CAFL – Professional American Indoor Football in China


PHILADELPHIA, May 22, 2013 – Less than 9 months after announcing their intent to develop professional Arena Football in China, a special team from AFL Global will board flights and jet off to Beijing to conduct the first ever, government-approved American-style football clinic.

“I am so excited — the 14 hour flight will seem like 14 days! I can’t wait to get there and begin this,” said Martin E. Judge, Jr., whose dream begins to take the form of reality beginning May 26. On that date, six special instructors kick-off a week-long clinc at Beijing Sports University — the first step towards establishing a Chinese collegiate football conference. After that, the AFL Global team has plans for a full-fledge professional arena league, with teams based in the same cities as the University programs.

As many as 70 prospective coaches from seven China Sports Universities will attend the five-day clinic, taking in more than 50 hours of instruction both in the classroom and on the playing fields. “This really takes me back to my roots,” said Lou Tilley, the president of Lou Tilley Media, whose company has worked in tandem with Villanova University to develop a 12-part video and written series ‘An Introduction to Football: A Coach’s Guide.’ “I was a coach for a short time after my playing days at Wake Forest University, at which point I transitioned into broadcasting. This brings me full circle in many ways.”

Tilley and his LTM group worked with The Philadelphia Soul (of which Marty Judge and AFL Global partner Ron Jaworski are owners) to focus on the unique brand of arena-style football. Tom Goodhines and long-time AFL all-star Darren Kenney sought out some of the best former players of the league to help teach the basics of the US style of football, which is almost entirely new to China.

“We have worked hard to try and understand that this will be a chance to shape our sport from the ground up,” said Kenney, based in Philadelphia, who worked closely with LTM to coordinate the curriculum with the crew of coaches he will lead. “We will begin with the basics of teamwork, and rules, and then introduce the physical requirements and fundamentals.”

When the week-long clinic is finished, Kenney, Tilley and others will personally visit the Universities to begin the process of spotting prospective players and introducing China to professional American arena football.

CCTV Coverage of the GMI/AFL Global Training Camps

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