***Storm Press Release***
TAMPA BAY - The Tampa Bay Storm held an open tryout at the Tampa Bay Times Forum on Saturday, November 16, with the hope of finding players that will help improve on last season’s success.
“I know how you guys are feeling,” said Storm head coach Lawrence Samuels to the crowd. “I had the opportunity to tryout for the team over 19 years ago and I was fortunate enough to make it. Just go out there, stay lose, have fun and give your best effort.”
Nearly 100 hopefuls came out looking for the opportunity to play for the Storm. One individual looking for his shot was U.S. Marine, Tony Fudoli, who played with the Marine Corps. team.
“I’ve always set goals for myself,” said Fudoli. “Coming out of high school I wanted to join the Marine Corps. I had the honor of serving my country for four years. My next goal is to play professional football.”
Fudoli did not make the first round of cuts, but he left it all on the field and came away with a sense of optimism as he left.
“I am happy that I had the opportunity,” said Fudoli as he looked out onto the field. “I’ll continue to follow my dreams and I’ll be out here next time.”
Athletes participated in combine-style testing; including the 40-yard dash, the L-drill and short shuttle drill, as well as individual position and one-on-one drills.
“We appreciate all of the effort these individuals put in today,” said Storm director of player personnel David Wilson. “But at the end of the day we need to make some tough decisions.”
While many athletes traveled from around the country, a majority came from the state of Florida. The experience level varied with participants having played in high school and college programs, to those that have played professionally in other leagues.
“There was a lot of good local talent out there today,” said Samuels. “We will go back and evaluate the film, and see which players stood out.”
With only a few months left until training camp, the Storm will have a lot to think about.
The Five-Time World Champion Tampa Bay Storm enters its 27th season in the Arena Football League. Season tickets can be purchased by visitingTampaBayStorm.com or by calling813.301.6600. For group tickets fans can contact 813.301.6900. Additionally fans and sponsors can follow the Storm on Facebook (Tampa Bay Storm) or Twitter(@tampabaystorm) for up to date n