Milwaukee Bonecrushers
Founded 2008
Folded 2009
History Milwaukee Bonecrushers (2008-2009)
Chicago Cardinals (2010)
Chicago Knights (2011-future)
Arena U.S. Cellular Arena
Based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Colors Purple, Silver, Black, & White
League Continental Indoor Football League
Head coach John Burns
General manager
Championships 0
Dancers The Crush

The Milwaukee Bonecrushers were a team in the Continental Indoor Football League. They played their home games at the U.S. Cellular Arena. The Bonecrushers were Milwaukee's second indoor football franchise, following the Milwaukee Mustangs of the Arena Football League.

The franchise made an immediate splash in Milwaukee when it announced former Green Bay Packer Gilbert Brown signed a three-year contract to be the team's first head coach. [1] However, the optimism quickly faded when Brown announced he was resigning from the position after just three games on April 8, 2008. Much of the team's staff and many of the team's players also left at the same time, raising eyebrows among the Milwaukee media and fans. The Bonecrushers finished 2008 with a hodgepodge of players and coaches, winning just one game, a 51-46 road contest against the Muskegon Thunder featuring a 26-yard touchdown run by Bonecrushers' quarterback Brian Ryczkowski on the final play of the game.

The rumored reasoning behind the exodus of many of the original members of the franchise was the team's inability to pay its bills or personnel. This was confirmed when a judgment was entered against the Bonecrushers in favor of Challenger Industries, the company that sold the team its game field AstroTurf, in the amount of $29,539.29 on October 15, 2008. Challenger resolved its claim against John Burns, one of the owners of the Milwaukee Bonecrushers, prior to the matter going to trial. [2]

The Bonecrushers returned to action in 2009 with renewed optimism after signing LeRoy McFadden, brother of NFL player Darren McFadden, as its new head coach, as well as the previous year's CIFL Offensive Player of the Year, Randy Bell. However, McFadden also chose to resign after just three games,[3] leaving assistant coach, John Burns, to take over as head coach. While the Bonecrushers survived the 2009 season in Milwaukee, attendance dwindled to nearly nothing and the team finished with a record of 3-8.

Prior to the 2010 season, the Bonecrushers management reorganized and the team elected to cease operations in Milwaukee. Many of the individuals involved with the Bonecrushers, including Burns, moved onto be part of the new Chicago Cardinals franchise based in Villa Park, Ill. [4]

While the Bonecrushers franchise is generally regarded as having failed in the eyes of Milwaukeeans, their existence did help create two other CIFL franchises: The Cardinals and the Wisconsin Wolfpack. Plans had already been in place for the Wolfpack to field its first outdoor team in the summer of 2008 when Brown left the Bonecrushers. Eventually, many members of the Wolfpack's staff were brought in to help the Bonecrushers complete the indoor season. In 2009, the Wolfpack fielded a CIFL team of its own in Madison, Wisconsin. The Bonecrushers would play the Wolfpack twice in their final season in Milwaukee, losing both times.


Note: W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties

Season W L T Finish Playoff results
Milwaukee Bonecrushers (CIFL)
2008 1 11 0 3rd Great Lakes West --
2009 3 8 0 4th Western --
Chicago Cardinals (CIFL)
2010 0 10 0 6th --
Chicago Knights (CIFL)
2011 0 0 0 --
Totals 4 29 0 (including playoffs)

2008 Season ScheduleEdit

Date Opponent Home/Away Result
March 21 Chicago Slaughter Home Lost 41-64
March 29 Muskegon Thunder Home Lost 35-60
April 6 Flint Phantoms Home Lost 53-62
April 12 Marion Mayhem Away Lost 19-43
April 19 Chicago Slaughter Away Lost 18-56
April 27 Miami Valley Silverbacks Home Lost 42-43
April 30 Saginaw Sting Away Lost 28-51
May 9 New Jersey Revolution Away Lost 32-56
May 17 Muskegon Thunder Away Won 51-46
May 23 Rock River Raptors Home Lost 3-56
May 31 Saginaw Sting Home Lost 28-54
June 7 Rock River Raptors Away Lost 29-53

2009 Season ScheduleEdit

Date Opponent Home/Away Result
March 6 Chicago Slaughter Away Lost 24-84
March 20 Rock River Raptors Away Won 53 - 40
March 28 Wisconsin Wolfpack Home Lost 20 - 36
April 4 Miami Valley Silverbacks TBD PPD
April 11 Wheeling Wildcats Home Won 35-32
April 18 Rock River Raptors Home Lost 31-41
April 25 Chicago Slaughter Away Lost 25-78
May 2 Wisconsin Wolfpack Away Lost 26-69
May 9 Fort Wayne Freedom Home Lost 33-51
May 16 Rock River Raptors Away Lost 12-32
May 22 Chicago Slaughter Home Lost 50-70
May 30 Miami Valley Silverbacks Home Won 40-32


  1. JS Online: Graphic
  2. Milwaukee County Courthouse, Case No.: 2008-CV-008105
  3. More Turmoil for Bonecrushers
  4. Where are the Bonecrushers?

External linksEdit

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