whole rather than simply maintaining the status quo. The new league will be owned and operated by all of the teams equally, as it is done in all major league sports such as the NFL, NBA and MLB."
An official unveiling of the league's new name, logo and website is scheduled for August 1. Team owners of the new league will meet in September.
IFL defending champion, Louisiana Swashbucklers, posted the league's first unbeaten regular season in 2008 and will be hosting Corpus Christi Hammerheads in the Intense Bowl 4 on July 28.
Sioux Falls has won all four UIF Championships and won 40 consecutive games from 2005 before losing a regular season game early this year.
Many details of the new league such as conference and divisional alignments, final expansion for the 2009 season, a hybrid of the two leagues playing rules, etc. will be decided at the first-ever league meetings hosted in Omaha, Nebraska in mid-September. Members of the media are welcome to contact their local franchises for limited information on the merger, or contact league officials Paul Aaron, UIF Commissioner at (402) 679-5741 or IFL Director of Communications, Robert Winfrey at (409) 363-1957.