Before the era of video games, there was another way to play football at home -- electric football. While the idea of a vibrating game board with plastic football players moving randomly sounds archaic now, it was once a sensation for NFL fans to enjoy at home. Sadly, the creator of such interesting memorabilia, Norman Sas, died recently at the age of 87.
Introduced to the public in 1949, Sas got NFL Properties to buy into the idea in 1967 and for well over a decade, until computer and video games came along, electric football ruled the football gaming world. For an idea of just how big, Sas himself commented on the phenomenon in a Washington Post story in '98:
"For the first 10 years, we generated more money for NFL Properties than anyone else," Sas said. "Then the [video] games came out, and that was the beginning of the end."
Is there life after video games and Sas' death? Apparently there is. Jay Levin of the North Jersey Record writes:
As for Electric Football, it's still chugging and vibrating in this era of video and computer playthings, and there are competitions nationwide sponsored by the Miniature Football Coaches Association, a hobbyists' group. Miggle Toys continued to make Electric Football; in February, Miggle was acquired by a Seattle-based toymaker, Ballpark Classics Inc. Ballpark reverted to the name of Mr. Sas' company, Tudor Games - a nod to Electric Football's importance to the deal.
Anyone have any electric football memories of their own?
Did you ever play electric football?
Yes! (702 votes)
No, I knew of it but never played. (161 votes)
What in the...? (140 votes)
1003 total votes