National Indoor Football League

The National Indoor Football League (NIFL) was a professional indoor football league in the United States. For their first six years, the league had teams in markets not covered by either the Arena Football League or its developmental league, AF2, however, that changed briefly with their expansion into AFL markets such as Atlanta, Denver, and Los Angeles, and AF2 markets such as Fort Myers and Houston. Green Bay Packers head coach Matt LaFleur, Buffalo Bills running back Fred Jackson, New Orleans Saints quarterback John Fourcade and Pittsburgh Steelers Super Bowl running back Bam Morris, all played in the NIFL. The league folded in 2008.

National Indoor Football League
National Indoor Football League logo
SportIndoor football
San Diego Shockwave
Official website
2004 Beaumont Drillers vs Waco Marshals
2007 San Antonio Steers


The NIFL, based in Lafayette, Louisiana, was founded by Carolyn Shiver. The league started operations in 2001, with many teams coming from Indoor Football League being bought the previous year and folding operations. In 2002, the league added in the teams from the Indoor Professional Football League. 2003 was the most successful year for the league as 24 teams played a mostly complete schedule, with few cancellations.

Before the 2005 season, nine teams left the league to form United Indoor Football. That same year, the Intense Football League ceased operations and four teams from there joined the league. Those teams however, left the league before the 2006 season started.

For the 2005 season, the NIFL had an agreement with NFL to handle referee assignment and training.[1]

The 2006 season, was the most chaotic for the league to that point. Ten expansion teams were added to the league, but nine of them had problems that reflected badly on the league. The most notable situation was the owner of the Montgomery Maulers firing the entire team.[2] None of the ten expansion teams returned to the league for the next season.

The 2007 season started with the addition of several league-owned expansion teams, primarily to supplement games with the returning teams. However, the teams were all poorly funded and had problems fielding competitive squads. On May 11, 2007, the ten independently-owned franchises banded together and left the NIFL. These ten teams played against each other as independents for the remainder of the 2007 season. Of these teams, seven left the league for other leagues. The rest of the teams folded.[3] No playoffs were held at the end of the season. The San Diego Shockwave were declared the official league champion, however, an unofficial championship game was played by the Wyoming Cavalry and Fayetteville Guard, with Fayetteville winning.[4] The league then officially folded prior to the 2008 season.

In 2016, a new website announced that the league operations were relaunched by Carolyn Shiver with announced goal of bringing 34 teams into the former AFL markets starting in the 2017 season. As of June 2016, the league was looking for local team ownership under the league's business model.[5]

Former teams

Teams that left the NIFL to join (or planned to join) another league

Defunct teams/failed expansion

Indoor Bowl games

2001Mississippi Fire DogsWyoming Cavalry55–21
2002Ohio Valley GreyhoundsBillings Outlaws55–52
2003Ohio Valley GreyhoundsUtah Warriors45–37
2004Lexington HorsemenSioux Falls Storm59–38
2005Tri-Cities FeverRome Renegades47–31
2006Billings OutlawsFayetteville Guard59–44
2007San Diego ShockwaveNo Playoff

See also


  1. "NFL to NIFL: No Deal". 22 May 2008.
  2. NIFL squad in Montgomery fired after salary dispute
  3. State Of The Marshals, press release, May 11th 2007
  4. "Fayetteville Guard To Host Wyoming Cavalry In Indoor Football Championship Bowl". July 2, 2007. Retrieved 30 April 2014.
  5. "National Indoor Football League Gears Up To Take The Field". PR Newswire. June 23, 2016.
  6. Hall, Jamie (April 22, 2001). "Tupelo waits to see whether two teams can survive". Southeast Missourian. Cape Girardeau, Missouri. Retrieved February 24, 2015.
  7. Anne Marie Apollo (June 6, 2007). "Short, strange season for Green Cove Lions". The Florida Times-Union. Retrieved December 14, 2010.
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