Professional Indoor Football League

The Professional Indoor Football League was the second league to successfully play indoor football as a paid pro-league sport, after the Arena Football League. Since the AFL had a patent given in 1990 on the gameplay of "Arena Football" (mainly the endzone nets), the PIFL played with mostly the same rules, but without the endzone nets. The PIFL only lasted one season (1998) under that name.

The PIFL was started by Richard "Dick" Suess. Suess was deeply involved in football on the semi-pro and minor league level, and was editor–publisher of the Minor League Football News. In 1996, he began shopping around the idea of the PIFL, an indoor league created from the top minor league programs around the country. The league was finally formed in late 1997 and began its first season in 1998. The league offices were located in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The PIFL was rife with problems from the start. The Colorado Wildcats changed coaches during the preseason. By the third game, many teams were in serious financial trouble and started forfeiting games. The Minnesota Monsters folded after Week # 5. Many other teams missed payrolls and this resulted in many players, including some of the best players, quitting.

In 1999, the PIFL would essentially "split" into two leagues. Keary Ecklund, owner of the Green Bay Bombers and Madison Mad Dogs teams, and an owner–operator of Ecklund Carriers of Neenah, Wisconsin (a trucking company), would take his two teams and form the Indoor Football League (IFL). On January 4, 1999, the remaining teams of the PIFL renamed the league to the Indoor Professional Football League (IPFL).

Read more about Professional Indoor Football League:  1998 PIFL Teams, 1997–98 PIFL Pre-season Final Standings, The Lawsuit: Arena Football League V. PIFL, PIFL Playoffs, Award Winners, PIFL European Division

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