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Bakersfield Blitz
BakersfieldBlitz
Founded 2004
Folded 2007
Home arena Rabobank Arena
City, State Bakersfield, California
Conference American
Division West
Division titles 1 (2004)
Playoff berths 2 (2004, 2006)

The Bakersfield Blitz were a professional arena football team based in Bakersfield, California. They are a 2004 expansion member of the af2 and play their home games at Rabobank Arena.

In 2002, the original Blitz was owned by Casey Wasserman, owner of the Arena Football League team Los Angeles Avengers, who owned and managed the team for two seasons. In 2004, the team was sold to an investment group that moved the team to Fresno to become the Central Valley Coyotes, while a new Bakersfield Blitz was formed. In 2005, the af2 owned the team, and was operated by the owner of the Bakersfield Condors.

In 2006, a combination of local Bakersfield and professional sports investors bought the franchise from the af2. Since that time, season ticket sales increased by over 25% per year, and the team won their first-ever playoff game in 2006. However, the Blitz unexpectedly folded after the 2007 season. Although this followed a season in which two players faced rape charges, it is unclear what role, if any, this played in the Blitz's folding.

On July 19, 2003 The Bakersfield Blitz reported the untimely death of Bakersfield Blitz Fullback/Linebacker Julian Yearwood. Yearwood, 31, who collapsed in the team bench area during the Saturday game against the Wichita Stealth at Kansas Coliseum in Wichita, Kansas. Emergency medical personnel worked on resuscitating Yearwood for over 20 minutes before he was taken off the field on a stretcher.

He was transported by ambulance to Via Christi St. Francis Hospital where he was pronounced dead at 9:37 p.m. CT on July 19, 2003. His body was transported to the Sedgwick County Coroner's office to have an autopsy performed to determine the cause of death.

The passing of Yearwood rocked the AF2 family. The game was tied 7-7 in the first quarter when Yearwood came out of the game allegedly claiming that he wasn't well. He collapsed shortly thereafter.

The league declined to comment on the cause of death, pending an official autopsy, though some reports in the local media indicated it may be heart related.

OwnersEdit

These were the owners at the time the Blitz ceased operations:

Jeff Allen, Dr. Vip Dev, William Edwards, Scott Erwin, Dr. Todd Farrer, Scott Garrison, Scott Hacker, Clayton Koerner, Paul Press, Fred Prince, Joel Shaddy, Andrew Watkins, SportsGelt,LLC among others.

Season-by-seasonEdit

ArenaCup Champions ArenaCup Appearances Division Champions Playoff Berth
Season League Conference Division Regular season Postseason Results
Finish Wins Losses
Bakersfield Blitz
2004 AF2 National Western 1st 11 5 Lost NC Semifinals (Peoria 38-36)
2005 AF2 National Western 4th 6 10
2006 AF2 National Western 3rd 9 7 Won NC Round 1 (Central Valley 45-37)
Lost NC Semifinals (Spokane 50-47)
2007 AF2 American West 7th 6 10
Total 32 32 (includes only regular season)
1 2 (includes only the postseason)
33 34 (includes both regular season and postseason)

Notable playersEdit

Rape AllegationsEdit

While in Boise, Idaho playing the Boise Burn, two members were arrested and charged with crimes related to the July 8, 2007 rape of a young woman in a hotel room in Boise. The players arrested were Maurice Ronald Troutman, 25 and Rennard Reynolds, 30 both of Long Beach, California. Boise police arrested Troutman on July 8, for the alleged rape and Reynolds on July 9, for an alleged burglary connected to the alleged rape. The Blitz team cooperated with Boise police and delayed leaving Boise until the investigation was completed.[1]

External linksEdit

NotesEdit

  1. "UPDATE: Second arena football player charged". KTVB.com. 2007-07-09. Archived from the original on 2007-07-11. http://web.archive.org/web/20070711151440/http://www.ktvb.com/news/localnews/stories/ktvbn-jul0907-blitz_player.5acbc874.html. Retrieved 2007-07-09.

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