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IAFA Appoints New Flag Football Committee Members

Due to an ever growing interest and membership, Flag Football is becoming a key element in the growth of American Football in Ireland.
With a record number of teams and the most members involved in the Emerald Bowl Conference league in 4 years running, and it has been decided to re-vamp the Flag Football Committee (FFC) to make sure all aspects of the sport are efficiently developed and managed. The newly appointed committee members will be working with IAFA Director of Flag Football, Guillaume Poznanski, reporting to the Board of IAFA.

The FFC will be an essential part of ensuring that IAFA 2019 strategic plan for Flag Football in Ireland are successfully implemented. Some of the key elements of the plan the FFC will be working on are (and this is by no means an exhaustive list):

  • Flag Football Competition programmes (EBC, New League (TBA), Intervarsities, Tournaments)
  • Flag 4 School (F4S)
  • Women in Sport
  • Flag Football Coaching
  • Flag Football Officiating

IAFA are pleased to announce the appointments of the following to serve as members of the Flag Football Committee:

Ethan Fitzsimons, who was invaluable as IAFA Administrator, has accepted to take on the role of IAFA Assistant Director of Flag Football and will be a great asset to the FFC working closely with the Director of Flag Football.

Robbie Caldwell from the Louth Mavericks. Robbie has played for the Louth Mavericks for 7 years (the Dundalk Mavericks then). Robbie has played as running back mainly, but stepped in different positions and was part of the Mavericks squad who won the IAFA League 1 in 2017. He has played Flag Football for two years and is now the Mavericks Flag Football team head coach. Robbie is also a strong follower of the Washington Redskins.
Dave Healy from UCC Raiders/Cork Admirals. Dave is entering his third season of football. He plays defensive back for the Cork Admirals and won Shamrock Bowl 32 as defensive captain and also helped coach the Cork Admirals Youth team to victory in 2018. Dave was called onto the Irish Wolfhounds squad for their win against the Belgian Barbarians and has also founded the UCC Raiders Flag Football club two years ago. He is a proud Green Bay Packers fan.
Daniel Shaw from the Belfast Trojans. Daniel has been involved in American Football in Ireland since he was 16. Daniel coached the Ulster Elks for two seasons and is now the team manager of the Belfast Trojans Flag Football team and is also involved in the kitted setup. Daniel is an avid Dallas Cowboys fan.
Robbie Tighe from the Edenderry Eagles/Cill Dara Crusaders. Robbie was introduced to American Football with the Edenderry Eagles in 2015 and hasn't looked back since. He won Emerald Bowl 4 with the Eagles in 2017. He has experience playing and managing in both kitted and Flag Football. He has no real NFL team allegiance but has a soft spot for the Atlanta Falcons.
Todd Zboyan from the Dublin Bay Raptors. Todd is originally from Seattle (USA) and has over 25 years experience in kitted and Flag Football (in the US and Ireland) and has played for the Dublin Vipers who won the Emerald Bowl 3 in 2017. Todd is currently the head coach of the Dublin Bay Raptors and is also a massive Seahawks fan.

Emerald Bowl Conference is back!

The IAFA Flag Football Emerald Bowl Conference is back!

Team registration opens today!

The season format will change a little from previous ones.

Games will be played from September 1st through to December 1st with the playoffs and Emerald Bowl V games on December 1st.

The season will run with a maximum of 20 teams who will be divided across 4 geographical divisions.

Each team will play 10 games – 8 divisional games and 2 interdivisional games.

All teams must submit the names of their Team Manager and Head Coach, with at least one of them being a non-playing member.

Teams a can have a maximum of 30 mixed players on their overall roster, with a maximum of 20 players on game day.

Games will run, as previously done, on a blitz format with several teams meeting at the one venue. Continue reading “Emerald Bowl Conference is back!”

Battle of the Rebels – Dublin Rebels win 2017 Atlantic Cup.

Irish Champions, Dublin Rebels had a comprehensive 42-14 victory over their Romanian namesakes, Bucharest Rebels to win the 2017 Atlantic Cup in ALSAA on Saturday. In spite of the very cold weather, the Rebels had a lot of success through the air with touchdown receptions by James Kalis (x2), Ciaran Fitzpatrick and Peter Keely. Three were thrown by veteran quarterback Andy Dennehy and the fourth by backup Jack Fagan. Shamrock Bowl MVP Wello Omorodian continued his good form with a rushing touchdown. A second rushing touchdown was added by Pete McMahon.

Bucharest acquitted themselves well, in what was the first ever European final involving a Romanian team – scoring two touchdowns. This was the Rebels first ever Atlantic Cup victory, having played in the finals tournament on two previous occasions. The Rebels maintained Irelands unbeaten record for finals played in Ireland.

Dublin Rebels Going For European Glory – Atlantic Cup 2017

The Dublin Rebels will play Bucharest Rebels in the final of the Atlantic Cup, in ALSAA, Dublin on Saturday 25th November, kick-off 1pm.

The Atlantic Cup is a competition where the Irish National Champions are invited to compete against the winners of other European amateur leagues in a mini-tournament format to crown the Champions. This years competition sees some change to the usual county line-up with France and Romania replacing the traditional Belgian and Netherlands opposition, who have opted to step up to EFL level. Unfortunately due to flight issues – Ryanair flight cancellations – the French entrant Les Diables Rouges, have had to pull out of the tournament at short notice. This means that this years Atlantic Cup will be a single game final between Dublin Rebels, and 2016 Romanian Champions the Bucharest Rebels (pictured in orange jerseys below).

As winners of the Shamrock Bowl in 2016, the Dublin Rebels return to the competition, having been Irelands inaugural representatives in the competition, and having competed previously in Belgium twice, and the Netherlands. They will be fielding a strong lineup on Saturday as they seek to win their first Atlantic Cup title. The Romanians are coming off a strong domestic season. Their key players are wider receiver Radu Ene (#85) and linebacker Cosmin Zamfir (#50).

GFL International and IFAF Europe have announced that the Atlantic Cup format will be reviewed for 2018 with a view to expanding the tournament to more European countries and adding additional entrants beyond the normal three of four.

Nostalgia – a look at some pictures from the archives.

Here’s some nostalgia – if you’re one of our alumni; or history if you’re currently playing. We’ve looked through some of the picture archives at some snaps from yester year. From the pioneering era of Irish football, when you had to be a real trailblazer to play the sport. Not all the uniforms match – this was before internet shopping and the advent of equipment stores in Europe. The fields may not have been as good many today. But, in spite of appearances, some great football was played by some very committed players. Apologies for the quality of some of the pictures – these were all taken on real cameras with film in them. No auto focus or touching up. Enjoy!

Above is the oldest picture in this batch. Dublin Celts (green) versus Craigavon Cowboys (black) in 1991. Two of the original teams who started playing competitive football in Ireland in the 1980s. Both played in Europe during this era. Greg Loughran, the current Cowboys coach was probably on the field in this game.

This is from the first ever American football game played on the historic campus of Trinity College Dublin. The game was part of the festivities for the colleges 400 year anniversary celebrations in 1992.Dublin Tornadoes (white) defeated Antrim Bulldogs (purple/yellow) with a field goal as time expired. The game was organised by our current Commissioner Cillian Smith during his college days. Interesting piece of trivia – this game took place before the first ever GAA game was played on campus later the same year.

In this picture, we see a familiar face to todays IAFA members. Kevin Sharkey – currently on the Wexford coaching squad and formerly of North Kildare – is player number 67 playing for the Dublin Celts against Dublin Tornadoes in 1993.

The Dublin Tornadoes 1993 Shamrock Bowl winning team. This is the Tornadoes first of 3 consecutive Shamrock Bowls. They were coached by the late Dave Curran (centre wearing blue/white shirt), who previously led the Dublin Celts to Shamrock Bowl success.

Picture of the Dublin Lightning huddle in 1997, when the team was defending its Shamrock Bowl title in the last full season of football before the start of the big shut down in the late 1990s. The opponents were Dublin Bulls – seen in the background – the only company team ever to play in Ireland. They were owned by the Gateway Computing who used to have a large plant in Dublin.

The mid to late 1990s saw flag football come to prominence with the very competitive Irish Flag Football League being played in various parks around Dublin. The league, which had 11 teams playing a 10 game regular season at its peak, played a 7-a-side version of semi-contact flag football. Pictured above is the Northside Devastators team, who won the title in the late 1990s.

A rare photo from the year that competitive football returned to Ireland in 2001. Dublin Rebels (black) play Dublin Dragons (burgundy) in Ringsend Park in Dublin.

 

Another rare snap from 2001 featuring the other two teams who made up the four who restarted in 2001. This is Carrickfergus knights at UL Vikings – believed to be the Vikings first ever home game. Note the blue scrimmage vests with painted numbers – the Vikings first uniforms did not arrive until later in the season.

And finally, from August 2002, Carrickfergus Knights (yellow) versus Team Canada. The Knights, as Irish Champions, represented the league against the touring visitors in a challenge game, which was played at St. Vincents GAA in Dublin.

Flag Football 2017/18 Tournaments’ hosts announced

We are please to announce the hosts for all four upcoming FFI 2017/18 tournaments.

  • October 28 2017 – South Dublin Panthers, Westmanstown
  • November 25 2017 – Maynooth University Hurricanes, Maynooth
  • January 27 2018 – Louth Mavericks, Dundalk
  • February 24 2018 – UCC Flag Football, Cork

We also would like to welcome new comers UCC Raiders, Louth Mavericks AFC, Maynooth University Hurricanes and the Dublin Bay Raptors.

Team and Individual registrations are open:
Individual registration: bit.ly/FFI18INDREG
Team registration: bit.ly/FFI18REG

Applications being accepted for 2018 League Football

The application process for the 2018 kitted league season has now opened. Between now and 11th October, all teams will be required to submit a detailed application form if they wish to play in 2018. Shortly after the deadline, the Association will contact all applications with a view to arranging a face to face meeting to discuss their application. New and returning teams all go through the same process which is designed to ensure that all entrants are capable of successfully completing a full season and, in some instances, to determine which level they should be playing at.

Returning teams will be very familiar with the process. New applicants can get assistance with completing their forms and the requirements.

A copy of the application form can be downloaded here:

2018IAFAteamapplicationform

FFI 2017/18 EVENTS REGISTRATION NOW OPEN

FFI 2017/18 Events Teams and Players registrations now open.

To celebrate we are giving away a €50 discount to all teams signing up for an “Team Registration for all FFI 2017/18 Tournaments” by using the discount code EARLYBIRD and this for only two weeks (offer ends 15/9/17) – so register early!

TEAM REGISTRATION ENDS OCTOBER 15TH 2017.

Quick reminder all players, managers, coaches or team staff must register individually as a member of IAFA (€5) regardless of the team or event they enter with/in.

Tournaments will take place 28/10/17, 25/11/17, 27/01/18 and 24/02/18.
If you wish to host a tournament email an official bid to info@flagfootballireland.ie by September 25th 2017.
All teams selected to host will see their 2017/18 entry fees (€150) waived off.

Individual regsitration: bit.ly/FFI18INDREG
Team registration: bit.ly/FFI18REG

If you have any questions contact us here.

Flag Football Updates

We are fresh off Emerald Bowl IV but it’s not too early for some Flag Football updates.

The league as been running full steam for the past four seasons so in order to properly organise next season and to cover all aspects required to run and grow the sport successfully in Ireland, it has been decided to hold off the next Emerald Bowl season until August 2018. With that being said, we are not going to leave you hanging for a full year.

We will instead be running a series of one-day tournaments between October 2017 and February 2018. Each tournament will be run under the direction of the Flag Football committee and will be open for bids to host them.

The tournaments will be held on October 28th, November 25th, January 27th and February 24th. Bids will be open for submission from August 28th. If you wish to host a tournament email an official bid to info@flagfootballireland.ie by September 25th. Any successful bid will see the full team registration fees €150) waived off for the team/club hosting.

Fees:
Team registration fees are set to €150 for 2017/2018 which will give your team access to all tournaments. Registration will open September 1st and will close October 1st.

If you wish to participate to less that four tournaments, registration fees are set to €50 per tournament. Team registration date for each tournament will be communicated in due time.

All players must register with IAFA for 2017/2018 for all IAFA Flag Football event. Individual fees are set at €5. Registration will open September 1st.

More information will be communicated in due time on our Facebook page and on the IAFA website.

Dublin Rebels win Shamrock Bowl XXXI

Dublin Rebels 12-6 Carrickfergus Knights

Dublin Rebels defended their Shamrock Bowl title in close battle with Carrickfergus Knights at Tallaght Stadium on Sunday 13th August. Rebels running back Wello Omorodion won the Terry Lynch MVP Award after having rushed for 145 yards and scored a key touchdown.

 

The game was played in good weather, with the pitch in perfect condition, on front of an enthusiastic crowd of supporters.

 

The Knights, who were appearing in their first Shamrock Bowl final since 2004, started the game strong. They moved the ball well in their opening possessions and played well on defence. Their efforts were rewarded late in the second quarter when, following an interception by Josh Davis, QB Spencer McDowell connected with wide receiver Martin Caskey in the corner of the endzone for the opening touchdown of the game.

 

The Rebels came out strong in the second half, moving the ball downfield early in the 3rd quarter and scoring on a touchdown pass from Andy Dennehy to Cathal Keane. This was followed by a touchdown run by Omorodion to give the Rebels a tight 12-6 lead at the end of the quarter. The Rebels appeared to control the game in the fourth quarter and were unluckly not to add to their lead.

 

Victory gives the Rebels a record 9 Shamrock Bowl titles. Veteran quarterback Andy Dennehy, who has played in all 9 victories, indicated after the game that he may return next season to try and win a 10th.