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Atlantic Coast Football League

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The Atlantic Coast Football League (ACFL) was a minor football league that operated from 1962 to 1973. Until 1969, many of its franchises had working agreements with NFL and AFL teams to serve as farm clubs. The league paid a base salary of $100 per game and had 36 players on each active roster.[1]

For the first few years, Joe Rosentover served as league president. He had served in the same capacity for the American Football League (formerly the American Association) from 1947 to 1950; a relative, John Rosentover, had run the league from 1936 to 1947. In fact, several of the teams from the AA were revived in the ACFL, including the Providence Steam Roller, Newark Bears and a team in Paterson, New Jersey. By 1968, Rosentover had left the organization and been superseded by commissioner Cosmo Iacovazzi, who had briefly played for the New York Jets.

In 1965, three of the franchises (the Hartford Charter Oaks, Newark Bears and Springfield Acorns) joined with five teams from the United Football League to create the Continental Football League. The league picked up four franchises from that league when it folded in 1969 (Norfolk Neptunes, Orlando Panthers, Jersey Jays and Indianapolis Capitols); the Neptunes and Panthers were exactly the same teams as the Acorns and Bears respectively, having relocated during their time in the CoFL.

In 1970, the Orlando Panthers signed a husband and wife duo, Steven and Patricia Palinkas, as a kicker and holder respectively. Steven did not make the team, but Patricia did, making her the first female professional football player.[1]

Most of the ACFL's teams, including all of the teams that had been in the Continental league, folded following the 1971 season. The Hartford Knights and Bridgeport Jets survived, and both moved down to the Seaboard Football League in 1972. Hartford accrued a perfect season in that league in 1972, including several games with margins of victory over 40 points, and after much dissatisfaction with the league announced it was leaving with the intent to reform the ACFL.[2] The ACFL returned for one final season in 1973 with Hartford, Bridgeport, and several teams promoted up from the SFL (which led to a trickle-up that brought Empire Football League teams upward to the SFL to fill the old SFL teams' void). The return, however, was short lived; the league determined it would not compete with the World Football League and folded after the 1973 season.

ACFL SeasonsEdit

1962Edit

League Year Team Years Plyd Wins Losses Ties % Pts For Pts Against Coach
ACFL 1962 Ansonia Black Knights 1962-1963
ACFL 1962 Paterson Miners 1962
ACFL 1962 Stamford Golden Bears 1962
ACFL 1962 Frankfort Falcon 1962
ACFL 1962 Portland Sea Hawks 1962-64
ACFL 1962 Providence Steam Roller 1962-64
ACFL 1962 Boston Sweepers 1962-64

1963Edit

League Year Team Years Plyd Wins Losses Ties % Pts For Pts Against Coach
ACFL 1963 Ansonia Black Knights 1962-1963 4 8 0 .333
ACFL 1963 Baltimore Broncos 1963 2 10 0 .167
ACFL 1963 Boston Sweepers 1962-64 2 9 1 .167
ACFL 1963 Springfield Acorns 1963-64 7 5 0 .583
ACFL 1963 Hartford Charter Oaks 1963-64
ACFL 1963 Jersey Giants 1963-64 8 4 0 .667
ACFL 1963 Newark Bears 1963-64 11 1 0 .917
ACFL 1963 Mohawk Valley Falcons 1963-65 5 7 0 .417
ACFL 1963 Pittsburgh Valley Ironmen 1963-65 6 6 0 .500
ACFL 1963 Harrisburg Capitols/Colts 1963-69 8 3 1 .667
ACFL 1963 Westchester Crusaders 1963-64,73 8 4 0 .667
ACFL 1963 Portland Sea Hawks 1962-64 4 8 0 .333
ACFL 1963 Providence Steam Roller 1962-64 6 6 0 .500

1964Edit

League Year Team Years Plyd Wins Losses Ties % Pts For Pts Against Coach
ACFL 1964 Atlanta Spartans 1964 4 9 0
ACFL 1964 Boston Sweepers 1963-64 10 3 0 .000
ACFL 1964 Springfield Acorns 1963-64 9 5 0 .000
ACFL 1964 Hartford Charter Oaks 1963-64 8 5 1
ACFL 1964 Jersey Giants 1963-64 11 2 0 .000
ACFL 1964 Newark Bears 1963-64 12 1 1 .000
ACFL 1964 Mohawk Valley Falcons 1963-65 2 12 0
ACFL 1964 Richmond Rebels 1964 8 5 1
ACFL 1964 Scranton Pros 1964 1 13 0
ACFL 1964 Pittsburgh Valley Ironmen 1963-65 9 5 0
ACFL 1964 Harrisburg Capitols/Colts 1963-69 4 10 0
ACFL 1964 Westchester Crusaders 1963-64,73 3 10 1
ACFL 1964 Portland Sea Hawks 1962-64 5 8 1
ACFL 1964 Providence Steam Roller 1962-64 8 5 1

1965Edit

League Year Team Years Plyd Wins Losses Ties % Pts For Pts Against Coach
ACFL 1965 Jersey Jets 1965
ACFL 1965 Mohawk Valley Falcons 1963-65
ACFL 1965 Pittsburgh Valley Ironmen 1963-65
ACFL 1965 Harrisburg Capitols/Colts 1963-69
ACFL 1965 Holyoke Bombers 1965
ACFL 1965 Scranton Miners 1965-66
ACFL 1965 New Bedford Sweepers 1965-66

1966Edit

League Year Team Years Plyd Wins Losses Ties % Pts For Pts Against Coach
ACFL 1966 Atlantic City Senators 1966
ACFL 1966 Jersey City Jets 1966
ACFL 1966 Rhode Island Steelers 1966
ACFL 1966 Waterbury Orbits 1966-67
ACFL 1966 Wilmington Clippers 1966-67
ACFL 1966 Virginia Sailors 1966-68
ACFL 1966 Lowell Giants 1966-68
ACFL 1966 Harrisburg Capitols/Colts 1963-69
ACFL 1966 Scranton Miners 1965-66
ACFL 1966 New Bedford Sweepers 1965-66

1967Edit

League Year Team Years Plyd Wins Losses Ties % Pts For Pts Against Coach
ACFL 1967 Waterbury Orbits 1966-67
ACFL 1967 Wilmington Clippers 1966-67
ACFL 1967 Virginia Sailors 1966-68
ACFL 1967 Lowell Giants 1966-68
ACFL 1967 Harrisburg Capitols/Colts 1963-69
ACFL 1967 Westchester Bulls 1967-1968

1968Edit

League Year Team Years Plyd Wins Losses Ties % Pts For Pts Against Coach
ACFL 1968 Virginia Sailors 1966-68
ACFL 1968 Lowell Giants 1966-68
ACFL 1968 Harrisburg Capitols/Colts 1963-69
ACFL 1968 Westchester Bulls 1967-1968
ACFL 1968 Pottstown Firebirds 1968-69
ACFL 1968 Richmond Roadrunners 1968-69
ACFL 1968 Roanoke Buckskins 1968-71
ACFL 1968 Bridgeport Jets 1968-71,73
ACFL 1968 Hartford Knights 1968-71,73

1969Edit

League Year Team Years Plyd Wins Losses Ties % Pts For Pts Against Coach
ACFL 1969 Quincy Giants 1969-71
ACFL 1969 Harrisburg Capitols/Colts 1963-69
ACFL 1969 Long Island Bulls 1969-70
ACFL 1969 Pottstown Firebirds 1968-69
ACFL 1969 Richmond Roadrunners 1968-69
ACFL 1969 Roanoke Buckskins 1968-71
ACFL 1969 Bridgeport Jets 1968-71,73
ACFL 1969 Hartford Knights 1968-71,73

1970Edit

League Year Team Years Plyd Wins Losses Ties % Pts For Pts Against Coach
ACFL 1970 Jersey Jays 1970-71
ACFL 1970 Jersey Tigers 1970-71
ACFL 1970 Quincy Giants 1969-71
ACFL 1970 Indianapolis Capitols 1970-71
ACFL 1970 Norfolk Neptunes 1970-71
ACFL 1970 Orlando Panthers 1970-71
ACFL 1970 Pennsylvania Firebirds 1970-71
ACFL 1970 Richmond Saints 1970
ACFL 1970 Long Island Bulls 1969-70
ACFL 1970 Roanoke Buckskins 1968-71
ACFL 1970 Bridgeport Jets 1968-71,73
ACFL 1970 Hartford Knights 1968-71,73

1971Edit

League Year Team Years Plyd Wins Losses Ties % Pts For Pts Against Coach
ACFL 1971 Jersey Jays 1970-71
ACFL 1971 Jersey Tigers 1970-71
ACFL 1971 Quincy Giants 1969-71
ACFL 1971 Indianapolis Capitols 1970-71
ACFL 1971 Norfolk Neptunes 1970-71
ACFL 1971 Orlando Panthers 1970-71
ACFL 1971 Pennsylvania Firebirds 1970-71
ACFL 1971 Roanoke Buckskins 1968-71
ACFL 1971 Bridgeport Jets 1968-71,73
ACFL 1971 Hartford Knights 1968-71,73

1972Edit

No Season

1973Edit

League Year Team Years Plyd Wins Losses Ties % Pts For Pts Against Coach
ACFL 1973 Long Island Chiefs 1973
ACFL 1973 West Massachusetts Pioneers 1973
ACFL 1973 New England Colonials 1973
ACFL 1973 Mount Vernon Crusaders 1973
ACFL 1973 Westchester Crusaders 1963-64,73
ACFL 1973 Bridgeport Jets 1968-71,73
ACFL 1973 Hartford Knights 1968-71,73

ACFL Championship Games Edit

1962- Paterson Miners 17, Providence Steam Roller 14 (Double OT), played indoors in the Atlantic City Convention Center

1963- Newark Bears 23 Springfield Acorns 6

1964- Boston Sweepers 14, Newark Bears 10 played in Newark

1965- New Bedford Sweepers 13, Jersey Jets 9

1966- Virginia Sailors 42, Lowell Giants 10

1967- Virginia Sailors 20, Westchester Bulls 14

1968- Hartford Knights 30, Virginia Sailors 17

1969- Pottstown Firebirds 20, Hartford Knights 0

1970- Pottstown Firebirds 31, Hartford Knights 0

1971- Norfolk Neptunes 24, Hartford Knights 13

1973- New England Colonials 41, Bridgeport Jets 17

ACFL teamsEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 Associated Press (1970-09-04). "First woman to earn place on pro grid team is also suspended." Retrieved 2010-12-25.
  2. "Hartford quits Seaboard loop." Associated Press (1972-11-23). Retrieved 2010-12-20.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 "Franchises.htm". Pottstownfirebirds.com. http://www.pottstownfirebirds.com/ACFL%20football/Atlantic%20Coast%20Football/Franchises.htm. Retrieved 2010-12-21.
  4. Woods, Mark (2009-10-22). Smith is Pats' UK connection. ESPN.com. Retrieved 2010-12-20.
  • Gill, Minor League Football 1960-1985 (McFarland Press, 2002)

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