August 26, 2005

East Coast Story

A co-worker and I were discussing football today, and the Dolphins came up. I have them as one of my defenses in fantasy football... not hoping huge things, but they do have some pretty good games. Anyway, he asked me why it was that Miami would choose Dolphins as their name, as opposed to Sharks, since Florida has had a few incidents lately, and sharks are just plain vicious by nature. I gave him my answer, then came home to research it, just to prove that I was right.

1959: The American Football League is organized. Joe Foss, a former Marine major, Air Force colonel, and South Dakota National Guard brigadier general, is the commisioner. One of the original teams is the New York Titans.

1961: West Side Story, featuring the delicious Natalie Wood, Rita Moreno, and a whole bunch of other people, is released.

1963: The Titans come under new ownership. Their name is changed to the Jets... most likely because the new owner really liked that movie. Foss is worried.

1965: Joe Robbie meets with Foss, who advises him to apply for a franchise in Miami. Everything falls into place as Miami becomes the first expansion team of the AFL. Robbie applies for the team name Sharks. Foss begins to have nightmares of team captains snapping their fingers as they approach each other for the coin toss. After visions of pirouetting linemen start, Foss tells Robbie that he needs to change the team name. Robbie is crushed, but decides to go with Miami Dolphins instead.

Foss was worried that half time celebrations would include knifings and stealing of the other team's cheerleaders. Choreographed tackles would not have been that far into the future. Thank the football gods for Joe Foss, and Joe Robbie's willingness to change.

After researching all of this, I found out that I may have been wrong about a couple of details. But I don't really think so.

Posted by That 1 Guy at August 26, 2005 08:55 PM | TrackBack