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Idaho Bighorns

Started by Armorbeast, November 29, 2019, 04:08:13 am

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Armorbeast



The history of the Idaho Bighorns begins in Minnesota with a team called the Duluth Kelleys. The team was sponsored M.C. Gebert, owner of the Kelley-Duluth Hardware Store from which it derived its name. They began play in the NFL during the 1923 season but lacked adequate facilities and played short seasons from 1923 thru 1925 due to harsh Winters. Ownership of the team was transferred to a new owner named Ole Haugsrud who renamed them the Duluth Eskimos for the 1926 and 1927 seasons. He turned the team into a traveling team in order to play full seasons but the team only won one game in 1927 leading him to sell franchise rights to Edwin Simandl.

Simandl only purchased the franchise rights in order to elevate his semi-pro Orange Tornadoes to pro status but the team itself was sold to investors in Alberta Canada. These investors would rename the team giving them the name Alberta Bighorns playing in the USA-AFL's Northwestern Division. The 1934 incarnation of the American Football League would introduce the Dallas Rams of the second American Football League owned by an heiress named Glyma Orr. When the league folded, the USA-AFL purchased its franchises and Glyma Orr retained majority ownership of her team choosing to relocate it to Boise, Idaho. Her new partners had connections to the University of Idaho and the newly formed Boise State Broncos college programs whose staff agreed to help manage the Rams.

The Alberta Bighorns would find themselves isolated in 1942 when many of their players left to serve in World War II and they couldn't arrange enough games to play a full season. They agreed to terms offered by the Rams to merge for the 1943 season and play their games out of Idaho until the end of the war. However, the owners of the Bighorns entered into a silent arrangement with the Rams minority owners to gain control over the team and decided to remain in Idaho. Fans of the team began calling their home turf "Bighorn Country" and it was decided to make a name change as the Rams ceased to exist. The need for resources to build a new stadium led the team to sell majority ownership to Idaho Power before the team was bought outright by business owner Joe Albertson of the Albertsons supermarket chain.

The Bighorns became known for their powerful running game and defensive sack attack because they emphasized having powerful front lines. This meant they sacrificed their throwing game and often gave up big plays to their opponents passing game. Often, they played in formations where they didn't even field a Quarterback which cost them important games against other teams with powerful defenses who did. By the 1960's, Bighorn Country had fallen on hard times as they continued to support a running game which lost game after game as defenses were prepared for them. Then came the disastrous 1965 season when they lost every game and the majority of fans who came to their games were season ticket holders or fans of their opponents for the 1966 season.

At the end of the 1966 season, they purchased the recently defunct Philadelphia Bulldogs, a team they were already familiar with after negotiating with the original United Football league Cleveland / Canton Bulldogs to resolve disputes over contracts between the two teams. When the team was purchased and relocated to Philadelphia as part of the Continental Football League, it would win the 1965 championship and then would be purchased by the Bighorns. With the Bulldogs acquisition, the Bighorns gained a championship caliber franchise and turned majority ownership of the team over to the city of Boise. This brought about a change in management as season ticket holders were actually allowed to elect their teams General Manager to a four-year term as head of operations.

The change in the team would prove almost immediate and, in 1976, they won the Ultra Bowl Championship. Although they played in a weaker market, the Bighorns focused on building from within and skillful trading to replenish their ranks rather than drafting. By focusing on a powerful offensive line, the Bighorns were one of the first teams to put their trust in a female Quarterback to carry them through a full season and to place their kicking game on the legs of female punter / kickers.




Team Colors



Indian Buff, White, Copper Brown, Black Shipyard Gray



Mascots

 



Cheerleading Squad





Team Nicknames





Booster Club





Legacy Teams

Dallas Rams 1934 (AFL I)
Duluth Rams 1935 - 1945 (USAAFL)
Bismarck Rams 1946 - 1952 (USAAFL)
Fargo Rams 1953 (USAAFL, Became Nebraska Big Horns in 1954)



Championships





Development Leagues




Credits
Art: Armorbeast
Song: Rockstar ~ N.E.R.D.







Armorbeast

November 29, 2019, 04:08:39 am #1 Last Edit: November 29, 2019, 11:38:51 pm by Armorbeast


Idaho Blackhearts



Credits
Art: Armorbeast
Song: I Love The Misery ~ Halestorm