Season 5, December something, 2017. Brian Mills was fresh out of college, and was entering the DSFL draft. He had been scouted by a couple of teams, but had no idea where he was going to end up. When his name was called in the third round, he knew that Tijuana was going to become his second home.
In his rookie season, the owner of the Tijuana Luchadores had to step down, and hand the team over to the General Manager, Joseph Askins. It was mid-season, and the team had shown promise, with the Tijuana defense being one of the greatest the DSFL had ever seen before. One night, Askins asked me if I would be interested in taking a player/coach position on the team. I immediately accepted the position, and from then on, my career had taken off. We went on to finish the season 7-6-1, winning in week 14 to knock our rivals, the San Antonio Marshals out of the second playoff spot. The Palm Beach Solar Bears were the team to beat that season, as they finished the season winning 8 of their last 9 games. The elderly members of the '85 bears were kicking everyones asses and not apologizing for it. That season we lost in the first round of the playoffs, blown out by a score of 27-3. The end of the season meant saying goodbye to most of my teammates, but it also meant that I had to start preparing to coach next seasons team.
The S6 DSFL draft was one that will go down in infamy. The Luchadores had 8 draft picks, 0 of which were committed to improving their skill. They were just in it for the contract money, and get out of the league as soon as possible. Sam Penner the QB showed great promise as the only active member on the team, but around week 5 was caught in a tampering scandal, leading him to fall off the face of the earth. The season was doomed from the start, but a little spec of light appeared off of the waiver wire. Tight End, Versa L'alto. We picked L'alto off of the waivers just out of sheer curiosity of how it would change the locker room. L'alto was one of the best Luchadores to step foot in the Tijuana headquarters for years. Even with most of the team giving up, L'alto put in work every day, and never took a day off. Unfortunately, his efforts were not rewarded, as the Luchadores tied for last place in the division, recording a record of 5-9. This actually gave them a playoff berth, but was short lived as the Marshals (...damn marshals...) knocked the Luchadores out of the playoffs with ease.
After the playoff game, General Manager Askins walked up to me and told me the news. He was falling ill and couldn't spend much time running the team anymore so he was going to hand the keys of the team over to me. I was handed a team with little to no assets. A team that had never once won a playoff game before. But I knew that this season would be different from the last two. And the first order of business was to find a second in charge to help build the Tijuana Luchadores up to a dynasty.
With an open spot, many people would look outside of the team to hire. Someone with experience in managing people, or someone who would be good with analytics, or football knowledge. But I had the best possible hire right under my nose for the whole season, Versa L'alto. I offered him the second in command role of the team and he took the job. Step one of rebuilding the team was already done.
The next order of business was scouting prospects for the S7 DSFL draft. There were many good candidates who would have fit great in Tijuana, but creating a good locker room presence was the biggest priority. We couldn't have a team full of quitters like the last batch of rookies we drafted, so we looked for enthusiasm and drive. The Pennington brothers, Chad, Brad, and .... what was the third one's name...... Thad? They stuck out above all of the other prospects on the board, so me and L'alto decided we were going all in on these three brothers. Among the prospects, another person stood out beyond the rest. Linebacker Ben Horne. This kid was the brightest and most energetic football player ive seen in my time in the DSFL, and we knew that pairing him with Chad and Thad on the defense would create a Tijuana defense better than the one we had in S5. Lastly, Viggo Squanch. He was a guy we had heard a lot about from consultants and confidants. Drafting a quarterback as talented as Brad Pennington, we knew we would have to go get him reliable weapons for him to throw to, so Squanch was our target. After the draft, we felt as though we completely changed the dynamic of the team. We went from a team with a dead locker room, and no hope of winning, to a team whose only goal is to come out of this season bringing the Ultimini trophy back home to Tijuana.
Once the offseason officially started, we ran into more luck through the waiver wire. Our first waiver wire pick up, was Vance Sachs, defensive end. "This guy literally has Sacks in his name..." Said an anonymous player in the locker room. The players renamed the defense to "Cuidad de Sacks", which roughly translates to "City of Sacks". This aggressive mentality is exactly what me and L'alto were looking for in a defense. Along with Sachs, we also managed to pick up a safety, Harry Balzac (Dont make fun of his last name, he comes from a foreign country you bigots)and a kicker , Klaus DerFisch. We also learned that our teammate from a couple seasons ago, Antonio Legion, would be joining the team as a send down from the NSFL because obviously Bovo thinks he's garbage or something like that. But we were glad to welcome him back to Tijuana, and give Brad another weapon to throw to.
The last order of business, was finding a strong man in the middle to solidify the defensive front four. Kansas City had the first claim on the waiver wires for Defensive Tackle Omar Wrong. We were looking to find a way to grab this DT and ensure our Ultimini run for the season, so immediately we picked up the phone with Kansas City and worked out a deal to send Wrong to the 'Cuidad De Sacks'.
All in all, with the roster we have in place right now, there should be no reason anyone will be calling us the Cinderella story of the year. From the moment we were on the clock in the S7 DSFL draft, we knew we were going to be the team to beat on the way to the playoffs. Get hyped Luchadores, we're about to make history this season
1185 words, ready for grading