Birmingham Vulcans

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Birmingham Vulcans
Birmingham Vulcans logo.gif
Sport Football
League World Football League
Active 1975
Home field Legion Field
Record 9-3
Coach Marvin Bass
General manager N/A
Website N/A

The Birmingham Vulcans were a professional football team which played in the World Football League (WFL) for its second and final partial season in 1975.

The team replaced the Birmingham Americans, winners of the WFL's first "World Bowl" in 1974. That team, owned by a group of Atlanta businessmen, failed to pay its debts after the season and dissolved with over $2 million owed. A group of Birmingham businessmen, led by Ferd Weil, created the new team to continue playing in the league. The "Vulcans" name, which had been registered years before by Harold Blach and Frank Thomas Jr for a possible Birmingham NFL franchise, was transferred to the group.

Weil served as president, with Crawford Johnson III as vice-president, Pee Wee Burgess as secretary-treasurer, Jack Gotta as president of operations. Other investors included Hugh Daniel, Tom Rast, Edwin Ashton, Howard Buchanan, William Kelce, Fred Hallmark, Fred Sington, James Lee and George Simmons. The team also sold shares of stock to the public at $10 each, with a minimum purchase of 10 shares. Shareholders were given first crack at ticket purchases. The owners said that although they had no connection to the Americans, they would make an attempt to satisfy creditors of the previous team with token payments.

On the field, Marvin Bass was head coach. Running back Johnny Musso and defensive back Larry Willingham anchored the team, which also featured quarterback Matt Reed, receivers Thom Gossom Jr and Dennis Homan, linebacker Warren Capone, kicker Ron Slovensky and center John Matlock.

The team went 9-3 and attracted good crowds before the World League itself collapsed on October 22, 1975. The Vulcans were declared champions by consensus, without a playoff. Afterward, Birmingham fans signed a "statement of support" as part of the city's efforts to land an NFL franchise, but none was awarded.

The unrelated Alabama Vulcans, part of the American Football Association, returned professional football to Legion Field in 1979.

Record (9-3)

  • July 3: Vulcans 23, Memphis Southmen 18 at Legion Field (exhibition)
  • July 12: Vulcans 25, Portland Thunder 9 at Legion Field (exhibition)
  • July 19: Vulcans 31, Shreveport Steamer 30 at State Fair Stadium in Shreveport, Louisiana (exhibition)
  • August 2: Vulcans 10, Chicago Winds 0 at Legion Field, attendance 29,000
  • August 9: Vulcans 27, Philadelphia Bell 17 at Legion Field, attendance 21,000
  • August 16: Jacksonville Express 22, Vulcans 11 at Jacksonville, Florida
  • August 23: Southern California Sun 35, Vulcans 25 at Legion Field
  • August 30: Vulcans 21, Shreveport Steamer 8 at Legion Field, attendance 18,500
  • September 7: Vulcans 26, Portland Thunder 8 at Civic Stadium in Portland, Oregon, attendance 6,342
  • September 13: Vulcans 33, San Antonio Wings 25 at Legion Field, attendance 12,500
  • September 21: Vulcans 22, Charlotte Hornets 16 at Legion Field, attendance 18,500
  • September 27: Jacksonville Express 26, Vulcans 18 at Jacksonville, Florida
  • October 4: Vulcans 29, Hawaiians 16 at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii, attendance 18,994
  • October 12: Vulcans 18, Memphis Southmen 14 at the Liberty Bowl in Memphis, Tennessee, attendance 18,000
  • October 19: Vulcans 21, Memphis Southmen 0 at Legion Field, attendance 35,000
Preceded by:
Birmingham Americans
Pro Football in Birmingham
Succeeded by:
Alabama Vulcans


  • "Football, From A to V" (July 1975) Birmingham magazine. Vol. 15, No. 7, p. 166
  • "Birmingham Vulcans" (September 29, 2010) Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia - accessed November 18, 2010

External links