Play in Columbus, Georgia
at the Columbus Civic Center
|Team colors||Blue, black, silver, white|
|Mascot||Leo the Lion|
|Head coach||Jason Gibson|
|League championships (3)|
|Conference championships (0)|
|Division championships (3)|
|Playoff appearances (12)|
AIFA: 2008, 2009
SIFL: 2010, 2011
PIFL: 2012, 2014, 2015
NAL: 2017, 2018, 2019
The Columbus Lions are a professional indoor football team based in Columbus, Georgia and a founding member of the National Arena League (NAL) for the 2017 season. The Lions were founded in 2006 as an expansion team of the World Indoor Football League (WIFL). After the WIFL went under in 2007, the Lions joined the American Indoor Football Association (AIFA) where they played for two seasons. When the AIFA broke apart, the Lions joined the Southern Indoor Football League (SIFL). The Lions joined the Professional Indoor Football League (PIFL) in 2012 when the Southern Indoor Football League (SIFL) teams split up into two new leagues. After the 2015 season, the PIFL broke apart, and the Lions joined American Indoor Football for 2016.
In their first 12 seasons, the Lions have compiled a regular season record of 100–47 with division championships in 2009, 2011 and 2016. They have made five championship appearances: in the 2010 season where they defeated the Louisiana Swashbucklers in President's Cup II, in 2015 when they defeated the Richmond Raiders in PIFL Cup IV, in 2016 where they defeated the West Michigan Ironmen in the AIF Championship game, in 2017 when the Lions lost to the Jacksonville Sharks 21–27 in the inaugural NAL Championship, and in 2018 with 66–8 loss to the Carolina Cobras.
The Lions were founded in 2006. The Lions' inaugural game on February 26, 2007, was marred by tragedy when opposing defensive back Javon Camon of the Daytona Beach Thunder was killed after a hard but clean hit by Lions fullback Cedric Ware during the fourth quarter.
For the Lions' impressive inaugural season, head coach Jason Gibson won the league's inaugural Coach of the Year Award.
The Lions move to the AIF proved to be fruitful for the Lions, and they completed the regular season 8-0 and won the 2016 AIF Championship with a perfect record. One week after winning the championship, the Lions announced they were leaving the AIF for the 2017 season.
In July 2016, Lions' owners Skip Seda and his father, Keke Seda, announced the formation of a new league called the Arena Developmental League to begin play in spring 2017. They named former Canadian Football League, Arena Football League, and AF2 coach John Gregory as the league's commissioner. In November 2016, the Jacksonville Sharks joined and the Sedas yielded control over the new league for it to become the National Arena League.
Awards and honors
The following is a list of all Lions players who have won league awards:
|League Champions||Conference Champions||Division Champions||Playoff Berth||League Leader|
|Season||Team||League||Conference||Division||Regular season||Postseason results|
|2007||2007||WIFL||1st||10||4||0||Lost World Indoor Bowl I (Augusta) 60–63|
|2008||2008||AIFA||Western||South||2nd||10||4||0||Lost Divisional Round (Mississippi) 50–52|
|2009||2009||AIFA||South||1st||11||3||0||Won Divisional Round (Fayetteville) 45–35|
Lost Semifinal (Reading) 51–60
|2010||2010||SIFL||2nd||8||3||0||Won Semifinal (Lafayette)|
Won President's Cup II (Louisiana)
|2011||2011||SIFL||Eastern||South||1st||11||1||0||Won Divisional (Trenton) 62–60|
Lost Eastern Conference Championship (Albany) 61–75
|2012||2012||PIFL||3rd||6||6||0||Lost Semifinal (Albany) 36–60|
|2014||2014||PIFL||American||2nd||7||5||0||Lost American Conference Championship (Nashville) 39–44|
|2015||2015||PIFL||1st||8||3||0||Won Semifinal (Lehigh Valley) 69–41|
Won PIFL Cup IV (Richmond) 64–38
|2016||2016||AIF||Southern||1st||8||0||0||Won Southern Semifinal (New Mexico) 49–37|
Won Southern Championship (Florida) 79–66
Won AIF Championship Game (West Michigan) 74–32
|2017||2017||NAL||3rd||9||3||0||Won Semifinal (Lehigh Valley) 52–50|
Lost NAL Championship (Jacksonville) 21–27
|2018||2018||NAL||4th||8||7||0||Won Semifinal (Massachusetts) 50–36|
Lost NAL Championship (Carolina) 8–66
|2019||2019||NAL||4th||6||8||0||Lost Semifinal (Jacksonville) 43–67|
|2020||2020||NAL||Season cancelled due to COVID-19 pandemic|
|Totals||106||55||0||All-time regular season record (2007–2019)|
|11||9||—||All-time postseason record (2007–2019)|
|117||64||0||All-time regular season and postseason record (2007–2019)|
- "Ownership". Columbus Lions. Retrieved November 10, 2020.
- "Lions Add New Member To Ownership Group". Columbus Lions. November 10, 2020.
- Chris White (July 19, 2010). "SIFL CHAMPIONSHIP: Fans soak up Lions' big win". www.ledger-enquirer.com. Ledger-Enquirer. Archived from the original on July 14, 2014. Retrieved July 8, 2014.
- "Indoor football player dies after head-to-head hit". www.espn.go.com. ESPN Internet Ventures. February 27, 2007. Retrieved February 27, 2007.
- "Daytona player dies". www.ledger-enquirer.com. Ledger-Enquirer. Retrieved February 27, 2007.[permanent dead link]
- Keith Groller (September 14, 2015). "Steelhawks moving to a new indoor football league for 2016". www.mcall.com. The Morning Call. Retrieved September 14, 2015.
- Dana Barker (June 19, 2016). "Lions capture AIF title in bizarre, blowout fashion". www.ledger-enquirer.com. Ledger-Enquirer. Retrieved June 20, 2016.
- "Columbus Lions leaving AIF following 2016 season". www.wltz.com. Frankly and WLTZ. June 27, 2016. Retrieved June 28, 2016.
- "Lions owner Seda establishes new Arena Developmental League". Ledger-Enquirer. July 7, 2016.
- "Lions' QB Kacz named PIFL's Offensive Rookie of the Year". www.ledger-enquirer.com. Ledger-Enquirer. July 13, 2015. Archived from the original on July 22, 2015. Retrieved July 21, 2015.
- "Columbus Lions' WR Terrence Ebagua named PIFL MVP". www.ledger-enquirer.com. Ledger-Enquirer. July 19, 2015. Archived from the original on July 22, 2015. Retrieved July 21, 2015.
- Matthew Hester (April 10, 2012). "Kicker Trey Crum Returns to Lions". www.proifl.com. Professional Indoor Football League. Archived from the original on July 14, 2014. Retrieved July 8, 2014.