Nebraska Danger set for 2013 home opener against Lincoln Haymakers|
The 2013 Nebraska Danger football season begins this Saturday, February 23 at the Heartland Events Center as the Danger host the expansion Lincoln Haymakers of the Central Plains Indoor Football League. The Danger will begin IFL play on March 2nd, when they host defending league champion Sioux Falls.
The Danger are coming off a 5-8 season in 2012, just their second in the IFL where they finished fifth in the Intense Conference and were in playoff contention until the final two weeks of the regular season. Head coach Mike Davis has 38 players in preseason camp as he will pare the roster down to 25 players for the IFL season.
“We are excited about the upcoming season and the guys we have in camp,” Davis said. “We have a nice mix of returning players and some really talented new guys that we have signed in the offseason. We are ready to get going and hope to have a successful 2013 season.”
The Danger returns three of the top four receivers from 2012: Kayne Farquharson, Corey Surrency and Daniel Libre. Farquharson, who played collegiately for Miami (FL) led the team with 74 receptions for 915 yards a season ago. Libre will be part of a stable of running backs that Davis will try out that includes former Danger player Tavares Pressley (Florida State) and new signee C.J. Gable (USC).
On defense, the Danger has a host of players returning including their top four tacklers from 2012: Pig Brown, Adrian Davis, Darnell Terrell and Carl Gettis. Davis is also excited about the singing former Coastal Carolina standout Maurice Simpkins to play linebacker. Simpkins was on the Green Bay Packers active roster in 2010.
“We have the core of our defense returning which will be a big plus for our team,” Davis said. “To have those guys back will be a key in us getting off to a good start. We feel like we have added some playmakers on that side of the ball as well.”
The Haymakers are a first year team that will play home games in Lincoln’s Pershing Auditorium. The CPIFL is a 10-team league that also includes former IFL teams Bloomington, Wichita and Omaha. Lincoln has signed former Nebraska players Marlon Lucky, Cortney Grixby, Antonio Bell and Jordan Picou. Also playing for the Haymakers is former Grand Island Northwest and Doane College standout Kevin Roehrich.
Kickoff is set for 7:00 on Saturday night at the Heartland Events Center, where the Danger posted a 4-3 record a season ago and the Danger fans have been named “Best Fans in the IFL” during both Nebraska Danger seasons. Doors open at 6:00 with pre-game activities beginning at 6:30. Danger general manager Mike McCoy said the fan experience is a key element to the Danger’s success.
“We have built this team for the community of Grand Island and all of central Nebraska,” McCoy said. “Our fans have been great the first two seasons and we expect the same this year. We are excited to get this season going and to give our fans another great season of exciting indoor football.”
Tickets for Saturday night are available at area Pump & Pantry stores, the Heartland Events Center Box Office, or via Ticketmaster. Theme for the night is Jersey Night! The game will be broadcast live on 2DayFM 103.1 with veteran sports announcer Brad Fossberg on the play-by-play, or streamed live at www.2dayfm1031.com
Special events during the game:
Pre-game entertainment by Little Danger Football and the Cedar Hollow Elementary Chicken Dance
Pre-game music by the Bruning-Davenport High School Band, the Hampton High School Band, and the Walnut Middle School Band
The Nebraska Danger Danger Dolls
Pledge of Allegiance by Stolley Park Elementary
Patriotic Song by Reggie Shaw
Fan tunnel by Mosaic, Stolley Park Elementary, Cedar Hollow Elementary, and Pepsi
National Anthem by Barr Middle School
Coin Toss by Pepsi and Snap Fitness
Appearances by Bones and the Texas Roadhouse Armadillo
Equipment Race to win Brisk Ice Tea coupons
Halftime performances by the Danger Dolls, the GISH Islandaires, the Doniphan-Trumbull Dance Team, Jazzercise Dancers, and Play It Again Sports Wiffleball
Throw for Dough contest benefitting the United Way! (Buy a mini-football from their booth on the Concourse Level for $1 for a chance to win!)
T-shirt shooter throughout game
Pizza Eating Contest with The Bunkhouse
Section contests for Nebraska Lottery
Following the game, an autograph party/dance party with Players, Danger Dolls, Ball Babes, Mascots, Coaches and Staff will take place.