If at first, you don’t succeed, try, try again. That’s Vince McMahon’s new philosophy with the XFL.
The Chairman of WWE announced Thursday that his new media company, Alpha Entertainment LLC., will be bringing back the highly controversial football league starting in 2020. There will be eight teams comprised of 40-man rosters, with a 10-game regular season and a 4-team playoff.
Some other things McMahon mentioned were eliminating halftimes, fewer commercial breaks, and bringing in good people to play the game. He expressed his desire to have XFL games be two hours or less. This would make XFL games more than an hour shorter than NFL games.
Another thing McMahon mentioned was “simplifying” the rules, something the NFL has struggled with in the past few years.
One of the questions McMahon was asked was about the national anthem protests in the NFL. McMahon didn’t give a clear answer as to whether players would be punished for kneeling during the anthem.
The announcement comes amidst struggling ratings for the NFL. There also was an XFL documentary produced by ESPN last year, reinvigorating the discussion regarding the league. The speculation of the XFL returning escalated even more when McMahon sold nearly $100 million of his WWE shares to create Alpha Entertainment.
McMahon said there will be zero crossover between WWE and the XFL. He also said he will not be stepping away from his WWE duties, as he will be taking a more behind-the-scenes role with the new XFL.
The XFL originally debuted in 2001 and lasted just one season. Lack of talent, over-sexualization of the cheerleaders, and the WWF/E crossover were all seen as factors for the failure of the league. It was considered one of the biggest flops in sports history upon its closing. Now, McMahon has a chance to re-write history with the relaunch of his new XFL.