One of the selling points of indoor football is an intimate atmosphere that puts fans in close contact with the players. However, that intimacy can also be a drawback.
In an Arena Football Association game Saturday night between the West Texas Warbirds and Dallas Prime, a brawl that originally broke out among the players in one end zone eventually involved people in the stands at Ector County Coliseum in Odessa, Texas.
Several fans became involved and, as evidenced by a video shared widely on social media, one fan grabbed a folding chair and hit a Dallas Prime player in the helmet.
According to reports, the fight lasted around 10 minutes.
At a press conference on Sunday, Warbirds president Leif Kurtis called the incident “embarrassing.”
“Regardless of anything that was said on the floor, we do want to apologize to the people of Odessa for what they witnessed last night, and to the people of the Permian Basin as well. This incident is not indicative of how our organization operates,” Kurtis said.
A police investigation is ongoing, although no injuries or arrests were reported as of Sunday afternoon, according to the Midland Reporter-Telegram.
Ector County Coliseum director Aaron Martin told the newspaper his staff will be meeting soon with team officials and the local sheriff’s office to discuss any additional safety and security measures that may need to be adopted in the future.