WHAT IS MUDBOWL?
Welcome to the official website of Mudbowl, the “Super Bowl” of backyard football. This special event is loaded with mud, blood, and profanity. It caters to a select few elite ballplayers who are intent on glory and padding their stats. Here’s the lowdown on this over-hyped event….
What is it?
Mudbowl is a hard-played organized game of pick-up football. This game has been held every December since 1992. It began as a simple birthday party concept that turned into an annual ritual. With increasingly busier personal schedules, the players have come to revere this event. For many it is the only football game they get to play in all year. So, they play their hearts out and talk it up many months prior to the game. To add fuel top the glory-hounds’ fires, each game is captured on videotape and statistics are tabulated.
Where is it?
Mudbowl is held in Gasport, NY. This small town is located in Western New York State just 20 miles east of Niagara Falls. This game was originally held in plowed-up agricultural land (hence “MUDbowl”), but has since been moved to the football/soccer field at the Royalton-Hartland Elementary School. The December weather associated with this area typically consists of cool temps (single digits to 35 Fahrenheit), brisk winds, and often snow and ice.
This game is by invitation only. Generally, 14 to 20 men play every year…everyone from high school stars reliving their glory days to armchair quarterbacks. Over fifty different guys have played in Mudbowl through the years. Mudbowl is such a big deal that people have traveled great distances to play, arriving from the following locales:
North Tonawanda, NY
University Park, PA
How is it played?
This game was - for the first 13 Mudbowls - full-contact , tackle football...less the pads. In 2005 (Mudbowl XIV) we made the change to flag football for safety's sake as our core crew gets older and less active. Play involves 6 on 6 with unlimited substitution. The game is played with 6 skill position players and no linemen (or pass rush). The game is structured in such a manner because sloppy amateur line play makes for poorly-played, boring games where most receivers/runners will never get their mitts on the ball. With so many of these guys only playing once a year this set-up makes it a worthwhile endeavor as it opens it up to big plays, both offensively and defensively.
The next Big Game, Mudbowl XVIII, will be held Saturday, December 19, 2009, at 12:00 PM.