Steven Ehrhart wasn't prominently mentioned in the 1983 USFL media guide, and doesn't ring many bells in those who fondly remember the league outside of Memphis, but its safe to say that without him, the USFL wouldn't have been the same.

An attorney and former player agent, Ehrhart joined the USFL in its early stages as a consultant, then later became Chet Simmons' right-hand man, with the title of "Director of Administration and Counsel to the Commissioner."  A former quarterback at Colorado College and an assistant coach at the University of Colorado, Ehrhardt had the kind of combination of football, business and legal experience that the fledgling league needed.

In his role Ehrhart was involved in a wide array of the USFL's operations behind the scenes, helping to coordinate the 1983 player draft, and took part in the initial telephone call that ultimately led to the New Jersey Generals blockbuster signing of Herschel Walker.


STEVEN EHRHART
USFL Director of Administration
and later
President, Memphis Showboats

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As the USFL progressed however, Ehrhart saw the writing on the wall - his USFL benefactor, Simmons, was about to be ousted from the Commissioner's chair.  He decided in 1984 to leave the league office to join the expansion Memphis Showboats as its President and General Manager.  In that role he and head coach Pepper Rodgers helped craft a team that improved from a 7-11-0 finish in its maiden season to a playoff contender that came just one victory away from the 1985 USFL Championship Game. 

Unlike most who were involved in the USFL's early stages at the higher levels, Ehrhart wasn't soured on football as a business, going on to serve as executive director of the Liberty Bowl, a position he holds today.  He even took part in another pro football start-up venture, heading up the Memphis Maniax of the ill-fated XFL in 2001.

Ehrhart also holds perhaps the most sought-after piece of USFL memorabilia of all-time:  the famed check for $ 3.76, paid by the National Football League in settlement of its anti-trust case with the USFL from 1986.  Ehrhart says he will someday donate the check to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but for now it rests with him, the last, great custodian of the United States Football League.
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