1997 Rhein Fire season

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1997 Rhein Fire season
Head coach Galen Hall
General manager Alexander Leibkind
Home field Rheinstadion
Results
Record 7–3
Division place 1st
Playoff finish Lost World Bowl '97
Timeline
Previous season Next season
1996 1998

The 1997 Rhein Fire season was the third season for the franchise in the World League of American Football (WLAF). The team was led by head coach Galen Hall in his third year, and played its home games at Rheinstadion in Düsseldorf, Germany. They finished the regular season in first place with a record of seven wins and three losses, marking the first winning season in franchise history. In World Bowl '97, Rhein lost to the Barcelona Dragons 38–24. Quarterback T. J. Rubley earned all-World League honors and was named the league's offensive most valuable player.

Offseason[edit]

World League draft[edit]

1997 Rhein Fire World League draft selections
Draft order Player name Position College
Round Choice
1 1 Israel Stanley DE Arizona State
2 7 Artis Houston CB California
3 18 Thomas Bailey WR Auburn
4 19 Scotty Lewis DE Baylor
5 30 David Merritt LB North Carolina State
6 31 John Anderson S Oklahoma
7 42 David Rhodes WR Central Florida
8 43 Pete Shufelt LB UTEP
9 54 Anthony Daigle RB Fresno State
10 55 Sean Foster WR Long Beach State
11 66 Chris Shelling CB Auburn
12 67 Ricky Powers RB Michigan
13 78 Kelly Wiltshire CB James Madison
14 79 Earl Mackey LB Southern
15 90 Mark Brook LB Wyoming
16 91 Don Robinson CB Kentucky
17 102 Will Brown LB Alabama
18 103 Kyle Richardson P Arkansas State
19 114 Chris Thomas WR Cal Poly
20 115 Jay Barry RB Washington

[1]

Personnel[edit]

Staff[edit]

1997 Rhein Fire staff
Front office
  • General Manager – Alexander Leibkind

Head coaches

Offensive coaches

  Defensive coaches
  • Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers – Pete Kuharchek
  • National Coach/Defensive Line – Walter Rohlfing
  • Defensive Backs/Special Teams – Steve Carson


Roster[edit]

1997 Rhein Fire roster
Quarterbacks

Running backs

Wide receivers

  • 18 Thomas Bailey
  • 80 Michael Dritlein
  •  5 Sean Foster
  • 81 David Rhodes
  • 84 Bill Schroeder

Tight ends

Offensive linemen

Defensive linemen

Linebackers

Defensive backs

Special teams

National players
  • 10 Manfred Burgsmüller K Germany
  • 82 Martin Driever TE Germany
  • 75 Peter Gross-Pass DT Germany
  • 71 Olaf Hampel G Germany
  • 94 Takahiro Ikenoue LB Japan
  • 78 Vladimir Ilic DE Germany
  •  8 Babak Movassaghi WR Germany


Rookies in italics

Schedule[edit]

Week Date Kickoff [n 1] Opponent Results Game site Attendance
Final score Team record
1 Saturday, April 12 7:00 p.m. Barcelona Dragons L 12–27 0–1 Rheinstadion 17,150
2 Sunday, April 20 3:00 p.m. London Monarchs W 28–6 1–1 Rheinstadion 14,876
3 Sunday, April 27 3:00 p.m. at Scottish Claymores W 23–10 2–1 Murrayfield Stadium 11,166
4 Saturday, May 3 7:00 p.m. at Amsterdam Admirals L 20–23 2–2 Amsterdam ArenA 10,698
5 Saturday, May 10 7:00 p.m. Frankfurt Galaxy W 10–7 3–2 Rheinstadion 32,140
6 Saturday, May 17 7:00 p.m. at Frankfurt Galaxy W 21–20 4–2 Waldstadion 39,182
7 Sunday, May 25 3:00 p.m. Scottish Claymores L 20–23 4–3 Rheinstadion 20,498
8 Saturday, May 31 7:30 p.m. at Barcelona Dragons W 38–23 5–3 Estadi Olímpic de Montjuïc 13,670
9 Saturday, June 7 7:00 p.m. Amsterdam Admirals W 24–0 6–3 Rheinstadion 23,697
10 Sunday, June 15 3:00 p.m. at London Monarchs W 10–7 7–3 Stamford Bridge 10,462
World Bowl '97
11 Sunday, June 22 7:00 p.m. Barcelona Dragons L 24–38 7–4 Estadi Olímpic de Montjuïc 31,100

[2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8]

Standings[edit]

World League
Team W L T PCT PF PA Home Road STK
Rhein Fire 7 3 0 .700 206 146 3–2 4–1 W3
Barcelona Dragons 5 5 0 .500 236 209 2–3 3–2 W1
Scottish Claymores 5 5 0 .500 134 154 2–3 3–2 L2
Amsterdam Admirals 5 5 0 .500 156 160 4–1 1–4 W1
Frankfurt Galaxy 4 6 0 .400 147 142 3–2 1–4 L1
London Monarchs 4 6 0 .400 116 184 2–3 2–3 L1

[2]

Game summaries[edit]

Week 1: vs Barcelona Dragons[edit]

Week One: Barcelona Dragons at Rhein Fire – Game summary
1 2 3 4 Total
Barcelona 7 14 6 0 27
Rhein 3 3 3 3 12

at Rheinstadion, Düsseldorf, Germany

  • Date: Saturday, April 12
  • Game time: 7:00 p.m. CEST
  • Game attendance: 17,150
  • [3]

Week 2: vs London Monarchs[edit]

Week Two: London Monarchs at Rhein Fire – Game summary
1 2 3 4 Total
London 0 0 0 6 6
Rhein 0 0 14 14 28

at Rheinstadion, Düsseldorf, Germany

  • Date: Sunday, April 20
  • Game time: 3:00 p.m. CEST
  • Game attendance: 14,876
  • [4]

Week 3: at Scottish Claymores[edit]

Week Three: Rhein Fire at Scottish Claymores – Game summary
1 2 3 4 Total
Rhein 13 0 7 3 23
Scotland 0 0 3 7 10

at Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland

  • Date: Sunday, April 27
  • Game time: 3:00 p.m. BST
  • Game attendance: 11,166

Week 4: at Amsterdam Admirals[edit]

Week Four: Rhein Fire at Amsterdam Admirals – Game summary
1 2 3 4 Total
Rhein 0 6 7 7 20
Amsterdam 10 0 6 7 23

at Amsterdam ArenA, Amsterdam, Netherlands

  • Date: Saturday, May 3
  • Game time: 7:00 p.m. CEST
  • Game attendance: 10,698
  • [5]

Week 5: vs Frankfurt Galaxy[edit]

Week Five: Frankfurt Galaxy at Rhein Fire – Game summary
1 2 3 4 Total
Frankfurt 0 7 0 0 7
Rhein 0 0 7 3 10

at Rheinstadion, Düsseldorf, Germany

  • Date: Saturday, May 10
  • Game time: 7:00 p.m. CEST
  • Game attendance: 32,140
  • Referee: Phil Luckett
  • [6]

Week 6: at Frankfurt Galaxy[edit]

Week Six: Rhein Fire at Frankfurt Galaxy – Game summary
1 2 3 4 Total
Rhein 0 14 0 7 21
Frankfurt 3 7 7 3 20

at Waldstadion, Frankfurt, Germany

  • Date: Saturday, May 17
  • Game time: 7:00 p.m. CEST
  • Game attendance: 39,182
  • [7]

Week 7: vs Scottish Claymores[edit]

Week Seven: Scottish Claymores at Rhein Fire – Game summary
1 2 3 4 Total
Scotland 7 0 0 16 23
Rhein 3 10 7 0 20

at Rheinstadion, Düsseldorf, Germany

  • Date: Sunday, May 25
  • Game time: 3:00 p.m. CEST
  • Game attendance: 20,498

Week 8: at Barcelona Dragons[edit]

Week Eight: Rhein Fire at Barcelona Dragons – Game summary
1 2 3 4 Total
Rhein 7 14 7 10 38
Barcelona 0 9 7 7 23

at Estadi Olímpic de Montjuïc, Barcelona, Spain

  • Date: Saturday, May 31
  • Game time: 7:30 p.m. CEST
  • Game attendance: 13,670

Week 9: vs Amsterdam Admirals[edit]

Week Nine: Amsterdam Admirals at Rhein Fire – Game summary
1 2 3 4 Total
Amsterdam 0 0 0 0 0
Rhein 7 10 0 7 24

at Rheinstadion, Düsseldorf, Germany

  • Date: Saturday, June 7
  • Game time: 7:00 p.m. CEST
  • Game attendance: 23,697

Week 10: at London Monarchs[edit]

Week Ten: Rhein Fire at London Monarchs – Game summary
1 2 3 4 Total
Rhein 0 3 7 0 10
London 0 7 0 0 7

at Stamford Bridge, London, England

  • Date: Sunday, June 15
  • Game time: 3:00 p.m. BST
  • Game attendance: 10,462
  • Referee: Phil Luckett
  • [8]

World Bowl '97[edit]

Main article: World Bowl '97
World Bowl '97: Rhein Fire vs Barcelona Dragons – Game summary
1 2 3 4 Total
Rhein 3 14 0 7 24
Barcelona 14 14 7 3 38

at Estadi Olímpic de Montjuïc, Barcelona, Spain

  • Date: Sunday, June 22
  • Game time: 7:00 p.m. CEST
  • Game attendance: 31,100
  • Referee: Phil Luckett
  • [2]

Awards[edit]

After the completion of the regular season, the All-World League team was selected by members of the media.[9] Overall, Rhein had six players selected.[9] The selections were:

Additionally, Rubley was selected offensive MVP by the six World League head coaches.[10] Galen Hall earned Coach of the Year honors.[9]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ All times local to where the game was played.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "1997 World League draft". WorldLeague.com. Archived from the original on July 9, 1997. Retrieved March 9, 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c "1997 Season in Review". The Official 1998 NFL Europe League Fact Book. pp. 218–222. 
  3. ^ a b "Dragons 27, Fire 12". European Stars and Stripes (Darmstadt, Germany). April 14, 1997. p. 27. Retrieved June 5, 2012. 
  4. ^ a b Associated Press (April 20, 1997). "Fire 28, Monarchs 6". APNewsArchive.com. Associated Press. Retrieved March 9, 2013. 
  5. ^ a b Associated Press (May 3, 1997). "Admirals 23, Fire 20". APNewsArchive.com. Associated Press. Retrieved March 9, 2013. 
  6. ^ a b Associated Press (May 10, 1997). "Fire 10, Galaxy 7". APNewsArchive.com. Associated Press. Retrieved June 30, 2013. 
  7. ^ a b Associated Press (May 17, 1997). "Fire 21, Galaxy 20". APNewsArchive.com. Associated Press. Retrieved June 30, 2013. 
  8. ^ a b Associated Press (June 15, 1997). "Fire 10, Monarchs 7". APNewsArchive.com. Associated Press. Retrieved June 30, 2013. 
  9. ^ a b c "1997 All-World League team". WorldLeague.com. June 20, 1997. Archived from the original on July 9, 1997. Retrieved March 9, 2013. 
  10. ^ "Rubley and Simmons Honored". The New York Times (Manhattan, New York). June 21, 1997. Retrieved March 9, 2013.