But the team dropped five of the next six to reach the midway point at a disappointing 4-5. Pepper Rodgers benched Walter Lewis in favor of Mike Kelley for the season’s second half. The 1985 Showboats now featured five players (Sharpe, White, Cade, Coleman and Spencer) who were actual or projected 1st round picks in the prior three NFL drafts. Finally, just a few weeks before the 1985 opener, the Showboats inked NFL free agent left tackle Luis Sharpe to a 4-year, $2.3 million contract. The Showboats went after the top two defensive backs drafted in the May 1984 NFL Draft, Mossy Cade (#6 overall) from the University of Texas and Leonard Coleman (#8 overall) of Vanderbilt. Perhaps it was Young’s Crimson Tide fixation that led the Showboats to offer a $1 million contract to 38-year old former Crimson Tide quarterback Ken Stabler in December 1983. The 1985 Showboats now featured five players (Sharpe, White, Cade, Coleman and Spencer) who were actual or projected 1st round picks in the prior three NFL drafts. List of Pittsburgh Steelers starting quarterbacks, List of Washington Redskins starting quarterbacks, List of Denver Broncos starting quarterbacks. Perhaps the most prominent players on the Showboats' roster during their two seasons of existence were future Pro Football Hall of Fame member Reggie White and future professional wrestler Lex Luger. Defensive back Doran Major (Showboats ’84-’85) died of cancer on June 11, 2012 at age 51. But weeks 3 and 4 saw back-to-back blowout divisional losses to the New Orleans Breakers (37-14) and the Birmingham Stallions (54-6). Ultimately, he was forced to take on limited partners, then sell controlling interest to cotton magnate William Dunavant, remaining as team president. Sharpe was one of the finest young lineman in all of pro football. It proved to be the final Showboats game.
We had a press conference at the Peabody Hotel to announce we had signed Reggie. Reggie’s sock size 15 or whatever. However, the Gold's local support had practically vanished after the USFL announced it was moving to the fall. (1975-1980), International Women’s Professional Softball Association (1976-1979), Mississippi-Ohio Valley League (1949-1955), National Basketball Association (1946-Today), National Professional Soccer League (1967), National Professional Soccer League (1990-2001), National Professional Soccer League Programs 1990-2001, National Women’s Soccer League (2013-Present), NBA Development League / D-League / G-League (2001-Today), Pennsylvania-Ontario-New York League (1939-1956), Senior Professional Baseball Association (1989-1990), United Professional Softball League (1981-1982), United Soccer League Programs (1984-1985), United States Football League (1983-1985), Western Basketball Association (1978-1979), Western Professional Hockey League (1996-2001), Western Soccer Alliance / League (1985-1989), Women’s American Basketball Association (1984), Women’s National Basketball Association (1997-Today), Women’s Professional Basketball League (1978-1981), Women’s United Soccer Association (2001-2003), World League of American Football (1991-1992). But it worked. It forced Harry Usher to give Memphis home-field advantage in the first round, since the Showboats had been among the league's attendance leaders once again. Indeed, like the World Football League's Memphis Southmen before them, the Showboats appeared to be on more solid footing than the league as a whole. Perhaps the most dynamic and fun-loving of the USFL’s eighteen coaches, Rodgers would become a popular figure in Memphis during the Showboats era.
The USFL held its college draft each year in January. His February 1985 deal with Memphis was arguably the last significant defection in the USFL-NFL wars. New York Times obituary. In 1997, the Houston Oilers franchise would move to Nashville, though they played their first season in Memphis, before moving to Nashville and being renamed the Tennessee Titans. The Showboats thrashed the Gold 48-7 before losing to the Oakland Invaders 28-19 in the semifinals. Hall of Fame defensive end Reggie White (Showboats ’84-’85) passed away on December 26, 2004 of a cardiac arrhythmia. As the Showboats’ focus turned to the 1985 season, owner Billy Dunavant made good on his earlier promise to boost payroll to put a winner on the field. Showboats founder and part-owner Logan Young was found dead at his home on April 11, 2006. The Memphis Showboats entered the United States Football League as an expansion club for the spring league’s second season in 1984. A big story in the papers about Reggie being used and so on. The Showboats offense was led by Ricky Porter who had a pair of touchdown runs, while Tim Spencer rushed for 113 yards as a solid crowd of 34,528 filled the Liberty Bowl. We need to defuse this.’. Memphis prepared for the 1986 USFL fall season as one of the just eight remaining franchises. A major factor in the contraction was the league’s controversial plan to switch from spring football to a fall schedule beginning in 1986. March 9, 1985, Showboats vs. Orlando Renegades. Despite White's play, the Showboats finished fourth in the Southern Division and missed the playoffs. Offensive lineman Dave Huffman (Showboats ’85) died in a car accident on November 21, 1998 at age 41. Presented is a great program from the opening game of the Memphis Showboats in 1985.
0, United States Football League (1984-1985), Born: July 17, 1983 – USFL expansion franchise The following month, a Name The Team contest in The Memphis Commercial Appeal generated 21,052 entries. In contrast to many other USFL cities, crowds in Memphis gradually grew during the 1984 season. His February 1985 deal with Memphis was arguably the last significant defection in the USFL-NFL wars. Logan Young was a millionaire in Memphis who originally bought the team in 1983. When the passed in the summer of 1984, it set of a wave of moves and mergers as other USFL clubs fled NFL markets. Indeed, they were one of the few teams whose crowds actually grew as the season progressed. The Memphis Showboats were a franchise in the United States Football League.They entered the league in its expansion in 1984 and made the 1985 playoffs, losing in the semifinal round to the Oakland Invaders.Perhaps the most prominent player on the Showboats' roster during their two seasons of existence was future Pro Football Hall of Fame member Reggie White. But the Denver Gold’s attendance cratered in 1985 and league broadcaster ABC prevailed upon the league to switch the game to the Liberty Bowl where the crowd would look better on television. Showboats vs. the Baltimore Stars at the Liberty Bowl on March 9th, 1985. They entered the league in its expansion in 1984 and made the 1985 playoffs, losing in the semifinal round to the Oakland Invaders. Like the rest of the division, they were left far behind by the Birmingham Stallions and Tampa Bay Bandits. The Memphis Showboats were an American football franchise in the United States Football League.
“Showboats” beat out “Hound Dogs” and “Mudcats” from the list of three finalists. Now both Cade and Coleman were contract holdouts in the NFL. I’ve got an idea if you go along with it and Reggie goes along with it. This site chronicles the United States Football League, 1983 - 1985. The Showboats' stellar attendance figures made Dunavant a supporter of the USFL's move to the fall. Take your favorite fandoms with you and never miss a beat. Once again, the Showboats hosted at the Liberty Bowl despite being the lower seed. The contraction put 200 players on the market and the Showboats plucked many of the best ones. The Showboats swooped in and poached both players. But the Showboats made national headlines in January 1984 by signing White to a 5-year $4 million contract.
The Showboats opened the 1985 season 3-0, including a victory over the defending champion Baltimore Stars. The Showboats would save their money for the 1984 college draft. The Showboats broke through in 1985, finishing fourth in the East and earning a playoff berth. Former Memphis State running back Terdell Middleton (Showboats ’84) died on April 3, 2015 at age 59. The team reeled off victories in seven of its final nine games to make playoffs with an 11-7 record.
This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. One of the Showboats few late season losses was a 17-7 loss to Donald Trump’s New Jersey Generals at Giants Stadium. He ended up buying something like 60 or 70 pairs of white socks for $5,000. Lewis was the top quarterback by rating in the USFL in 1985, with 16 touchdowns against just 5 interceptions. Sharpe was one of the finest young lineman in all of pro football. Prior to the open draft, the USFL also held a territorial draft that allowed teams to protect the rights to players from local colleges.
Both rosters of the Showboats and Stars are found in center roster card. From the old USFL, Doug Flutie is featured on the front cover of this very good - excellent example. Linebacker John Corker, the league’s 1983 Defensive Player-of-the-Year, came over from the Michigan Panthers. May 3, 1985, Showboats vs. Baltimore Stars. The team put up a respectable showing against the league’s eventual champions, the Philadelphia Stars, losing 17-9 before 28,098 fans. 1985 Tampa Bay Bandits football team scores, roster and statistics. American football teams established in 1984, statscrew.com 1984 Memphis Showboats Game-by-Game Results Retrieved December 19, 2018, usflsite.com 1984 USFL Season Retrieved December 19, 2018, profootballarchives.com 1984 Memphis Showboats (USFL) Retrieved December 19, 2018, statscrew.com 1985 Memphis Showboats Game-by-Game Results Retrieved December 19, 2018, usflsite.com 1985 USFL Season Retrieved December 19, 2018, profootballarchives.com 1985 Memphis Showboats (USFL) Retrieved December 19, 2018, http://www.remembertheusfl.8m.com/teams/memphis.html, https://americanfootballdatabase.fandom.com/wiki/Memphis_Showboats?oldid=213260. It was only the second sellout in the USFL’s two-year history. Forgotten Superstars: The 1985 Memphis Showboats The final installment of the Forgotten Superstars on my favorite USFL team features the 1985 Memphis Showboats, who were my third favorite team in three cities in the three-year history of the league.
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