Tag Archives: sacramento surge

Bennett, Ben

Card: ProSet 1991 WLAF Insert
Acquired: 2018, EBay
Failure: TTM 2014, C/o Home 

Ben Bennett was a prolific quarterback for the Duke Blue Devils finishing as one of the top passers in NCAA history, throwing for 9614 yards on 820 completions (1375 attempts) and 55 TDs from 1980 to 1983. 

Selected in the 6th round of the 1984 NFL draft by the Atlanta Falcons, but ended up playing in the USFL for the Jacksonville Bulls. Bennett then bounced around camps for the Falcons, Oilers, Cowboys, and Bears, eventually seeing a little action playing for the Bengals in ’87.  He’d join the Arena Football league playing for the Chicago Bruisers in 1988 and 1989, leading the team to the championship in the latter season. After playing for the Dallas Texans in 1990, he was selected by the Sacramento Surge of the WLAF during the first round of the positional draft. 

Ben was expected to be the starter for the Surge, but he’d be supplanted by former KC Chiefs 2nd round pick, Mike Elkins- who took all the snaps after the first game. Bennett returned to the Arena Football League later that year with the Orlando Predators.  Ben at this point became a star for the young league. He’d play for Orlando through 1995, before taking one season pitstops with both the San Jose SabreCats and the Portland Forest Dragons.  Ben is known in Arena lore for the ‘Miracle Minute’ in which he engineered a 16 point comeback in under 1 minute. Ben was inducted into the Arena Football Hall of Fame in 2000. 

Outside of his impressive Arena Football resume, Ben has been involved as coach for the Milwaukee Mustangs (1998), Greensboro Prowlers (2000), Florida Bobcats (2001), Florida Firecats (2002-2004), Manchester Wolves (2005-2007), Austin Wranglers (2008), Orlando Fantasy LFL (2010), the New Orleans Voodoo (2011), and the Orlando Predators (2012). 

I had previously tried to get Ben way back in 2011, but had no luck. Since then, I’ve seen no successes or addresses for him that I could use, so I went ahead and just picked this autograph up off of EBay after verifying its integrity. 

NFLATTCPDYDSPCTTDINTRAT
0/1522533.3017.6
RUSHYDSAVGTDLG
2178.509
USFLATTCPDYDSPCTTDINTRAT
0/213711353.810142.5
ARENAATTCPDYDSPCTTDINTRAT
192810691416855.426781N/A
RUSHYDSAVGTDLG
11367.609
WLAFATTCPDYDSPCTTDINTRAT
1/02696034.60239.6

Trainor, Kendall John

Card: Ultimate WLAF 1992
Acquired: TTM 2018, C/o Home
Sent:  6/11     Received: 8/21          (71 days)

Kendall Trainor was a well-practiced kicker for the Arkansas Razorbacks from 1985-1988. During that period he set a few school records and tied a few others- going 5 of 5 twice (A&M and TCU) and 4 of 4 (HOU) in 1988 in field goals made. He holds the school record for most field goals made in a season at 24 (27 attempts) and his career mark of .889 stands as a school record as well. Named an All-American in 1988, Trainor was part of the legendary 1989 NFL Draft- selected in the 9th round by the Phoenix Cardinals. 

Kendall was selected as the first overall kicker in the WLAF Player Draft in 1991 by the Sacramento Surge. He’d go 4/6 on PATs and 8/13 on field goals while pulling double duty with 29 punts for 946 yards and a 56 yard long.
  
Later he’d sign with the New York- New Jersey Knights going 8 of 8 on extra points and 1 of 3 on field goals and finish with 39 total points ranking 5th in the league amongst kickers.

In 1992, Kendall won the kicking job outright in NY-NJ and finished 22 of 25 on extra points and 6 of 11 on field goals. He’d hit 4 of 7 from 40-49 yards including a career long 48 yarder. Kendall had a terrible game against the Ohio Glory missing 2 extra points and 2 field goals. He’d be cut the next day ending his NFL career.

These WLAF guys are getting harder and harder to track down over the years, but when you receive thank-you letters like I did from Kendall it makes it all worth it. Kendall returned home to Arkansas and worked for the Walmart Corporate offices for many years. He currently runs his own business specializing in information technology.

WLAFPATFGPCTLGPTS
34/3915/27.5554879

Wilson, Curtis

Card: ProSet WLAF 1991
Acquired: TTM 2015, C/o Home
Sent: 3/6/15   Received: 3/16/15  (10 days)

Curtis Wilson was a difficult player to track down- but with a bit of effort I was able to find him connecting a few dots. Wilson’s son plays football in Curtis’ footsteps. This gave me a tip leading me to a small town in Oklahoma. Cross referencing that information to Curtis’ data on his ProSet WLAF card cinched the deal. Curtis was the last player from the original ProSet WLAF 1991 set that I needed from the Sacramento Surge.

Curtis Wilson was originally drafted out of Missou by the New England Patriots in 1989. At Missouri, Curtis distinguished himself as a leader on the line when he was voted co-offensive captain as a Senior. His skillset, speed (4.95 40) and size (6’3″, 273) allowed him to play a variety of positions on the line. After being cut by New England shortly before the start of the ’89 season, he’d be selected in the 3rd round of the WLAF positional draft by the Sacramento Surge.

While the Surge had a difficult 1991 season finishing a dismal 2-8, Wilson was one of the up and coming stars of the offense. He’d help pave the way for Sacramento’s rushing attack from the Center position as both Paul Frazier and Victor Floyd averaged over 4 yards a carry in 1991.  He’d earn second team All-World Honors from the league.

Before the 1992 WLAF draft began, the Surge traded draft positions with the Ohio Glory to move up to the #1 overall spot. Sacramento traded the Glory Curtis in the exchange. The move represented the first trade in league history.  Unfortunately Curtis was injured during training camp and was lost for a good portion of the 1992 season.

Curtis included a nice note with his autographed card and wrote “God Bless You!”, on the back of his card next to his player profile picture.