Arena Football Coming to the Quad Cities

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record

The Iowa Barnstormers will battle the Milwaukee Mustangs in a preseason match up at the i wireless Center on Thursday, March 3 at 7 p.m. Tickets go on sale Friday, Feb. 4 at 10 am.

2011 Iowa Barnstormers

The Iowa Barnstormers were founded in 1995 and since their inception have been one of Arena Football's most successful and well-known franchises. The team is best known for developing star Quarterback Kurt Warner, who played for the Barnstormers for three seasons (1996-98). Iowa finished 2010 with a 7-9 record, however they have high goals as they enter 2011. Head Coach John Gregory returns for another season at the helm. He is widely known as one of the AFL's all-time best coaches.

Wide Receiver #22 Jesse Schmidt returns to the Quad Cities as a member of the Barnstormers offensive attack. Last season he led Iowa in all receiving categories including 116 catches for 1,621 yards and 26 TD's. Previously, he spent 3 seasons (2007-09) with the Quad City Steamwheelers and was the team's top player before moving up to the AFL. In 2009 Schmidt was named the Big Game Player of the Year for af2 as he compiled a remarkable 172 catches for 2390 yards and 58 touchdowns. Jesse attended school at Buena Vista University and is a native of Laurens, Iowa.

Wide Receiver #11 Todd Blythe - Todd will be back in a Barnstormer uniform for a second season in 2011. Last season as a rookie, Blythe had 65 catches and 22 touchdowns. His Arena Football career follows four standout years at Iowa State University, where he holds just about every receiving record.

2011 Milwaukee Mustangs Team

The Milwaukee Mustangs return to their roots and a rich heritage of exciting Arena Football action in Milwaukee dating back to 1994 when the Mustangs first joined the Arena Football. The 2010 team experienced a great deal of success on the playing field and finished with a 12-6 record, a Midwest Division title and a playoff victory over the rival Chicago Rush. The team fell just short of a berth in the Arena Bowl Championship Game in a second round playoff loss on the road to the Spokane Shock, who then won the championship the following week. Last season's team also featured the Arena Football League's MVP in Quarterback Chris Greisen, who is now with the Dallas Cowboys.

Former Philadelphia Eagle and Wisconsin Badger All-American lineman Bob Landsee once again leads the Milwaukee Arena Football team into war - and with Bob, one of the most experienced and successful coaches in Arena Football, it truly is a "50 yard indoor war" every game with his hard hitting, smash mouth approach! It's just the way he played the game in the NFL and Big Ten. Bob is joined by Mark Stoute, another established Arena Football coach with previous head coaching experience in the AFL, who also oversees Player Personnel Operations.

Arena Football teams carry 24 players on their respective rosters and the returning Mustang club is peppered with outstanding, proven professional football players. Many with previous NFL experience. An initial preseason roster will be issued in early February

Many AFL players have gone on to successful careers in the NFL, most notably Kurt Warner. Warner played college football at University of Northern Iowa and then the Iowa Barnstormers, taking the Barnstormers to ArenaBowl X in 1996 and ArenaBowl XI in 1997. Others include Anthony Armstrong, Oronde Gadsden, Adrian McPherson, Rashied Davis, Jay Feely, Rob Bironas, and Paul Justin.

Ticket prices are $11.00, $17.00, $30.00, and there will also be a limited number of VIP front row tickets available for $50.00.  Tickets go on sale Friday, February 4 at 10 am and are available at the i wireless Center box office, all Ticketmaster outlets, by phone at 800-745-3000, and on-line at

About the AFL

 Since its inception in 1987, the AFL has afforded the fast-paced and exciting game of Arena Football to millions of fans in a myriad of markets across the country.  The NFL Network will once again broadcast an AFL National Game of the Week for the entire regular and post season on Friday nights at 8:00 pm EST, culminating with the ArenaBowl Championship Game in August.  For more information visit