Arena Football: New Utah franchise hires White
By Andrew Aragon
The Salt Lake Tribune
Danny White finally confirmed Thursday what was a poorly kept secret: He will be the first coach of Utah's Arena Football League team when it begins play in January of 2006.
"It's good to finally get this out of the closet," White said. "It's been, 'I don't know, we'll wait and see.' It's funny how things happen sometimes."
White's hiring was a combination of a coup and common sense for the new franchise. White, a member of the LDS church, is also a member of the AFL's Hall of Fame. While he led the NFL Dallas Cowboys to three consecutive NFC championship games as a quarterback in the early 1980s, White found greater success in the AFL, which is now in its 19th season.
White has the second-most coaching wins in AFL history. His Arizona Rattlers won league titles in 1994 and '97 and they advanced to the Arena Bowl and lost in 2002, '03 and '04.
"For me personally, I've got an excitement about this and some juices flowing in me that haven't been flowing in a long time," White said. "I was excited when we started the team in Arizona 13 years ago. That excitement waned
a little bit over the years as we moved further and further down the food chain in Phoenix and seemed to get less and less of the attention that I felt like the players and the organization deserved."
White was the only coach in Rattlers history until July, when the team chose not to renew his contract.
White said he originally got involved in the AFL because it gave him the chance to work in Phoenix, his hometown. He wasn't too familiar with the AFL but he agreed to become Arizona's coach and general manager because it gave him the chance to get back into football without having to dedicate his life to it, he said.
"I fell in love with the players and the game," White said. "I'm addicted to it."