|Southern Indoor Football League (2011)|
|Team colors||Black, gold, garnet|
|Head coach||Rod Miller|
|Trenton Steel (2011)|
|League championships (0)|
|Conference championships (0)|
|Division championships (0)|
|Playoff appearances (1)|
|* Sun National Bank Center (2011)|
The Trenton Steel was a professional indoor football team that began play in the Southern Indoor Football League (SIFL) in the 2011 season. The team suspended operations December 27, 2011. The Steel were based in Trenton, New Jersey, with home games played at the Sun National Bank Center.
History[edit | edit source]
The team was announced as a 2011 expansion franchise in the American Indoor Football Association (AIFA) during a neutral site game at Sun National Bank Center between the AIFA teams New Jersey Revolution and Harrisburg Stampede on June 12, 2010. The Steel became Trenton's first indoor football team since the Indoor Professional Football League's Trenton Lightning. That team folded in 2001 after only six games played, all losses, because of their owner's indictment on various charges. However, the AIFA was split for the 2011 season and the Eastern Conference teams were merged into the Southern Indoor Football League, including the Steel.
On November 4, 2010, the Steel announced its ownership group, owned by Fanteractive LLC and new team president Andrew Bondarowicz. Richard Lisk, who spent several seasons as the general manager of the Philadelphia Soul as well as the Trenton Titans of the ECHL, was named the general manager. Rod Miller was hired as the head coach with assistants in Kahlil Carter, Jermaine Lewis and Rob Stanavitch.
The team made its home debut March 26, 2011, losing 76–73 to the Erie Explosion before a crowd of 3,620 fans. The team earned its first victory, defeating the Explosion, 65–62, at Erie's Tulio Arena on April 9. The Steel defeated the Carolina Speed 86–42 on April 16 for their first win at home and the first home victory by an indoor football team representing Trenton. With a 52–22 win at the Harrisburg Stampede on June 11, the Steel finished their first regular season with an 8-4 record and qualified for the SIFL playoffs. The team finished its inaugural season with a 62–60 loss to the Columbus Lions in the SIFL Eastern Conference semifinal.
After the season, the SIFL proved to be highly unstable and teams split off to form other leagues by September 2011. The Steel were claimed by a resurrected AIFA, then rebranded as American Indoor Football (AIF), after it had failed to play the previous season with its western teams.
On December 27, 2011, the Steel's management announced that they would not field a team for the 2012 season. High travel costs due to a lack of nearby opponents and a dearth of corporate sponsors led to serious financial losses for the team in its first season. With minor indoor football leagues going through a period of instability, ownership did not believe that the team could operate successfully in 2012 but did not rule out a possible return in 2013.
Season results[edit | edit source]
|League Champions||Conference Champions||Division Champions||Playoff berth||League leader|
|Season||League||Conference||Division||Regular season||Postseason results|
|2011||SIFL||Eastern||Northeast||2nd||8||4||0||Lost Eastern Conference semifinal (Columbus) 62–60|
|Totals (including playoffs)||8||5||0|