Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Week 3

We had another awesome turnout for the third week of games this season. In honor of the Light Team taking two of two, we have a guest contributor to the blog. See if you can guess who wrote this:

News Flash SMFL weekend update:

Good guys (light team) go 2-0 over the weekend and kick sand in the eyes of the bad guys (dark team). Over all records are now:

Good guys 4-1
Bad guys 1-4

Even after The Commish met with the team owners in the Summer after the Light Teams annihilation of the Dark Side to break up the Football super power house “The Light team”, things are still looking shaky for one opponent.

Favre was quoted “I thought we had a chance this year starting off just 1-2, but things are seeming bleak, I have got to quit turning the ball over and giving away easy points.” When asked about his dropped pass while taunting Rhino Reist, he declined to comment.

General Josh was heard in the back ground saying, “if only they (the light team) would quit taking cheap shots at Five Star General Sarah, this game would have been locked up” (In reference to bull rush Ryan’s charge in the 1st Quarter). We hope Five Star is doing fine and a 10,000 fine was issued for illegal head to head contact after further review.

Peg leg Ford is still looking to get back to full speed, but is currently operating at 60% capacity on his old stump of a leg. Although he is operating at 60%, it still seems to be better than most people's 80-100%. Magic Patin had the catch of the game, jumping over General Josh in the corner of the end zone in game one. On the opposite end of the spectrum, the drops of the game, aka having the “drops,” was Daniel un-“Luck”y Patino. He accounted for more drops than his team had receptions.

Unrelated smfl sports news, Aggies still stink, Baylor, SMU, OSU and Texas rock. Basically any college other than aTm rocks.

See everyone next time out!

Saturday, January 30, 2010

The Future

Players - Today I received an e-mail from Avery Chan. many of you may remember that he and his wife, Felicity, moved to East Asia 9 months ago... hence the reason he has not been on the field this season. Today, Avery shared a news article that may provide a little hope that we will see him on the field again and possibly provides a glimpse into the future of the SMFL. It's a little long but very appropriate.

Six Mississippis and Counting

ON Wednesday mornings, Andy Lupo, 51, sends out his weekly chain e-mail message to the guys: “How we looking for Sunday?”

Mr. Lupo is counting heads for the regular Sunday 10 a.m. touch football game. And if there’s one thing he has learned about keeping a pickup game going from September to April, 30 Sundays a year for 20 years — through rain, sleet, snow, ice as well his own torn rotator cuff, Abrey Light’s four broken fingers, Jim Dennehy’s two fractured ribs and Glenn Christie’s career-ending ligament tear — it’s to leave zero to chance.

“If you e-mail Andy at 1 a.m., he answers back at 1:05,” said Jack Hayon, 54, an Educational Testing Service vice president who has been playing “just seven years.”

On Thursday of that week, Mr. Lupo reported, “Still early, but looks like a good turnout.”

By Saturday, he was telling everyone that despite Nelson Obus’s torn meniscus, “We should have 21.” And they did.

Mr. Lupo, an executive at an investment bank, and Mr. Light, 51, a general manager for a software company — both present at the first game in 1990 — arrive early to lay out orange cones marking the field.

Lyle Girandola, 50, soon appears out of the woods at the back of the field, a misty figure pushing a wheelbarrow with a wrought-iron firepot to keep the subs warm on the sideline.

Anthony Costa, 54, arrives on his bike after Mass at St. David the King, which makes Mr. Lupo look bad because he tells his wife, Carolyn, that he has to miss church because of the game. H. Fenster, 47, drives the farthest, about 35 minutes from Hillsborough. Everyone brings both their red and blue jerseys since Mr. Lupo keeps it a secret what team they’ll be on until game time.

“Andy has his black-box formula for picking teams,” said Karl Dentino, 53, a marketing executive. His goal is to make teams that are so balanced each week, the game ends in a tie. About half of them do.

The league is called 12 Again, because for two sweet hours each Sunday morning that’s how these middle-aged men feel. “By Sunday afternoon I’m limping around the house pretty good,” Mr. Lupo said.

“I play Sunday, I can’t lift my arm until Thursday,” said Steve Tosches, 53, a quarterback, who coached Princeton’s football team for many years.

“We’re afraid the game will end when someone drops dead,” Mr. Light said.

“That’s why I have this,” said Mr. Lupo, throwing open his trunk, and waving a defibrillator high in the air.

The game’s longevity is in part because of subtle concessions to age. They used to count three Mississippis before rushing. “Then four, then five, now six,” Mr. Light said. “We need more time to get places.”

In their 30s, they’d argue about players rushing the quarterback too soon. But in their 50s they don’t need the aggravation, so Mr. Hayon brings a stopwatch that buzzes when it’s O.K. to rush.

Mr. Obus, 63, an investment manager, says as they age the game gets more like chess. “You don’t just say, ‘Go long.’ We can’t do that anymore. You have to flood a zone. You come up with more complex plays, more paths.”

It makes huddles interminable. “People say, ‘Why do you spend so much time in the huddle?’ ” Mr. Lupo said. “By the time you tell the seventh guy what to do, the first guy forgot what he’s supposed to do.”

There’s no blocking, no tagging hard (“everyone’s got back problems,” Mr. Lupo said), and fumbles are dead balls.

“Our motto is, ‘Monday morning we all need to go to work,’ ” Mr. Lupo said.

When the game started in 1990, they were lucky to have six players. Mr. Lupo and Alan Slepman, the league’s first commissioner, went through backyards, shouting, “Lyle, is this your house, can you play today?”

“It got easier with cellphones,” Mr. Lupo said.

Mr. Dentino, who jogged by one day and joined the game, brought in his neighbor Mr. Girandola, who brought in his neighbor Jerry Fields, 53, who brought in Jonathan Sabin, 42. By the mid-1990s, they had the opposite problem, too many wanting to play, and some not understanding the thin line between worthy competitor and inglourious basterd. “A lot of people claim they’re good guys and they’re really not,” Mr. Lupo said.

They needed men who were athletic, but not too. Scott Brunner, the former Giants quarterback, played for a few weeks. “Oh, my God, he threw too hard,” Mr. Lupo said. “The ball kept bouncing off guys’ chests. People kept running out of the way.

“We’re not looking for the great triathlete. If your wife is saying: ‘What, are you crazy? At your age?’ That’s the guy we want.”

Those wives. In the early years when the kids were young, it was harder. The men were working all week, then gone Sunday morning, too?

“My wife was a little bit on my back,” Mr. Light said. “I was taking away our Sundays. She didn’t get it.” But after 10 or 15 years, he wore her down.

“I know nothing about football,” Susan Light said. “After the game, he gives me the play by play. I say that’s great or that’s too bad — I can just tell if it’s positive or negative. The big thing — he’s happy and calmer after he plays, so I’m happy.”

There’s a final element every sports classic needs, a legend, a Gipper, a Bambino. For the 12 Again league, it’s Mr. Slepman, the first commissioner, and by all accounts, a quippy, civic-minded, big-hearted guy who taught Mr. Lupo everything he knows about running a Sunday touch football league for slow old men. In October 2001, Mr. Slepman, a banker, collapsed on the commuter train home from Manhattan. He had a brain tumor, and on Jan. 13, 2003, he died. Every 12 Again player attended his funeral. Mr. Slepman was buried in his blue jersey and today the town field they play on is named for him.

But that’s only half the legend. Nine months later, a single dad from Boston moved next door to the Slepman home. Shortly after, Mr. Lupo recruited him to the game.

“He seemed to have the right personality,” Mr. Lupo said, “a friendly, mild temperament.” When Mr. Lupo asked the man from Boston if he’d ever played organized football, the man answered no, and Mr. Lupo said, “You’re perfect for us.”

That was Mr. Hayon, the educational testing executive. And two years after replacing Mr. Slepman on the field — not that anyone could truly replace Mr. Slepman, of course — Mr. Hayon married Mr. Slepman’s widow, Holly. When she is asked if her second husband’s love for the same Sunday morning football game had anything to do with it, she said, “It didn’t hurt.”

On a recent Sunday at Alan Slepman Football Field, Mr. Hayon, playing for the red team, caught two passes, made two interceptions and wore the stopwatch around his neck to monitor the pass rush.

Once again, Mr. Lupo’s black-box formulas worked — with one play left in the game and the blue team 20 yards from the goal, the score was tied, 2-2. An icy rain fell as Mr. Fenster, an accounts manager who puts in 60-hour weeks when he’s not quarterbacking the blues, dropped back to pass. He thought of tossing the ball blindly to the back of the end zone. “Sometimes they bat it around and you might get lucky,” he’d say later.

Instead, he saw his teammate Mr. Light cutting across the front of the end zone and threw. Steve Honig, floating on pass defense for the reds, raced in front of Mr. Light, intercepted the ball and streaked downfield with no one near him.

Asked later what he was thinking as he ran toward the end zone, Mr. Honig, 50, the president of an insurance third-party administrator, said: “Wow! That’s all I was thinking. Wow!”

Sunday, June 7, 2009

2008-2009 Finale!!

The 2008-2009 SMFL Season came to an end this past Saturday (June 6). And in typical SMFL fashion, the game spurred one of the most competitive of the year. If it were not for Favre's outright "voluntary" fumble, the League may have had an Season Champion. Instead, the Season Finale ended in a 1-1 "kiss your sister" game tie. There is always next season.

This season endured longer than previous years, spreading into June, due to strong participation, great competition and overall league comradeship.

As each season draws to a close, the Commish is humbled by the "success" that the league has enjoyed; that success being the friendships that are created as a result of playing football together. Us at the league office feel very blessed for the previous season and are looking forward to the next.

Congrats go out to a few players who have become new fathers and raising future SMFLer's over the past year: T-Dar, Big Game Hunter, Baylor Dave and soon to be father's Boone Packer, Butterfly Davis and Eskimo Joe.

Enjoy some pictures from Saturday's game. If we don't see you at the Mid Summer BBQ, then we will see you in September!!

The Line Up

Sam - I AM

Big Game

Eazy E - from THE Oklahoma State University - yep he's a Poke

Big PapiBoone Packer


A Close Up.... For the Ladies!

Magic Patin
Baylor Dave

Not pictured individually -

- Jagt Holland
- T-Dar
- Peg Leg Ford
- Eskimo Joe

Enjoy some action shots!!

The SMFL - Outside the SMFL

Cowboys Flag Football Tournament 2009

Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Avery Chan Bowl

Well, after 3 or so seasons of playing in the SMFL, Mr. Chan, the player formally known as "Zephry", has officially retired from the Saturday Morning League. He went out in style posting a career high 4 touchdowns, 8 pass blocks, 14 catches and 21 tackles for the day. He also threw his first and probably last career interception.

"All in all, it was a great day - I know my team won and lost today, but I'm fine with leaving the SMFL on a .500 note... mainly because I'm too tired and their is not enough oxygen in the Dallas air. I'm really looking forward to retirement" - Mr. Chan

Avery's contributions to the league include:
- The Avery Count: The ability to count to "7 Mississippi" in less than 3 seconds
- The Avery Rule: This rule is still in the SMFL Rules Committee as it has not been enacted, however, the rule would eliminate the "Mississippi" count and allow for a blitz on each down, thus taking away the "Avery Count" advantage.

Below is his official SMFL post game press conference announcing his retirement:

The SMFL would like to wish Avery "the best" as he moves his family to China in the coming months. You and Felicity are in our prayers - you will be missed.

Enjoy photos which documented the historic "Avery Bowl"

Avery Arrives

Even the likes of Baylor Dave and T-Dar make it out for the festivities!

Easy E was nervous about the big game.

Here he is over preparing...

And... doing something else in the bushes...

Of course - no SMFL week would be complete without Favre and Peg Leg....

All in all - it was a great day for football!

Align Center

Friday, April 17, 2009

Congrats to an SMFL Player

"T-Dar" Tim Darley (better known as the Johnny Moxin of the SMFL) and his wife gave birth to their first child on April 16th. Emma Louise Darley was born at 8:12 pm weighing in at 8 lbs 4 oz and measures 22 in. Mom and baby are doing good.

When asked how this incredible personal development would affect his SMFL status, T-Dar said:

"I'm out for good reason for a while, but when I do get back I think I'll have a renewed dedication and maturity just like Pacman did."

We look forward to that day when he is back on the field but we are excited for him and his family in their new parenting endeavors.

Here is T-Dar (in the red) is his all to familiar resting position.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008


The Office of the Commish would like to wish everyone a Happy and Safe New Years!

New Years Day 2009 will mark the 1st Annual SMFL New Years Day Bowl (naming rights have not been sold). The Bowl Game will begin at 9:30am and take place at our Standard Location (the fields across from Lake Highland High school).

The Commish is looking forward to this inaugural event and to many new initiatives for the league during 2009!

Make it a Great Year!!