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Expansion Arena Football team officially named Columbus Destroyers, Matt Sauk named coach

The name is a throwback to the Columbus team that played at Nationwide Arena from 2004-08.

Twitter | @ColumbusAFL

On Friday, the Arena Football League chairman of the executive committee Ron Jaworski confirmed that the league’s recently announced Columbus-based expansion team would go by the familiar name of the Columbus Destroyers.

The nickname was used in the previous incarnation of the AFL in Columbus, as the Destoyers played home games at Nationwide Arena from 2004-08, when they were coached by Earle Bruce, Chris Spielman, and Doug Kay.

This new expansion team will be coached by Matt Sauk, who has a long history in the AFL. Having played quarterback for eight teams in the league and af2 — its developmental league — and coaching for five franchises, Sauk has been a part of the AFL for the majority of the past two decades, dating back to 2000. Most recently, he was the head coach of the Salt Lake Screaming Eagles of the Indoor Football League in 2017.

The new Destroyers will again play home games at Nationwide, and will compete in the 12-game regular season. The team will open up the season on Saturday, April 27 at Albany, and will rechristen Nationwide Arena as a home for Arena League Football the next week on Saturday, May 4 against Atlantic City.

The team’s roster will be announced soon. You are able to purchase tickets now at