UNITED WE STAND…
The Birmingham Bulls are one of the longer established American football teams playing in the United Kingdom, having been founded in 1983.
Jerry Hartman, a former US military policeman with some College Football experience formed the team in a local park, and by April 1984, there was enough interest to begin a fully fledged adult team. The team was financed by local businessman Dave Gill, who later became the Bulls’ first chairman and would go onto become chairman of the British American Football Association.
On Friday June 8 1984, the Bulls played their first game against the Milton Keynes Bucks at the Alexander Stadium, losing 40–7. They later took residence in Salford Park, underneath the Gravelly Hill Interchange, and under Dave Webb, the club attempted to purchase the land from the local council.
In 1986, as members of the BAFL, under coach Warren Tate, the Bulls won their first national championship, and represented the UK in the inaugural Eurobowl, finishing third, losing to eventual runners-up, the Bologna Doves.
In 1988, the Bulls won their second national championship, and first in the Budweiser League, beating the London Olympians at Loftus Road 30–6, and again qualifying for the Eurobowl. However, they once more lost to the eventual runners up, this time the Amsterdam Crusaders.
In 1989, the Bulls again made the Budweiser Bowl to challenge for the national championship, but lost to the Manchester Spartans 21–14.
Under the banner of the NDMA league, the Bulls took their third national championship in 1991, defeating the London Olympians 39–38 at the Alexander Stadium, with kicker Mark Webb scoring the winning field goal with just 17 seconds remaining.
In 1992, the Bulls again faced Eurobowl disappointment, falling to the eventual winners, the Amsterdam Crusaders once more.
In 1995, the Bulls won their most recent national championship, defeating the London Olympians once more, in a 34–30 game. However, the Olympians got their revenge later in the year, knocking the Bulls out of the Eurobowl at the quarter-final stage, before going onto finish as runners-up.
After a re-invention, the Bulls began life in Division 2 in 1996.
The Bulls reached the national championship again in 1999, but fell to the London Olympians in a close, defence-heavy 9–6 loss. The result of the 1999 Britbowl was repeated a year later in 2000, when the London Olympians again defeated the Bulls in the national championship game, 34–26.
In 2013, the Bulls junior team finished an undefeated season by defeating the Woodham Warriors in the Junior Britbowl at Keepmoat Stadium, and were crowned national champions.
In 2014, in the second and final year of former Redditch Arrows head coach Ian Hill’s tenure, despite a large rookie contingent, the Bulls came within one game of making the play-offs.
2015 saw a league restructure and the Bulls found themselves placed in the Division One SFC North, with former player, Mark Pagett, taking over the reins.
After two seasons of transition, with a large number of rookies getting regular playing time due to a number of experienced players retiring or moving to new clubs, the Bulls were relegated to Division Two following a one win season in 2017.
Mark Pagett resigned from the role as Head Coach and the Bulls moved to appoint Matthew Sheldon as the new leader for a new chapter of 'Bulls Football' in 2018.
ERIN GO BRAGH HOLLY LANE ERDINGTON BIRMINGHAM B24 9LH