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The History of the RABEFL

The RABEFL started in 1993 when two young men thought they could build a better league, and did they ever. The RABEFL is now followed by millions of people in 57 different countries and continues to be the most popular sport ever in Namibia.

Year 1 - 1993
  The fledging league started with eight teams. None of the owners had very much fantasy football experience. The original eight were Cams, Todd and Neil, Bill, Mark, Rick, Dave, JR, and Hans. The Ted Bundy Division was won by Injured Reserve (Cams) with an 8-6 record. Three 7-7 teams trailed close behind. In the Jeffery Dahmer Division, Death Merchants (Mark with a disputable amount of assistance from Rich) won with a dominating 10-4 record and a high point total of 521.

  In the playoffs, the first of many high point curses was felt by the Merchants when a red-hot Magic Missiles (JR) team crushed them 48-17 in the second round. Injured Reserve won the Souper Bowl 22-15 with Boomer Esiason and Andre (house on fire) Rison leading the way. Surprising Rookies (Todd & Neil) won the Sister Kissing Bowl (the now discontinued third place game) with Crypt Thing (Hans) winning the toilet bowl.

Year 2 - 1994
  Year Two saw the addition of two new owners, Lane and Jay. Unknown Players (Todd & Neil) won the weak Lorena Bobbit Division with a 7-6 record. Crypt Thing (Hans) won the OJ Simpson Division with a 10-3 record. Back in third in the division was Mean Drunks (Bill) who was the high point team with 594 points.

  Crypt Thing continued their strong play into the play-offs until losing to Drink Beer. Watch TV. (Dave) in the Souper Bowl. The two teams tied 43-43 with the tiebreaker going to the Drinks 7-6. The starting QBs for the game were Frank Riech and rookie Jeff Blake. Unknown Players won their second consecutive Sister Kissing Bowl. Anarchist Dogs (Mark) won the Toilet Bowl.

Year 3 - 1995
  The same owners were in place for the next year. This was the first year where the scoring inflation really began. The team names included MESOHI, Bong’s Squad, and Mean Drunks leading many of the owners who were faxed the sheets at work to race to the fax machine before their boss saw the standings. Long Bombers (JR) bounced back from their 3-10 season the previous year to win the DJ Dozier Division with a 10-2 record. Pets or Meat (Rick) won their first of many division crowns taking the Buster Rymes division with a 9-3 record and a league leading 617 points. The Bombers were close behind with 607.

  Much like the previous year, the points leader made it to the Souper Bowl only to lose a tie-breaker to a third place team with a losing regular season record. Boyz N The Hood (Todd & Neil) won it 54-54 (13-4 tie-breaker). High point scorers in the Souper Bowl were Brett Favre and Chris Warren, both with 22 points. Mean Drunks (Bill) won the Sister Kissing Bowl, continuing their hex on Gangrene until the bitter end. Crypt Thing (Hans) continued to use their plumbing experience to win another Toilet Bowl.

Year 4 - 1996
  This year was overshadowed by the controversial addition of MX Bob to the ranks of the team owners. For the three previous years, he was a non-playing character. Bill left the league, unwilling to play in a league where the commissioner had a team, but the rest of the owners stayed leaving ten teams in the league again. The conspiracy buffs had their early evidence when Whistling in the Dark (Bob) won the Tommy Herr division. It went to the tiebreakers as they, NWH (Rick) and Magic Missiles (JR) all finished at 6-7. Boyz N The Hood (Todd & Neil) got the tiebreaker in the Curt Frazier Division over Ski Cats (Hans), both finishing with 9-4 records. Boyz easily won the points title with 652 points.

  This year in the playoffs, the top heavy prize money contingent were successful in eliminating the Sister Kissing Bowl and the Toilet Bowl. The Whistlers met Psycho Klowns (Mark) in a Souper Bowl tournament marked by teams that were scoring big all year suddenly cooling off. The Klowns lost 37-34, the lowest scoring Souper Bowl since Souper Bowl WON. Jeff Blake lost his third straight Souper Bowl, with Marshall Faulk winning his third straight.

Year 5 - 1997 (The links for the years are to the web pages for that year.)
  Despite talk of expansion during the off-season, there was again 10 teams. Jay left to go live in Harleyland heralding the long awaited (by him) arrival of Rich. Las Chupacabras (Rick) won the Sal Butera Division with a 10-3 record. Caller ID (Cams) won the Junior Ortiz Division, also with a 10-3 record, taking the points crown as well with 668 points. Shieldsville Militia (Mark) had the dubious distinction of setting the record for most consecutive losses (11 to end the season).

  The playoffs saw the return of the Toilet Bowl although this time with a format close to double elimination. This was also the first year of seeding for the playoffs, rather then the traditional division format. Las Chupabras won the Souper Bowl 48-41 over Boyz N The Hood. Caller ID started a trend of losing the week after a bye, but took some solace in winning the Toilet Bowl. In the QB duel of the Souper Bowl, the then Raider, Jeff George, played Brett Favre to a draw. Consistent scoring from the receivers was the Chups strong point.

Year 6 - 1998
  This year saw the peak of the scoring inflation fueled by the new long touchdown rule, the generous defense scoring, and big plays becoming a regular part of most games. The regular season was ruled by Busy Signal (Cams), winning the Sonny Bono Division with a 12-1 mark and a record setting 845 point regular season (the next closest was 691). The lone regular season loss was at the hands of Alien Nation (Rich), a precursor of things to come. In the Mike Kennedy division. Las Chupacabras (Rick) was the only team with a winning record, winning the division with a 9-4 mark.

  The first week of the playoffs was highlighted by a single game record 120 points being scored by Shrunken Les Steciles (Bob) which was a small consolation for his awful 4-11 record that year. The second round saw both bye-rested division winners get bounced from the upper tier play-offs, with Alien Nation advancing to the Souper Bowl with a win in the now infamous Seahawks Defense game. Boyz N The Hood (just Neil now) became the first team to win two Souper Bowls with a 77-42 score. Antonio Freeman had a Souper Bowl record 29 points in a winning cause. Busy Signal won another Toilet Bowl.

Year 7 - 1999
  Hans left the league this year to pursue other interests. He was replaced by fellow plumber, Brent. With the elimination of the long touchdown rule, the less generous defensive scoring, injuries to many star players, and overall poor offensive play league wide, scoring was way down this year. For the third year in a row, the division winners were the same. Thugs, Cons and Other Heroes (Rick) won the Freeloading Bogarts Division and Long Distance (Cams) won the Drunken Beer Moochers Division, both with 10-3. 672 points gave Branch Davidians (Rich) the points title.

  The Davidians, lead by rookie running backs Edgerin James and Olandis Gary, continued to burn bright in the playoffs, winning the Souper Bowl 76-41 over Thugs, Cons, and Other Heroes. Grouse Busters (Lane) won the Toilet Bowl.

Year 8 - 2000
  Neil left the league due to lack of interest and Cams was unable to make it to the draft. The two last minute replacements were John and Jason. The top 6 seemed to separate from the rest fairly early with only the final positioning of the elite six being in question. Last year’s Souper Bowl contestants, Compassionate Pagans (Rick) and Branch Davidians (Rich) found themselves in the consolation bracket once the playoffs started.

  The closest division race in years was in the Brian Bonin Division. One Eyed Pike (Brent), Ole’s Army (Lane), and James Gang (Bob) went into the final week all tied at 8-4. The Pikes and the Oles both won their games sending it to the tiebreaker which, of course, Lane lost. Catholic Nun and the Posse (John) won the Darby Hendrickson Division, also with a 9-4 record, holding off CYA.Com (Dave). The newcomer also won the points crown comfortably, scoring 728 points.

  When the playoffs started, number one seed Pike lost two straight after the bye, allowing James Gang to sneak into the Souper Bowl where they were trounced 77-34 by the Nuns. First year starters Dante Culpepper and Jamal Lewis were both late round picks that played well in the Souper Bowl and all season. Lay Z Boy (JR) won the Toilet Bowl, their first playoff title.

Year 9 - 2001
  This year saw the return of Cams and the addition of New Bill bringing the league to twelve teams for the first time. The other major change for the league was the shift to to handle the tabulation of the scores and other tedious tasks that the commissioner was sick of doing. Most of the scoring rules and waiver rules were retained. Another change was the elimination of the alternate player for a tie-breaker, resulting in the league's first tie. Two long time franchises, Roaming Charges (Cams) and Lay Z Boy (JR), skated to a 54-54 tie immediately after the rule was changed.

  The division races were quite tight, two of them coming down to the last week. Old But Still Stupid (Bob) won the Swerving Lappers Division, jumping to an 8-1 start which was followed by a 5 game losing streak. The early success was enough to hold off Doc Holiday's (Mark). The Inattentive Flaggers Division went down to the second tie-breaker with Ben & Friends (Rick) better division record giving him the edge over I'm Not Cleaning Out That Toilet (Brent). The Toilets found some consolation in winning the points title 717-700 over the Stupids. A last week showdown decided the Mistake-Prone Scorers Division with Ebonic Plague (Rich) winning the game over Happy Hour Heros (Lane) and with it, the number one seed.

  Ebonic Plague continued the tradition of the Number One Seed Curse, losing in the first round to eventual Souper Bowl participant, Catholic Nun and the Posse (John). The Toilets rode Marshall Faulk and Rich Gannon through the playoffs and to their first Souper Bowl Crown. The Nuns were the first team in history to make it to the Souper Bowl after winning the previous year, but was unable to repeat. There was no consolation round this year.

Year 10 - 2002
  With Cams unable to make the draft, and Dave retiring from the sport, the league was back down to ten teams. 2002 saw increasing their league fee from free to $140, prompting a switch to, a site inferior by most every measure but price. A combination of that site and the newly renamed "RABEFL Classic", hosted on, proved to be an adequate replacement.

This was a year where two teams clearly dominated. In the Feel The Burnsville division, Lay Z Boy (JR) posted a league best 10-3 record and clinched the division 3 weeks early. Smell the Glove (Bob) had the better division record, edging Great Expectorations (Rick) for second. In the Head on Down to Prior Lake division, Green Loosers (Lane) jumped to an early lead and was never headed. After starting 8-0 and posting nearly 70 points a week, even a 1-4 finish and injuries to stars Donavan McNabb and Ahman Green couldn't stop them from winning the division. Injury Prone (Jason) finished second despite losing their first four games. The Greens easily won the points title 824-692 over Lay Z Boy.

The playoffs returned to the modified double elimination format that had been used in most of the past years. For the first time, both of the teams with byes won and met in the Souper Bowl. Despite losing league MVP Priest Holmes, who scored more points than even all of the kickers, Green Loosers got enough from their other players to cruise past favored Lay Z Boy and win their first Souper Bowl. Underrated Warrick Dunn filled in nicely for Holmes and veteran Amani Toomer was the Bowl MVP with 26 points. In the Toilet Bowl, Smell the Glove beat Injury Prone for their first ceramic award.

Year 11 - 2003
   Long time league veteran, Mark, (the so called “Violent Vermin” franchise) left the league using the surprising reason that he put too much time into it. Entering the league for the third time was Cams, so it seemed that there would be ten teams. Unfortunately, Bill was holed up in his primitive off-season compound, and did not receive word of the draft night. Nine teams drafted. The planned nine team schedule was not allowed on CommissionerOnline, so a tenth team was assembled by the commissioner after the draft. Bill then later re-joined society and bought the leftover team at a discount price, putting the league back to ten teams and ten owners.

A dynasty in the making, Buck Snort (Lane) won the division and the regular season points title (773) for the second year in a row. Their 12-1 record tied the league record. Only a loss to otherwise mediocre Ebonic Plague (Rich) marred their perfect season. Party Line (Cams), at 7-6, was the only other team in the Ed Gein Division to finish above 500. In the H H Holmes Division, Catholic Nun and the Posse (John) jumped out to an early lead and then barely hung on, finishing 8-5. After a slow start, second place Swollen Shoulder (Jason) finished at 6-4-3, shattering the record for season and career ties.

The Buck didn’t stop at the regular season, as they Snorted their way to back-to-back Souper Bowls, a first in league history. Ahman Green and Torry Holt continued their strong play through the playoffs, just as they had all year. Swollen Shoulder knocked off the Nuns on their way to the big game, but their Boyz N the Hood-like playoff run came up a bit short, 57-31. Lay Z Boy (JR) beat Party Line to take their second Toilet Bowl title.

Year 12 - 2004
  The team owners stayed unchanged from 2003. Commissioner OnLine was used once again. For the first time in league history, the draft was held in a public place. Because of security concerns, it was held at an undisclosed party room at a previously agreed upon location.

Sewage Serpents (Brent) was the class of the regular season, winning the Points Title (734), best overall record (10-3), and the Black Labrador Division. Injury Prone (Jason) and Lay Z Boy (JR) tied for the second (8-4-1) with the Prones getting the final tie-breaker, total points. In the Some Sort of Spaniel Division, Bar Stool Buddies (Lane) and River Lake Stars (Cams) tied for first, with the Stool’s late point surge being the difference.

In a display of road destruction not seen since the last aborted Guns n Roses tour, the favorites all went down at home on the pivotal Week 15. After losing the Souper Bowl last year, Injury Prone went on to win it this time, ending the fine road playoff run of Ebonic Plague (Rich). Hi Definition Weasels (Bill) almost became the first number ten seed to win the Toilet Bowl, but was flushed in the final game by the high fiber Stools. The big news at the end of the season was the stories swirling around the league office.

As reported in Week 17:

Despite (sic) ... vehement denials by league officials, an RABEFL News investigative reporter has learned that this may have been the last season. Disgruntled former employees of the RABEFL have revealed many interesting facts, many of which are probably made up.

According to these unauthenticated sources, the league has lost money four of the five last years and the owner, a multi-millionaire at the peak of the .com era, is now a recluse, holed up in a tin shack in Oklahoma. The palatial RABEFL headquarters building may be sold to MXBob.Com Enterprises and all employees have been laid off. “Your sources are dangerous psychopaths” claimed the current league spokesman, “We have pictures of them being cruel to animals and old people.”

Year 13 - 2005
  Instead of folding, the league expanded. The addition of former co-owner, Tuan, and class of 79 Alum, Rick (ohio) brought the team total to twelve. Also new was a double header Sunday on Week 11. The draft was held in the garage of one the original league founders for the first time in nearly a decade. There was a clear consensus that , “No, it did not smell like cat anymore.”

The Year of the Vermin started with GerfluchtWeasels (Bill) compiling a league-best 11-2-1 record in the regular season, pulling away from mid-season challenger Injury Prone (Jason) to win the Boat of Car Division. Ebonic Plague (Rich) had the next best record, at 10-3-1, taking the shaky Mr. Me Division over the wretchedly named, New Kids on the Block (Tuan). Despite outscoring every team in the division by over 100 points, Sewage Serpents (Brent) through a series of unlikely events, only finished second in the sloth-like Shoehorn With Teeth Division. Opportunistic, Catholic Nun and the Posse (John), won the title with a 7-7 record.

There was also a change of format in the playoffs. Instead of six teams qualifying for the championship round, with two having a bye, there were no byes and eight teams played a three round, single elimination, tournament for the Souper Bowl. The Consolation tournament started the next week with the Bottom Feeder Four and the First Week Losers facing off.

In the first round, the Weasels had a close call against number eight seed, Geins Spleens (Rick), but made it through. Number two seed was not so lucky, ousted by Bar Stoole Buddies (Lane). The Stools would make it to the Souper Bowl, only to be crushed by the inevitable GerfluchtWeasels infestation. In the questionably revived Sister Kissing Bowl, the Nuns scored some playoff cash with another low scoring win.

Another change was that the points race went all the way through the season, including the exhibition games during the playoffs. The race between the Blocks and Serps was still close going into Week 16, but the News blew it up open with their late playoff burst. The extra push at the end helped them land in the Toilet Bowl, taking a title in their first season.

Rumors of the league’s demise swirled again at the end of the year, especially with the announcement that no team reservations are being taken for 2006 yet. With hemorrhaging cash at nearly 1000 Greek Lire a day, it is reported that the eccentric league co-founder is getting ready to skip the country, possibly heading towards the impenetrable boundary that is the US-Canadian border.

Year 14 - 2006
  The number of teams stayed at 12 as the exit of Cams was matched with the entrance of Mark / Rich coworker, Shannon. All the rules and fees remained the same, as the previous year, probably more out of lack of ambition in the league office than a desire to preserve tradition. The draft was held at the same undisclosed public location as Year 12.

The best record of the regular season was Tazed and Confused (Rick H), tallying a 10-3-1 record. Even still, he wasn’t able to clinch the Herve Villachaize Division until Week 12. The communally drafted, auto-pilot rostered, second-place, Roughed-up Suspects (Rick B), faded at the finish, but finished above 500 at 7-6-1.

A 6-0 start helped Backyard Bullies (Shannon) start their RABEFL career with the Wendy O Williams Division title. Their 9-6 record was enough to hold back the 7-7 of hot and cold, GerfluchtWeasels (Bill), and LT and some stiffs, Toilet Trainers (Brent).

The only division fight was in the Virginia Woolf Division. Although Catholic Nun and the Posse (John) was a game ahead nearly all year, Ebonic Plague (Rich) was right there to keep the pressure on. They were tied at 9-4 going into the last week, and as had happened earlier in the season, the Ebs were unable to beat division cellar-dweller, Chicken Pluckers (Lane). The Nuns held serve against Old Kids on the Block (Tuan) for the title.

The curse of the Number One Seed reared it’s ugly head once again as the eight seed, Kids, took out Tazed in the first round of the playoffs. The next three seeds, Nuns, Bullies, and Ebs all made it through.

In what had been brewing for years, the Nuns and Ebs would finally meet in the Souper Bowl for the sought after Bill Goldsworthy Memorial Trophy. Security was stepped up as both team’s fan base consisted primarily of convicted felons and delusional psychopaths. After an event-filled week leading up to it, the game itself did not stay competitive for long. The Ebs rode number one seed, Larry Johnson, and a balanced attack to a 55-31 victory. In a much more well mannered game, The Kids won another title, taking the still-restored-but-rumored-to-be-going-away-next-year, Sister Kissing Bowl.

In the consolation division, after waiting a week playing exhibitions against each other, the lowly 9-12 seeds all went on the road and took out a former championship bracket contender. Lay Z Boy (JR) ousted Tazed from the playoffs, while regular season egg-layers, Chickens, Celebrity Organ Donors (Bob) and Injury Prone (Jason) also stayed alive. The Chickens would make history by winning their league-record third Toilet Bowl.

The points chase went down to the last game. Plague trailed the Tazeds by 6 points going into the last weekend, but another huge game by Johnson carried them past.

The league seemed more stable than in previous years, with word coming from the RABEFL ivory towers that the rules were gong to be reviewed over the off-season. A collaboration with famous-in-his-own-mind moto-journalist, MX Bob, had mixed results. The serial football story he wrote eventually became less rambling and more interesting, but, as was originally feared by league profilers, the saga was ultimately unfinished. No word as this went to press if he will be contracted next year to finish it.

Year 15 – 2007
Again, the number of teams stayed at 12 as the exit of Dick was matched with the re-re-entrance of Cams. The draft was held at the Richfield Legion Flag Room, much to the disappointment of the two guys that showed up for some meeting they normally had on the first Wednesday of the month. The intimidating appearance of the team owners must have prevented the easily-AARP-qualified bikers from going “greatest generation” on the interlopers.

In a desperate attempt by the reclusive team founder to find any interest what so ever in the football season, and given some circumstances away from the field, the rules were changed fairly radically. Gone was the Defense, which given all the complaining about it over the years, was surprisingly widely-mourned. The TE position became mandatory. WR yardage was made a bit easier, with QB more difficult. There was a poorly thought out Coach position added, but because of the low points and the fact that it wasn’t mandatory, only one Coach was still playing by the end of the year.

The two most consistent teams during the regular-season, were Triple Threat (Tuan), who won the Mr. X Division with a 11-3 record, and Fighting Sioux (Cams), who topped the (sadly named) Cigarette Smoking Man Division with a 10-4 record. Lay Z Boy (JR) and Catholic Nun and the Posse (John) both finished 8-6 in the Lone Gunmen Division. They split their games during the season and had the same division record, so it came down to total points, where the Nuns had a 23-point advantage.

Again it was an eight-team first week of the playoffs, with no byes. Of the top four seeds, only the Trips made it to Round-Two, beating Anorexic Santas (Bob), who just barely snuck into the number 8 seed with a lowly 6-8 record. Whohawho (Brent) drove off the Sioux, Ebonic Plague (Rich) excommunicated the Nuns, and Sinister Ministers (Rick) cursed the Boys. The Sins would meet the Plague for the crown. The 11th in the points, Ebs, run of extreme luck ran out, denying them a record-breaking third Souper Bowl. It was the second crown, first in 10 years, for the Sins. The Trips won their second consecutive Sister Kissing Bowl, despite the revelation that after all this time, no one ever realized that the expression applied to second place, not third.

In the consolation bracket, the 4 low seeds, well rested from their Week 14 exhibition games, were all ousted the first week, making it a tournament of Championship Bracket losers. With a line-up that was finally clicking, the Santas run three in a row for the first time all season, earning the coveted Toilet Bowl.

In the points race, a tight race came down to the last week, with four teams with a chance and the top two within 10. Week 17 produced few big scores and the Trips were able to hold on by a less than a point a game over the Sioux.

The big news breaking out of the RABEFL Corporate PR Department, was that the league has been sold to original league co-founder, R, (the R of RABEFL), and MXB Productions was pulling out completely of league operations. “We are thankful to be given the opportunity to run the league for the last 15 seasons”, said the League Czar, suddenly turning to Dilbert-speak, ”but we need to focus on our core competencies and harvest some synergies from our redundant sets of folks.”

The move also leaves longtime player, Bob, owner of the Occasionally-Funny-Team-Name franchise, without sponsorship for 2008. “I’ll have to evaluate my options during the off-season”, commented the skills-diminished team GM, “But this is most likely it for me and for the team. I’m working now on my transition to the newly-formed, Senior BMX Tour.”

So ending with a bit more of a whimper than a bang, the league goes the way of the USFL. So much promise at the beginning, but eventually descending into a cartel of whining, self-absorbed, often poorly dressed, windbags. Ah, the memories.

The End?



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