Orlando Thunder

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Orlando Thunder
Orlando Thunder logo
Logo
Year founded 1991
Year retired 1992
City Orlando, Florida
Team colors Lime Green, Royal Blue, Light Blue, Yellow, White[1]
                        
Franchise W-L-T record Regular Season: 13–7
Postseason: 1–1
Championships
World Bowls (0)

The Orlando Thunder was a member of the World League of American Football from 1991 to 1992 (known as NFL Europe from 1995 onwards). The team played their games in the 70,000 seat Citrus Bowl, and was coached by Don Matthews in 1991 and Galen Hall in 1992. The team's most visible point was their colors – the League wanted to develop new colors which hadn't been used for teams before, hence the vermilion and green that the Raleigh-Durham Skyhawks wore, and the fluorescent green jerseys that the Thunder sported.

The team's general managers were Lee Corso and Dick Beam. In 1991 the team played to a 5–5 record, and in 1992 the team had an outstanding 8–2 record, and made it to the World Bowl II championship game before losing to the Sacramento Surge 21–17. Despite the team's success early on however, the Thunder's attendance figures fell from over 19,000 per game in its first year, to just over 16,000 per game its second year, and the team was folded.

Notable players include Kerwin Bell and Scott Mitchell, a left-handed quarterback who went on to play in the NFL for the Miami Dolphins and Detroit Lions.

The team's jersey was recently voted 2nd worst football jersey of all-time by ESPN voters.[1]

Season-by-season[edit]

Season League Regular season Postseason
Won Lost Ties Win % Finish Won Lost Win % Result
1991 WLAF 5 5 0 .500 2nd (North American East)
1992 WLAF 8 2 0 .800 1st (North American East) 1 1 .500 Lost to Sacramento Surge in World Bowl '92
Total 13 7 0 .650 1 1 .500

1991 season[edit]

Personnel[edit]

Staff[edit]

1991 Orlando Thunder staff
Front office
  • Majority Owner – Raj Bhathal
  • General Manager – Lee Corso
  • Director of Player Personnel – Jeff Beathard

Head coaches

Offensive coaches

Defensive coaches
  • Defensive Coordinator – Dan Daniel
  • Defensive Line – Pete Catan

Strength and conditioning

  • Strength and Conditioning – Pete Catan

Roster[edit]

1991 Orlando Thunder roster
Quarterbacks

Running Backs

  • 25 Myron Jones
  • 21 Eric Mitchell
  • 27 Carl Painter KR
  • 37 Tommie Stowers FB

Wide Receivers

Tight Ends

  • Vacant
Offensive Linemen
  • 65 Doug Aronson G
  • 73 John Durden T
  • 61 John Guerrero G
  • 52 Rodney Lossow C
  • 77 Mike Withycombe T

Defensive Linemen

  • 70 Winfred Bryant DE
  • 94 Charles Jackson NT
  • 72 Robert Presbury DE
Linebackers
  • 57 Wayne Davis ILB
  • 55 Matt Devine ILB
  • 56 Wayne Dickson OLB
  • 95 Willie Walker OLB

Defensive Backs

  • 26 Brian Covington CB
  • 24 Bob Flenoid CB
  • 23 Mike Nettles S
  • 42 Billy Owens S
  • 31 Rob Sterling S
  • 20 Erroll Tucker CB/PR

Special Teams

Operation Discovery
  • 94 Helmut Joder DE Germany
  • 82 Steffen Nagurski WR Germany
  • 53 Dirk Reessing LB Germany


Rookies in italics

Results[edit]

Week Date Opponent Results Game site Attendance
Final score Team record
1 Monday, March 25 San Antonio Riders W 35–34 1–0 Florida Citrus Bowl 21,714
2 Saturday, March 30 Raleigh–Durham Skyhawks W 58–20 2–0 Florida Citrus Bowl 20,811
3 Saturday, April 6 at London Monarchs L 12–35 2–1 Wembley Stadium 35,327
4 Sunday, April 14 at Barcelona Dragons L 13–33 2–2 Montjuic Stadium 40,875
5 Sunday, April 21 Birmingham Fire L 6–31 2–3 Florida Citrus Bowl 21,249
6 Saturday, April 27 at New York/New Jersey Knights L 6–42 2–4 Giants Stadium 30,046
7 Saturday, May 4 Frankfurt Galaxy L 14–17 2–5 Florida Citrus Bowl 11,270
8 Saturday, May 11 Sacramento Surge W 45–33 3–5 Florida Citrus Bowl 20,048
9 Monday, May 20 at Raleigh–Durham Skyhawks W 20–14 4–5 Carter–Finley Stadium 4,207
10 Monday, May 27 at Montreal Machine W 33–27 (OT) 5–5 Olympic Stadium 23,493

1992 season[edit]

Results[edit]

Week Opponent Results Game site
Final score Team record
1 Ohio Glory W 13–9 1–0 Florida Citrus Bowl
2 at Montreal Machine L 29–31 1–1 Olympic Stadium
3 at Ohio Glory W 28–3 2–1 Ohio Stadium
4 New York/New Jersey Knights W 39–21 3–1 Florida Citrus Bowl
5 Montreal Machine W 16–8 4–1 Florida Citrus Bowl
6 at Frankfurt Galaxy W 38–0 5–1 Waldstadion
7 at San Antonio Riders W 39–21 6–1 Bobcat Stadium
8 London Monarchs W 9–0 7–1 Florida Citrus Bowl
9 at Birmingham Fire L 23–24 7–2 Legion Field
10 Barcelona Dragons W 13–10 8–2 Florida Citrus Bowl
Postseason
Semifinal Birmingham Fire W 45–7 9–2 Florida Citrus Bowl
World Bowl Sacramento Surge L 17–21 9–3 Olympic Stadium

Staff[edit]

1992 Orlando Thunder staff
Front office
  • Majority Owner – Raj Bhathal
  • Chief Operating Officer/General Manager – Dick Beam
  • Director of Player Personnel – Pete Levine

Head coaches

Offensive coaches

Defensive coaches


Roster[edit]

1992 Orlando Thunder roster

Quarterbacks

Running Backs

Wide Receivers

Tight Ends

  • 89 Michael Titley

Offensive Linemen

Defensive Linemen

Linebackers

Defensive Backs

  • 20 Malcolm Frank CB
  • 43 Todd Krumm S
  • 23 Mike Nettles
  • 26 Glenn Rogers CB
  • 24 Efrum Thomas S

Special Teams

  •  1 Tracy Bennett K
  • 88 Geep Chryst LS
  •  2 Ray Criswell P
Operation Discovery


Rookies in italics

Orlando Thunder Cheerleaders 1991

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Team Colors – WLAF". SSUR.org. Retrieved January 16, 2010.