Prior to the Mad Dogs, Smith fronted an ownership group (along with such entities as former Memphis Showboats owner William Dunavantand the estate of Elvis Presley) that tried to get a National Football League team into Memphis in 1993. The Memphis Hound Dogs, as the proposed team was to be called, was one of five teams to be considered, but was passed over in favor of the Carolina ...
Due to massive losses and the late-season attendance collapse, the Mad Dogs folded at the December 1995 CFL meetings. It is likely they would have been forced out of town in any event by the impending arrival of the NFL’s Houston Oilers, who were planning to play at the Liberty Bowl while their new stadium in Nashville was being built. Sharing the Liberty Bowl with the ...
History of the Mad Dogs
The Memphis Mad Dogs were a Canadian Football League (CFL) team that played in Memphis, Tennessee, from 1995 to 1996. The team was founded by local businessman Fred Smith and had an ownership group composed of prominent business leaders in the area. The Mad Dogs played their home games at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium and were coached by former NFL head coach Pepper Rodgers.
During their two-year existence, the Mad Dogs compiled a record of 18 wins and 20 losses with one tie game against Toronto Argonauts on October 11th, 1995, which ended as a 16-16 draw. They made it to playoffs once but lost in a first-round match-up against Baltimore Stallions, who won the Grey Cup championship that year. Despite being competitive, the franchise failed due to its lack of attendance at home games, resulting in financial difficulties for owners and leading them to close operations after the 1996 season.
Despite the short-lived success, Mad Dog’s fans remain loyal today as they remember fondly how exciting it was when CFL football came alive in Memphis for those two years between the 1995 -1996 seasons, even though all good things must end eventually. It is safe to say that many sports fans still have great memories of cheering on hometown heroes like quarterback Reggie Slack or wide receiver/kick returner Chris Armstrong. At the same time, they represented “Memphis Proud” by playing gridiron glory!
Mad Dogs Products
1995 / Canadian Football League
1995 / Memphis Mad Dogs
Mad Dogs - The Memphis Mad Dogs were a Canadian Football League (CFL) team that played in Memphis, Tennessee, from 1995 to 1996. The team's owners chose the name as an homage to their hometown and its rich history of blues music. But what exactly does it mean?
"Mad Dog" is often used colloquially in American English to refer to someone wild or out of control. This meaning originates from an old saying about mad dogs running around without regard for consequences or safety. It's also possible that this phrase was adopted because many people associate blues music with being wild and carefree, which could be seen as analogous to the unpredictable nature of football itself!
In addition, there may have been another layer behind naming this particular CFL franchise after such a phrase: The original owner wanted his team’s nickname—and thus identity—to reflect not only on Memphis' musical heritage but also its reputation as “the birthplace of rock 'n roll”; hence why he chose something like “Mad Dogs” instead of something more traditional like “Tigers” or “Bulldogs." In essence, he wanted his players (and fans!) to embody all these aspects when they took the field each week: A gritty attitude combined with intense passion and energy!
Overall, while we may never know precisely why this particular moniker was chosen for such a short-lived franchise back in the 1995–1996 season – one thing is sure: It certainly made them stand out amongst other teams at a time!
Grey Cup 0
1995 / Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium
1995 / Fred Smith
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