Competing with the NFL

is it crazy to try to compete with the NFL ?

I don’t think so. Here is why:

1. There is obviously demand for top level professional football. That is exactly what the UFL hopes to be someday, an equal of the NFL, if not more.

2. The NFL wants and needs competition. They have grown so big and powerful that every move they make is scrutinized by local or federal officials. A competitor allows them to point to us and explain that their moves are for competitive reasons rather than the move of a monopoly.

3. They just extended their CBA. Their CBA structure is not designed for a competitive environment. Competition for top players, even if the UFL gets just a few, increases prices at the top end for all teams. Every star will get paid more, but still have to fit under the cap. That forces teams to use more low cost players, at the expense of signing the middle of the roster. That gives us access to quite a few very, very good NFL players. The downside is that it will significantly impact small market NFL teams and its unclear how the NFL would respond to that and what the impact would be on the UFL.

4. There are a lot of markets that are bigger than some current NFL markets that do not have teams that would love to have a pro football team.

5. There are a lot of smart people involved in the UFL

6. Its a great TV product.

These are just my personal reasons for having an interest in being involved with the UFL. They still have a ton of work to do before a game can be played. Like all good ideas with a great opportunity available to it, the hard part is in the execution.

Hopefully they can get it done.

422 thoughts on “Competing with the NFL

  1. Pingback: Welcome to the United Football League « the Sporting reVolt

  2. Mr.Cuban, please is there anyway I can get more information about the new UFL league, and how I can work with the Organization.?


    Comment by ssenate -

  3. This is one of the best ideas i have heard in a long time. You should try to get Vince Mcmahon and Donald Trump to be owners of teams in Connecticut (New England) and New York. two huge egos, bank accounts and drive to make something like this succeed.

    Comment by Gary -

  4. My one piece of advice to the UFL: don\’t name teams things like PRIDE or POWER or SOL ala WNBA. Plural team names, like all 32 NFL teams, make the league more credible and less tacky.

    Comment by He Hated Me -

  5. I can tell you a simple way to get FREE instant nationwide TV coverage AND how to make money from the very start.

    Offer it to a local independant station to run on one of their digital channels. Intergrate mobile into the feed like we do at for our sports clients. Add predictive voting, live text to screen and premium mobile reverse auctions and every hour of company content will make money right from the start. This is a very radical move but you could pull it off and I can show you how cause Im playing in the space today.

    Comment by Jeff Vick -

  6. Saw this story in our local Las Vegas paper:

    LV part of plan for football league: Eight-team UFL would start in \’08

    Despite a mediocre record, the Las Vegas Outlaws of the XFL had amazing support. However, I feel that the combination of the prime games on Saturday night (when everyone is out or when men stuck at home have to watch what their woman wants [pity them]) was just a bad time slot.

    Friday nights not do much better.

    My thoughts and suggestion? Do a winter/spring league. I love football more than the NBA (sorry… just my thing). I\’d love to watch football through April.

    HOWEVER… keep all the teams in the south half of the U.S. (plus Mexico). Places where in the dead of winter, it is still warm enough to see a game. And… areas where football is loved.

    Bottom Line:

    No teams in New York or Chicago. The XFL showed that playing to that audience didn\’t work, plus too cold to watch a game.

    Teams should be in the Southern half of the U.S. (and Mexico if needed). Teams in cities with no NFL team.

    Make the season Feb – April and have the playoffs and UFC super bowl to happen just before NBA playoffs happen.

    But.. with the zillions of football games already available every day of the week now in the fall… good effing luck.

    The XFL almost had it right. Almost. Winter/Spring works in football happy markets in warmer climates. That will work. Friday nights in the fall… no dice.

    Ted Newkirk

    Comment by Ted Newkirk -

  7. Mark,

    If the UFL changes a few rules, it could create a truly innovative and exciting brand of football. I would like to see unlimited motion and forward motion before the snap allowed, like in Canada or the Arena league. Middle screen plays are illegal in the NFL, but legal in college football.

    Fans love big plays, touchdowns and sacks. If offensive linemen were required to space themselves at least a yard apart, it would create natural running lanes for running backs, and pass rushing lanes for linebackers. Make the endzone larger and require only one foot inbounds for pass completions. If you really studied the rulebook, I\’m sure you could find other changes that could make the game more exciting.

    Comment by Tom -

  8. Mark,

    In order to compete with the NFL, you would probably need to adopt a novel approach to the game, similiar to what the Arena League did, because the NFL has the talent monopoly. I would suggest tweaking the rules of football to make the game more exciting. Try making the run n\’ shoot or shotgun offense the base offense for all the teams. You could do that by requiring the offense to line up with at least four ends and only 2 backs on every play. Adopt some ideas from rugby or aussie rules football. Allow the offense to advance the ball by kicking it, and allow dropkicked field goals. Imagine the possibities! The quarterback lines up in the shotgun formation with a 3rd and long situation on the 30 yard line. He tries dropkicking a field goal and comes up short, but no problem because one of the wide recievers recovers the ball in the endzone for a touchdown! A league that allowed things like this would be exciting to watch, even if it was staffed by second tier talent. Think outside the box!

    Comment by Tom -

  9. Mark, please, please, please, please don\’t allow your new league to have soccer-style singular names. You know the kind I mean… Express, Extreme, Victory, Gold,Steamer,etc.

    Football teams should have predatory names that end in \”s\”.
    There are plenty of those type of names still available….

    Barracudas, Silverbacks (gorillas), Scorpions, Condors, Vipers, Rhinos, Griffins, Centaurs, Yellowjackets, Whalers, Sea Wolves, Cougars, Warhawks, Stallions, Toros, Diablos, Makos (Sharks), Phantoms, Stingrays, Norsemen, Kodiaks (Bears), Corsairs, etc.

    Comment by Robert -

  10. God bless you and Good luck 😉

    Comment by ziare -

  11. Who says you have to compete with the NFL? Let them continue to overpay for a bunch of whiners that lost heart for the game a long time ago.

    Redefine the game. Agents are banned. Every player has to negotiate is own deal. No unions, they only raise the price of everything and give us less for the money. Just get a bunch of guys that want to play the game for the love of the game not for the money. I gurantee you, people will relate to this more than what the NFL is marching out there.

    Yeah, maybe I\’m dreaming, but then again, isn\’t that what you are doing by trying to create this league?

    Comment by Dan The Man -

  12. I think the league will thrive. One reason is because it will be played in the fall, when everyone has football fever. I think the league should be played with the same rules as NFL as well. Obviously it needs to avoid the XFL rules and media coverage. Overall, I think it will work, and I will say that I will watch the league, no doubt. Good luck Mr. Cuban!

    Comment by Tim -

  13. i know it has nfl but put one in jacksonville we love football there please

    Comment by mickey -

  14. Dear UFL officials,

    The USFL of 1983-85 showed there is a market for pro football
    in the Spring. And now there is such a proliferation of domed
    stadia that a spring league with a regular season schedule
    running from mid-February to mid-June could be quite successful.
    This league could grow to 20 teams in a few years as

    Toronto Detroit Atlanta Seattle
    Montreal St. Louis New Orleans Arizona
    Vancouver Milwaukee Houston Los Angeles
    Seattle Indianapolis San Antonio San Diego
    Minnesota Memphis Birmingham Portland (OR)

    Thanks for receiving my comments.


    Rick Worth CHICAGO

    Comment by Rick Worth -

  15. Mark

    This is August already and when are you going to get this league-UFL moving. The AAFL has 6 teams already and you have only what fans want as in teams. IF you are going to play in 2008, you shuold have teams, at least 4, by now. IF this league isnt going to happen, you, Mark or who should let the public now

    Comment by Frank -

  16. This is a new website for the UFL which is

    Comment by Frank -

  17. Mark this is what the XFL was about look at this great video

    Comment by Dennis -

  18. Dear Mr. Cuban,

    you are planning to start a own football league and want to bring up some competition for the NFL? Europe offers a great fit to this plans with the NFL Europe franchises.

    The NFL has established football in Europe during the last 15 years but ruined their success heavily by closing the NFL Europa in June. Fans in Europe are extremely disappointed and angry about the closing by the NFL. The fans interest in football is still verg high but not anymore for the NFL. This vacancy is creating a one time opportunity for anyone else to step in place of the NFL and take advantage of fans desire. A loyal fanbase, sponsorship & media interest, a ready network and modern stadiums are guaranteed and allows to start a new league right away.

    Some facts about this years NFL Europa season:

    The whole league produced the highest number of attendance in 15 years with more than 20.000 people per game. Berlin increased its attendance by 13,8 percent, Cologne by 6,0 percent, Frankfurt by 17,5 percent, Hamburg by 38,4 percent and Rhein by 11,2 percent. Finally for the World Bowl the league recorded the highest attendance since five years with 48.125 people.

    Also the Team of Rhein increased their amount of sponsorship income by more than 50 percent and also the time on TV by 30 percent.

    The DSF (German TV station which is specialized on sports television) put up two extra shows every week (one before gameday and one after) despite not holding the rights for the live game coverage which is also a sign for increased media interest for Football in Europe

    Further every team played in new or renovated modern stadiums. They were just build for the soccer championship 2006 in Germany and among the most spectacular arenas in Europe.

    I hope you consider this for your future football plans and include Europe in it.

    Kind regards,


    Comment by Stefan -

  19. I want to be the Herschel Walker of this league!!!!!!!!!!!! Hey tell KG I said whats up…I love his drive and heart

    Comment by O -

  20. C\’mon Mark, $600+ million for the Cubs??!! The Phillies are worth approx. $475 million according to Forbes. Offer them $500-550 million and you\’ll still save anywhere from 50-100 million!!

    Comment by Lenny Sutton -

  21. Hey Mark, I just saw the news about it on I know it\’s off the UFL subject, but if you want to put your money into a franchise that will be worth it, please consider buying the Phillies. They are always on the precipice of the playoffs but the owners are too friggin\’ cheap to get the players they need to get them over the hump. I\’m not saying you have to be George Stienbrenner Jr. or anything with the spending, but a $105-115 million payroll would get the Phils in the playoffs perenially and give them a chance at the World Series (I mean winning it, not just getting there). They\’ve already got a great nucleus of Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins, and Cole Hamels; just a couple of bullpen arms, another solid starter, and they should be good to go. As a diehard, exasperated Philadelphia sports fan, please give some thought about the Phillies. There are a bunch of suitors to buy the Cubs. Why wrangle with all of those other folks, when you can blow away these carpetbaggers with a good offer and become an icon and hero in the city of Philadelphia. Think about Mark…please.

    Comment by Lenny Sutton -

  22. Don\’t give-up. Find a way to make this happen. Prepare you mind and body for the long, long task ahead. If you are unwilling to make this you life\’s work, don\’t start. Many failed because they weren\’t serious enough and seriously underestimated the fortitude, well-experienced and influential assets of the NFL. This league will methodically break you down and tear you apart like Hagler dismantled Hearns–with any scent of weakness of will. Their playbook gets thicker and weaknesses fixed with every effort to curtail it\’s franchise. They know and have a strategy for every move any new league must make. They know their strengths well, as well as their weaknesses. Not until somebody comes along who\’ll make football his business will anyone ever pose a serious threat to the NFL. They\’re like Tyson in his prime–they can be beaten by someone willing to bring their lunch and expose their weaknesses, as the AFL did. Be prepared, think through this thoroughly, account for every possiblity and do not wage war on multiple fronts–Focus! Napolean Bonapart said, \”Bring all resources to bare at the decisive point.\” Finally, read \”22 Immutable Laws of Marketing\” by Jack Riles. You must come to see and believe that you can win. I hope you \”Shock the World\” like Ali did in 1965! Go Mavs.

    Comment by David Patterson -

  23. Mark,
    I think the UFL is a really good idea. You may get this alot, but, here is a city i recommend : Honolulu, Hawaii. I think it\’ll be cool. When will the first season begin? I\’ll be watching.

    Comment by not important -

  24. Location, Location, Location.

    Virginia is the largest state without ANY major league franchise. The Hampton Roads area is one of the largest urban areas in the country and there is such an appetite for sport here with only a minor league hockey team and minor league baseball team to show for it.

    With VTech and UVA in this state along with almost a dozen other successful college teams, football is a natural and proven winner with the population here. Hampton Roads fans must travel at least 4 hours to see the VTech, UVA or Redskins teams play.

    America\’s First Region. Huge tourist destination. Population of 1.8 million (not including Richmond an hour up the road) and an estimated 30% population growth by 2034? You know it makes sense to bring this venture to \’the 7 cities\’.

    Comment by Stephen -

  25. Mark

    Why not try to replace NFL Europe league….there are lots of fans crying out for a franchise…London for one….Look at the response to the Dolphins-Giants game at new Wembley and the attendance at last World Bowl. If anyone can make it work you can and there are lots of American owners of English soccer teams i.e. Randy Learner, Tom Hicks, George Gillette, The Glazers etc maybe they would invest

    Comment by KeithT -

  26. Mark

    Why not try to replace NFL Europe league….there are lots of fans crying out for a franchise…London for one….Look at the response to the Dolphins-Giants game at new Wembley and the attendance at last World Bowl. If anyone can make it work you can and there are lots of American owners of English soccer teams i.e. Randy Learner, Tom Hicks, George Gillette, The Glazers etc maybe they would invest

    Comment by KeithT -

  27. look at this great XFL video that was what the XFL was about

    Comment by Dennis -

  28. You only have to look at English Premiership model for your example. Three games a week often but rising viewing figures.

    Make the product good enough and you can saturate the airwaves.

    That was Vinnie Mac\’s problem, (along with the credibility issue – is it fake?) the XFL just wasn\’t played at a high enough level.

    Comment by Queen of Suburbia -

  29. Mark

    Best of luck with any new venture to take on the NFL
    iam a huge fan of the formar NFLeurope as you know the nfl shut down on the 29th june

    this was a wonderful leauge wich could have been run better if run by someone who cares for the fans, do you know anyone like that Mark?

    if you put some thought to it you would have a ready made fan base who would welcome you, passion for the game and much more


    Comment by Andy Giffen /mrclaymore -

  30. Hello Mr. Cuban. I hope that you are doing well. I would lLove to see football year round or a real farm league that could be a real feeder for the NFL. We could put more people to work and give the young men that still have that burning desire to play and compete after college or a career in the military or what ever. They didn\’t get pick up out of college still need a place to hone there skills. Semi Pro. Ball with league min. pay accross the board of $50K. Training of the players on and off the fields making them work with the youth of the commuinties. Non profit league. like the LCFL. Le Belle Community Football League has been around for going on 4 years. 31 teams strong and growing. Located on the East & West Coast. Some teams use the local Community TV stationsto get seen in the local areas. This league is a 501.c.3 Non Profit.

    Contact the commissioner when you are well.

    Toni Reid

    Comment by Terence -

  31. I really would be intrigued by this, if the league would develop a german \”Conference\”.
    The german Conference would only play against other teams in Germany, keeping the travel costs low (except playoffs) and would instantly have a large fan-base since NFL Europa just closed …
    And it would add an additional point of rivalry to the mix.

    It would make sense to purchase a hotel at the locations of the teams to accomodate the players and those would bring profit in the offseason.

    Thanks for reading !

    Comment by Turin -

  32. the XFL was around to be a competitor dont tell me vince didn\’t want a piece of the big football pie. The best player in the XFL was Tommy Maddox, and he has a XFL and a Super Bowl ring now he didnt start in the Super Bowl but he helped the team nonetheless now rod smart was a player that was exicting dont say that the he hate me jersey wouldnt sell it would because not of Rod but because it was different than the NFL and the he hate me term is marketable, believe me it would sell.

    The beauty of the XFL was that the rules were different and granted there are a couple of rules to change like the halo rule because that was the most penalized rule, and where the teams play can be different too. The birmingham bolts, orlando rage can move since there is since there is not really a football market like san francisco which averaged 35,000 people a game, so put teams in Pittsbugh, and Dallas, where the football markets thrive.

    Now the presentation of the game can change as well by not having cameras everywhere, and not having wrestlers promote it and be there every week make it a seperate entity and I believe it can be done well and that it can work.

    Now when it comes to owning teams you can have Vince own a team Mark own a team, bill hambrecht own a team, and get T. Boone Pickens to get back on board and own a team your halfway there from the start.

    The possible TV networks it can get on could be TNT, Mynetwork TV, CW, Spike TV

    Done right the XFL can work but you gotta get it going again and I believe with these four people, which can turn into eight this can happen.

    Comment by Dennis -

  33. Poster #394 listen up a sec. The XFL was not a competitor to the NFL, it was mocking the NFL on purpose. To compete you need a viable and comperable product. Vincent McMahon is worth $781 million, he is not a billionaire as he claims on Raw. McMahon has built an empire off of entertainment and the willingness of his LOW paid wrestlers to get the crap kicked out of them in scripted situations. But as his wealth proves, when it comes to making smart business choices, he has lost $400 million since 2001. Do you really think people will buy into any system he puts forth with a histroy like that?

    As far as branding is concerned. There are companies that get the cloths printed on Cafe Press that sell more than product then the XFL did.

    Rod Smart? We are talking about an equal product to the NFL. Rod Smart was the best player in the XFL, but is listed forth on the depth chart of his current team. Is that the kind of player you would build a franchise around? T.O. is one of the best receivers in the world. Not even an NFL team is willing build around him and he sells millions of dollars in murchendise and seats.

    Its far more complex then just starting a league, naming teams, signing players, building some stadiums and playing foodtball. First and for most you have the rules. Who will enforce the rules on and off the field. Where do teams play? Who is going to pay for the stadiums? Who will own the teams? Where will teams be located. Will cities grant a UFL team permission to establish themselves, when the possability of the next NFL expanssion could come to their city. Who has rights to players in the draft? Do both leagues have seperate drafts and the players have a choice? Putting together everything from a merchendise prospective is a huge huge task.

    The bottom line is this, NBC was mad it lost the NFL, Vince thought he had some money to spend to poke fun at another entertainment source and thats why the XFL existed. This deal will take at least five years to put together, its a huge risk. Done correctly it will prosper, done wrong and a lot of very rich people will loose, big time!

    Comment by Jerry R. Reynolds -

  34. It\’s me again I was also comment number 384.

    All I hear about now is that NFL Europa closed down but what kind of effect does that have none 5 out of the 6 teams left in NFL Europa were in germany the NFL might do games in the future there anyway but what you need to focus on is here in the U.S.

    Now in my last comment I said you should go in with Vince and bring back the XFL and I still stand by that because the league even though it lasted one season had all the teams established names etc., and you could bring back He Hate Me Rod Smart I can almost guarantee that is going to be the number one selling jersey in the country.

    Also in my last comment I said that Vince does want to bring back the XFL if you watch the Mcmahon DVD and read articles over the last six years he really wants to bring the league back and the only thing holding him back was investors and you and Bill Hambrecht, Daugherty, Brod, and get Pickens in if he sees that the XFL could be stable and it will.

    I really hope that you read this comment and my other one Mark and I hope that you take these comments into consideration.

    Comment by Dennis -

  35. As addressed in previous comments, people are for ever institutionalised! In response to a question posed by another reader, there atleast 40 other markets besides LA and Las Vegas. The NFL is in only about 2/3 of US major markets, most have NO professional sports. If you want to see how passionte people can become about football, go to your next local high school game. What most people don\’t understand is, everything in the world is Supply and demand. If the ticket price is right, teams have likable stars, teams play a role in the city outsie the lines, it will do outstanding. I am so tired of hearing the comparisons of the XFL. The XFL was mocking, not competeing with the NFL. Look at the AFL, yeah its a niche program but they are exploding! If the UFL is taken serious by its owners and dedicates itself to a quality product, avenues for T.V. contracts and other major sponsorship are there.

    1. Oklahoma City, OK
    2. Portland, OR
    3. Austin, TX
    4. San Antonio, TX
    5. El Paso, TX
    6. Little Rock, AR
    7. Columbus, OH
    8. Memphis, TN
    9. Charlotte, NC
    10. Nashville, TN
    11. San Jose, CA
    12. Sacramento, CA
    13. Colorado Springs, CO
    14. Raleigh, NC
    15. Lexington, Kentucky
    16. Fort Wayne, IN
    17. Orlabdo, FL
    18. Stockton, CA
    19. Harrisburg, PA
    20. Hartford, CT
    21. Albany, NY
    22. Wilmington, DE
    23. Virginia Beach, VA
    24. Columbia, SC
    25. Louisville, Kentucky
    26. Tulsa, OK
    27. Lubbuck, TX
    28. Salt Lake City, UT
    29. Vancouver, BC Canada
    30. Wichita, KS
    31. Des Moines, IA
    32. Jackson, MS
    33. Birmingham, AL
    34. Toledo, OH
    35. Greensboro, NC
    36. Tallahassee, FL
    37. Richmond, VA
    38. Washington, D.C. (Fan Base would side with a good owner)
    39. Rochester, NY
    40. Shreveport, LA

    Comment by Jerry R. Reynolds -

  36. Dear Sir,
    The NFL Europa Leage is closed, but we – the fans of American Football and the Fans of our teams – We are still here. Please think about the possibility to keep teams from USA and from Europe together to one league. Please come to europe and tell us – the fans of Rhein Fire, Frankfurt Galaxy, Hamburg Sea Devils, Berlin Thunder, Cologne Centurions and Amsterdam Admirals – that there ist a chance to see professional football in europe next year. I am not interested in one NFL game in the year, I am interested in a team like Rhein Fire, where I can identify with. The Name should not be the problem, when the license is possessed by NFL, you can also call ist \”Rhein Flame\” or something else. Europe has a really great fan base, you can use ist fr the new league. Please send me an answer what do you think about this.
    With kind regards

    Comment by Ulrike -

  37. Dear Sir,
    I am from Germany, a great fan of American Football and specially of Rhein Fire. I am so sad at closing the NFLE.
    Please give us a chance to see professional American Footbal in Europe next year (a real season, not only one NFL game). Please take over the Teams of NFLE.
    Thank you.
    With kind regards

    Comment by Ralf -

  38. Dear Mr. Cuban,

    as many of my fellow football fans in Europe I am quite disappointed at the way the NFL has closed down the NFL Europa. Personally, I supported my team (the Rhein Fire) for more than 12 years, visiting all home games, almost every away game and most of the world bowl. There is a strong fan base in Europe and especially in Germany – and this fans kind of feel let down now.
    The moment is now to capitalize on the mistakes the NFL made in Europe. There is a lot of potential in Europe to market professional football. The NFL never understood to make use of that potential, failing to convince German and european TV stations to show American Football… the other problem was, that the NFL intervened to much as far as personnel decision were concerned. Coaches and Managers never had the choice to let the best players play – result of this was a decreasing quality of the games. If you think about setting up a new league in the US, please also think about setting up a european Division. The infrastructure and fan base is already developped here and cities like Duesseldorf, Hamburg, Frankfurt, Berlin, really long for professional football. This is really a Chance to get something new started.

    Kind regards from Germany


    Comment by Sascha -

  39. Dear Sir,
    2 weeks ago I wrote a letter to Titans owner Bud Adams in which i told him some facts about the NFL Europa he should consider by voting for or against the league. In Europe there\’s a lot of potential, Managing Director Uwe Bergheim just did a bad job and the concept was not adjusted to the European Market. 2 weeks ago, when I wrote this letter I already knew about your idea to create a new Pro-Football-League, but I just thought that NFL is too big in Business to be attacked by a new concept or a new League to establish football. In Europe a lot of Fans trusted the NFL, but after they told us that the League will be closed down by giving all those weird reasons I lost my trust in the NFL. I am a Tennessee Titans Fan and so it is difficult to say that I do not want to watch the 2007 games of the NFL, since there is no compareable product. Just think about placing Teams in Europe! Europe is a strong continent… Many highly developed countries, many people who could be possible fans of the teams, a lot of interest in sports(many of those people don\’t know about football, since coverage has been bad over the years, we got the potential to support your idea)… We got big cities over here and following your team on the road is perhaps easier in Europe than in the US, since the distance between those cities are not bigger than in the US… I watched 8 out of 11 games of the Frankfurt Galaxy eventhough Frankfurt is 120miles away from where I live. I spend 500-600Euros this season, eventhough I attend varsity right now and normally do not have the money(I will suffer from this 2 more months i think^^). I feel forsaken by the NFL, since everything seems so worthless now. They told the league would lose 40 million bucks a year? Someone calculated that sold out stadiums would not make up for this, so the mistakes have to be somewhere else. We got some strong sponsors in Europe. The Soccer market is satisfied in Europe, I turned away from soccer when I learned about American Football in 1995 at the age of 8. I love this game, but because coverage of the NFL Europe was almost(perhaps rather utterly) cut down since 1999 there was not this big number of little boys and girls who explored the world of professional American Football. You got the money to develope something over here. You won\’t regret. Please make something happen. I do not want to turn back to the NFL because of missing opportunities to ignore it!!!

    best regards,
    Klaus (Germany)

    Comment by Klaus -

  40. dear sir,

    i was shocked because of the message that the NFL Europa will be closed. i love this game and i love to watch football games here in europe. but i want to see games with the team i identify with. and that will not be a nfl team playing in europe. i hope you will think about an european division of your new football league. after the nfl closed the league here in europe i am a hater of the nfl. they stole me and all the other european football-fans their teams they loved with passion. the last season was the season with a new league-spectators-record in the stadiums. but the league missed to market the product nfl europa good enough. the tv-stations did not pay enough money and did not broadcast enough. the result was less sponsorship and a loss of 500.000.000$ in 15 seasons, as they say. but that was not the fault auf the teams or the fans. that was a fault of the nfl. the nfl europe was the only chance for good, young european football-players to become a pro. please give them this chance and all the football fans in europe to see professionell football. if you will think about that it would be the best way to reanimate the nfl europa teams because they have got a fan base. unfortunatly the license of the names is in posession of the nfl. so you would have to rename the teams or try to get the license.

    please think about it and perhaps contact the GM\’s of the nfl europa teams. that is the only realistic chance to get our teams back.

    best regards

    Comment by Elmar -

  41. Dear Sir,

    NFL is certainly not the only football top organisation and they still think so.

    They\’ve just closed the NFL europa thinking that the only way to attract fans here (and certainly around the world) was to bring a NFL season game. It\’s not about a show, it\’s all about a game !

    Not only US citizens love football no matter if it\’s high school, College or Pro… They\’re fans round the world the NFL seems not to care about. They care \’bout bringing most of them into their NFL-shop.

    What about today\’s kids who dream of becoming a pro.
    They are the same kids we were 20-30-40 years ago.

    do the NFL remember that ? hope you do

    Wishing you the best for you projects.


    Comment by Luis -

  42. In the states it will be very difficult. I dont think you take it.
    You are welcome to Germany. You could take over the German & Netherland fans immediatly. As NFLE closed this could be your start. But as its all about money you need more national players (lower costs) and just a few from the states (like stars). On the other side i am sure many american players would come for less money as in the states. Why? Because thats also your point: They dont have a chance in the nfl. There are too less teams for too many good players. There is only a chance if you react immediatly. If you wait too long than it is over. For sure the nfl wont give you the names. But hey, we in Frankfurt always say we are purple. Take it and we come. Maybe you could easily call us GalaxXy ? However if you think about options take this. If you contact us we help you for sure. How can i say that? I dont know if youve seen the worldbowl. We made a sign on the whole side of the stadium: We love NFLE. First we wanted to write We love football. But we canceled it 3days before the worldbowl as we heard about closing the nfle. We have many people to support and we will come. Try it!
    By the way: I have been last year in the states and also visited for example the nfl hall of fame. Others go to the states and visit a regular game (maybe they change that now). There is a lot of money here. And be sure that the nfl didnt make friends in Germyna with the decision to close nfle. We like to see football and dont need the \”nfl\”.

    Comment by Karl -

  43. It actually scares me to think that another league could come in and turn my Steelers into the Pirates. I think with the NFL Europe is closing shop though that opens up a whole lot of good talent that really has no place else to go at this point in time. If you are going to compete with the NFL now is probably the time.

    Comment by Rich -

  44. I thought that the XFL was pretty cool they had hard hits and attitude they also invented the helmet cam and skycam later taken by the NFL, it could\’ve succeeded if they had more investors to own the teams and not just vince mcmahon owning everything now even though they offered half the league to NBC, what could\’ve gaven them more power was more ownership.

    Now there are still hardcore XFL fans out there and Vince who wants to bring the League back so why not get Bill Daugherty, and Jon Brod and team up with Vince and bring back the XFL and if you want to SURPRISE THE SPORTS WORLD THIS WOULD BE THE WAY TO DO IT!!!!!!

    Comment by Dennis -


    Comment by T.J. -

  46. Mark: With the demise of NFL Europa (officially as of 15 minutes ago) any potential league would be crazy not to look at the structure that is already in place to create aEuropean division. The questions are, why did the NFL fail and two how do you attract the fans who have been affected and who have walked away?

    I\’ve been covering the league since 1991 when some of the teams were located here in the U.S. (It was called the World League of American Football then.) For me this momentis hard. I\’ve been to 14 of the 15 World Bowls, have built a strong network of friends and have seen where American football cuts across all cultural lines.

    Here\’s why the NFL failed: they could not properly market the game on television. Rule 1. If you have an asset, use it. Why keep it on the shelf? The NFL utilized it poorly, failed to capitalize on relationships they could have had with European companies that wish to expand to the U.S. etc. They failed to measure for examplehow much people spend in income traveling to away games for their teams or to the U.S. for games (many fans come here and spend up to a month to see games). People in Europe felt a tremendous ownership of their club.

    Secondly those who walked away were so pissed off at the constant amateur tactics that the NFL used – lack of television coverage, lack of recognition of fan clubs, etc. They thought because its the NFL people would flock to the product. Becuase its Reebok they would buy the product. Instead of working with say Falke, a German concern that makes some of the best workout gear in the world, people were stuck with overly expensive, poorly made Reebok.

    If you decide to go through with your venture, please consider the European market. I have plenty of contacts – a full network in fact, ready to hand you three franchises on a silver platter – Rhein, Dusseldorf and Hamburg.


    Lee Zakow

    Comment by Lee Zakow -

  47. More advice for Mark Cuban (!?)

    Start by creating UFL Films.

    Start shooting now.

    The \”epic struggle,\” getting the UFL and it\’s teams up and running, could be the truth in advertising that wins fan emotional support.

    The NFL produces fantastic propaganda. The enhanced significance of its history is like a hypnotic suggestion that underlies all subsequent fan perceptions.

    Comment by Mike Piek -

  48. if you want to discuss or read the ufl latest news come to

    Comment by ufl news -

  49. Hey Mark – My advice to you would be to bring back the name and spirit of the USFL. 20+ years later and there are still many devotees of the important Spring League. Bring back the USFL name and you\’ll be able to tie-in special appearances by former USFLers on your Friday night telecasts.

    Also, bring back a franchise name or two and you\’ll solidify your effort!

    A league reformation is not unprecendented – look at the recent rebirth of the long dormant MISL!

    Comment by Rich -


    Comment by Shawn -

  51. There\’s a lot wrong, arrogant & uber-fascist both the NFL & the extreme rightists are doing today– with my above suggestions you will be taking advantage of their weaknesses– in order to appeal to & empower your disrespected & downtrodden average Joe.

    Lots of luck.

    Comment by charles langer -

  52. Fantastic idea IIFFFF i infer correctly the league will embrace / support gambling.

    To the greatest extent possible, make sponsorship deals with all major national & international books & wagering forums– & allow individual players to do so.

    Give away free data thru, , , , etc.

    Cross-marketing deals with local racetracks & simulcast parlors.

    As well with

    And with Powerball et all– UFL scores could substitute for the ball drops.

    Allow advertising on uniforms.

    Give away first year tv rights if you have to.

    Ditto for free streaming of all games on the web– talk to YouTube, Yahoo, AOL, MSN / Real, etc. to see who offers you best deal.

    Work out communities / social networking deals with , , etc.

    You\’ll need teams in Canada & Mexico, plus one national team for each Central American country.

    Friday is NOT a good choice– do NOT compete with both partygoers & high school football!!! Tuesday is the best day.

    BUT, if you insist on Friday, you\’re much better off working out deals with large high schools & small colleges to hold doubleheaders. In fact, do it with any willing sport / league / school– women\’s soccer, field hockey, etc.

    Speakin\’a wenches:
    A. court female placekickers
    B. field a separate women\’s league– even if only flag.

    Substitute God Bless America for national anthem…and/or license Ray Charles\’ America the Beautiful… Satchmo\’s What a Wonderful World…
    Find old name musical acts that have fallen on hard times / popular indie bands / name foreign acts wanting to break into American market…to perform pre-game & @ halftime.

    All the best,

    Charles Langer … NYC

    Comment by charles langer -

  53. Here is my case for a Connecticut-based team in the UFL. . .

    1) Both NY-based NFL teams play in New Jersey. Going into Connecticut will provide access to professional football to fans who cannot/will not make that type of trip on Sundays.

    2) There is a possibility for very strong ownership in this state with the presence of the Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods casinos there. I would try to get one of those two involved (Mohegan Sun is already involved in the WNBA). Maybe they would have the land for a state-of-the-art stadium on their grounds?

    3) For the time being, I would split the home games between the Yale Bowl in New Haven and Rentschler Field in Hartford (play in both places and determine where you get a better turnout).

    Other that Connecticut and the other cities already mentioned (LA, LV, Orlando, San Antonio, and Mexico City), I would try to put the remained two available francises (out of eight. . .and I would not stretch this league any more then that) in Memphis and Ottawa (the latter of which does not have a CFL team).

    Additionally, I would like to see the games on the Vs. network so that the presence of that network (and, by addition, the NHL) can be enhances by the UFL.

    Good luck to you. . .

    Comment by Brian McKnight -

  54. A great idea. This is what football in america needs. It allows players a chance in the spotlight that would not normally been seen. Its almost like the minor league of baseball but has the potential to grow into something bigger. Im all for it and everyone i have spoken to is also for it.

    Comment by jeff -

  55. I\’m really not sure this is best for football. Let\’s assume you have some success with the new league. What are you really doing with this early success? Diluting the talent pool.

    I offer the IRL and CART fiasco. Yes, theirs was a split of existing drivers and teams and came at a down time for the sport. Yet the sum is diluted talent and diverged name-brands. The NFL is at the top and I personally enjoy it the way it is and they continue to try an improve the rules and game.

    So why dilute what works? I wonder what would happen to small-market teams with another level of \”successful\” competition? Sports is an oddity. Sometimes monopolies are desired here.

    Comment by James R -

  56. dear MR. CUBAN I AM WRITING NOW CAUSE I DO BELIEVE IN YOUR DREAM TO GO UP AGAINST THE n.f.l. and i think it would work and i would like to apply to be on your team to go up against them please let me know where i can send my resume or where i can apply in person i live in the METROPLEX i appreciate the time you take to read this and thanks again !!!

    Comment by T.J. -

  57. Your concept intrgues me greatly… So much so that I have done a
    bit of market research on possible team cities, cable TV networks,
    investor possibilities,and available coaching prospects.
    I think the UFL could potentially field 12 teams, in various parts
    of the US with adequate financial backing and fan support.
    As well as,possible coorporate cross-marketing/sponsorship.
    I am concerned on the TV side of this equation…
    Without a major network commitment, you could expect Nielsens in
    the 3-4 range at best.
    With all this said, I would gladly watch football 24-7…
    Best of luck!!

    Comment by Toney C -

  58. Mark…I want on the mailing list…..My 8 friends and I have a total of 10 season tix to Chargers but are ready to change horses as we live in Orange Co. and are awaiting a more LA oriented team….
    Mark…you have made a habit of proving to people that long shots can be winners if you plan for upfront losses for 3-5 years and then reap the benefits…owners need money and vision and must share your passion…Don\’t forget..PUT ME ON E-MAIL LIST FOR UFL….I LOVE SEEING A \”BALLSY\” GUY FROM PITTSBURGH MAKING THE \”NFL SUITS\” QUIVER….SHOVE IT IN DAN SNYDER\’S FACE…PUT ME ON MAILING LIST…PULLEAZE!…TONY

    Comment by Tony Calderone -

  59. Mark…I want on the mailing list…..My 8 friends and I have a total of 10 season tix to Chargers but are ready to change horses as we live in Orange Co. and are awaiting a more LA oriented team….
    Mark…you have made a habit of proving to people that long shots can be winners if you plan for upfront losses for 3-5 years and then reap the benefits…owners need money and vision and must share your passion…Don\’t forget..PUT ME ON E-MAIL LIST FOR UFL….I LOVE SEEING A \”BALLSY\” GUY FROM PITTSBURGH MAKING THE \”NFL SUITS\” QUIVER….SHOVE IT IN DAN SNYDER\’S FACE…PUT ME ON MAILING LIST…PULLEAZE!…TONY

    Comment by Tony Calderone -

  60. Mr.Cuban, What would be the best way to contact you regarding your UFL team ? I would like to send a resume and I am certain I could be of some value. I have 24 years of NFL service and helped start 2 expansion teams.

    Comment by Robert A. Monica -

  61. With 32 teams currently in the NFL, shouldn\’t investors in the UFL worry about further diluting the market and deeply-invested fan loyalties? Also, with little obvious differences between the UFL and NFL to casual observers (aka TV watchers), I\’d be concerned that the UFL\’s perceived advantages are washed over and left unconsidered.

    Comment by ETCW -

  62. There is a chance this might work if you first concentrate on football hungry and capable cities like San Antonio and Las Vegas. I like the Mexico City connection. If there is enough corporate support, like giant AT&T in S.A., that must precede the televsion end. Take the right steps in the right order, and yes there is room for more quality football teams. Our population is shifting to the south and west, but the NFL is not changing with that.

    Comment by john pascal -

  63. Mark,
    As a true football fan here in Los Angeles, this would not be a bad idea at all. Everyone was all down on the Arena Football League and look how long they have been around and the fan base is still growing. It got to the point that even some NFL owners got involved with purchasing teams for that league.

    Everyone is trying to compare the UFL to the XFL before the league even starts play, remember people the XFL was a wrestling owners idea not people who know the game. Even after that league folded the NFL took some ideas from that league and brought it to their league. However many parents are shying their kids away from the NFL lately and towards the arena league due to NFL players and their problems being aired in the press. All I say is to attract the fans make it more fan oriented and the ticket prices not so costly like the NFL.

    People here in L.A. have been making a statement to the NFL we are a football town (USC,UCLA, Arena Football, XFL) however their promises never become reality to the point we are just fed up. As for the whole friday night thing. I am kinda iffy about that. I agree with others about possibly doing it in the spring but friday is a good idea knowing it is the start of the weekend. I will be one of the first people to get tickets when this league begins play..

    One more thing please make the preseason a little longer and have a fanfest thing so people can get to know their team that is something the XFL never did and that is why they bombed.

    Comment by Earl -

  64. I think It\’s a great idea, If done right. First, and most important It must have central ownership. Indiviual ownership will create rogue owners who don\’t have the best interest of the league at heart. Central ownership can protect weaker teams from failing. Teams remaining in the same cities year after year lead to overall credibility and fan lolalty. Secondly, I\’t would be foolish to go head-to-head with the NFL and college football. You\’d be a distant third choice of football fans. Thirdly, run the league at a profit or at least break even. I don\’t care how much money you and your investers have,nobody likes to loose money year after year. Spending big money for second tier players is a mistake! Each NFL team goes to training camp with 80 plus players.Only a handfull of players on each team are difference makers, the other 75 or so are interchangeable you don\’t have to overpay, just market the players you have ,well.

    Comment by Beau Zelmer -

  65. I\’d start out with these 4 divisions:

    — West —
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Portland, OR
    Las Vegas, NV
    Los Angeles, CA

    — Mexico —
    Mexico City, MEX
    Monterrey, MEX
    Albuquerque, NM
    San Antonio, TX

    — Southeast —
    Birmingham, AL
    Memphis, TN
    Norfolk, VA
    Orlando, FL

    — Central —
    Oklahoma City, OK
    Omaha, NE
    Milwaukee, WI
    Louisville, KY

    The NFL has most of the norheast cornered, so it may be wise to stay clear of that area before establishing the league.

    BTW, here are the top states in total NCAA (divs. 1-3) football attendance for \’06, base on the sum of every school\’s average attendance in that state:

    Rnk | St | Total | % of total pop
    – | US | 7002301 | 2.39
    1 | TX | 500505 | 2.23
    2 | CA | 380568 | 1.06
    3 | FL | 324533 | 1.87
    4 | PA | 307642 | 2.48
    5 | NC | 300644 | 3.52
    6 | AL | 299354 | 6.61
    7 | OH | 293704 | 2.56
    8 | MI | 273109 | 2.7
    9 | TN | 243478 | 4.13
    10 | SC | 234502 | 5.59
    11 | VA | 232213 | 3.11
    12 | LA | 217398 | 4.81
    13 | IN | 213949 | 3.43
    14 | GA | 211282 | 2.39
    15 | MS | 176627 | 6.08
    16 | OK | 167053 | 4.74
    17 | IL | 156385 | 1.23
    18 | IA | 154439 | 5.23
    19 | NY | 149504 | 0.78
    20 | KY | 132182 | 3.19
    21 | UT | 126381 | 5.29
    22 | AR | 123025 | 4.47
    23 | AZ | 116968 | 2.04
    24 | CO | 116126 | 2.52
    25 | OR | 114738 | 3.19
    26 | KS | 113375 | 4.14
    27 | MA | 110994 | 1.73
    28 | WI | 110257 | 2
    29 | WA | 109386 | 1.76
    30 | MO | 105915 | 1.84
    31 | MD | 104364 | 1.88
    32 | WV | 101540 | 5.59
    33 | MN | 101416 | 1.99
    34 | NE | 99421 | 5.69
    35 | CT | 74145 | 2.12
    36 | NJ | 69702 | 0.8
    37 | NM | 53068 | 2.79
    38 | ID | 52431 | 3.76
    39 | HI | 36589 | 2.9
    40 | NV | 35968 | 1.54
    41 | MT | 35358 | 3.81
    42 | DE | 27679 | 3.33
    43 | WY | 19109 | 3.77
    44 | NH | 15982 | 1.23
    45 | SD | 14652 | 1.9
    46 | RI | 13979 | 1.29
    47 | ME | 10341 | 0.79
    48 | ND | 8827 | 1.39
    49 | DC | 7593 | 1.37
    50 | VT | 3901 | 0.63

    That may give you an idea how well each state or region supports football.

    Top 10 per capita:
    Rnk | St | Total | % of total pop
    1 | AL | 299354 | 6.61
    2 | MS | 176627 | 6.08
    3 | NE | 99421 | 5.69
    4 | SC | 234502 | 5.59
    5 | WV | 101540 | 5.59
    6 | UT | 126381 | 5.29
    7 | IA | 154439 | 5.23
    8 | LA | 217398 | 4.81
    9 | OK | 167053 | 4.74
    10 | AR | 123025 | 4.47

    Alabama\’s screaming for a pro franchise.

    Comment by John -

  66. Mr. Cuban, I just wanted to know the cities you will be placing teams at, because I would like to give you two cities you might want two place teams at Austin, Texas Because that is a very populated city and that is one of my favorite cities and my mom named me after that city. The other city is Fountain Valley or Orange County, California Because I was born there in 94 and I would like to have my own hometown team.Know me and my family live in another state because it was too expensive in California and I wanted too move next to my Grandparents and we had too take care of my Greatgrandma, but she passed away 5 months ago and I loved her alot, but we might be moving again but without my Grandparents so I am very Disapointed. But I like your guys plan Mr. Cuban, because I always wanted to make my own Football Leauge too. So I hope you Mr.Cuban and the other guys suceed and I hope you answer my request.

    Comment by Austin Dailey -

  67. Cuban, I love you. I really do. You have saved the woe-be-gone franchise that was the pre-Mark Cuban era Mavs. My Mavs are now serious contenders for the NBA title year after year after year. People hate you for behaving like us mortals: bitching and moaning about bad calls, hounding the evil Kim Jong Ill-esque Commisioner Stern along with his minions (yes, I\’m referring to those bastards in black and white), living and dying with every play, getting emotional about the game, wearing team gear. Mark, you are demonized for being a FAN. So all of your critics can READ MY TIRADE AND CHANGE THEIR MINDS; and if they\’d rather not, then they can SUCK IT!!!!!!


    I hope your league fails the way your reality show did. I hope this culturally treasonous league tumbles like a poorly and wrecklessly manipulated tower of Jenga (hey, your attempt to create a league, a seemingly lofty undertaking, that competes with the NFL can be related to a metaphor to a game of Jenga that can fail, no, fall, if you make the wrong moves).

    The thing is, I LOVE THE NFL. I dont want to be rooting for the Dallas Champions football team. I WANT TO ROOT FOR THE SILVER AND BLUE. I WANT TO ROOT FOR AMERICA\’S TEAM. I want to be able to say, \”HOW BOUT THEM COWBOYS!!!!!\”. Now I know you are hoping to grow your league so big that it gobbles up the NFL (or atleast merges with it). And I know you and Sergey are BLOODY GENIOUSES WHO KNOW WHAT HELL THEY ARE DOING and if anyone can succeed in taking down the empire that is the NFL, it\’s you. But I love the system that\’s in place. I dont want change. I love the way the conferences and divisions are set up. In fact, every time I hear talk of an NFL expansion team for Tinsel Town, I get distressed. In short, THE NFL IS FINE JUST THE WAY IT IS, DAMN IT!!!!


    Oh yeah, JENGA!!!!!!!!!!

    Comment by Mohammad -

  68. Mark,

    I\’ve been an NFL fan for over 37 years. I\’ve seen the \”other\” leagues come and go. I\’ve seen what you have accomplished in the sporting world…as well as the business world. I believe that this thing that you propose…WILL WORK. I also believe that it will take someone such as yourself to make it work. Now is the time. Nay-sayers away!

    I see where someone brought up Vince McMahon and the \”Joke Football League\”. Somethings just can\’t work together…this is to be expected. The \”T-Bone car crash Football League\” or \”The Ballet/Lord of the Dance Football League\” will not work either. Why can\’t people understand that just because somethings \”work\” alone (Wrestling…Football) doesn\’t mean they will work together. (Is it true that McMahon\’s next effort will be a roadside drive-in proctology exams and wedding finger sandwiches to go?) }?D

    If a serious effort is made…then I believe that the time is right. Sure there are a million things that the league will have to overcome…isn\’t that they way it is these days? Just to get a boating permit can drive a man insane. But…if that man wants the permit……..well? I hope your efforts succeed. There are alot of good football players that don\’t get a chance to play. This could be good for players and fans alike!

    Comment by Marc Stacy -

  69. Don\’t really like it that all games will be played on Friday nights. The others games should be played on Saturday. I can see the team in Mexico City working out. I know that college football has been played in Mexico for more than fifty years. I heard they tried to get a NFL team in Mexico City before. I can see a team playing in Monterrey. There is going to be a new stadium in Guadalajara. Don\’t know if a football field would fit in that stadium.

    I can see the games being played on TNT, Versus, Spike TV, and My Network TV.

    Comment by Pedro J. Quezada -

  70. The only chance this league has of working is to lower the age limit to 18 years old, not try to trick up the league like the XFL did, pay players a reasonable amount close to but not quite what the NFL pays and pick 8 good cities who will support it for years to come.

    But as far as competing against the NFL on that same level….no way.

    Friday nights are not that great of a night because that is when High School football and Arena Football games are played. Saturdays are for College and Sunday/Nonday are for the NFL.

    So you will have to be on a Country wide network readily available to ever cable and satalite customer.

    I\’m not saying there is not a market for it, i mean look at stupid arena football still around after 20 years. But your numbers aren\’t going to be that great. So you better get some good sponsors and owners like yourself with a loooottttt of money.

    Comment by Pdiddy -

  71. Why was my post removed???

    Comment by Dog -

  72. Wuz Up Mark!
    I personally think this is a GREAT idea! I feel the NFL has gone from SMASHMOUTH football to CANDYA@@ football. All these rules & penalties took alot of the fun & excitement of the game. The XFL had the right idea, but just wasn\’t executed right. There is a point made in saying that other Billionaires have tried & failed, but…What if these Billionaires(The Donald,Cube,&Vinny Mac) came together to create a melting pot of ideas? Anyways, those are my thoughts, and I will be there to support the UFL all the way.


    P.S. Despite what most SoCalled MAVS fans think about this season, I can say that I am TRUELY PROUD of MY MAVS for an AWESOME season! LOUD, ROWDY, AND PROUD!!!!

    Comment by Robert F. Tafoya -

  73. Here\’s the quote: \”5. There are a lot of smart people involved in the UFL\”
    Hey man, that statement is not a good selling point at all. Most people do not flock to smart people. In fact, most people hate smart people with a passion. What\’s worse is, smart people hate each other too. The NFL succeeds because it is dumb, big, and strong, just like it\’s core fans. The NFL will bully the UFL, and then make fun of it afterward. Good luck too.

    Comment by Todd -

  74. Mark I own the domain owned by the University of florida so I don\’t think they selling. If interested let me know. I think the idea is great and think you can make it work. GO U-F-L

    Comment by equityblue -

  75. I work with a former NFL guy, played 2 or 3 years in the league, never made it big. But we were talking about the UFL and the AAFL, and concluded that to survive you\’ll need viable talent so you at least land *closer* to the NFL than you do to arena ball. And how to get that talent is defined in two words: Guaranteed contracts. A marginal player would take a couple guaranteed years at $300k well before a non-guaranteed $500k. Do that, and you\’ll get guys who have enough talent to make the NFL, if not be superstars, and you increase the (still small) chances of the league being viable.

    Comment by Josh -

  76. I would love to see a football league compete with the NFL. I am a huge CFL fan and Notre Dame fan. The NFL just doesn\’t do it for me. Too much sizzle and not enough steak. They\’re (NFL) all about hype. I would be an instant UFL fan.

    Comment by Ryan Wallace -

  77. Well , well a lot of naysayers to this idea of a New football league . Everyone seems to be convinced that going head to head with the NFL is a bad idea. That may be so but in the current NFL structure careers are either fairly long or extremely short , and salary cuts make getting back to the league a tough climb . Providing a SECONDARY league to the NFL that does not have the quirks of the CFL rules and its over sized ball or the stale product of NFL Europe might not be such a far fetched idea.

    First,drug policy or lack there of one would open the door to freakish science projects of players ( A plus for ratings) or a squeky clean policy that can truly even the playing field.

    Secondly how many players will accept $250,000 salary to stay in football that can\’t cut it in the NFL, An intriguing proposal for football players at all levels who get overlooked or passed over for whatever reason.

    Third and final reason that if done right without challenging NFL supremacy this new league can provide secondary population base cities with pro ball ( Miami Sharks from any given sunday comes to mind)or a second team (Dallas and Miami) that can serve as a showcase for NFL expansion.

    If the NFL truly wants a monopoly on pro ball then they have only the bottom line as their primary driving factor leaving the players as meat for their meat factories . A secondary league benifits the players more than anyone and if the owners are rich enough to stick it out then this may just have a chance.

    Good Luck,

    Kevin \”SPORTSDUDE\” Randall

    Comment by Kevin \"SPORTSDUDE\' Randall -

  78. Mark

    I would like to wish you the best success with the United Football League. To make sure, your league is successful –
    1 – stay away from Friday thru Sunday during Sept. to Jan.
    2 – do not put teams in markets that NFL has teams in except for New York City (i think they can handle 3 football teams and have the team really play in New Yrok City).
    3 – We would all like to know when are you going to get a website going.
    4 – Beside the markets some of the people have mention here is a few more Markets where you can put teams in, they are Rochester NY, and Norfolk Va.

    Comment by Frank -

  79. Want to read and discuss the latest news on the united football league. come to

    Comment by ufl news -

  80. Mr. Cuban,

    I\’m sure you\’ll never read this but maybe a staffer or intern will. I echo the sentiment of an earlier poster who said, \”I BELIEVE!\” This is a brilliant concept.

    For all the doubters out there, imgaine former Buckeye QB and Heisman Trophy winner Troy Smith — a sixth round NFL draft pick — starting for a franchise in say Columbus, Ohio.

    Imagine professional football back in Los Angeles, with California University QB Nathan Longshore or Stanford\’s Trent Edwards at the helm.

    Don\’t you think running backs like Corey Dillon, Fred Taylor, Ahman Green and others might want to extend their careers a couple of years in the UFL? Don\’t you think young running backs like FSU Star Lorenzo Booker, Louisville slammers Michael Bush or Kolby Smith, Auburn\’s Kenny Irons and or OSU stud Antonio Pittman might want to jump-start their careers — instead of riding the pine for an NFL franchise?

    The only thing I don\’t think is a good idea is playing the games on Friday night — that night belongs to high school football. My advice would be to move the games to Thursday night and rack in all that lucrative movie marketing money coming out of Hollywood. This way the league isn\’t stepping on anyone\’s toes and on a major network — the league would have a captive audience and a ready and willing stream of advertisers.

    Comment by Remy Grad -

  81. Buy the Canadian Football League, expand it to the US and play it during its current schedule (ie: July to November, mostly Fridays and a few games on Tuesdays). Seriously, this could work. Going head to head with the NFL, College and High School football doesn\’t seem like an awesome idea. With this you would get to the playoffs before anybody gets too excited about the NFL games, nor would you compete with all the college bowls.

    Comment by Simon -

  82. Mr. Cuban,
    I think that there is a need for another football league and one exists. Capture Football is not a minor league to the NFL. It is a sport in its own right and not in competition with The NFL for players. 85% of the players in the NFL are too slow to play capture football. Capture Football requires greater stamina and agility. I invite you to check it out.

    Comment by Jon Digman -

  83. Mr. Cuban,
    I have already created a new football league and it is not a minor league to the NFL. It is a new sport in its own right. It is a much faster paced game than the NFL and therefore is not in competition for NFL players. 85% of the players in the NFL are too slow to play Capture Football. Capture Football is a much more action packed game requiring great amounts stamina and agility. Please go to my web site for more information. I\’m inviting you to one of our games, so check it out.

    Jon Digman

    Comment by Jon Digman -

  84. Mark

    At first I thought you were crazy, but then I remembered that without the old AFL, I would not be a pro football fan.

    I think the success of Arena football proves your point. The UFL, exclusively on HDNET??

    Comment by Frank -

  85. Hey if you want someone to work for you for 3 years for free I\’m game thats how much I believe in this. I\’m a die hard John Elway fan and I support Arena Ball. I think for the most part your a genius but this is ballsy. Hit me up via email if you need someone who believes. Shoot I will be a ball boy to start.

    Comment by David Krug -

  86. Mark:
    I love the idea of a new league; maybe even more than I do HDNET, which is going to pay off for you in the future.
    Thank you for your patience and vision.
    I have an idea that ,I believe, would make the UFL a player with immediate impact. For obvious reasons I wish to discuss them with you privately.
    Thank you again.

    Comment by Arthur Broaderick -

  87. How about adding a team to Tulsa, Oklahoma!?

    Comment by D.C. Thomas -

  88. Birmingham, Memphis, San Antonio, Orlando, Las Vegas…these cities have been loved and left by numerous other football leagues. Maybe the focus should be on NFL cities with non-NFL stadiums, such as the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, the Orange Bowl in Miami, etc. And maybe you could use big league baseball parks, although the day of the multipurpose stadium has passed. (The XFL did put a team in Pac Bell in SF, though.)

    I\’d definitely look into using Tiger Stadium or the Silverdome in Detroit, before they get torn down. As a Lions fans for the last three decades, a (successful) competing football team in Detroit would be viewed as a godsend: remember the USFL\’s Michigan Panthers in 80s?

    If you insist on playing Friday nights, you\’d be better off in larger cities anyway, where high school football is less important.

    No league in any sport will be taken seriously without a team in New York, and there just aren\’t any available big-time football stadiums there. Maybe you could work something out with the Yankees or Mets, both of whom are building new stadiums (but they\’re tearing down the older ones, I believe). Chicago\’s a possibility, if you play at Northwestern or perhaps at Wrigley or The Cell. Thery\’re building a new ballpark in DC, so RFK could be available.

    Forget Mexico City; it\’s over 700 miles from the US border. Forget Canada; there\’s a Canadian law against putting American football teams there.

    I notice a few people mentioning the AAFC and the AFL, but that was a whole different world; a half-century ago, there were plenty of large cities with no NFL teams. Today, LA is the only major city without a football team…and that market is a lot harder to penetrate than you think it is. (Anybody been to any Avengers games lately? Anybody?)

    OK, here\’s what the UFL could look like:

    Las Vegas
    Los Angeles


    Good luck to ya, Mark…you\’ll need it.

    Comment by Rob McLean -

  89. Mr Cuban…I just heard about this new league,and I instantly got excited….Mr. Cuban I hope that this all comes true, and if so I want to be a running back of one of the teams….I\’m a player who didn\’t get a full shot, I currently work as a child social worker for meantl and behavioral health kids…but my heart is still in it to play…..I seen bunch of guys get 2nd 3rd and 4th opportunities and they have a history…what about the guys like me..we deserve another shot…instantly I invisioned the league the movie Any Given Sunday….I am excited and hope that this all pans out…whatever team needs a hardnosed old school Earl Campbell Eddie George Running Back I am the man for the job straight old school…..Goodluck and please don\’t forget me….

    Comment by O -

  90. I wish there was some way I could profit off the UFL\’s imminent failure. I\’m sure others feel the same way. There are so many flaws I don\’t know where to begin. Let\’s just start with this: Superstars sell tickets.

    Hockey (by having none and tanking) has proved that superstars sell tickets. How do you intend to prevent the NFL from snatching up every superstar that comes through the UFL? There\’s nothing left for the casual fan to watch if their league\’s a revolving door of talent and names. If you\’re trying to make Triple A baseball for the NFL, too late. Ever heard of NFL Europe?

    I am your average football fan. The people I hang out with are your average football fans. Not a single one of us would every seriously follow a 3rd league.

    I am now dumber for hearing that idea.

    Comment by Jason -

  91. Mark i believe that there is a overwellming amount of talent in america and i agree with you completely there is a market for it. thats why i created a reality show surrounding this topic that i would love to share with you. i will respect the wishes and terms of the blog site. i know the football league will work! i have over 14 years experience organizing football leagues in Southern California. Good Luck!

    Comment by Ed Blount -

  92. I think its a good to start the UFL. Cause it give the people that couldnt make it in the nfl another shot to give it all they got. To make the team so this is realy a second chance for me an other people out there to live there dreams an play football. So mark just keep doing what your doing man im behind you all the way an go mavs!!!!!

    Comment by joe mcgee -

  93. want to read and discuss the latest news on the united football league. Come to

    Comment by ufl news -

  94. Mr. Cuban,

    I think that you should look at reviving the dormant Ottawa franchise in the CFL. The Canadian Football League had a great tradition in Ottawa dated back to the 1890s, I beleive, but lousy ownership since the 1970s. You would be a fantastic owner, bringing enthusiasm and renewed fan interest to Ottawa. CFL fans are just as(if not more passionate) than NFL and college fans. The game is a little different and more exciting than \”American Football\”. Check out the fan site for a display of the passion for the CFL.


    Comment by Ryan Gniewecki -


    Comment by jd byrd -

  96. Your proposition makes sense for the simple reason that the NBA and MLB are faring well with tremendously longer seasons. People will surely watch more football, especially if you can net the quality players you believe you can–or at least convince people there is a level of quality to the competition, just like in college football, where there the players are not as powerful or as skilled but the action seems to satisfy the masses. Good luck.

    Comment by James Vaughn -

  97. Columbus, Ohio is one of the larger markets without a pro football team…and it\’s a football town, no doubt about that…but I couldn\’t see a pro team here being competitive.

    Friday night is High School Football Night all around the country. Your biggest competition won\’t be the NFL, it will be the thousands upon thousands of high schools across the country. Students, their parents, teachers, alumni, people from the community…this takes away a huge portion of the football watching public.

    Comment by David -

  98. The key to UFL\’s success will be to target the right audience. If it were my dime, I would target two huge audiences for the UFL.
    1) The latino market in the US. It\’s the fastest growing market in the US.
    2) Families. The NFL has out-priced families. Create great entertainment and invite families to attend games.

    Finally, I don\’t think you need to recruit high priced talent right away. (Look at the attraction of college football in most markets.) Go out and recruit great coaches who are role models. They, in turn, should recruit players who aren\’t thugs and to whom kids can look up to.

    Good luck.
    Karl Zachar

    Comment by Karl Zachar -

  99. Remember that cities that already have some kind of top notch sport(Salt Lake City, San Antonio, Sacramento, Portland, Orlando, Columbus) will look better than cities who don\’t have any first class sports. I might also suggest keeping ticket prices down, at least for the first year. When people tune in, you want them to see a full house.

    Comment by Dan Thomas -

  100. Simple enough of an idea to work – going up against the NFL on Friday nights – If the potential owners stick to a business plan that keeps the costs under control and make the ticket prices affordable in the cities they choose to play in, I don\’t see how this could fail.

    Everyone knows there are more than enough out of work football players come early September to stock the teams 2-3 fold.

    The USFL strayed from their original idea and failed; the XFL figured out way too late that they should of just focused on the football and killed the gimmicks – I personally think UFL can work if the owners are truly in it for the 5 year haul.

    Comment by BD Tatum -

  101. win a basketball championship 1st–dont be like michelle wie

    Comment by jd byrd -


    Comment by jd byrd -

  103. I think this is a long overdue idea. Here\’s how it would work:

    1) Run it professionally with rules in place to prevent the owners from screwing it up like they did with the USFL. They must put up 3-5 years of expenses in escrow to show they are committed.

    2) A strong commissioner that people would respect. Someone like Jerome Bettis or Emmit Smith

    3) Must play in the Spring or Summer. If you want to tap into this hunger for football, then do it when there isn\’t any.

    4) Try to get ownership that is involved in media. An owner like yourself, who is involved with HDNET is perfect.

    5) One crazy idea I have is those cities who want to be considered, must have a minimum amount of season tickets sold.

    6) Have an excellent pension plan in place for the players. Be the league that does it better for the players.

    7) Make it seem like \”real\” football as much as possible. No nonsense like the XFL.

    8) Get rid of the age limit. This is America and if a kid wants to skip college to play in the pros, good for him. However, to soften the pr of this move, every player under contract has a 4 year college scholarship put in a trust in his name.

    I\’m sure I\’ll think of more stuff.

    Comment by Allen Berrebbi -

  104. Mark-

    PLEASE bring a team in this league to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The Packers played several games per year in Milwaukee from 1933-1994 and as much as Wisconsin loves the Packers, the city really misses hosting pro football games. Milwaukee has one of the top TV markets for football. The sport is entrenched in Wisconsin tradition. If you put one of these teams in Milwaukee, it will be very successful. I ask that you please consider doing this. Thanks and good luck.

    Comment by Mike -

  105. Maybe there\’s something ironic about it…but another league was birthed by a young \”maverick\” in Dallas and changed the game forever. Try this site for some inspiration. http:\\\\
    The only thing I don\’t like about your plan is the Friday night schedule. Come on Mark, leave that alone for the kids. Everything else, good luck!

    Comment by Bryan T -

  106. Mark,

    If your going to have a team, San Antonio is your best bet. It\’s close and it make perfect sense.

    Comment by Robert Garcia -

  107. As an avid NFL fan (Go Patriots!), I would love to see an alternative to the NFL, but in the off season. I think that during the regular season it will be hard to compete.

    My two cents…

    Comment by Josh -

  108. This is a general rant about people on this website who are bashing MR. Cuban here.

    1) Don\’t like what he has to say, then don\’t read it. Idiots.

    2) I don\’t know about you but I rather be a geek who had the chance to take the risks he has, whether they are successful is a completely different debate.

    3) I am a fairly intelligent engineering student who today interviewed at a Pet Store. For some reason, I only can imagine a small part of the emotions going through this man\’s head when he has to listen to the utter nonesense out of your mouth. You do not backup a single claim you make, and in general are socially retarded, oh sorry, mentally handicapped (and for those who think I am an asshole, I am. I do have a heart however which my blind gf even can see).

    My point is this website is completely to encourage free thought and thinking ideas. This guy is one crazy person, but controllably. He can make an idea we have a reality, and he wouldn\’t be here if he did not value our opinons in some capacity. So why waste his time and everyone\’s else\’s by posting a hate e-mail. You are serious stupid if you think this guy does no more than laugh at you. I know I am.

    I believe this blog and comment section was intended to satisfy a curiousity of Mr Cuban\’s. That curiousity is the one in which he wants to genuinely see what we are thinking, as he has come to the realization he may not know everything and may not see every angle that a concept or idea may have. That if nothing else is humble, and shows a self-realization that he is not always right, and that there are two sides to every coins. So I suggest than in the future, people who feel the need to mouth off refrain as this man is respecting our opinons, so we can at least respect his. He is a normal person with a passion for the NBA, just like most of us have a passion for a certain sport. We cannot hate this man for attempting if nothing else to do what we did not have the oppurtunity to do. It is a free country so feel free not to disagree but if you wish to post, at least make a coherent argument to why you think he is wrong.

    Comment by Jeremy Rutledge -

  109. The first comment was someone giving Mr. Cuban advice on this theory not flying. This man is a lot of things to me, hot headed, outspoken, and much more but do not mistake this for stupidity. Hilter was deranged (I do not support at all what he did, as it was reprehensible and should never occur again) but like Mr. Cuban is not stupid. He has made a career of being on the leading edge of business and this idea may be crazy to some, but it might just work.

    There to me is several things to be considered here and to judge him on this short post is plain ignorance and foolishness. For example, the post does not include where the teams are located, whether they will directly compete with an NFL franchise in the same city. Even if that is the case, there are many teams currently sustainable in the same market. For example, look at the several teams than New York possesses in most leagues.

    This debate is currently a hot topic in Canada after the sale of Nashville, as to whether hamilton can sustain an NHL team so close to Toronto. Truth is, there is such a demand that it is quite feasible for both teams to thrive in that marketplace. We as Canadians love hockey. As for several leagues competing in the same marketplace, in Canada there is the NHL but there is also a high contigent of people who would rather watch Junior hockey rather than professional for a number of varying reasons. Two leagues are sustainable in a geographic region with ease if the league is marketed properly.

    Also, we do not know how we would act if we faced competition. For example, in Canada Bell was the only telephone provider for a long period of time but then were forced to create smaller companies. Look currently at today\’s marketplace with several companies offering phone service, even the cable company. My point is simple: Someone here dared to think outside of the box. You are judging this league and not even giving it a fair chance. As mentioned in the post, there are alot of smart people involved in this project, and they may be able to create a product that we will enjoy watching.

    For those who do not believe a few major NFL players can draw a huge fanbase are to me wrong. For instance, David Beckham name is associated with soccer for some, and after Lebron James, I cannot not a single played for the Cleveland Cavaliers.

    Mr. Cuban, for what little its worth, you have my support to create something we have never seen before. I, for one want the choice back in sports. For the record, I know several people who would rather watch a CFL game than an NFL game on TV. There are only a few minor differences made between these two and they do not jeopardize the quality of the football played.

    Comment by Jeremy Rutledge -

  110. Mark instead of trying to hit the NFL head on why not go the CFL route and invest up there. Here\’s why:

    1 – the league already exists and has for eons. First Grey Cup was 1909.
    2 – the CFL is already home to about the best college players outside the NFL. The quality is higher than you might think.
    3 – with a sensible salary cap ($4.05 million) it wouldn\’t be a huge financial hit even if the team didn\’t generate fan revenue in bunches that first season

    Put a team in Windsor, Ontario (they talked about it last year as playing out of the Pontiac Silverdome since it\’s across the river). Halifax, Nova Scotia would support a team like crazy if they ever got a stadium to do it with. Quebec City, Quebec already has the country\’s largest college football attendance, would work on the pro level. And finally either Victoria, BC or Kelowna, BC. Warm, sunny spots all summer long.

    Comment by Kent Ridley -

  111. to discuss and read the latest news on the united states football league go to

    Comment by ufl news -

  112. I don\’t like name UFL that much too wimpy need appeal name call United States Xtreme Football League or Great American Football League…. anyone want Vote new league name….USXFL vote yes vote no GAFL vote yes vote no

    Comment by Jeff -

  113. UFL is great idea but don\’t waste money take time and slow …Let spring football fan enjoy in new league..I know USFL made mistake moved to fall with NFL…I love USFL is great league they should stay in spring.I\’m former Memphis Showboats fan.Let the owner stay focus on league.Don\’t get national TV deal,go to local tv is easier in their home base.then take to grow then i\’ll say2-3 years get national TV later.Save money,expense,players and coaches.
    here good franchise pick:
    San Antonio
    Los Angeles
    Omaha never have pro football
    Las Vegas
    I am waiting for new league for a long time I am tired NFL players make too much money too greedy.I hope the players is one of us they want play let play for new league.looking forward next season.

    Comment by Jeff -

  114. i have idea…every teams must go for 2 pts con. even on 4th down try to score .no field goal on 4th down.if team reaches at 5 yards line or less must be 2 point conversion. Before 5 yards kick or more yards 3 point FG.50plus yards FG 4 point on board.we dont want copy as NFL.Here division line up
    Los Angeles
    Las Vegas
    Mexico City
    near future expansion teams
    San Jose
    San Antonio
    Corpus Christi

    Comment by Jeff -

  115. As much griping as fans do about blackouts and schedules, and who\’s on and who\’s not, it seems an alternative would be welcome.

    Comment by Michael A. Banks -

  116. Just send me the money you would be investing in this mess and when the UFL goes down the tubes I\’ll give you back 90% of the money. You will come out way ahead.

    Psst… how many times has someone thought \”Let me compete with the best sports franchise in the United States.\”

    Where have you been for the last 40 years or so? Tradition plays a huge factor in keeping the NBA, NFL, MLB and NHL going. How do you think the NHL came back from that player\’s vacation?

    Bringing in a new league just doesn\’t have the history, stats, traditions — it will NEVER work.

    Comment by Herschel -

  117. Mark, great idea and good luck!

    I think the UFL can succeed if it positions itself as an alternative to the NFL, not merely as an imitation. I suggest one rule change which would make a difference. End unlimited substition, and only allow one player substitution per play. This change would reward overall athleticism and endurance, not just speed and strength. Average player size would diminish (reducing the number of catastrophic and long term injuries) and rosters would be smaller, saving the teams money while increasing the salaries of individual athletes. Furthermore, the reudction in player siaze would mke it safer to add recent high school graduates (who are already used to playing both offense and defense).

    The public relations advantages are clear. The UFL could advertize itself as \”real\” football, not a league of designated hitters. The NFL is the only major sports league where most players do not have to play both offense and defense. And if anyone thinks this leauge is \”wimpy,\” get Chuck Bednarik as its spokesman. CDJ

    Comment by curtis d. johnson -

  118. Mr. Cuban,

    I think everything about the league is well thought out, except playing games in the Fall.

    I believe you\’re right that there\’s more OVERALL demand for football, but I don\’t believe that there\’s more demand than supply currently in the Fall. Currently you can watch a football game (NFL or college) on almost every day of every week once both seasons start up except Friday. Given the additional competition with Friday night itself (High School Football games – watching OR playing; date nights for young people who would be one of your main demographic groups; social night for a lot of adults), I just don\’t see it working.

    Personally, I\’d love to see more football. But I\’d much prefer to see it in the Spring. Maybe that doesn\’t work with the goal of attracting 2nd round and lower NFL draft picks as they\’d have to wait more than a year to play. But if you truly want to \”go where they don\’t put their resources\” as a business plan, then Spring football makes the most sense.

    That said, if the UFL starts play and is televised so I can see it, I\’ll watch when I can just because I\’m tired of the prima donna attitude of the NFL stars. I hope that somewhere in the charter for the UFL, character issues are considered to be of main importance. I don\’t want to hear about players taking steroids, being charged with felonies, disrespecting the game, coaches and teammates. Make a league where players care about playing first and money second, and I\’ll never watch the NFL again.

    Comment by Robert -

  119. Thank u for your sharing!!!

    Comment by wow powerleveling -

  120. Mark, if you want to invest in a new professional that actually has a chance of success, then why not invest it in professional rugby? USA rugby has released 3 press releases last week, each hinting at starting a professional league in the USA with possible connection to Canada. There is alreay huge international interest in rugby, the World Cup is this year in France, and I know I don\’t have to remind you of what a great game it is since you\’ve played in IU, Pittsburgh Harlequins and Dallas Reds.
    Pro rugby could get all the athletes you are looking for and not directly compete with the NFL, therefore no embarrasing business fauxpaus like the USFL, which UFL is destined to follow.
    Professional USA rugby is the future, Mark. Invest wisely.

    Comment by Tom Zanarini -

  121. Try to get recognizable coaches to come to the league. Guys who aren\’t in the league because teams don\’t want to hire older guys like Dan Reeves.

    Fans care about who the coach is and they don\’t want to see some high school coach that took a pay cut to join the league.

    Comment by Joel -

  122. Mark,

    Love it. Great idea! Do it! I watch college football and every year I buy a sports package to see as many different games as possible. I dont watch NFL because it is just not as exciting to me and has too many commercials. An Oklahoma vs Boise St. game never happens in the NFL. I love the idea of Friday night games as they are perfect for television viewing. I have a few suggestions on what to do / not do.

    1. Dont pull and NFL and have standard broadcast commercials every 2 minutes. The biggest reason I stopped watching NFL was because the commercials destroyed the pace of the game. I know you got to pay the bills but broadcasters need to get creative with advertising put sponsors on jerseys and cheerleaders or something. Try virtual commercials that display on field or in the corner of the screen during huddles. I am sick of seeing a bunch of stupid car commercials right in the middle of a big drive that let the defense get rested up it screws up the game.
    2. Make cool team names so many new leagues have lame names. Take for example Major League Soccer. I really want to get into soccer but I cant see buying a jersey with Galaxy or Dynamo on itgo Galaxy! Come on man.
    3. Run games on Thursday and Friday nights. People are home from work they are more likely to watch TV at this time. If games are on sat or sun Im likely doing something else. There is always tivo of course.
    4. Create a culture of traditions and fun. Show more cheerleaders and create events to engage fans that come out to games. One of the best things about college football games is the energy and excitement of the fans. Its a completely different feeling than going to an NFL game. Pro sports needs more of this fun fan excitement and tradition. The beauty of the new league is you can create or get fans involved in creating traditions.
    5. Hit unrepresented markets in strategic areas in the country. I understand that some people in L.A. still enjoy watching football and would like a team. Take a look at a USC game that fills the Coliseum every Saturday. Certain areas of the US have very loyal fans that are sports junkies. Places like Texas and Northern California for example can support multiple teams. I imagine that there are several areas that have little or no entertainment or sports outlet and would kill to have a football team.
    6. Longer seasons. Start the season in April and end in January. The football junkie really needs football in spring to get his fix. Yes this is a long season but what you can do is allow more bye weeks for teams to recover maybe one bye week each month for all teams during the summer months.
    7. Dont have announcers like Fox or NBC or CBSId rather watch paint dry or listen to a baby cry than listen to some of these announcers. I could care less about some of the commentary. It would be nice to just get the facts and background on players instead of some lame commentary / comedy hour like Monday night football. They need to take a lesson from Keith Jackson
    8. Make teams and players compete for spots. Ive noticed that in the NFL a lot of teams have showcase players that a lot of PR is put into and many times they really dont show up to play in every game but they stick around just because they have brand recognition. Take a really competitive edge on players and let them compete for positions. If you have a Bret Favre who is throwing interceptions game after game and not winning pull him and let the second stringer or third stringer try. The NFL has got way to sensitive about some players. Hey big guy dont hit Eli so hard
    9. Design good Stadiums Im not sure what it is but I almost always feel like even with the best seats Im missing a lot of the game. If you build good stadiums with extra amenities for they will come just for the stadium. Take note of the SF Giants baseball stadium for example.
    10. Get really good owners, coaches players etc.. These guys need to really buy into the idea and build it. I think you are a great start but you need other superstar owners who love the game and want to build teams.

    Comment by Dan -

  123. Mark,

    My question, why?

    Why do you want to start another football league? It just doesn\’t make sense. There is no other league competing against another in basketball to the NBA, hockey to the NHL or baseball to the MLB. So why do it against football??

    There\’s NFL Europe, which to me is similar to the Minor League from the Major League in baseball.

    And you mentioned competetion. There\’s no better competetion than the best against the best. People want to see the best against the best. Not a few of the best with some average against a few more of the best with some more average.

    All I\’m saying is leave football as it is.

    Comment by Roger Arnold -

  124. For the person who posted the stadium statistics.

    About the Norfolk/Hampton Roads area:

    Yes, there is Dick Price Stadium in Norfolk at Norfolk State University\’s campus. However, there are also two other facilities that could be used to accomodate a professional gridiron football field. Currently, Old Dominion University is renovating Foreman Field for the revival of the football program at the college in \’09. Virginia Beach also has a field in the form of the Virgina Beach Sportsplex, which currently doesn\’t have a primary occupant (its previous occupant was a soccer team that folded due to mismanagement), but could definitely be renovated to accomodate a gridiron field.

    Comment by Jeff Harris -

  125. Want to discuss all the ufl news and updates come to for All the latest news and discussions on the united football league

    Comment by ufl news -

  126. PLEASE bring a team to Milwaukee. Although Wisconsin has the Packers, they haven\’t played any games in Milwaukee since 1994 and this part of the state would really embrace another pro football team. We have a stadium here that has a retractable roof and could work for football. Please consider Milwaukee, you will not be disappointed.

    Comment by Mike -

  127. While I do believe that the public would demand more football, there is one small problem with going head to head with the NFL.
    They are the Big dog on the block.
    The laws of nature would dictate that a better target would be the weakest league of the big 3 (MLB)

    The large markets would still be available.
    The TV product would be even more marketable since the rest of TV is nothing but reruns in the spring/summer.

    Comment by Clay -

  128. Any hope for a team in Salt Lake City, Utah???

    Comment by Spencer Ferguson -

  129. Also, throw in:

    Huntsville-Decatur, AL (my hometown) — 21K (Alabama A&M)
    Montgomery, AL (my hometown) — 21K (Alabama State)
    Providence, RI — 20K (Brown University)
    Tulsa, OK — 36K (U of Tulsa)
    Spokane, WA — 29K (Eastern Washington U)
    Reno, NV — 31K (U of Nevada)
    Toledo, OH — 26K (U of Toledo)
    Madison, WI — 81K (U of Wisconsin)
    Champaign-Urbana, IL — 69K (U of Illinois)

    North Alabama may not have one \”huge\” city, but it has 1 that\’s 150K+ 3 or 4 over 50K (Madison is growing like crazy), and several in the 10-20K area. It adds up. Probably somewhere near a million live in Alabama\’s \”Tennessee Valley\”, from Florence to Scottsboro. It\’s an overlooked area, but has some potential.

    Huntsville-Decatur-Athens is around 500K alone, w/o Florence, Cullman, Scottboro, and the trio of Guntersville/Albertville/ and Boaz thrown in.

    Comment by John -

  130. I think competing with the NFL may not be the best idea, however the AFL and Sonny Werblin saw that the NFL was not about football, as the NFL thought at the time, it was about the fans. While Vince McMahanon saw some areas he thought to improve on this, I think from his Pro Wrestling experience, his view of what the fan actually wanted was scewed. Friday\’s during the early NFL season might not be the best plan — High School football still rules many areas, especially Texas. Do you really think anyone would in West Texas would watch a pro game over a Permian-Midland Lee game?

    Comment by Al Middleton -

  131. Here\’s a list of most of the biggest non-NFL cities, with existing football stadiums over 20K within a reasonable distance to the town\’s core.

    == US Cities ==
    Albuquerque — 42K (University of New Mexico)
    Anaheim — 45K (Anaheim Angels baseball stadium)
    Austin — 80K (U of Texas)
    Birmingham — 80K (Legion Field)
    Boise — 30K (Boise St.)
    Hartford/Connecticut — 40K (UConn)
    *Hartford/Connecticut — 64K (Yale)
    Syracuse — 49.5K (Syracuse U)
    Colorado Springs — 52K (Air Force)
    Columbia,SC — 80K (U of South Carolina)
    Columbus,OH — 101K (Oh. St.)
    Des Moines — 45K (IA St., @Ames)
    El Paso — 52K (Sun Bowl)
    Fort Worth — 45K (TCU)
    Fresno — 41K (Fresno St.
    Honolulu — 50K (Aloha Stadium)
    Jackson,MS — 60K (Veterans Memorial Stadium)
    Knoxville — 104K (U of Tennessee)
    Las Vegas — 40K (Sam Boyd Stadium)
    Little Rock — 53K (War Memorial Stadium)
    Los Angeles — 2 * 92K (Rose Bowl and USC Coliseum)
    Louisville — 42K (Papa John\’s, U of L-ville)
    Memphis — 62K (Liberty Bowl)
    Milwaukee — 42K (Brewers)
    Mobile/Pensacola — 40K (Ladd Peebles Stadium @ Mobile)
    Norfolk/Tidewater — 27K (Dick Price Stadium, Norfolk State)
    Oklahoma City — 82K (U of Oklahoma, in Norman)
    Omaha/Lincoln/Nebraska — 81K (U of Nebraska, Lincoln)
    Orlando — 70K (Citrus Bowl)
    Portland — 20K (PGE Park, U of Oregon or Oregon St. also options)
    Raleigh/Durham — 57K (NC St., Carter Finley)
    *Raleigh/Durham — 60K (UNC Kenan Stadium, @ Chapel Hill)
    Richmond — 22K (University of Richmond Stadium)
    Sacramento — 26K (Sac. St.)
    San Jose — 26K (San Jose State)
    Salt Lake — 46.5K (U of Utah)
    San Antonio — 65K (Alamo Dome)
    Shreveport,LA — 50K (Independence Bowl)
    Tallahassee,FL — 82K (FSU)
    Tuscon — 56K (U of Arizona)
    Wichita/Kansas — 30K (old Wichita State stadium, could also use either Kansas or K-State field)

    == Mexican Cities ==
    Guadalajara — 63K (Estadio Jalisco)
    Mexico City — 114.4K (Atzec Stadium)
    Monterrey — 45K (Estadio Universitario)
    *Monterrey — 38K (Estadio Tecnologico)
    Veracruz — 42K (Luis Pirata Fuente)

    I think it would be wise to utilize Mexico, as there are no really big pro leagues there, yet they have had a history with the sport of American football for quite some time. They have a total population of 100M (2.5x Canada\’s population). Yeah, futbol (soccer), baseball, and lucha libre wrestling are the 3 biggest spectator sports there, but I think there is some room for gridiron football as well.

    Also, Play in the spring and allow 18 y/os (or younger) into the league. Being a fan of a \”2nd tier\” (non-BCS) college football program, I think it would level the playing field at the top college level, as well as improve academics at the big \”football factory\” schools. NCAA football is getting out of control. It\’s becoming a semi-pro league in absence of a legit alternative for HS players.

    Compete with college football, not the NFL. You don\’t have to try nearly as hard to produce competitive salaries, (except for some SEC \’schools\’…)

    Comment by John -

  132. Mr. Cuban,

    I think you might be on to something here. I\’m 35 years old and live in Texas, so I can really appreicate how inavative you are because I\’ve been a Mav\’s fan for many years and had to deal with them stinking for a long time. I think if you leave the true product of football alone you will do ok. (No XFL!!!) As you probably already know football in Texas is a religon. I really think people will watch it if it is real football. I think the evidence is there with the ratings of the draft and the interest in the NFL year round in recent years. People like me just can\’t get enough.

    You have always been a \”FAN\’S\” owner and someone who goes above and beyond for your team and city. I never get tired of telling people the story about you working at a Dairy Queen for the day. That proves you care about your city and fans.
    Good luck, if anyone can do you can!


    Comment by Shane -

  133. Mark,

    When are you going to buy the Rangers and turn them around like the Mavericks?

    Comment by John -

  134. I can\’t stress enough how bad an idea the Las Vegas and Mexico City franchises are.

    Las Vegas will not support a major league sports franchise. There is not a native population with ties to the area (a huge % of the people who live there are from somewhere else). It\’s not an area that is big into football.

    Mexico City is even worse. It\’s at extremely high altitude to point out the smallest problem. Beyond that, do a google search on: \”Mexico City\” AND Crime or \”Mexico City\” AND kidnapping. All you would need to get the league off on the right foot, lure an NFL QB to the UFL and have his family kidnapped. Would the movie about that be free publicity for the league?

    If you want support for your team, these are the cities you want:

    Greater Los Angeles
    San Antonio
    Salt Lake City

    All of these Metro Areas are top 40 and over 1.5 million pop.

    All support an NBA team.

    All have some quality local football support (even in LA where quantity is a quality all its own) It\’s not like USC and UCLA can\’t sell tickets.

    Besides those cities, the following cities are better than Las Vegas and Mexico City.

    Norfolk, VA
    Memphis, TN
    Oklahoma City
    Columbus, OH
    San Juan, Puerto Rico
    Hartford, CT
    Louisville, KY

    Comment by Joel -

  135. Why don\’t you consider buying the Cowboys as well?

    Comment by Dog Bowl -

  136. Point well taken as for as the NFL requiring competition to avoid any semblance of a monopoly, the players desiring a real \”Collective Bargaining Agreement\” that can truly give them a competitive opportunity to market their skills, and the need for a viable product. There are a few problems that arise in your theory as I see it, but I may be wrong. First, as I see it, one of the reasons the NFl has done so well is because the product shifts to the opposite side of the scales when facing supply and demand. People are given, yes, about 21 weeks of football but the amount of games per year for each team leaves the rabid fan desiring more. Offering too much of the product, such as the 82 game NBA season or the 162 MLB season, tilts the demand for the product in the favor of the fan — they can catch it whenever they want. They really don\’t have to sit on the edge of their seat for the next installment. They can catch the game next week or get their fill from the Cliff Notes version of the game commonly called ESPN. Secondly, By spreading the quality over two leagues, you inherently dilute both leagues and the quality of each of its parts or teams. Maybe that would allow for more scoring. Maybe that would allow for bigger plays. Or maybe, just maybe, you might have 64 teams of a lower quality rather than 32 teams of good/great quality. 64 episodes of the XFL each week might kill a product that is flourishing. Maybe the NFl needs to realize that the more contracts it establishes with television networks and the farther it expands across a globe, they might just be forcing themselves into government scrutiny as a monopoly. The more the product becomes selective to a certain group of fans — Direct TV customers, etc, etc — the more they are leveraging their ability to manipulate the buying power of the public to their favor with the fan having no other option than to buy the service. Most of your points are well taken, but you need to be able to market the league of if the overall quality is of XFL quality, the magic you will have to compose in marketing the product might be insurmountable.

    Comment by sam el -

  137. 1. There are no NFL teams in the city of New York nor Long Island; the Jets and Giants play in New Jersey, and the Giants sell out all their home games, which would mean new customers for \”popular-priced\” football.

    2. The Chicago Bears, Denver Broncos and Washington Redskins sell out all their home games, which would also mean new customers for \”popular-priced\” football. In the case of the \’Skins, their old stadium, RFK, sits empty, save for the baseball team that will be moving to a new ballpark within the next couple of years.

    3. The city of Milwaukee is, technically, without an NFL team, since the Green Bay Packers chose to play all their home games in Green Bay rather than split the home half of their schedule with Milwaukee, as in years past.

    3. If you start the season in mid-March, teams franchised to any or all of those above-listed cities can each open with a 3-game road trip, with a 3-game home stand to make up for it during May.

    4. \”Lingering death\” 15-minute overtime in which each team is allowed one possession, reverting to sudden death if neither team scores.

    5. Maybe Mark Cuban and his partners ought to work with the All-American Football League and provide them the \”seed money\” to start that venture up.

    Comment by Steve -

  138. I\’m not sure the country will ever have enough money/attention span to sustain more than one major league per sport. The UFL sounds like another short-lived novelty to me. Here\’s more information on the plans for the UFL:

    Comment by Akhilleus13 -

  139. Hi Mark,

    I would love to see the NFL get some new competition. The area where you could excel, where the NFL fails, is in delivering a football experience. The NFL may have the best players, so presumably the best football, but the viewing experience is horrible. Like the millions of other Madden gamers, I am used to being able to see what is going on in the field during a play. The NFL shows a closeup of the QB dropping back to pass, which is the least interesting thing going on. What I wouldn\’t give to see what routes the WRs are running and how the defense plays them. The rest of Madden nation can recognise zone vs man defense, see who they think is open, and actually judge how good the QB is. This can\’t happen the way the NFL shows games. They basically just show you the results of the play. For anyone who understands football (and EA sports has been a great teacher to millions), this is just wrong. I don\’t know if my sentiments are popular, but there is no doubt that people would come around to a new viewing angle if they just watched a game. I don\’t think I would stop watching the NFL, but I would certainly watch UFL if they showed me what is happening rather than teasing and frustrating me. Just a thought.


    Comment by David Richters -

  140. I think this could be a brilliant idea given that:

    a. the ufl agree to be a lower level league
    b. the nfl work with the ufl similar to the lower leagues and English Premier League

    The possibility for ufl teams to be \”promoted\” to the nfl and vice versa would increase the overall competitiveness of the teams in both leagues.

    Comment by James -

  141. The NFL faces another challenge from a rival football league. Unlike the most recent challenge — the WWE-inspired XFL — the United Football League is prepared to challenge the NFL at old-school football. But the bigger questions facing the new league are who will watch it and, more importantly, who will air it?

    Comment by wow power leveling -

  142. Mark:

    Don\’t do it. I agree with your point the NFL needs competition, however there is a reason there isn\’t any true competition. The public/fans base won\’t accept it. NFL is an icon well entrenched in the target demographic psyche. Additionally, there is football year round, AFL, Europe Football and CFL all not very viable in the U.S. Do not convince yourself that the World Football League, the USFL and XFL had missed an essential point. They did not and the point was essentially to compete for the viewship=dollars the NFL had already salted away.

    Mark, why not compete with MLB or the NBA. Reason, they would be viewed as a minor league. Save your money and consider a different challenge.

    Comment by Rod Parr -

  143. Ok. I got one of them right. The first should have been http://www.uflfans.COM The second is also working.


    Comment by Dennis Justice -

  144. Whoops. Make that

    Comment by Dennis Justice -

  145. Oh, by the way, there\’s already a website of UFL fans:

    Comment by Dennis Justice -

  146. I really hope that somehow Mark Cuban reads this because some of us actually want this to work and see that if he goes forward with a fall league he will end up bankrupt and starting over.

    The XFL should not be totally dissed. It was a great idea with the wrong person running it. I STILL believe that had it been a cable TV only league, it would still be on.

    Here\’s some of my suggestions. The points of them is not be \”gimmicky\” as much as doing changes that make sense. I\’m sure others will comment as well:

    1. Rule change: Don\’t let conversions be automatic. In rugby (which Cuban plays and loves), conversions not automatic at all like they are in American football. Pending on where you score your try, you have to kick your conversion from there. If you score from the side, you can step back as far as you like to get a better angle. Misses happen all the time and is part of the game.

    Now, that couldn\’t work, but what about just spotting the ball on the 20 after touchdowns for the conversion? Make the kicker hit a 37-yard kick for the conversion. Make it realistic it might miss. The game IS called \”FOOTball,\” you know. (Yes, if they want to go for 2, go for 2 from the 20).

    The XFL had the right heart with their rule change where after a touchdown you had to run it in from the 2 for the extra point. It worked too well as conversions were around 50%. This way it\’s around 70% (and makes weather more a factor), and again, it\’s \”FOOTball.\”

    (I call this the \”Dino\” rule. My lucky number is 37 and this would be a 37 yard kick.)

    2. Rule change: Speed up the game. In an alternative league, even with HDNet (which Cuban is half-owner), he won\’t get the control of the time with other channels like the NFL does. He will have to make sure the game ends before 3 hours.

    We all know the college attempt to speed up the game last year was a disaster. Starting the clock at change of possession allows teams in the lead to more easily run out the clock and kill drama.

    Here\’s a better idea: After they spot the ball on incompletions, restart the clock. Do this in the first and third quarters only and fans won\’t notice the difference.

    3. Rule change: Don\’t run clock on kickoffs and most other kicks. This would add drama because a great run late in the game could cause a last second field goal that could tie or win it. Takes away a little from time saved from idea #2 but not much.

    4. XFL idea: Pay to play, pay more to win. It was a great idea and would give more incentive.

    5. XFL idea (modified): Replace coin-toss and make \”dash for the ball\” relevant. The dash for the ball was a interesting idea, but really, didn\’t change the outcome of the game as the losing team on that still got the ball in the 2nd half to even it out. You could either give the winner the opening possession of EACH half, and/or overtime.

    6. XFL idea (modified): Punts are live balls. Like in rugby, forward kicks are live balls. I\’d suggest any punt past the line of scrimmage is live provided receiver gets 5 yard halo and if the ball goes out of bounds it\’s automatically the receiving team\’s ball unless they fumbled. (If the ball lands outside the halo it\’s live).

    7. Overtime: Each side guaranteed the ball at least once.

    8. Make me Commissioner.

    Good luck.

    Dennis Justice
    828 681 0391

    Comment by Dennis Justice -

  147. Take a look at these links

    Comment by Canoya Jefferson -

  148. 1.) Do you have a timetable where and when you would like games to start and or be played

    2.) The most important thing I would have to say is getting good people to help build and run this league..tap into the younger grad student and or undergrad level

    Get people excited and are willing to work, dont work with the NFL castoff\’s and bitter ex owners who are now not taking part in the sucess that the NFL is having

    Big Cities with out strong fan support is important, I would say attempt a few safe cities but also look out for the new Green Bay of your league one where the community would be true blue (or whatever else color) fans

    Make LA your base, its a big diverse population that the NFL has left and the people will not forget who gave them a real team to root for….

    As for scheduling that is a problem that has many different aspects and will take months of reasearch to find out what market you are looking for what market can you reach etc.. but for an off the wall idea how about not having a game day but having games every day of the week?? Like tuesday night games its not like people are watching CW or NBC, have the UFL be free to watch on the internet which will increase a fan base…

    Also I know as owners are found and the leage is created more jobs will open up, but if you want to get in on the ground floor, is there a website to put an applicaton up on or whatnot and anyone to just talk too?

    Comment by Adam Leathers -

  149. Mr. Cuban:

    In order to build a brand, you have to analyze a number of things before you proceed into doing it.

    – Is there a demand and will it be supported?
    – Who benefits?
    – What makes it different than the existing product?
    – What kind of markets will be a part of it?

    Is there a demand? From a market perspective, there isn\’t really a market for another professional football league in the fall. You\’ve mentioned that there is a demand for competition for the NFL, but I don\’t really see it. In fact, the NFL has proved that they not only despise competition, but they\’ll kill it or sue those that dare try. They have made a calculated effort to control the sport of gridiron football in the United States, from multibillion dollar television contracts to actually controlling who can and can\’t produce football video games in the US (and right now, only EA can do that). That\’s why the USFL failed (ask your \”friend\” Heir Combover about that endeavor and how the NFL sent him a check for $1). That\’s why the World League failed (the NFL was an owner in that, and they purposely killed interest in the States). That\’s why the CFL USA experiment ended (the NFL was very litigious about the name of the Baltimore CFL team that ended up being the only one winning the Grey Cup; the only major CFL US owner ended up moving his NFL team to Baltimore after the experiment was over). That\’s why the XFL ended. Well, the XFL ended because of Vince McMahon, who tried to turn football into a wrestling-like spectacular and not really having an understanding about the game.

    Now, just because there isn\’t a demand now doesn\’t mean there won\’t be years from now. The NFL has revealed itself to becoming an organization that is very rigid and restrictive, and a newer generation of players aren\’t being represented fully by the league. Perhaps a new league would reignite the game, but there has to be a strong vocal support for a new league.

    Will it be supported? Initially. The markets that receive the franchises will definitely benefit it. And the league must show respect for the market as well. Otherwise, you get a situation like what happened in Charlotte. George Shinn took the fans for granted and didn\’t even try to reason with the city before announcing a move out of Charlotte. The NBA respected the city and awarded them a new expansion franchise. The NFL did the same for Cleveland after the original Cleveland Browns moved to Baltimore. However, for the nation to support it, the end product mustn\’t be amateurish. Again, look at the XFL. It reveled in baffoonery and immaturity, and that was one of the many reasons it failed after its first year. America has to see a quality product week after week. Players have to become professional on and off the field. If the league presents a professional product, then others will respect it as a professional product. Otherwise, you join the ranks of the XFL.

    Who benefits? How will the ownership of the league\’s franchises be handled? Will the teams be owned by the league itself or will each have an individual owner? A solo owner of all the teams almost automatically has a sense of distrust with the audience. A solo owner could \”fix\” games to benefit one franchise over another. Nobody really paid attention that the XFL was centered solely around the Los Angeles franchise, where the first and last games were played with LA winning the only XFL championship. Each team should have a solo ownership party, with all team owners working with the front offices of the league to create a quality product.

    What makes it different than the existing product? Don\’t make it too different than what the NFL currently offers, but don\’t make it a carbon copy either. Look at the AFL and USFL as well as the original ABA. Both leagues were nearly identical to their larger counterparts, the NFL and the NBA, respectedly. However, each league had subtle differences, features, and unique play options that set it apart from their \”mainstream\” competitors, making them more of a serious competition. The NFL absorbed the AFL and took a lot of the USFL features and made them their own while the NBA essentially took some of the ABA teams and all the features that essentially helped create the modern NBA of today, the NBA you\’re a member of. In the end, you have to keep things the same, but also set yourself apart from the competition.

    What kind of markets will be a part of it? This is a dilemma. Do you go for the traditional markets (you know, New York, Chicago, LA, Miami, Dallas, DC, and New England), the ignored markets (Norfolk/VA Beach, Las Vegas, Orlando, Richmond, Birmingham, Nashville, OKC, Sacremento, Milwaukee, and South Carolina) or a combination of the two? You could go the easy route with the big TV markets, so the traditional markets would be covered. You could also concentrate on the larger markets without pro teams and build an instant brand out of that. Certain markets are oversaturated while others are completely ignored. Did you know that the Norfolk/Virginia Beach/Newport News, VA market is the largest in the nation without ANY major league franchise? No NFL, no NBA, no NHL, no MLB. And it\’s bigger than Buffalo, New Orleans, and Green Bay, markets with NFL franchises. A professional football franchise would work here without competiting with another franchise for fan and corporate support. If you do proceed to launch a sports league, then you have to consider the ignored markets as well as placing teams in large television markets.

    Oh, and if you decide to do so, consider Wednesday nights in the fall rather than Fridays. Middle of the week means a higher concentration of viewers than on Fridays. You said it\’s a great TV product, and that\’s an ideal timeslot I\’d take advantage of. That, and a Saturday night doubleheader.

    Comment by Jeff Harris -

  150. Mark –

    Nice idea with the UFL, but let\’s take it a step further. Have an 8 team league with one team managed by the people. Charge people $10 for the right to participate in a season of management decisions as it relates to player personal. Examples of management decisions would include: having live streaming tryouts, where the \”Virtual Owners\” watch and then vote on who to sign…maybe a live draft and the managers vote on you to select. I would love the idea of making fantasy football \”real\”.


    Comment by Josh -

  151. A bunch of injured 19 year olds will do nothing to help the league. The NFL cuts, coming from NFL conditioning programs and using professional workout supplements are going to be too strong and too heavy for guys coming out of high school weight rooms doing Stacker and Walmart Protein Bars.

    Peyton Manning at 19 going to the (hypothetical) Nashville Cats of the UFL would be out of the league with multiple injuries within 3 years unless he spent the first one or two on the bench. Do a google image search on his high school pictures, he looked like he weighed 150 pounds.

    Look at Jimmy Clausen (for a modern example of the top QB recruit). He\’s 6\’3\” 200, underweight for an NFL player and soft at that. If he took a shot from a washed up NFL player like LaVarr Arrington it would break him in half.

    Comment by Joel -

  152. oh, i don\’t know, what about the Bart Starr\’s & Brett Favre\’s? The history is why many people like these leagues. It will be very difficult to try an attempt a 2nd legacy, people seem pretty happy with the NFL.

    Comment by AMERICO -

  153. Mark, you\’ve identified no reasons why it would work, just reasons why the NFL is vulnerable. That\’s no business plan if you ask me. Jay Slick\’s post shows one way how to attack the NFL in a way that make the league interesting and possibly successful. But until you tell me why I want to watch, and what I\’m going to get out of it, I ain\’t watching.

    Comment by Gary -

  154. DO you want to know all the latest news on the UFL go to to discuss the latest news and just discuss the UFL.

    Comment by ufl news -

  155. how about a new football league with an old school appeal? leather helmets with no face masks, fewer pads, and a lot more physical contact and dirty play – the shit we used to play in the schoolyard. i\’d pay to see those types of games.

    Comment by Jordan Blum -

  156. Mark once again here I am to be the dark cloud that rains on your parade. You have to be the dumbest smart person I know. So much money, not a good investor. Mavericks, I give you that one. At least you one a western conference banner…WOW. Thinking about the Cubs….that would be another Dallas, and now the \”ufl\” give me a break. Why don\’t you stick to something that you can actually make useful like you HD network. I hate to break this to you but it seems like you have a bad omen on you or something. That\’s what happens when you try to pay off referees and make comments about San Antonio. San Antonio has always had that pick on the smaller kid name lingering over it. We may not have much and we may not be as big economy wise as Dallas but one thing we do have that Dallas doesn\’t and probably will never have is a Championship. 3 titles and one more on the way. Maybe if your nice we can get you nosebleed seats to the Finals. Spurs in 5. GO SPURS GO!!

    Comment by Albert Rios -

  157. I think that having another football league is a great idea. I was a fan of watching the XFL as well as a current fan of the NFL. I hope that you are successful in making the league work. I don\’t see it being an easy task but I think you have the right ideas and drive. Good luck.

    Your future UFL fan.

    Comment by William -

  158. If you are going head to head with the big boys…. you HAVE to beat them where they are weak. You need a \’hook\’.
    Drugs and off field violence/criminal activity:
    Zero tolerance in the new league may be the hook you need. A lot of folks do not like the \’thug element\’ in professional sports…. make them happy!!!

    Comment by Tom Burris -

  159. If anyone can do it you can. I went to XFL games, they were great. I\’d buy season tickets to your league.

    The key is timing – the season should complete with zzzzzz…base….ball (talk about a S-L-O-W sport!). Football year round – awesome!!

    Comment by DEWZ -

  160. Hey Mark,
    How can a coach like myself get involved? Is there a web page, e-mail address or fax number I can send my re\’sume\’ to? Please let me know. I would love to get involved ASAP. The world needs more football. Thanks.

    Comment by Frank -

  161. I think your timing on this is perfect in two ways and have a third option that could increase your drawing power.

    You already have a built in telelvision outlet in HDNet that can offer games in HD to a market that wants more of that type of programming. If you schedule games so you don\’t go head to head with the NFL, their audience will be waiting for you.

    Secondly, you offer the opportunity for the majority of college players who are good at what they do, but not built physically or menatlly for the NFL. Look at the careers Doug Flutie, Warren Moon and other stars had in the CFL before finding a niche in the NFL. A faster, less formatted playing style will draw the attention of fans and sponsors alike.

    Finally, I believe the NFL\’s public image is more vulnerable at this time than it has ever been. If your league can attract players less prone to the criminal activities that an NFL lifestyle appears to encourage, I think you\’re also going to increase your profile — and your profits.

    Good luck. Can\’t wait for the kickoff.

    Comment by Jim Henshaw -

  162. Mark, PLEASE bring back the USFL. That was by far the best football league there ever was. If you can do that I will back you 100%!!

    Comment by Nick V -

  163. Please put a team in Orland, Florida!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Nicholas S.

    Comment by Nicholas -

  164. Mark,

    I think the UFL is a great idea. I have scouting and sports management experience and would love the opportunity to help the UFL grow from the ground floor. Where can I get information on possibly getting involved?

    Thank you,


    Comment by Miguel Duarte -

  165. I also believe another Football League can succeed. What is needed are good organizations, with \”good\” players ,in a league that has good competition. I am 68 years old and have been following all Football all of my life. One suggestion I would make is to adapt the canadian football sized field. Leave everthing else the same. The entire game would open up and become up and become very exciting. The running game would be reborn with wide sweeps. Deep passes inside the red zone into 20 yard deep end zones. The No Fun League would soon be looking at some real competition.

    Comment by Sal Monforte -

  166. Hi Mark. I\’m inclined to believe that another pro league can exist. Can it work in the fall? Only if the games are on nights during the week and not just Friday. Also, I think the spring would work so much better, but that\’s not my decision right?

    One other thing…I am inclined to agree with Brad who posted on May 30th. PLEASE BUY THE PIRATES!

    Comment by Harry Michelson -

  167. to discuss the latest news on the ufl go to

    Comment by ufl news -

  168. How about an alternative to the NBA? The NBA is in a weaker position than the NFL. Better yet, just broadcast European basketball with your HDnet in the states.

    Comment by Nick -

  169. Mark,

    I got your comment, thank you. I can\’t disagree more with it, however. I don\’t expect you to back your own busness plan without criticism — from me. Remember, a simulation\’s a form of business plan — you all did not make a simulation of the UFL. You\’re flying blind out there.

    Zennie Abraham, Jr.
    Chairman and CEO
    Sports Business Simulations

    Comment by Zenophon Abraham -

  170. Mark,

    Great idea… wrong sport. Go after the NBA. It\’s ripe for the taking. Raise the rims a foot, make the ball bigger, and enforce the rules as the were in the 60\’s and 70\’s. Take the dunk out of the game and bring back the grace of the weave.

    As for your NFL idea…sure sounds a lot like the USFL. Remember why it failed?

    Comment by Greg -

  171. Mexico City is a BAD idea. By bad I mean terrible. If nothing else the high altitude will kill teams. With all of the kidnappings in Mexico, you want to lure a top QB to the UFL just to get one of his kids kidnapped by Guatemalan gangsters?

    There are much nicer cities in Mexico, there\’s Monterrey for instance.

    Aside from that I love the league. I loved the USFL. We\’d love to see some crazy run and shoot football on Fridays.

    The cities I\’d pick:

    San Antonio
    Los Angeles
    Oklahoma City
    San Bernadino (the Inland Empire has 4 million people)

    Maybe a team in Canada.

    Comment by Joel -

  172. As a purely capitalistic endeavor, the UFL could work. Step one would be to remove the age restriction so that you get the better high school athletes who view college simply as the NFL farm system. The money would be way too hard to pass up for many of them. Step two, years down the line when the league is financially strong, would be to start signing players to long-term deals. Dry up the NFL talent pool and you win through attrition. But that doesnt mean I endorse such an approach.

    Comment by Jeff Mitchell -

  173. Of, I forgot … some more ideas …

    1) Attack them on Sundays MORNINGS!

    Schedule a live game at 10-10:30 a.m. ET (East coast teams only). You\’ll hammer the \”all-blather, all-the-time\” pregame shows, and you\’ll give the bettors something to wet their whistler before the 1 p.m. games.

    2) Start a worldwide fantasy league competition immediately, with something like a $5 million-$10 million first prize. Weekly prizes of $1 million. Those who don\’t bet on the NFL certainly play fantasy football for peanuts.

    Comment by Ken Carpenter -

  174. Mark,

    Where do I send my rsum?

    Here\’s the first bit of free advice — buy the entire Canadian Football League first. Why? You get ALL there players, three nice markets — Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver — with nice stadiums … but most importantly you get the Grey Cup, one of the oldest trophies in pro sports.

    Of course, lots of Canadians will be pissed when you change everything to U.S. rules, but they\’ll get over it!

    Comment by Ken Carpenter -

  175. Look to the USFL as a guide, not the XFL.

    People talk about the USFL as if it were a flop. Some of the teams stunk, true, but the better-financed ones had a solid fan base and put a good product on the field. Steve Spurrier\’s Bandits were sensational. Part of the appeal was everything wasn\’t ground down by tradition. The coach challenge came out of the USFL, of course.

    A lot of great college players are thrown away by the NFL. A lot of fans watch the pros to follow their college team\’s grads, especially in markets without a team.

    Hell, I\’ll watch. Put one in LA!

    Comment by Glenn -

  176. When do we get viable competition for the NBA? I can\’t wait for that day. The NBA has ruined basketball in its purest form. There is no such thing as team ball – the Pistons are the closest thing I see to it.

    All the NBA is are guys jogging up and down the floor, and when they get camped out on one end it just turns into an isolation play. What happened to people who move, who arte hungry for the game? I can\’t wait for the NBA to get some good competition. It\’s my dream that it happens soon.

    And I was a fan until about six or seven years ago. Until then I could name stats, and give you draft orders and picks, I watched more games than the average person should. But then somewhere in the mix the NBA lost it. Now I have to stick to college ball, and international ball whenever I get the chance to see some.

    Just a rant – can\’t wait for the NFL\’s rival – I am a huge football fan. The more the better!!!!!

    Comment by Ben Parker -

  177. its not so much crazy, its just a waste of time.

    The NFL meets the demands of football fans.

    IT fills them up right like say chunky soup.

    Now the NBA, could use some competition.

    For me personally I would like to see a professional basketball league where more strong, atheltic, skilled, white players have the opportunity to get minutes, and take more field goal attempts, and have the ball passed to them more so that we can see what they can do.

    Comment by craigp -

  178. Mark,

    Thanks for doing this, I live in Vegas and we are dying for some pro sports here and I am thrilled that you recognize this.

    Sign me up for season tickets.


    Comment by Brian Rakvica -

  179. get all your news and discuss the upcoming league the united football league.

    Comment by ufl news -

  180. Mark Cuban,
    I would love to see a competing football league, and am even more intrigued by the thought of placing a team in San Antonio, my home town. I love football, and the National Football League is fun to watch. But being somewhat of a purist, I lament the descent of American football into such a specialist game. While you consider tapping the under-supplied football market, I wonder if you have ever considered bringing back \”iron-man\” football, that is, the pure form of American football. I\’m sure you know what iron-man football is, but to be clear, I\’m primarily talking about the fixed roster, where the team on the field is made up of 11 players, which play both offense and defense, and even special teams. Iron-man football has several advantages over the NFL style, both from the vantage point of the sport itself, and the business side of it.
    Just like originally, and in European Football still (soccer and rugby), Iron-man players play on both sides of the ball. They can be replaced of course, for injury, or even for advantage, but all replacements last through the quarter. A player taken off the field for injury is out of play until the next quarter. This aspect of Iron-man football, players playing more time, requires the game itself to be shorter, with less stopping of the clock, which also allows for more games per season. The roster would be perhaps 20 athletes, rather than 50 or so, as it is in the NFL. This is also a business advantage.
    Besides being pure American Football, iron-man requires savvy coaching and placement of personnel, and makes the game more fun to watch. It becomes more explosive, rather than entrenched, like the NFL, which has found itself tweaking the rules every year, and application of the rules by the refs, in order to make explosive plays happen. In the NFL, defensive backs are hamstrung in their play by such nitpicking rules in order to result in more crowd-pleasing long yardage plays. Iron-man football by its very nature opens up the field to explosive plays, because of the very versatility of the players.
    Iron-man football has other serious advantages in the business end as well, especially when considering competing with the NFL. It would compete directly with only a few of the NFL players as it stands, since Iron-man incorporates more athletically versatile players, rather than specialist players. As an example, Iron-man football would not as likely hire the 350 pound linemen as it would build its line more likely with more 250 pound tight-end types and linebackers. The result is a faster, more explosive game. A full-back would also play a line-backer, a quarter-back would also be a safety or corner-back, and linemen would both block and rush. When choosing players for draft, owners and coaches would focus on versatility, which would lower the direct competition, giving the Iron-man League financial leverage for the truly best athletes, and making the sport of Iron-man Football the most athletic team sport in the world.
    More games, fewer athletes, finer athletes, explosive plays, intriguing coaching, purer sport, less dead clock, and focused competition with the NFL for only the most versatile players, all make an Iron-man Football League a business venture worth investing in. I don\’t think it would take long for lovers of American football to become entranced with the real deal. The real deal is Iron-man, of course. Furthermore, if you make it happen, I\’ll buy you a steak dinner, out of pure gratitude.

    Bill Kincaid

    Comment by William Kincaid -

  181. Hi Mark,

    It\’s an interesting idea, but as my blog post explains, there are fundamental problems with the UFL.



    Zennie Abraham, Jr.
    Chairman and CEO
    Sports Business Simulations

    Comment by Zenophon \"Zennie\" Abraham -

  182. hello mr. cuban,i am an equipment manager with 20 + years experience who has had the chance to assess all the needs and order all the football equipment for an expansion franchise. when the ufl gets a little further down the line in this process
    and is looking for ball park figures for each teams equipment costs, i would love the opportunity to help out any way i can.
    i\’ve been a fan of yours since you came on the scene with the mavs, and this latest venture of yours can be only one thing…a success.

    Comment by j.k. ouellette -

  183. God bless you and good luck competing with college football.

    Comment by fjtpw -

  184. Mark, There has always been a place for another league if done right. Obviously a TV contract is critical but I think the WFL, USFL, XFL and CFL expansion to the USA would have all worked if managed properly. I\’d like to see the UFL play with the same 3 down rules as the CFL. I think a bowl game between the two champions (CFL & UFL) would be a great draw and would boost both leagues. Please make this league happen! There are many of us that live in markets like Hampton Roads, Virginia (Norfolk, Virginia Beach) that are tired of just missing out every time expansion or team relocation happens. GO UFL!!!!!!!

    Comment by Coach Walt -

  185. Mark, good luck in your efforts. However, just a couple of thoughts.
    1. In Ohio, Texas, California, and other states, Friday nights in the fall are reserved for one thing–Friday night high school football. The folks that would watch Friday pro football are going to be in high school stadiums watching their kids or the neighbors\’ kids play football. Also, it would not be fair to try to draw away the spectators from the high school to the UFL. Many athletic departments need any funding they get from their state athletic associations for making a run threough the play-offs at the end of the season. This funding is dependent on the number of folks through the turnstyles.

    2. Please don\’t let high schoolers go directly to the league. They need four years to build body mass & muscle before going pro. An eighteen year old usually can\’t go against a NFL Europe or CFL or AFL player or NCAA D-1 NFL draft passed over prospect in terms of phyical conditioning. Also, they need a few more years to get some mental maturity as well. A college degree to fall back on after a career ending injury would be good, too.

    3. Two to three months after the NFL Pro Bowl, football fans are wanting football to start. Give them a league and at that time of year you could put it on Friday night.

    Good luck!

    Comment by Erik S. -

  186. Great Idea

    Comment by Adi -

  187. Mark- Big fan of yours (from Philly, a city that could definitely use an inspired entrepreneurial GM/Owner). I have grown tired of professional leagues in the USA. The quality of play is at an all time low due in large part to crappy CBA\’s and general malaise. The NFL is the only league that requires players to actually play to get paid, thus the league is the most profitable and competitive. In every other league I am sick and tired of seeing players sign a lucrative contract and wind up on the DL with some mysterious injury or just lose all interest in playing the game (i.e. Jamal Mashburn, Glenn Robinson, Matt Geiger, Tom Gordon, Toni Kukoc, Chris Webber and these are just from my home city). I don\’t tune into any league until the playoffs because this is when you see competition at its finest. The bottom line is top flight athletes respond to one thing, money. Throw out everything we have become accustomed to regarding the NFL, MLB, NBA and NHL \”championship\” models. In order to facilitate a true \”championship\” there must be a significant purse to be won. I have become a huge fan of European Soccer. Players in the various premiere leagues do not miss matches unless they are seriously injured or suspended. Talk to Roman Abramovich who has taken Chelsea from the basement to the penthouse much like you have done with the Mavericks. I realize this idea is rather crude but I believe my concept is right on point. Line up some sponsors and create a baseball, football, basketball, hockey, badmiton, etc. tournament. Declare a first prize of $x million, and throw a little to second and third. Allow all capital market forces in play. Sponsors/owners will assemble the best team possible to win the purse. No excuses, no bull shit. If the purse is worth winning there should be an ample number of owners willing to field a team and ample number of sponsors lined up to broadcast and market these matchups. If winning this \”championship\” rewards players and owners more than the 4 leagues then the level of play will be greater in this tournament and you will have a superior product. I realize this concept requires a significant capital outlay but I feel this would promote the purest form of athletic competition, the likes of which the world has been missing out on.


    Comment by Walt Michel -

  188. Mark,

    I respect you as an owner, but I am concerned about a couple of items that I have heard/read about the UFL.

    1) Yes, there is a huge open market for professional football, but not during the current NFL season and not immediately after it (see XFL). Right now is when us die hard football fans are really craving some NFL quality football. Not only would a May-August league fill that open market, but, if successful, it would take some of the excitement away from the start of the NFL season. That would be an excellent way to get into the NFL execs heads.

    2. I think that the worst thing that the UFL could do is try to thin out their product on TNT or Vs. One of the major reasons that the NFL is so huge is because they have built team loyalty for fans. If I have to watch a different team every time a UFL game is on, I am not going to care enough about the players to really get into it.

    Well either way I hope that you are able to create a great product. Good Luck


    Comment by Matt -

  189. Mr. Mark,
    I think it will be a great opportunity and it will not have to compete with the NFL, because this can be minor league system for the NFL, and the people dont who dont wont it to happen are haters, because mark have to money to do, mark this is what you do. You go purchase the League the number one minor football league with over 100 teams and you change from a free league to a paid league each player get paid $1000.00 a game coaches get paid anywhere $30 to $60,000.00, and young coaches can used this for training and travel would be paid for by sponsorship. Each player would get on the field insurance, every team will have to do things in the community mark and the current ownership over of the NAFL can have a partnership.This league would have benefits for football players that was cut, from NFL team and young men who dream it was to play football and get paid. Mark it can be done, do not listen to haters, start off small, like this and then maybe the NFL would invest in this league as a minor league system and do not look at it as competion. Mark contact me I can help you map it out. Good Luck!


    Comment by Charlton -

  190. to check out the latest news on the ufl go to and discuss the league.

    Comment by ufl news -

  191. Mark,

    While I applaud your efforts to consider any and all opportunities, what I think you should really consider down the road is a rival to the league you are already in: the NBA.

    Look at the product on the court; there are a handful of teams that play hard all the time(your Mavs, the Suns, Spurs, ?) and the rest dog it for 3 quarters and then if it\’s close then maybe they try for a quarter or so. Also, as you have mentioned repeatedly in the past (before fines made it impossible to comment on) the refereeing in the NBA has gotten terrible, as there is so much inconsistency, technical foul abuse, no traveling, etc

    If you ever sold the Mavericks and started a rival league that put a bunch of guys on the court who tried for all 48 minutes, actually ran plays and had coaches who thought about strategy (the Pistons-Cavaliers series is a joke in that department) you could definitely compete against the NBA.

    From a business standpoint, what I\’ve always learned in my entrepreneurship classes I take (I\’m a senior at Northeastern University) is that you should learn as much as you can about an industry/market before going into business for yourself….And who knows more about the ins and outs of running a team (not to mention any inefficiencies/problems with the league) than a person like you?

    I don\’t know what the ratings look like for the Conference finals games, but I can\’t remember the last time I cared less about the NBA…


    Comment by Jason E. -

  192. Here\’s the change I\’ve always wanted to see in professional football (and other sports for that matter: the majority of players on each team should be FROM the city they play for (the same state, at least). If Portland has a team, then the team\’s players would all be from Oregon (grew up there or played college ball or lived there x number of years). If you\’re a football fan in Oregon, what would you want to see more than a bunch of former Oregon and Oregon State players and local Oregon boys who played elsewhere going up against an LA team of former USC and UCLA and local LA guys? Who\’s tougher? Who\’s got more talent? Real pride is on the line.It would be like national teams facing each other. In the Olympics, if the teams weren\’t made up of citizens actually FROM the countries they represented, who would care enough to watch? One of the reasons I like college football is that the teams are often made up mostly of kids from in-state.

    And who cares if one team\’s got a larger population to draw from? In the World Cup, if Portugal (10 million) plays Spain (40 million), do you think they care that their population is only a quarter as big? Denmark (5 million) vs China (1 billion) isn\’t a fair fight?

    And you could have an exception to the residency requirement for several \”ringers\” on each team. That way if you\’re a really good player and underappreciated on your home team, you could shop yourself to a team willing to use up one of their ringer spots on the roster.

    Good luck with everything…


    Comment by Victor -

  193. Mark,

    I have a suggestion for you? Why not go after competing with the AFL? Hear me out now:

    1. The NFL has a solid following and it\’s fan base is continuing to grow every year.
    2. A source for the prime target audience is young men 18-25 years old. During the NFL season they are tied up on Friday nights with high school ball or saturday nights with college ball.
    3. There is a big void between the end of the SuperBowl and the start of the next season. Honestly I\’ve tried watching the AFL but it just doesn\’t do it for me. I\’m longing to see some real football played outdoors during this time. Now I\’m a Maverick fan so the NBA keeps me going for most of this time but I still prefer to watch football.

    Hey I\’m all for another football league but most people I know grew up on the NFL and are loyal and will stay loyal to that league for years to come. During the NFL season I\’m watching that league.

    Another thing if you are dead serious about this keep it real. Don\’t try to do some of the outlandish things the XFL did. I totally lost interest in that league after the first half of the 1st season.

    Just my .02 cents. Good luck man. I\’ll keep following your progress in this venture.

    Comment by Scott Hammons -

  194. Mark, you are the greatest owner there is. This is an amazing idea…but you live in Texas. You should know Friday night is high school football, your target market is at the local football game not at home watching your game

    Comment by RB -

  195. Mark,

    Here is from one geek to another: I think it is a brilliant idea, and one that will translate to success with good planning and execution. Having observed your passion about things and what you have done with the Mavericks (and NBA in general) from day one as an owner, I have no doubt that UFL or anything like it could use more owners like you. Sure, you could have spent money elsewhere, safely, by buying the Cubs or Pirates. But I see your point in pursuing a challenge and wish you the best. You deserve it.

    The biggest help comes from starting with a clean slate. It provides an opportunity to create a strong fan base by addressing issues that the (established) behemoths cant. As long as UFL sticks to the fundamentals of football, remains clean, fan friendly and exciting, there would be nothing stopping it from quickly becoming a benchmark.

    As far as scheduling goes, I think spring would be a better choice over winter. Consideration should be given to having games played on Wednesday or Thursday instead of on Friday or either of the weekend days when people have plenty to watch and do.

    It would also help to ensure that TV contracts are broadcast type as opposed to cable, as it would help as much as keeping the game affordable to most fans would. Keeping interaction alive with fans through out the season and after, plus making even the commercials worth watching (for example, using widgets to reduce potential switching of channels) are just a few of the ideas. I will share more with you over time, any time an opportunity comes around.

    Comment by Maneesh Roberts -

  196. I think you\’d be better off taking on Open wheel racing in North America vs taking on the NFL. I agree with your points, except you\’re forgetting about creating legitimacy with fans. You simply have 70% of current fans who think the notion of competing with the NFL is absurd, and those are the people you want from a loyalty standpoint. How will you convince these people? The only way I could see this is if the NFL was crazy enough to actually host exhibitions vs your teams and you consistently compete with them. Otherwise, there\’s nothing you could do, even in markets without teams.

    Take that vs buying out CCWS and the IRL or simply buying out CCWS, contracting your way into ISC tracks and creating a diverse series that the top teams want. This would be much cheaper to implement and would fill a void that\’s already there. You have a huge fanbase that has essentially given up on the ownership of these two leagues and is looking for a new \’leader\’ to unite the teams even without the Indy 500. You don\’t even have to concern yourself with the Indy 500 as it is open to one-off efforts(selling point to teams). If buying out CCWS, you\’re already buying into a TV contract with NBC/ABC/ESPN as well. Was this something looked at by you vs starting a football league? The void of fans is still there. A lot of us are just alienated and refuse to watch a watered down product. Please save us. The NFL is creating its own demise as we speak and there will be plenty of opportunity in 10 years. We need you now.

    Comment by Randell Weatherall -

  197. I cannot believe he has the kahunas to go after the NFL.

    Here are some other leagues that have already tried this and failed:


    Comment by Ryan Pratt -

  198. Mark,
    I\’m a huge football fan. I watch the NFL, college, I coached High School Football, Ill go to HS games, Pro games, and Ill even stop by the park and watch kids play skin and bones. I watched the XFL and liked it, and I even watch NFL Europa religiously.
    Im glad you have decided to start a new league. I wish I could be part of it somehow. Im also in the internet advertising business maybe if you need investors.

    Anyway if you dont mind I would like to throw in my 2 cents. So here is my idea: Why dont you put together your 8 team league and play it at the same time that NFL Europa is playing, then the Champion of each leagues plays a North America vs. Europe Championship game. The rules would have to be exactly the same, you can in the future do inter-league play; you would have support of the NFL because it would help them expand the NFL Europa game to the US. It would double the size of your league and the size of NFL Europa. You should be able to get a TV contract with the NFL network and other more easily. It would be a world wide league. There are many other up sides to this idea.
    I also always thought that there should be another league in the fall and winter, just because people are in football mode at that time of the year. Unfortunately my idea would have to be played in the spring but it can be a good starting point to be a successful venture.

    Any feedback from you would be great. Good luck with the league.


    Comment by Marcelo -

  199. Too bad you couldn\’t have been around in time for the Maurice Clarett fiasco. Although it may have ruined the league after we all learned what an idiot he actually is. Speaking of idiots, it sounds like Michael Vick will be looking for a new job if the Falcons have any class at all. He will still have followers. Apparently, a lot of people look up to a quarterback who passes STD\’s better than a ball, hates his own fans, brings pot to an airport, and forces dogs to kill eachother for fun.

    Comment by Generator Safety -

  200. Don\’t forget Monterrey, MX; 3 hours south of San Antonio, 4 million people, 2nd largest city in Mexico, and recently an offensive linemen from a college there got a contract from the Kansas City Chiefs.

    I\’d love a league a Pacific Rim, Central Continent, Atlantic division alignment with international teams as the primary difference between the NFL and UFL. Your league\’s teams would also have to eventually play the Cowboys for me to like it.

    Comment by Nick Welp -

  201. Why not? But there are a few things you must consider:

    1. consider the CFLs field specifications, especially the end zone (offense sells tickets).

    2. I spent 6 years in Germany and the Germans are ready for a pro football franchise, trust me on this, the NFL has primed them with the WLoAF.

    3. 50+ yard field goals count 4 points.

    4. San Antonio, Oklahoma City, Portland, etc

    Comment by JASON CALLAWAY -

  202. There seems to be a lot of skepticism within the comments, and while I, like any observer of like ventures from the past, have my doubts as to whether the U.F.L. can work, it certainly seems like it\’s worth a shot. I think it\’s clear that the market for professional football is not satiated, and Mark makes a lot of good points about how the N.F.L.\’s C.B.A. serves to provide a potential competitor with a viable means of competing for non-elite talent. And there will even be cases where the non-elite talent makes it\’s way to the U.F.L. Lance Briggs would sure welcome a competing league right about now.

    Comment by Richard -

  203. Mark as you can see I am totally ecited about this but look at this potential 8 team league:

    Ft.Lauderdale FL
    Columbia SC

    Augusta MA
    Providence RI

    LA CA
    Las Vegas NV

    Sort of Mid-West
    Oklahoma City OK
    Mexico City NM

    This would give you a good base in most makets and there should be some good fan base comparisons in all of those areas.The South Carolina Stallions…..I like that!

    Comment by Kevin -

  204. The NFL will fall at some point. It\’s not going to last forever. It\’s not a sacred institution and if the UFL does it right (coupled with the NFL doing some things wrong) then it will work.

    But I understand, stay on the sidelines and make sure the band wagon is sturdy and can hold a good crowd before getting on. Safer that way…

    Comment by Jon -

  205. Hey Mark listen it is obvious that your a smart man so I am sure you have football experts advising you on this as well as the other owners. As a football fan of 37 years I would respectfully ask that you go with the traditional rules because of your direct competition with the NFL. That\’s where the other leagues failed. Theatrics are for outside of the white lines. The game should stay pure but it would be great to be more fan friendly with more colorful venues,halftime shows and advertising. Don\’t let the bitterness people have with the Mavericks defeat deter you from this great idea that I totally support! Give me an udate sometime I would love to stay up to date!

    Comment by Kevin -

  206. Mark I think the idea is fantastic! There are a great many good quality football players bagging groceries and working in factories because a political cut from a team. My question is can small markets like South Carolina get a franchise? We have a great track record of packing fans into 76,000 seats every single home game for the SC Gamecocks in Columbia and 80,000 plus in Clemson at Death Valley. Columbia SC is a GREAT GREAT place for a professional franchise.

    Comment by Kevin -

  207. I think you should use your money to get KOBE and leave football to the NFL, College, AFL, CFL, NFLE, and the High School ranks. Spurs in the title game. Mavs at home. Stick with basketball.

    Comment by Shawn -

  208. I think a new pro football league is a great idea.

    I think competing at the same time of year is the only way that works, just ask the old AFL owners.

    The players you sign to the new league will take away from the pool of players that are available to NFL teams when they cut a player or need to replace an injured player. Maybe having contract terms with the players that allow them to leave for an NFL contract would be a way to get free media exposure and show the world that you have NFL caliber players? That might be a bad idea, or maybe the NFL forbids it.

    I am a target fan. Give me a reason to pick a team. I live near Portland, OR, but I\’m from Texas. For the first couple of years, I don\’t think it should matter how much revenue you make, but it is critical to establish a fan base. Maybe broadcast the games for free on the internet.

    Assuming there is no team local to Portland, how can I become a fan if I can\’t see any one specific team\’s game every week? Also, radio coverage. Maybe provide a free radio package to entice radio stations to broadcast games. Better yet, a free live audio feed of every game, followed by a podcast of the game. I would love to see a video podcast of every game from the high end zone camera behind the offense. Use the internet to hook me.

    I don\’t want to see/hear different teams every week. Thats what the NFL Europa does, and who cares about that. Make me care about a team.

    The biggest thing is don\’t do anything weird. An offense like the Run and Shoot would be great. I don\’t care how many players are on a team, or how timeouts work. But you have to use NFL rules, or at least close enough that I can\’t tell the difference. The only exception is that I prefer the NCAA overtime rules.

    Good luck!

    Comment by The Dog -

  209. I like the idea of a competing league. If any one can do it, it would be Mark Cuban and the other guys involved like Tim Armstrong of Google. I read an interesting comment today in this blog post

    which said:

    \”If people fear the league will dissipate within a few years, they won\’t even bother familiarizing themselves with team names. After a period of time though, after the league has been around a while, people may say OK, it looks like this league is going to be around for a long time, let me take a look and see what its all about.\”

    My question would be is this league, the UFL, prepared to lag behind for many years while building a fan base slowly but surely? Or is the idea to come in and compete head to head with the NFL in just a season or two? Obviously if the latter can be done successfully, that would bring in the most money. I hate to be a naysayer, but I don\’t think it would work this way though. I think the UFL has to be structured to withstand initial years of unpopularity. Like the poster said, if people don\’t fear the league will disappear in a couple of seasons, they will ultimately pay attention and the UFL will grow in popularity.

    Comment by Justin -

  210. I agree with a lot of what you\’ve said. The one question I have, and I\’m sure I\’m not the first person to ask this question, is why do it in the fall and try to compete with the NFL for ratings? In essence, there are 5 months out of the year where Americans who love football (such as myself) have no football to watch. Wouldn\’t it be better, at least in the first few seasons, to not try to compete for ratings with the most popular sports league in the country?

    Comment by Andrew Bohl -

  211. Mark…..get together with the founders of the All American Football League. Go to They have a great business model. You could even have a team right there in Dallas.

    Comment by Bruce Butler -

  212. Here\’s my problem with the UFL: When was the last time anyone was watching the NFL and thought to themselves, man there are just too many great players out there that aren\’t getting on the field, I wish there was a way we could get rid of all this quality depth and have another league? I\’m all for competition in most areas, but there are a finite number of people in this world talented enough to get paid to play football. Seriously, look at the quarterback situation in the NFL, how many teams have really good qbs? Five or six at most, everyone else just muddles along. The UFL will never attract the likes of Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, or Donovan McNabb, until they are at the tail end of their careers. The UFL may succeed and Mr. Cuban you may get more money, but the real losers will be fans who enjoy seeing quality football. Glad you could help turn the NFL into the over-stretched monstroncity that your own NBA has become.

    Comment by Jamesthemic -

  213. If the cost of entry for a team to the UFL is significantly less than the NFL, there is enough local market support for each team in the UFL and the UFL gets competitive television coverage there should be no reason it won\’t succeed.

    Comment by Dennis -


    Comment by kevin wesley -

  215. one of the reasons i love the nfl is the limited number of games played, and a season that doesn\’t go on forever (though a feb superbowl is streatching it). i don\’t want/need more football. if i did. i\’d watch more college ball.

    we get the nfl ticket every year and see all the football we need.

    i wish you well mark, but i just don\’t see the need.

    Comment by tom -

  216. If you make your product available on the web just as it will be shown on tv I would watch. I spend most of my entertainment time on the web instead of tv and have no problem watching 2 things at the same time. football is football if it is played within the basic current rules (a la high school, college, and pro are all similar products).

    Comment by paul -

  217. Mark, as successful as you have been I honestly do not feel competing with the NFL should be your next target. The XFL plummeted dramatically after a couple of weeks and was a disgrace! I think you are an incredible asset to the Mavericks organization and we really need to bring a championship to Dallas!! Which brings me to a question……have you given any consideration about the possibility of bringing Ray Allen to Dallas?

    Comment by Jeramy Hopkins -

  218. Mark,

    With the NFL imposing much stricter behavior related consequences and now banning of alcohol at any team function, it appears that this might be the perfect time to implement this vision. It is only a matter of time before the current players get fed up with the administration and seek alternative opportunities (i.e. UFL). I think the NFL administration is losing sight of the fact that they are dealing with grown ass men and ultimately will lose talent once another option is available. I\’m 100% behind ya!

    Comment by Julio -

  219. Mr. Cuban I admire your spirit and your passion, but I respectfully disagree with your decision to go heads up against the NFL. As smart as you are when it comes to making business decisions, your approach to this is not the brightess. I mean, yeah the NFL needs a rivial, but you are going about it all wrong. Your league should be played in the spring/summer and should be played in the same cities as the NFL (established markets), in the same stadiums ( to keep the feel of a NFL game), it should be marketed to the youth by changing some a rule or two (specifically no fields goal or punting, Madden/Playstion rules), and well, I have one more aspect to this which would make sure your league won\’t fail where the XFL and USFL did and give the NFL a run for it\’s merchandising dollar unlike the Arena League and NFL Europe. If interested you have my email address. I\’ve rambled on enough. God bless you Mr. Cuban.

    Comment by Q. LeSure -

  220. Don\’t waste your time trying to compete against high school or college football in Texas. That\’s a losing bet no matter what.

    Also, in regard to the CBA, that is a very short lived advantage.
    If your league is sucessful, and the only way that can happen in the long run is to attract great players, then you will have to negotiate a CBA which will be modeled on the NFL. Oterwise any player who makes a name in your league will jump to the NFL, unless you can wave enough money at Drew Rosenhaus and Leigh Steinberg so that their clients don\’t mind forgetting about Super Bowls.

    Comment by Andy -

  221. Mark,

    I\’m a football fan, so I\’ll say good luck. You\’re intelligent enough to know the risks involved.

    If I can offer one bit of advice to the UFL, it would be to balance smaller markets where you will actually get a lot of media coverage (Memphis, Birmingham, Oklahoma City) with the larger markets that are necessary (LA, Chicago, NYC). Also, stay away from markets where high school football is a way of life; I would think this would be the case in Dallas and Houston?

    Look at the cities that had XFL teams — absolutely perfect begininng lineup and it left tons of room for expansion had it worked out.

    Comment by Alfred Sumrall -

  222. Mark,

    I\’m a football fan, so I\’ll say good luck. You\’re intelligent enough to know the risks involved.

    If I can offer one bit of advice to the UFL, it would be to balance smaller markets where you will actually get a lot of media coverage (Memphis, Birmingham, Oklahoma City) with the larger markets that are necessary (LA, Chicago, NYC). Also, stay away from markets where high school football is a way of life; I would think this would be the case in Dallas and Houston?

    Look at the cities that had XFL teams — absolutely perfect begininng lineup and it left tons of room for expansion had it worked out.

    Comment by Alfred Sumrall -

  223. Mark,

    You don\’t want to get into football, you want to get into baseball. There\’s a really horrible baseball team not too far from where you live called the Rangers, you should buy them. Please God buy them!

    Comment by Hank Blalock -

  224. When does Maurice Clarett and Lawrence Phillips get out of jail- you got some name recognition right there?

    Also, if you don\’t have drug testing you can get the likes of Ricky Williams and anyone else who fails multiple drug tests.

    Comment by Chris -

  225. You are a complete fool. here\’s an idea why dont you just burn the money in your front yard and have a weinie roast

    you really got lucky with broadcast .com

    you clearly are not that smart.

    Comment by joseph favreau -

  226. Ain\’t gonna happen.

    1. The NFL is fully entrenched, there are generations of established fans.

    2. This isn\’t 1970 and the AFL. There\’s no room for X number of more teams if you plan on a merger at some point and/or play during the Fall. It\’s simple math – the scheduling of that many matchups in a punishing sport like football won\’t fly (this isn\’t basketball – players need a week to heal up)

    3. If you play in the Spring, as other said, go ahead and try to compete with March Madness, baseball, basketball (you should know this), etc. Again, no room. *see USFL

    4. If you somehow figure out a magic bullet to solve the above, I still think you need to create something \”different\” in order to establish a fan base. Different rules, different scoring, etc. Don\’t make it a joke/circus, but just copying the NFL will make the UFL seem \”second rate\” IMO.

    Good luck…

    Comment by Kman -

  227. Why fall? Is it because you want to go head to head with the NFL or because you feel that is the best time for the league to have success? I have not heard a definitive answer and the media is interpreting it as you are going head to head with the NFL. Why not go for the spring or summer? I\’d rather watch football games in late July than NFL players running drills in shorts on ESPN!

    Comment by Joe Jackson -

  228. Mark,

    I would rather see you buy the Kansas City Royals, instead of getting involved with an unproven football league.

    Comment by Tony -

  229. If I had heard about the football thing before I saw you the other day, at MiCocina in the Galleria, I would have asked you to consider another direction. RUGBY.

    I love the football idea actually. There is a lot more money out there to be made from this entertaining sport. But what I don\’t understand is how as long as rugby has been around, how does lacross have a pro league but rugby doesn\’t. Actually my team the Dallas Reds are in the top level of rugby in the US.

    The problem is leadership, quality coaching, and monetary backing. Enter Mark Cuban.

    Rugby is twice the sport Lacross is. And with as similar as it is to football I can\’t believe it has not taken off. The best thing we can hope for is a tryout with the national team and then maybe a world cup that only happens once every three years.

    There have been some business men who have made attempts to elevate the sport, but they have all, eventually lost steam. I\’ll admit for reasons that I don\’t completely know. I played in the military during that time, and did not see the politics, if you will, around USA rugby at that time.

    Rugby desperately needs support. As players we pay for most if not all for other teams expenses. Referees dues, club dues which cover the field rentals, tournaments, and travel. There are some who will sponsor but there is little return for these organizations who know very little about rugby themselves.

    USA rugby needs a major backer to put the sport on the map. There are lots of opportunities to expand rugby at the youth level, and there are several high schools in the Dallas area that already have teams that compete nationally. College rugby is huge, and from the military side it is probably the biggest team sport around because it requires no pads.

    Professional level team are already established and are broken down into divisions to where the lower level division team could become feeders for the upper level.

    And of course there is the national level. In all of the different levels mention there is a womens counterpart and a touch (especially for the kids) levels.

    In short I truly believe this is a great sport, and I don\’t feel like I am biased in saying it will do well here. Again that is based on our love for violence in sports. Elegant violence as it is. At the very least in our football driven world it could do at least as well as soccer and lacrosse.

    This is a sport for all ages, sizes and genders. Feel free to email whenever and I would love to chat about rugby anytime.


    Nick Sloan

    Comment by nick -

  230. Mark –

    I think it is a great idea and once the teams are aligned I would like to be a part of one of the organizations.

    Comment by Craig -

  231. I am a huge football fan. NFL, college and even arena. I watched every game that XFL had on TV and what really was its downfall was incomplete passes. All the extras they had with WWE names, camera angels and mics were all lost when a nobody QB dropped back and threw 3 and 7 pass into the line of scrimmage. There is really nothing more boring than an inept qb. There are athletes and football players everywhere. But all the qb\’s are in the NFL. I hope you can find a way to talk a college qb to come to your league rather than being a 2nd stringer in the NFL

    Comment by Joe -

  232. Mark,
    If you are looking for a tax write-off then this is it. High School football associations are going to put this league directly in their cross hairs since you will be playing on Friday night. I agree that supply does not meet demand here, but the product that you are going to offer is going to be an inferior one to the NFL. Removing age restrictions will not happen either because as you know college football is a big business and state government\’s would pass a bill baring any team from your league playing and residing in their state. As someone who knows the football business there is an opportunity for a state side farm league to the NFL with the proper financing and management.

    Comment by Blake Trotter -

  233. I can see it working if:

    1) All games are televised nationally. With an 8-team league, you could have 4 doubleheaders almost every Friday (except for bye weeks).

    Put the best matchup on the CW, the next best on TNT/TBS, 3rd goes to Versus, 4th (if necessary) goes to Cuban\’s own HDNET channel.

    The cable games need to be carried on free TV in local markets. Friday night air time should be readily available on all these networks.

    2) The teams are placed in markets underserved by the other major sports leagues, such as Las Vegas, Northern Virginia, Orlando, Portland, Oklahoma City, Sacramento, New Jersey, Louisville, etc. Forget Los Angeles. Forget college sports-first towns like Columbus.

    2) You can bet on it, and not just in Vegas, but w/ your local bookie.

    3) It catches on in the Fantasy Football world.

    4) No teams play in Texas, if these games are to played on Friday night

    That\’s a lot, but every part of it can be done with patience and an abundance of money.

    If nothing else, I\’d like to see Cuban come up with some experimental gameplay ideas that will push the NFL into change their dumber long-standing rules (such adopting a college-style overtime).

    Comment by Portland Web Design -

  234. Mark,

    Seriously, good luck.. I hope you do really well with this.


    I think your downfall will be with Friday nights, I hope to god one of your advisors or someone close to you tells you this. Friday nights are the -worst- night in television ratings. This is the night people go out or do things other than rot in front of the TV, especially your target audience. You would be far more successful if you target summer weekdays or Saturdays evenings.

    Weekdays, so you can compete with the lull between primtime television series. You will cleanup this dead period.

    Saturdays to compete with college to a degree.. like you say, you will be taking 3rd rounder+ players. These are some star players from smaller schools. You will get die hard college fans wanting to watch their favorite players flourish in a league like you propose.

    I guess in the end I hope you do well with this. I just dont see it happening on Friday nights as you have it currently proposed.

    Good luck sir.

    Comment by Marc -

  235. Mr. Cubin: I am an ex-NFL sports agent who has an intellectual ability to brainstorm and come up with pragmatic and creative ideas to life occurances and problems. Using my extensive knowledge-base of the business workings of the NFL , I have deeply thought into your idea since reading about it in the paper this morning. I had been getting some resumes together in order to try and latch on with several large and well established sports agency companies, until I thought \”what if I could work for Mr. Cuban to give him a fighting chance of making his idea/vision of being successful\”! I have a bunch of ideas about how you can make this work. I would like to work for you as Director of League Development until this new football league launches its first season, after that point in time, I would like to become the General Manager of your team in the league. We would have to share my ideas with all of the teams in the league, however, in order to make it fair and equitable to all of the owners and teams involved. You would have to be wiling to hire someone you is not a \”yes\” man, however, as I will tell you what aspect(s) of your vision are not pragmatic, and which would probably led to the quick demise of \”your\” football league. I would not allow you to implement an aspect of your vision which would lessen the chances for success of this new football league, like George Bush has allowed stupid advisors to sell him on the Iraq war, which is unwinable as President Bush defines or lacks to define \”victory\”. I am not looking to make large amounts of money from you, as you will see that I am willing to work for a modest salary in which I would provide you with \”million dollar\” ideas or perhaps even more valuable in return. E-mail me back at my e-mail address. Send me a phone number where I can call you, and perhaps we can meet after talking on the phone. I will provide you with a resume and personel references in order to validate who I am and my morale character. I look forward to talking with you.

    Comment by Chris Allen -

  236. I like the idea of another league. More of a David vs. Goliath-type thing. More jobs for football players who had to feel the sting of being told they have no place in the NFL due to height, speed, and underweighted etc., etc. (Need I remind everyone of a small school named \”Boise State\’ got all the attention in the college football world last Jan. by knocking off a storied Football program ,Oklahoma, in the Bowl game???)

    Yeah, XFL was more focused on wrestling and Vince McMaahon spent too much money on Ads about the XFL which may be the reason why he folded after one season. I liked others\’ ideas on how to improve and giving yourself a fighting chance against a Giant such as the NFL.

    But, the XFL and also as well the NFL gave out a blueprint on how to build a new league. It just needs money and the willing to stick to a plan. It would be the NFL\’s undoing. Just follow what they did…start off small (12 teams) and then take the next step (expand) when deemed ready.

    Instead of starting off the season in Feb. like XFL. Just start in April and play your way into the end of June. Unlimited age policy would garner you the pre-colleges and Post-High School Propects. I am tired of Players going to college and end up disappointing hundreds of fans simply because of money by leaving early. Contracts should be on a year to year basis for everyone. Players who have been producing results for at least 5 years to the owner\’s approval are allow to recieve a long-term contract; \”Hard Work don\’t go Unnoticed.\” This way owners don\’t have to worry about costs and get stump with paying wasted money on one-year flukes. Also, instill a \”One Strike\” rule in case, someone goes to Jail. They will be given a one chance. 2nd time out…they should be banned. With all the rules that gives them a chance to be on a team, they should be honored to be a member of this league unlike the NFL who turns a blind eye until recently.

    Keep the rules of XFL. The OT games are awesome. I think the best way to build rivals will be to keep the state players on their teams. That way the fans would get emotionally invloved. The Championship will be hyped for years to come. Ohio fans vs. Florida fans, South Carolina vs. North Carolina, Texas vs. California. I promise you even the players will be emotionally pumped up for these games.

    Mark Cuban, Please look at this plan and consider it.

    thanks!!!!!!!!!! Go UFL!!!!!!!!!!!

    Comment by JC -

  237. Mark-

    How will the UFL be different from the proposed All-American Football League?


    Comment by chuck -

  238. 189 comments as I write this and 3 Major League Lacrosse suggestions.

    Suprisingly low..

    And the guy who suggested \”Running ball\” owes me a new keyboard because I just spit my coffee all over it.

    Comment by PSC -

  239. Mr. Cuban:

    Not only do I support your idea, but I wholeheartedly am behind it, if for no other reason, to remind America that the NFL does not have to have a monopoly on \”professional football.\” As a former fan of the U.S.F.L. (and I remind you that, despite the paltry $1 award they won in their antitrust lawsuit against the NFL, an illegal monopoly WAS found), I enjoyed the fact that that league had new ideas and a fresh approach in contract to the stodgy NFL.

    I have long held the thought that another league could setup where the USFL left off, namely, by establishing teams in Orlando, Birmingham, San Antonio, Las Vegas, Los Angeles and Portland, among other places.

    Everyone always assumes that a rival league would have to compete head-to-head with the NFL in its cities… false! There are too may other cities around the country that are literally starving for pro football. With one or two \”NFL-cities\” included with the 6 cities I named above, a league could function and prosper.

    In reference to competing, however, I would suggest that the UFL attempts again to establish a spring league. Football in the fall is, frankly, spoken for, with high-school, college and pro football throughout the week. More thought should be given to establishing a spring league, as the attention given to the NFL Draft coverage in April should indicate that, while basketball and baseball are spring/summer sports, this country is starved for football action year-round.

    You can e-mail me anytime for more ideas!

    Comment by Craig Washington -

  240. Mark,

    I\’ve been writing up a business plan for a Spring/Summer league since last year, and have been looking to do research to gauge interest in such. I notice that everyone here says \”I think the NFL will crush you\”, \”No one can compete with the NFL\”, \”Anything not NFL will be second-class\”. But what I have yet to see is these same people saying \”I\’d watch that\” or \”I\’d like to see the product.\” I plan on putting a survey online to gauge people\’s interest in pro football, to see their receptiveness to the product.

    I have developed several concepts to differentiate the league without any kind of severe deviation from the standard rule set. I think the new league, the All-American Football League, that\’s being started by a bunch of former Div I guys to tap into local college ball spirit and channel it into a pro-level game is the right idea. I think a smaller roster with smaller salaries playing in smaller facilities approach is the right one. But it is imperative that the team be able to build team spirit and loyal fan bases with a product that people can focus on during a certain part of the year. Sure, there\’ll always be distractions like NFL Draft day and the Combine and all that, but those would be minor at most.

    The best part of Spring/Summer is you can pick up where the NFL leaves off by playing your games on Sunday. Set up this league with even local or regional broadcasting deals and maybe a \”Sunday Ticket\” style satellite deal, and season-pass internet broadcasting, and watch talent from the CFL, NFL Europa, AFL, AAFL, and probably College (especially sub DIV I schools) come flocking in. A league that could offer an average salary of even $150,000 would be besting the offering in just about any of these leagues and they would be playing real football in America.

    And besides, why are people acting like they can\’t like more than one team? I don\’t feel guilty cheering on ND against Michigan when I\’m wearing my Colts hat. This is the same thing, and moving the schedule to the spring reinforces the concept of: These teams are not in competition, pick a favorite in each. But at the same time, the drawing power of the new league will force the NFL to innovate and increase quality, even if it keeps its schedule in the Fall/Winter.

    I have a lot more thoughts on the subject, so if you\’d like to talk about more, please email me.

    Comment by Anthony Bullard -

  241. If what I am reading is correct you will be playing your games on Friday night, which is a mistake the same mistake the XFL made. Putting their games on at a time I and all others in the 18 to 35 crowd is not watching TV. I have always believed if someone were to start a football league where the season began a month or so after the super bowl with games on Sundays it would kill. Sundays are good days to lay around on the couch and watch football when God knows there is nothing else on. Friday and Saturday nights your audience is not going to be anywhere near a TV.

    Comment by cjc -

  242. Mark – Here is a crazy idea…

    I think some one should create a post college league where teams are required to select players from a particular conference. Say, only players that have graduated 4-5 years ago or less, anyone older cannot join. Wouldn\’t It be cool to watch ex-Big12 players that didn\’t make the pro\’s form a team or teams who play ex-Pac10 or ex-Big10 players? It would be fun to follow your college players. You could also see which conference has the best post-college/pre-NFL players. I think a hybrid college/pro league would work if you had more ties into college vs. trying to become like the NFL.

    What do you think? It would be hard to pull-off something like this but MONEY if you did. Remember who you got this idea from 😛

    Comment by Tyson S -

  243. This is great. Since the fall of the USFL we are stuck watching baseball in the summer.

    1. Although you will compete for players, play in the NFL Offseason. This is great for the Football fan.
    2. Don\’t be afraid of going after the non-major sities such as Birmingham, Sacramento, Colorad Springs etc.
    3. Get the locals involved monetarily. Offer stock in the teams as the Green Bay Packers do. This would provide a more fervent fan base with something to win or lose depending on the performance of the team. As stockholders they will pay a little more attention to what would be good for the league.

    Comment by James Biga -

  244. Mark

    This idea can and will fly. The CFL (Where some players go if they get cut or unsigned) only has 8 teams but they are limited by a rule that there must be a minimum amount of Canadian players on each team. I am from Canada, but I disagree with that rule. LET THE BEST PLAYERS PLAY !!!
    I believe this endeavour will work and good luck to getting it started and thriving. Cheers.

    Comment by Donny -

  245. Please tell me you will focus on the game, not on allowing these over-paid athletes whine and complain about their salaries, holding-out for new contracts, and basically holding teams hostage with their demands.

    I would fully support a new league that emphasizes \”the love of the game\” – not the paycheck. Funny how current pro players have their best years when playing for a new contract. I hope you do \”incentive-based\” contracts to allow the players to earn their pay – not collect an a huge payday after each game.

    Comment by david g -

  246. Mark my man, shouldn\’t you be focusing your attention on buying the Cubs? We need you!

    Comment by Edward Silha -

  247. How about a francise in Salt Lake City?

    Comment by David Fehlman -

  248. One insight for you… If you had an LA team which was predominantly former USC and UCLA players who weren\’t quite good enough for the NFL, but play hard and deliver a fun product, you would own Friday nights here. Similar with a Detroit team that drew from Michigan and Michigan State standouts, an Austin team with UT players, etc. It would be an easy way to get established local \”stars\” from the start without having to actually compete with the NFL for players.

    Comment by Brad Hutchings -

  249. NFL\’s may have helped the UFL today.

    No alcohol at any NFL event (for players)!?

    These are grown men, I find it hard to believe they are telling them they can\’t drink!

    The NoFunLeague is doing everything it can to alienate players.

    GO UFL!

    Comment by Karl K -

  250. Mark,
    Where do I send my resume? There is a clear market for this product, but when taking on the leviathan that is the NFL, you will need highly motivated people working behind the scenes to make it happen. I\’m in.

    Comment by Bruce -

  251. Mark, I have 3 words for you. X F L

    Comment by david davis -

  252. Mark,

    I have covered the NFL since 1981 and I admire your guts and vision. I believe you have the germ of a great idea because you want to get in on the football market without competing with the NFL directly.

    As a longtime NFL reporter who has studied the history of the league and has two books coming out shortly, I know that the American Football League was the best thing that ever happened to the NFL. Lamar Hunt was drawn into the game and the 1958 championship game between the Colts and Giants cemented his interest. At the time, owners like George Halas and George Preston Marshall wanted no part of expansion because they didn\’t want to divide up the pie. But Bert Bell was the commissioner at the time and he thought that the birth of a new league would only help the NFL. He was willing to give Hunt behind-the-scenes advice and would have helped the new league get off the ground had he not dropped dead of a heart attack in 1959.

    Take this idea and run with it.

    Comment by Steve Silverman -

  253. San Antonio is ready!

    SA\’s shown that it can support a team, and probably should.

    We\’ve got two pro-football owners here anyhow, with Tom Benson and Red McCombs.

    I think it\’s wise not to compete with the NFL on Sundays, or even Monday nights. Even the NBA isn\’t foolish enough to go head-on there. You\’ll notice the Sunday and Monday games are limited even in the NBA till the NFL season is over.

    Keeping it off of Saturdays will keep it out of competition with NCAA.

    Not sure about the name UFL, I\’m sure Florida fans love it. They\’ve got over 200 players that have gone to the NFL anyhow, so I guess it could be fitting. Florida \’Gator\’ade probably won\’t have the nuts to sponsor it, but I\’m sure there will be enough sponsors. Go Russell Athletics & Reeboks!

    My suggestions:

    – A Google exec is a major contributor behind this, Mark Cuban is involved, and yet there is no legit website for the league? Whats that about. Get a site going!


    – Get the calls right, replay everything upstairs, ties go to the call on the field.

    – Guaranty the contracts. If you\’ve got a great player, you\’re not going to pay him NFL money anyhow. Guaranty the contract and keep him happy. I hate to see players lose their careers and future health for their teams only to get kicked in the nuts when their health fails them. Curtis Martin, one of the best runners in NFL history, gave his knees to the NFL, the NFL (Jets) basically gave him a token $475k and fired him.

    I\’m a basketball fanatic, but I find myself more consistenly watching the NFL, because I know I only have 16 games a season to catch. More football won\’t hurt anything, except the players.

    I think a new basketball league, or help with some of the others that are trying to come-up isn\’t a bad idea either.

    I\’d hate to see it like pre-ABA joining the NBA, when you had Dr. J, Moses Malone, & George Gervin in a different league. What would have happened if those players had been in the NBA earlier?

    Comment by Karl K -

  254. I think it\’s a viable option, especially since teams will be plunked down in areas without a nearly NFL option. If a minor-league ballpark in Frisco can attract a regular, family-friendly crowd, I don\’t see why this league couldn\’t do the same.

    Comment by Spamboy -

  255. I was an XFL season ticket holder in Las Vegas, and loved it. I would support another football league again, and am fairly certian Las Vegas would adopt a team again. Especially one that would make an effort to take some of the older/pricer players that the NFL has been trying to squeeze out. My vote would be for games at a different time of year than the NFL, but realize that may not be possible. I think football is a strong enough sport to support multiple leagues. The XFL wasn\’t far off. A whole lotta people turned into that first game. Talent level was weak, and the teams had not practiced enough. Some of the games were pretty good by mid-season.

    Comment by Adam Narver -

  256. Mark maybe you should focus your efforts on why the Mavs are watching the Spurs are in the finals and that the Mavs (the team i love and cry for) let point guards (Nash, B Davis, Parker, Bibby) do whatever they want and let shooting guards (T mac, Kobe 62, D Wade and any other SG) make them look silly. And when a team that is up tempo you don\’t have a player you can give the ball to and just say do your damn thing. But if you feel you can take on the NFL so be it. Good Luck Sir.

    MFFL Crying till October

    Comment by MFFL Jay -

  257. Pretty obvious to me what you\’re up to… build competitive franchises in 10-20 cities, and then merge with the NFL. Good luck with this… there are lots of cities out there capable of affording a team that do not have one… and the NFL could easily accommodate 12-16 more teams. Lots of potential downside risk here too… but truly an example of \’If you build it they will come…\’

    Comment by HJ Mann -

  258. A new league oh yeah….I am sick of those overpaid panie waste in the nfl.Mark give us a great league with great players who love the game.In fact hire me to go sell it to real football fans who love the game but hate the politics…For all you opposed to any league other than the NFL you are the waste of the panie waste so your afraid of change….if you got a problem say it to my face

    Comment by Brady Sult -

  259. You can\’t raid the High School kids, That would take away from the college ranks, and not allow the Kids to develop their skills, for the next level. Most of the High school kids need that extra time to mature.
    I do believe that a late spring & early summer league would be succesful.

    Comment by David Fehlman -

  260. Hey ..the guy who heads the marketing firm..good money but not enough..Bring guys in after HS..that would tarnish the game as well as the play..Here is the concept in a nutshell…
    Be competitive first on the field….
    Draft before the NFL does in Feburary..
    Get players from the NFL,AFL,AFL2,NFLE and semi-pro leagues.
    Have rosters set at 45 men..+10 taxi squad
    Cities who join in the USA could put up to 40 %(total) in stock options for fans.
    Start the league in April -and end in mid June(Championship)
    Allow college players to be eligable in their sophmore season ..with the intent to graduate from their school after two years of playing.
    Begin the salary cap at 70 million dollars(this is where the stock option helps out).
    Keep the teams at 8 and expand to no more than 10 after 3 years of play.
    Major city would be Los NFL team for 20 + years and #2 market in the USA…
    Cities with NFL teams should be stayed away from but close enough to compete for players.
    Use the USFL + NFL version of the draft..NFL standard style and add two of the rounds as territorial picks.(IE.-Morgantown ,WVA-Western Pa,Ohio,West Va and Western Md.)
    Stay in the Spring season..only untill the league can truely compete with the NFL..
    it will especially when Top draft picks leave school in their sophmore year and also guys can get drafted before the NFL does..
    Like any good business everything must be planned ahead of the other guy.You just don\’t drop a league in with wild saying and promises that can\’t be kept…like XFL.
    Learn from the other leagues mistakes and enhance the positive moves that they did make.
    Money talks and BS walks..but enough money will make the competiton talk to you..

    Comment by John Puhala -

  261. Mark,

    I have read a number of your viewers comments who are mostly looking at this new venture from the fans standpoint. I will look at it from the players standpoint.

    I believe it will be very difficult to get the top quality players you need to make the league successful. Some readers in this thread have talked about a policy with no age limit so the new league can take high school players away from colleges. That is one of the most ridicious things I have heard in a long while.

    High school players at 17 or 18 years old are not ready mentally or physically for professional football. They could not compete with older more developed, stronger players. You would also be allowing individuals whose character would have to be questionable to play in your league. Most high school stars would rather attend a Notre Dame, Miami or Alabama and play against top competition on the highest level of amateur sports. The best D-1 programs provide a free education and a stepping stone to eventually play in the NFL where the big money awaits.

    I cannot see where your proposed league can compete for top or even mid-level players. The second and third round NFL draft picks all receive a minimum of $1 million in compensation in their first two seasons and are virtually a lock to make the roster. The NFL veteran salary minimums will also be tough to compete against.

    In addition, the NFL players union has Players Inc., its licensing arm. High draft picks, especially skill position players get addition compensation from various marketing deals handed them by Players Inc. Many rookies can earn over $100,000 in endorsements through Players Inc and on their own before they sign their rookie contracts.

    Finally, the NFL provides benefits that are very good for current and retired players. The health insurance provided by the league is excellent and the 401K program, annuity program and severance pay lump sum payment provide additional earning power after the player has retired. Every year of NFL service adds to the financial advantages. These factors will make it very difficult, almost impossible to lure top players from the NFL.

    I also believe most top agents that represent the best players will keep players away from the new league. The NFL teams may hold grudges against these agents for sending talent to a rival league. Mark, as you know a team\’s relationship with an agent can be important during negotiations. Agents know teams can hold grudges against if a free agent client signs with a competing team. I believe the grudges would be worse if an agent sent a player to a competing league.

    Without the top players and without the ability to market quality football the league may survive for a very short time. However, the novelty of a new league will eventually lead to empty stadiums and bad ratings.

    You have revolutionized the role of ownership in pro sports. Don\’t tarnish your image of success…stay away from this venture. I know of some current and former NFL players looking to become part of an NFL ownership group that you could partner with to own an NFL team.

    Comment by Scott -

  262. Great idea. This can be done and will work very well if done correctly. One thing I dont agree with is playing the games on Fridays. You will not only be competing with college football but I know in Texas High School Football is a really big deal and people will be out watching those games.

    I have two different ideas the first a lot of others have already said and that is having the season in the spring after the NFL season it gives people something other to look forward to than the NFL draft. But an even better idea is to run with the NFL and have your games on Tuesdays or Wednesdays. I know this seems like a crazy day but if you think about it what else is going on? In the middle of the week people are just watching Sunday and Monday NFL highlights.

    Last I would really appriciate if you were to take over a team in San Antonio. San Antonio has nothing besides the Spurs. There is no real College team and no other sports team worth watching. Who are the other people that are involved in starting the UFL? Is there any website we can go to? I would really love a job and a chance to learn from you and also help with the Marketing of the UFL. I will graduate in December with a Marketing Major.

    Thank you for giving us more football.

    Comment by Demetrius Fields -

  263. Mark,

    It seems like youve always had a knack for seeing around the corner, but this one looks like it does not have a lot of upside. Your supply vs. demand analysis is correct, but the market has shown pretty convincingly that it is only willing to pay for 100-yard football (arena league is a different animal) when the top level athletes are involved. Anything that resembles minor league football simply wont gain an audience. Im a huge football fan, but Im just not interested in a league where the majority of players could not make it in the NFL. Thats what this new league would be if its stars were 3rd rounders (I know about Tom Brady)

    Also to everyone who says to drop the age limit: This is not basketball. A young man playing college ball at 18 will nearly double his strength by the time he is in his mid 20s. An 18-year-old is an adult, but he is not a grown man. Throw them out there with guys just a handful of years older and they will get killed.


    Comment by ScottO -

  264. I heard a story about this on the news last night. I immediately knew that I had to contact you about the WPFL and the Dallas Diamonds.

    LA and Las Vegas do in fact have professional football teams. The Las Vegas Showgirlz and Los Angeles Amazons are a part of the Womens Professional Football League. Yes, I said women! The WPFL teams play by the same rules as the NFL except they are women. This is full contact, tackle football. And in your own backyard, the Dallas Diamonds are the WPFL 3 time world champions. Thats right, the Dallas Diamonds have won the 2004, 2005, AND 2006 superbowl games! (

    Here is a clip from a game in 2005. Its the only one I could find online:

    On the Diamonds website, you will find the schedule: The first game of the 2007 season is Saturday, August 18th in North Richland Hills. Kickoff is at 7:05PM against the Houston Energy.

    Im not a player but I am a devoted fan with many friends on the team that sacrifice so much of themselves to play football. These ladies dont get nearly the recognition they deserve. These are athletic, professional, hard-working, women with a love for football. I felt obligated to let you know that there ARE professional football teams in many areas, but because womens football doesnt have the huge sponsorships that the NFL does, theyre pretty much little known.

    Im so confident that you will fall in love with womens football and the Dallas Diamonds that I will buy you a 2007 season pass for the Diamonds home games. You can even help me hold my Go Diamonds banner!

    Comment by Tiffany Ellis -

  265. Hi Mark,

    The NFL needs competition like Paris Hilton needs more media coverage. I think the Arena Football league is filling the gap between college football and pro football. The players here for the Austin team make around the same salary as many of the fans. There\’s a lot of fun for kids, families, and former college players and even a handful of NFL players are playing the games and they\’re fun to watch. Plus, it doesn\’t cost a small fortune to entertain a family wheras NFL games for many U.S. families are completely out of reach. The NFL is a powerful brand and the have a great product-the best of the best against the best of the best, each week during the season. I am all for going against the grain or succeeding where others have failed, but there will have to be something far more compelling than the joke of a product which the XFL was. Personally, I\’d rather see you buy an NFL team and turn it around to a serious contender the way you have with the Dallas Mavs. But, either way, all the best with the UFL, I will definitely be interested to see where it leads!

    Comment by Kurt W -

  266. Mark,

    At this time, there are not enough quality quaterbacks for each NFL team to have one (see, e.g., Rex Grossman). Without competent quaterbacks, the new league will be boring. You could try and weight the rules in favor of receivers, but if you mess too much with the rules, it\’s no longer football – just a parody thereof (see Arena Football).

    That being said, best of luck.

    Comment by Scott Lewis -

  267. One question why are we talking NFL? Hey mark i guess too many chords were struck and now you are out moonlighting in fantasy land…Are the strippers you date the ones telling you \”good job, great idea?\”

    Comment by rene -

  268. SOUL SELLING 102
    :0506 sell soul to devil/beat the spurs in playoffs
    :0607 sell soul to devil/obtain the best(regular season) record franchise history
    :0708 sell soul to devil/contribute in making a bizarro world xfl


    Comment by rene -

  269. Hi Mark:

    I love your chutzpah! Very interesting idea!! I\’m a long-time pro football fan (NFL, AFL, CFL) and I think it would be fantastic to have some competition for the NFL (just look at all of the positives from the AFL merger in 1970). The only thing is, like some of the other posts, I would really like to see something legitimate and not rinky-dink like the XFL or the Arena League. Perhaps a CFL-like league with some actual steady cash-flow. Best of luck to you!

    Comment by Phil Roch -

  270. Mark,

    Execution will be the navigation around a myriad of obstacles.

    Lower level talent is actually in my opinion one of the NFL\’s greatest assets. How often are aging stars released or asked to re-work their contracts for a 5th, 6th or 7th rounder?

    I attended a Big 10 school and still keep a keen eye on how many players are in great shape, have a head for the game yet…end up in NFL Europe or Arena leagues. Some get called up, but paid the minimum. By the time they work their way into the premier pay schedule, the team cuts them or buys out the package at a discount.

    Friday nights are for high school…blah, blah, blah. The only places that\’s crucial is OH, TX, CA and FL. Most people would be willing to watch if the game is good, going back to your talent, if the rules were slightly different and if the consumer related to the product.

    The one thing I\’d say NOT to focus on is taking on the NFL so hard initially, focus on the product, delivering what the consumer needs and staying true to the brand, whatever that comes to be.

    Of course advertising is key, so identifying great allies as you know…I\’m sure any player in this future would have been happy to partner with the recently sold Vitamin Water…imagine if that had been the official league drink.

    In addition, carrying games on HDTV as well as online would be great…

    Either or, best wishes as you and the group pursue the opportunity, because it does exist.

    Comment by Q -

  271. Mark, if there really were another 8-12 North American cities capable of supporting pro football teams on par with an NFL franchise, why isn\’t the NFL already in these cities?

    If anything, football needs to be contracted, not expanded. You\’re a smart guy so I know this thought has occured to you. If you wanted to get all the skeptics on board, you should do another list of reasons explaining why your league\’s business model will be better than that of the failed XFL and USFL, and the now-merged AFL.

    Comment by Jared B -

  272. Mark, don\’t throw your money down the drain. There is a great investment right here in the metroplex just awaiting a guy who can do for it what you have done for the Mavs. They are called the Texas Rangers. If you can bring good players to this team like you did with the Mavs, the value of this team can skyrocket, not to mention your esteem in the Metroplex. Good Lord Man, you could not find a better spot for you to perform magic again with a sports franchise.

    Comment by Larry -

  273. Mark,
    This is a great idea. I have thought about this idea myself but then again it was just a thought. I read some of the comments on your blog and the idea of accepting kids right out of high school would help keep the league in contention. Then with the idea of a full scholarship in mind, have it written in his contract that he must attend a certain number of credit hours in the off-season until he reaches a certain age (or three years removed from high school, the allowable age of the NFL).
    There are many ways to make the league rise to greatness, but the thing that you must remember is when the XFL busted onto the scene they tried to say it was so extreme and innovative. The problem with that is, it really wasn\’t. They made people believe that it was going to be like wrestling, and the only real innovative things that came from it are the sky-cam and the race for the ball at the begining of the game (which by the way was not that cool). All you need for the league to thrive is one MAJOR signing or draft pick. As a football lover the NFL Draft is my favorite off-season activity. I have seen or read scouting reports on 80% of the players drafted this year. If the UFL were to take even 5% of those players then it would catch the attention of every football enthusiast who really knows the game. The key is to keep the rules as close to the same as possible otherwise it could be like a sideshow (XFL) that folds like Lebron James at the end of a game (dont get me wrong I am a Lebron fan haha).

    Comment by Mike Beckius -

  274. Let me know if you start a team in orlando. I will be graduating in a year from UCF with degrees in Finance and Accounting. I will be getting my MBA within 5 years. I can help make that team a winner! Just kidding.

    Comment by Steven -

  275. Most football fans that I know are dying for football during the NBA season. Too many meaningless NBA and MLB games leaves a serious gap in exciting competition during the early spring and summer months. The local sports radio personalities are so thirsty for something to talk about, that even the smallest news from the NFL supercedes anything else going on. Even Randy Galloway has a hard time finding anything to talk about during the months following the superbowl. Here is your niche, Mark. Success here could always leaves the door open to move the season to compete with the NFL.

    Comment by Heath -

  276. Mr.Cuban
    First and foremost, this is a great idea. A league can compete with the NFL and be successful.Look at them 4 leagues that competed. Only one did make the NFL cave in to mergering teams.Yes the AFL.The XFL and the WFL were jokes teams were placed into a no win possiblity.The USFL did everything right except 2 things..
    1.Locations..placing teams in markets that had winning tradions like Pittsburgh,Oakland and Chicago..where fans were used to championship teams
    2. Moving to the fall…they had already lost teams due to the lack of fan support.
    By going with an Eight Team league allows the draft pool to be very good and with the aging of some NFL players the chance of a last hurrah is great.
    Cities that would thrive in a new league should be looked in this order..
    1.Los Angeles-#2 market and no NFL team for the past 20+ years
    2.Birmingham AL
    4.San Antonio
    7.Oklahoma City
    These are cities that have football backrounds.HS,College and even some of the other leagues..the biggest thing would make them fan friendly in ticket prices.How do you get people to a game…. good players and decent ticket prices.
    The key with the AFL was the teams were in cities where the NFL wasn\’t (except-NY Titans{Jets}).
    Here is the other key …Fan investment of the team like Green Bay Packers. Get the people of these towns involved.
    TV contract would of course be small but VS is a good example.
    But if the quality is good enough to get people in the stands , TV big boys will follow.
    BTW..each of these cities have stadiums built and I think would love to be able to get some revenue fom the games..
    If you and I are on the same page look me up…

    Comment by John Puhala -

  277. Good luck losing 100-million dollars like your good buddies Vince McMahon and Donald Trump!

    Comment by Jeff -

  278. Just like a loser who can\’t face the music.. I know cuban was watching the spurs game last night hoping the refs would snipe out the spurs during shootaround..The funny thing is it\’s damn near the finals ans this little man is talking about nfl…dont quit your day job…Oh yeah what is that word everyone keeps referring to? \”COPING\”

    Comment by rene -

  279. This can definitely work.

    Second tier players are as good, in many cases, as what the NFL trumpets as first tier. If you make sure that you have good coaching, plenty of preseason games and scrimmages, etc. before game one for the public then everything should be fine – the key is to have a well played game when the public first tunes in.

    I think it can work in the fall, but I think the spring would be a more likely time to fill the void as football fans really need football in March, April, May, and June…

    Whatever season you are in, I\’ll be watching. I have been looking for an NFL rival for some time – just make sure you are not the XFL, follow the path of the USFL minus Trump – which with you involved I imagine is a no brainer. =)

    Comment by Nation -

  280. This possibly can work in terms of selling tickets in cities that do not have pro football and lack a local compelling college team. However, I love football and I have zero interest in watching a sub-par league particularly if it drains players from my team. On the other hand if this league functioned like soccer leagues in Europe and the bottom 2 teams in the NFL were relegated to it and the top 2 teams in UFL went up to NFL then I would be real interested.

    Comment by Charlie -

  281. Not gonna work. Not gonna work. No audience for second tier lame players. Remember the USFL? Not gonna work. Remember lame ass beta max? Just like Sony\’s Blue Ray. Same as the beta max example but for football. Not gonna work. Not gonna work.

    Comment by Jack -


    Comment by tigervidmar -

  283. Mark,

    The state of Kentucky does not have 1 professional team. If you were to set up shop in Northern KY, just on the border of Cincinnati you could really create a huge fan base for a team. You would have fans from the state of Kentucky and fans from Cincinnati for this one team. Bring the UFL to Kentucky!!!!!!

    Comment by Scott Sewell -

  284. Agree with competing in the Spring and Summer, especially during the dead time. If you enjoy football, then the NBA and hockey can\’t end soon enough but I\’m not so sure about competing with the NFL and college football. I like your idea, but already, in the fall that would be third on my list if I was a quadraplegic.

    Comment by kemit -

  285. Mark, we have $30MM, we have the licenses (logos etc.) you need to win, we are a part of the largest International Marketing Group in the world focused on Sports. Spend a Million dollars, to start and you will not lose and UFL will win, will get a TV COntract…..Nike, MLB, NFL, Olympics, PGA and World Series of Poker can\’t be wrong in choosing our team. Will you join us? Can We join you?.. Reach out..All the best,

    Here is a Tease, but reality…and we would like to get started:
    1. Raid AFL & AFL2, Play NFL Rules, Play in Spring, Play in South–Alabma had 92,000 to show up for aintersquad scrimmage in April 2007.

    2. Regional Focus Big Ten,PAC 10, SEC, Big 12..only players from those conferences can play on that regional team..rotate home games (ie SEC TEAM plays home games around south BAMA, Atl, New orleans, Orlando)…create scarcity and make them BIG EVENTS…that are festivals…

    3. The REGIONAL Tourism and Cities/State ask them to spend $10M yr. just to get a Team they then become \”gras roots\” marketers for UFL.

    3.1 Average Joe/Jane Shareholders: Offer Shares through Mobile Phone Providers, Visa Bankcard holders or Regional Utility Company bills (i.e $15/mo.) Mobile phone share holders get coupons etc. . You must have local people as stakeholder/owners

    4. Play in the Spring and compete against MLB in non MLB Regions. Yet, the Regional Tie to College Conferences allow you to rotate home games. People will root for their conference where organic natural ties exist. SEC you could play in Birmingham, Atlanta,

    5. Get Under Armour to Fork Up $30MM, feature UFL in all commercials.

    6. USe HD Net Sports as the TV Network butlaunch rgional sports nets to get Cable fees. Due to MASN/Wash. Nationals, all regional sports Nets get cable fees and carriage. (i.e HD NET SPorts SOuth, North etc.). OR Get COMCAST and TIME WArner tobe Equity Stakeholdes, who both hate paying fees and hate the NFL. COmcast could get rights to games on their SportsNet.

    7. Show live Games through Google and YouTube. Feature live Grammy Music Performances at 1/2 time. That way you supply Goog and YouTube with entertainment content, that is monetizable on YOuTube and GOOG.

    8. Get AT&T as an equity partner, let them get rights for Mobile. Same goes to Apple and MOtorola.

    9. All players must sign contract with an independant Non-Profit organization–. The UFL pays the non-profit $100K per player (tax-deductible). The non-profit mandates that all players do community service –else they do not get their paycheck

    10. Sign up General MOtors and all players get a free lease t o Hummer from a local dealer–improves quality of life for player.

    11. Partner with Westin/Marriot or swnakiest hotel to give players housing that the league pays for. he players are getting a Million dollar lifestyle, and royal treatment–a good life. Remember 250 Grand is the minimum in the you are real close to getting them that lifestyle.

    12. Get regional cities to put players on their insurance or payroll. Force cities ti give contribution.

    13. Get Major Colleges to pay for players or sponsor players–that have graduated,..take the SEC get the 12 Schools…to sponsor players ..let\’s say 3..that\’s 36 players at $100K per player..that eliminates your player cost..and gets fans interested in following the SEC\’s UFL team..each player can wear his school patch logo on his jersey and a stiker on the back of the helmet…

    Comment by eac7871 -

  286. Visionary thinking always asks what If. I applaud your effort and would like to get involved. The NFL is a monopoly and needs direct competition. Mark you have proven to be a winner and I hope to meet you some day. Besides if the majority says no then it will probably work based on contrarian thought.If it was easy every one would be doing it!!

    Comment by Philip Askew -

  287. Mark,

    Friday nights? Hmmmm…. As a lifelong Texan and football fan I would advise you to reconsider that key point.
    Don\’t underestimate the power of high school ball here.

    Jim Flores
    Grandview, TX

    Comment by Jim Flores -

  288. Mr. Cuban,

    I like the idea and I\’m a sports management major at Georgia Southern University in Statesboro, GA. The only thing I\’m lacking is an internship. I would love to intern for you and help make this happen. I believe that you can\’t just start with NFL players but you need to get these blue chip players after they leave high school. It is obvious that College football believes they are untouchable, but they really aren\’t. If you can get the talent from the college to go along with some of the top tier kids out of high school then you will be able to succeed. You won\’t have to pay huge salaries until they were through their first contract and that helps get the league up and running. The problem with all the other leagues and why they went under was that they went after the big names without making sure of their success first. If you grabbed some of the top names before they entered college and the NFL that could secure some leverage and it could help keep the cost down some before you had pay the premium contracts.My name is JT Uribe and all I want is a chance to work in this league and help it get started. My e-mail is Thank You.

    Comment by John-Thomas Uribe -

  289. I applaud u Mark Cuban. The NFL has become boring, yawn. Anything with u and Google behind it is destined for greatness – dont listen to those sports talk idiots. Can u please start pro baseball league too – I love baseball but cant stomach MLB??? Peace out.

    Comment by Cbass -

  290. Mark- great idea. I would watch. But please, stop focusing on the UFL and start talking to Sam Zell about buying the CUBS! With you as an owner, we might finally get to see some baseball played in October on the Northside!

    Comment by Elliot -

  291. So, this was the winning bid for \”create TV programming?\”

    Jeez, if only I thought there would be hundreds of millions available for grass seed level of creating and producing a TV show for HDNet I would have suggested it.

    Good luck.

    Comment by David -

  292. put a team in Omaha, Nebraska, and when you got the UFL sittin pretty, take on the NBA, talk about a monopoly!

    Comment by Travis Bowman -

  293. Mark,

    You know how crazy the fans are in Utah. Even though we just got destroyed last night against the Spurs we would love to have UFL football here. Any professional team we can get we support with the best and LOUDEST fans. Don\’t overlook Salt Lake.


    Comment by Ryan Hyde -

  294. Rugby

    And I mean Rugby Union, not Rugby League.

    After soccer it is the most geographically diverse sport in the world. It is one of the fastest growing sport in the world. Massive popularity in Europe, Africa, Australia- New Zealand, Micronesia, South America, and Asia. Growing popularity in the USA, especially with women as it is the sport many colleges use to offset the Title 9 pressure from the corrupt collegiate football. Among men it is one of the fastest growing collegiate sports and is likely to go NCAA varsity status shortly.

    Rugby answers the USA required physical contact needs and yet has all the field movement of soccer. It is international. It never did well in the USA commercially as it is almost impossible to fund with commercials given the nature of the game – similar to soccer. But that also makes the sport attractive – constant hard play – for anyone with an affinity to football. It has many of the requirements regarding space and fluidity that basketball requires, but has the obvious contact of football. With pay per view and the internet, this is a sport begging to be embraced.

    The USA Rugby Football Union has a 12 team \”Super League\” already in place (Dallas Quins for one)which could easily shift to commercial status. And it would be good for the sport as the \”super league\” is messing with the usual club playing base in most locales.

    Comment by Mac Robertson -

  295. I realize spring leages have failed in the past. But I wish it were tried again. I\’d would be more than willing to go the Cottonbowl and watch football on a spring day. Be it in the fall or spring, I would hope that the UFL would force the NFL to get away from parodody football and teams not keeping quality veterans in order to meet a collusion ridden salary cap.

    Comment by Roddy D\'Arcy -

  296. Mark,

    I\’m a big Mavericks fan and I really applaud your efforts for raising them higher than they\’ve ever been. Being a devout Mormon in Utah, I really do love the NFL, but it\’s always nice not having to watch football on Sunday. (Thankfully, my favorite team, the Broncos, is an NFL favorite as well so they get to play lots of Monday night games). Hopefully, in your league you\’ll put a team in Utah. If you don\’t want to go into Salt Lake City, I can tell you that placing a franchise in St. George, Utah may be quite beneficial for you. In Washington County, Utah (where St. George is located, in the southwest part of the state), state statisticians project the area to boast 450,000/500,000 residents by 2025. Utah is a rich market for you and because I\’m a Mavs fan, while I\’m here, I\’ll be a staunch supporter of yours. I\’m grateful for your efforts to promulgate HDTV as well. Professional sports are better with you around. Hopefully, our Mavs bounce back from the doldrums and win the Larry O\’Brien trophy next June. Thanks again for your extensive labors.

    Comment by Brad James: Bronco and Maverick Fan -

  297. Mark,

    I think this is a good idea in concept, but how will the league survive its infancy stages so that one day it can truly compete with the NFL? I think you should focus on the Mavericks as they are one of my favorite NBA teams. If you really want to get involved more with sports, COME TO PITTSBURGH AND SAVE THE PIRATES!

    Comment by Dan M -

  298. Mr. Cuban, I like the concept, but do you have to play on Friday Nights? I am a high school football coach, we play on Friday nights. Friday\’s are for high school, how about Thursday or Saturday night?

    Comment by Vince Conway -

  299. There are many economical reasons this could work out. Think about the 2nd string RB whose contract is up and he could resign for 500k in the NFL or maybe 1 million in the UFL. It would be hard to pass up 2x the salary.

    The hardest part will be convincing the fans that the league is not a 2nd rate league and that this product is just as good as the NFL.

    Don\’t listen to everyone saying that you should allow HSers to jump into the UFL and bypass college. I think the best thing would be to allow players to be eligible after 1 or 2 years of college instead of the 3 that the NFL requires. It will give you a chance at getting the players first and they will have some name recognition at that point.

    Of course the college coaches and AD\’s won\’t like that one bit.

    Comment by Chris -

  300. The NFL has become so popular and powerful that it\’s virtually impossible to compete with it unless you have a gimmick(see AFL). Even then, you\’re not guaranteed success(see XFL). Besides they already have pro-football in Texas on Friday nights. They even made a movie about it(see \”Friday Night Lights\”).

    However, a Mark Cuban pro-football league and team? I\’m not going to lie, I would watch it at least a few times.

    Comment by BDoc -

  301. I\’m from Wisconsin and Packer football is part of our culture, it took 50 years for this to happen, and I doubt another league could compete with this without at least a decade of exposure. If you can get some big names in the league I\’m sure people will watch. Just be willing to lose money for a few years and pony up the extra cash to get the expensive NFL players when the opportunity arises, otherwise the league has no chance of me watching.

    Comment by trackback -

  302. With the amazing local attention and patronage the AFL gets, this only seems like a logical. I\’m in Spokane, WA and this little city came alive when the Spokane Shock AFL team was formed. The arena is packed, season tickets are sold out and everyone who can\’t go to the game is tuned in to the local broadcast of it.

    I think what you\’re planning could just be a \”one-up\” to that. Simply put: I\’d be a fan.

    Comment by Eric -

  303. Mark,

    If you have connections with Warren Buffett, get him involved. I would love to see more football in the Omaha-Lincoln area than just the Huskers. This is a population area of about 1.5 million people within 60 miles of Omaha.

    I agree with a lot of the comments that it might be more accepted in the Spring. I think it would be easier to compete against the AFL rather than the NFL (especially at first) But it\’s your money, your call. GOOD LUCK.

    If you get it in Omaha, you already have one season ticket holder!

    Comment by Jeff from Omaha -

  304. Mark, I think you\’re dead right about the need for another pro football league in this country.

    I\’m sure the issue of the XFL has come up as an example, and to that, I\’d argue that the XFL wasn\’t football, just a clown show in football uniforms. There\’s the Arena League, but that doesn\’t have crap for TV rights. I don\’t remember enough about the USFL to even comment on it here…

    The way I see it, there\’s a few roadblocks along the way to a successful league:

    1. The rules. I know it sounds nuts, but I have a hunch (and while that\’s not hard data, it\’s all I\’ve got) that the difference in rules from league to league is what makes people unable to watch some of the other leagues. A lot of responses I\’ve heard about Arena League are that it\’s not football — the field\’s too short, scoring is too high, and possessions seem to change every 30 seconds. \”It\’s like watching a video game,\” as one friend put it. There\’s no time for the human element.

    2. Stadiums. A stadium contributes greatly to the atmosphere for attending a game. Building new stadiums is out of the question for a new league unless every owner is part of the billionaires\’ club and has no problems burning cash on what may or may not be a successful league. This means that sharing arenas with existing pro (and/or college) teams is going to be a necessity, and that limits you to cities with established pro/college teams…moving into a crowded market is going to be problematic.

    Number 1 seems fairly easy to resolve — just keep it similar to NFL rules. How do you propose to deal with #2?

    Comment by Dan Bailey -

  305. Reduce the play clock so that the teams have to play some sort of no huddle the entire game…

    Comment by Will -

  306. Mark i think you are on track with this but then again i am a football junky having been to two Grey cup games when Baltimore played and actually saw kurt warner play for the barnstormers. some things to remember when fighting the NFL.

    Don\’t spend too much money, keep in budget. This is what destroyed the USFL. Lots of good players for good prices. Don\’t overspend on offensive linemen and punt returners etc.

    Also the game needs to be offensively oriented. The UFL needs to be the pac-10 of pro football high scoring. No one wants to see the coaches killing the clock at the start of the 4th quarter.

    Find a broadcast entity that will show your games on free tv on Friday nights. And on free tv on thanksgiving evening when the NFL games are on the NFL network and most people can\’t watch them. Put something on free tv when the NFL network has the NFL game. I think this is crucial to your success as the NFL is gradually moving games over to the NFL network to force fans to subscribe to their channel. I think the UFL will have a fighting chance if they can stay on free TV as the NFL migrates to pay per view over the next decade.
    Anyhow good luck hope it works well. I will be watching.

    Comment by gp -

  307. Mark,
    you are absolutely correct that Professional football is very popular and we can\’t get enough of it. If I had the money, I\’d join you.

    It is a great idea. Put the plan together and stick with it. Make minor changes as necessary. Keep direct competition to a minimum.

    You are a very smart man and I am sure, if handled properly, you will suceed.

    I wish you well.

    Comment by Bill -

  308. Mark,

    I am still not sure if this works in your case, but I always thought it would have worked for Vince Mcmahon. Instead of starting the XFL, I always thought that Vince should compete with football by starting a professional rugby league. No pads, same violence, and a more dynamic game. USA rugby already has sold the rights to their sevens program, maybe 15s is next.



    Comment by Kurt Nienberg -

  309. Please bring in the Maloofs and Sacramento, or just SACRAMENTO ! PLEASE ! ! !

    Comment by \"Chuy\" -

  310. Mr. Cuban-

    I think this league could be similar to the USFL. Why not take a chance on Troy Smith similar to the USFL taking a chance on Doug Flutie becoming a star? All it takes is one player to do well for instant creditability.

    Also, I was talking to a friend last night about this, and Mexico City would be an ideal market for a team. They drew well over 100K last year for two awful teams in Arizona and San Fran. Why not put a team there and give our American football fans South of the Border a chance to root for a home team? And just imagine the draw of Mexico City going on the road to play in cities like LA, NYC, Dallas and even Phoenix or Miami? You could sell out the place.

    As someone who works in the media, I think the market is no where near saturated when it comes to professional football. Do most people even know NFL Europa is going on right now? No. Why because it\’s on the NFL Network and there is no promotion. The right network for the UFL would be either USA(they used to air the WLAF in the 90s) or TNT(who used to have a partial NFL contract for about a decade from the late 80s to late 90s). And as someone who has worked for two start-up media ventures myself, this would certainly be a league that networks would gladly listen to.

    If you\’d like to contact me privately, please do so. On a personal level, I\’d love to work for a league like this. There\’s always room for improvement in football and no better way than the UFL!!!


    Comment by Rob Adler -

  311. There\’s no demand for more pro football. One of the reasons football is so intensly loved is that it\’s only a 16 game season. College football fills in any other urge or need a fan would have. Another league now would always be viewed as second tier.
    So unless you have a Joe Namath up your sleeve DON\’T DO THIS.

    Comment by Steve -

  312. Mark-
    First off I love Football, and after suffering through the Basketball (sorry man I live in MN and it just does nothing for me) and Hockey season that would just not end, and while Baseball is a nice distraction, when the Football season is over there is just a void in my life (that is not to say that I am lacking in my spiritual life) and every year I miss the NFL and I just know I can\’t be the only one.

    The growth of the NCAA and college football is reason why the professional football needs to expand. For example look at the QB\’s currently in the NFL, with the ever increasing number of QB prospects coming out of the NCAA many QB\’s who have the talent and the ability will be cast aside if they can\’t put it together fast enough. Case in point: this year the MN Vikings will be starting something called Travris Jackson a player with only half a year of professional playing time under his belt, and he comes from something called \”Alabama State\”? A kid that wasn\’t good enough for a NCAA Div 1 school is one of the 32 best QB\’s in professional sports? How can he be deemed worthy of the NFL but College standouts like Jason White can\’t get drafted and even the guys who put out one of the best Bowl games ever Like Jared Zabransky can\’t get drafted. If not for a few injuries allowing some of the backup guys a shot the world wouldn\’t know a Tom Brady and a Kurt Warner from a Steve Evans or a Bob Revell. So why not have a place where these other guys can get a shot? Because only 32 QBs get a chance, there will be talent riding the bench and not very many of these backup QB\’s will get a chance to prove themselves like Tom Brady did (only when he was given the opportunity to play did he prove he didn\’t deserve to ride pine) also my man Big Ben.

    So I think your right, either another league needs to step forward or the NFL should expand (in some fashion).

    In the defense of the NFL, they\’ve done a pretty good job structuring their organization. Out of all the sports the demand is greater than the size of the product, and that\’s straight from the page of how something like the NFL should be run. But just like any business that successful they tend to be slow to react, deaf when it comes to problems and concerns, and ignorant of fans yet to receive a team. Mr. Cuban you are the type of owner that fans need, you are excitable passionate and protective not only about what you own, but about the sport itself. I am from MN and I\’d flip if you were to become the owner of any of my local teams (as a former PA native I\’d also wish you would buy the Pirates) because you are just as much a fan as we are. The NFL Owners and some reporters may not get that, and for that very reason may be hindering your efforts to own a part of the NFL. Leaving you to investigate other options, I can not think of a bigger loss to the future of the League than preventing someone like yourself from adding some new blood into their veins.

    There are two ways you could do another league

    Another league could survive by adding a summer league over here in the states, if you were able to establish such a venture with the NFL an Ideal system would be:

    Assign each division a team to place either players under contract that need seasoning or a place to provide tryouts to locals within the region that division plays. So in this way the Summer team has a built in fan base, and by playing it\’s home games in the stadiums around it\’s division it can be a way for fans within that division to see developing talent within the division. Now this is not meant to eliminate the NFL\’s inbred brother the \”NFLE\” (instead think an NFL version of MLB\’s minor leagues), but when the allocated players from a specific team are spread throughout a league with no consistent basis like that it\’s hard for a US fan to root for a specific team, a stateside summer league would provide more opportunities for player development for every organization as well as adding a sense of rivalry between divisions.

    Another prospect with the NFL is Expansion, something that the NFL needs to do but would take someone like you to help orchestrate. Right now the two conferences have four divisions each with four teams in each division. By adding a new team to each division and upping the total number of teams to an even 40, it would be opening the game up to more fans, giving more under the radar players a chance to play, and would bring in more revenue for the league. Some people would say there is no place for the NFL to put 8 more teams and that\’s just not true. I been thinking about it for a long time and here is where they should expand:

    AFC East: Ottawa/Montreal/New Jersey, Yes, Canadians play football and it\’s about time the USA displays there dominance in the sport, plus it would rid us of any mention of the Canadian Football League. The Garden State could be also be a possible site, if the New York teams ever actually move to New York. Out of all the sites this is the one I am the most unsure of.

    AFC North: Chicago (or one of it\’s boroughs), Yes, another team for the Windy City, it\’s nothing new and if New York can pull it off I imagine someone to root for in the AFC might appeal to some when the Bears are down big in the 4th.

    AFC South: Oklahoma City/Las Vegas, If they can pack a stadium as well provide a healthy fan base for college they could do it for the NFL, plus imagine that tailgating that starts with the Saturday Oklahoma vs. Texas and continues all the way through to a Sunday Houston vs. Oklahoma match up, awesome. Another Choice would be Las Vegas, this city is hungry for a new image and the first sports team to franchise there, will be embraced by the city as part of forging an identity separate from its gambling roots.

    AFC West: L.A., If only to tick off Al Davis, an L.A. expansion team could draw on anger over the Raiders as well as match ups against the Chargers for some instant rivalries.

    NFC West: L.A./Vancouver/Portland, Like New York (and Chicago, see above), L.A. could do two again (it is a rather large city) former L.A. Rams fans would cherish an opportunity to be a rival for the city that stole there team and it\’s history (even if L.A. stole it from Cleveland). If not L.A., Vancouver or Portland could provide a pretty good fan base as well as provide a very good rival for those Seahawks (who I found out during Super Bowl XL, apparently is the most ignored franchise in football).

    NFC South: San Antonio, This city proved itself worthy of a football team by packing an aging stadium to see a poor homeless Saints team, they are a feasible market and there seems to be a lot of new residents that might want to watch football in their new home.

    NFC North: Toronto, Baseball has worked here, it\’s near Detroit, during the couple times I\’ve been there it seems like a very nice, clean city (it is a sound choice, except by those who don\’t want a Canadian football team.

    NFC East: Orlando, It certainly is a growing city, and because football is a bigger sport in Florida I believe Orlando would be more accepting of a football team then they are of the Magic, sell the team to Disney and put it in their \”ESPN wide world of sports\” park, between the millions of visitors as well as the locals, this team could be establish themselves very quickly.

    The problem with so many new teams is an old one, \”How do you get them to become competitive like the Jags and Panthers have been in years past and not bottom feeders like the Texans, Lions and new Browns have been? Once again the answer is you (and other \”fan\” Owners like you) would need to nurture any growth the NFL would do. A successful home team can mean the world to people looking for something to smile about, there is something about that feeling I wish everyone could enjoy.

    If you build your own league (and I Really wish I could help you, but sadly I am not rich), I will come (because I believe you have nobler intentions than Vince McMann).

    And if you were t
    o read anything of my post I want you to know that you Mark Cuban, are the Anti-Carl Pohlad and your only regret should be that there are not enough of you in sports.


    Comment by Derek Foley -

  313. Mark,

    Waiting for the day someone steps up to the NCAA. It would be a big hurdle to overcome, but they seem to be a monopoly in the truest form.

    Comment by Jeff -

  314. NFL contracts are not player friendly. Partially because the NFL is a monopoly. At macro level this creates an opportunity for competitors to try to exploit, along w/ the other variables Mark listed. Competition is always good. I hope they do well – they have their work cut out for them.

    Comment by gzino -

  315. You\’re competing with college football, but you\’re also competing with/for the allegiances of fans in the cities where you have franchises — who likely have loyalties to existing NFL teams that have been built over their entire lifetimes.

    To think that they\’re going to abandon ship and pour cash into a new team — especially right away — is very far fetched.

    It COULD work, if you take the MLS approach and build slowly from the grass roots with say a 25 year plan to catch up to the NFL. But from my uneducated view, big time money guys lack that kind of patience. That\’s one of the reasons the USFL and the Women\’s soccer league failed.

    I\’m curious whether you\’ll also go with the single entity approach as a way of limiting costs. People laughed at MLS when it started but by taking the long term conservative approach, they\’re succeeding.

    Also, you can\’t build lasting fan loyalties in a year or two. It takes decades. The Patriots for example started out as an expansion team in NY Giants territory and it was only once Bob Kraft took over that the team really made the leap to where they\’re part of the landscape here. But Kraft\’s tenure came 30 years after the team was founded and that gave fans plenty of time to live and die with teams success and (many unfortunately) failures.

    Looking at it from the long term and having the patience to build a loyal fan base is the only way this works — especially in this age of limited attention spans.

    Comment by scotbo -


    Comment by Joaquin Soliz -

  317. Mark, forget a TV contract. Broadcast the games on the net, via Yahoo or Google or something like that. Streaming internet TV is the way to go and possibly cheaper than mainstream TV-bet you can get more people watching too.

    Comment by Micah -

  318. Please consider Albuquerque as a future market for your league. I would bet that if you were to contact the Maloof brothers or even the Unser family they might be interested in backing a team in Albuquerque. The city is attempting to attract a football team and the Governor Bill Richardson has been in contact with the NFL for a team in Albuquerque. Good luck and I hope Albuquerque is considered.

    Comment by Jim P -

  319. As a current NFL fan and a former USFL fan, I say go for it, but but here\’s three pieces of advice:

    1. Play during the spring and/or summer. Don\’t be hubristic and compete directly with the NFL.

    2. Work out something with the *Pro Football Hall of Fame* so great players who play in your league teams aren\’t penalized in the future.

    3. Stay true to the spirit of the game (no \”stupid new rules\”).

    Best of luck.

    Comment by Will -

  320. Mark,
    very rarely do i have good ideas but i\’ve shared this with numerous people and they think it\’s brilliant.
    Make a minor league football league where the players are assigned to teams by where they went to school. Texas would have a team made up of Big XII south players. LA would have a team of PAC-10 players. Put a team in Birmingham of SEC East players. Little Rock with players from the SEC west and so-on and so-on. With the popularity of college football and fantasy football, i think the following for something like this would be significant.

    Comment by Matt -

  321. I don\’t think you\’re crazy. I love the NFL, but there have been sucess stories for rival footbal leagues (if only few). The AAFL in the 40\’s survived for a few years and that\’s where the original Cleveland Browns came from. The AFL was definately a sucess because they went after top talent. However, I do feel that you\’ll be taking away attention fromt he high school kids on Friday night. You should consider some other part of the year or another night. Monday night may be good because it has been a big night in the past for MNF, but the MNF games the past few years haven\’t been great. And I do think that you\’ll have to compete for high talent to have a chance. See the AFL.

    Comment by Barry -

  322. You are investing in the wrong football. If I had your money I would buy an English Premier League team. Even investing in a Major League Soccer club will end up making you more money than competing with the NFL.

    Why did Google become so successful? Because they had a better product than any of the other search engines at the time AND this better search engine was accesible to all internet users.

    How will you create a better football league than the NFL AND how will you make this superior product available to all football fans?

    If you can do that then I can see this project succeeding.

    Good luck!

    Comment by Peter Rath -

  323. Mark,

    Instead of competing with the NFL, have you thought about making your proposed pro football league a minor league for the NFL? Your points about the NFL are valid, but I think you can still accomplish most of them without trying to slay the giant. As a minor league affiliated with NFL teams, you\’ll instantly have legitimacy as a real league, a built-in fan base and the best advertising and promotional opportunity for football that there is–the NFL. I\’m sure everyone would agree that the WNBA wouldn\’t be around without its relationship and promotion from the NBA.

    Good luck.

    Comment by Bill Swatling -

  324. All new ideas meet with great resistance, thats what makes it fun when it takes place. Sports is an area which does need to be \”Revamped\”. I am a Football official doing various levels of games. Would love to believe there are other opportunities to grow. This new league would give more officials opportunity to move up in levels of play. Please keep at it.

    Comment by Adolph Lopez -

  325. What about regional teams that pull talent from respective College Football conferences initially to build a fan base? I would love to see a Midwest team that pulls from the Big Ten, MAC, etc. Growing up in Michigan and being a UM fan, you learn all the players from UM, MSU, Wisc, ND, CMU, etc. So I would pay to go see John Navarre throwing passes to the likes of Agim Shabaj or handing the ball off to Ron Dayne whose following the crushing blocks of big Aaron Gibson. Or David \”Circus\” Kirkus from GVSU returning punts and kicks.

    Comment by David Petrovski -

  326. Mark… Football??? Come on now. Listen up you are one to take advantage of cutting edge technology. Here is an idea, invest in LaCrosse. That is right LaCrosse. I do not know very much about this sport but I do know they are two leagues and is one of the fastest growing sports in the nation. I am becoming a fan and I can see this sport rising quickly once it gets some real exposure. If you want to invest in cutting edge sports… I think this may be an investment worth going forward. Merge the two leagues and market the heck out of it. A huge ROI is waiting.

    Comment by Jeff Pedigo -

  327. Mark, it would be smarter to make this new American football league into a AAA American football league for the N.F.L. All of the other major American sports already have minor league systems in place, but not the N.F.L.! I don\’t understand why with the high number of injuries that do happen in American football, the N.F.L. doesn\’t have any minor league system in place that concurs with the regular N.F.L. season! Newly signed N.F.L. players that take the places of injured N.F.L. players would not be \”rusty\” if they continue playing in the AAA League. Having a minor league system in place for the N.F.L. would also help financially with the new league because of its importance to the N.F.L. in having players readily available whenever N.F.L. teams need new players to replace injured players.

    Comment by John Manning Moore -

  328. Mr. Cuban,

    Having studied the USFL and having talked with a wide range of owners, both commissioners, general managers, players, and coaches for an independent study project I did at SMU, I can offer some assistance. Not all of the information about the USFL\’s successes or failures was chronicled in Jim Byrne\’s \”The $1 League: The Rise And Fall Of The USFL.\”

    Additionally, there are several ways you can monetize various features of the new league, create a loyal fan base rather quickly, and also improve ways that your fans will want to watch commercials instead of changing the channel (thereby increasing Nielsen ratings). There are also ways in which technology can be used to lock out the NFL, thereby creating exclusivity.

    While I am sure that you, your trusted staff, and the UFL are more than qualified to create a viable league, feel free to e-mail me privately if you wish to discover a few more possible low-cost ways to make this venture a success.

    Best wishes and have fun. Most of the USFL alumni will tell you that while the financial situation was exasperating (especially during the 1985 season), the league was also the most fun they ever had in professional football. I wish you and your staff the same experience!

    Dallas, TX

    Comment by Matt Mc Dermott -

  329. I agree with the person that said a spring league would be better. Feed the need when the others are not around. During fall you will have too much competition and your target audience will be occupied already. At least do it when there is not already football is being played(spring/summer) I would rather watch football than professional basketball any day of the week.. Good luck. (if you need anyone in marketing or an announcer call me, I will be your first female, in the booth, announcer.

    Comment by Emma -

  330. The NFL has stayed on top and squashed competition before. All the XFL managed to produce is a new camera angle. They are succeptable to competition because of the salary cap, but they can increase the cap to squeeze out that opening.

    Fall fridays will lose about 1/2 of the potential audience to HS football games. Off fall-season football has some chance.

    I think the best shot would be ultimate frisbee. it already starts with a 50,000 active member structured base (probably 10x with past players and second teir players) and is flashy & fast enough to grab casual viewers. There\’s some room for a cheap pro-player sport.

    Comment by dan -

  331. Mr. Cuban,

    There is very little chance for this to succeed. This is why: The NFL will not let it happen. The XFL folded for one reason. The NFL said: We own all of the footage from our games, and you(ESPN, local news, etc…)will be able to show it if they show highlights from the XFL. If your paper continues to report scores from the games, you will not be granted press access.

    The main chance for this to work is with the \”blessing\” of the NFL. Without it, your league WILL be shut down.

    Now, if this league was part of an internet broadcast situation, you may have a chance. Let people register for their team and let them have an interactive voice. Should the coach go for it on 4th down? Vote, and see the results after this commercial break. It obviously couldn\’t be done on every play, but you could have set situations….4th downs: punt, FG, go for it; extra point or 2 point conversion; kick or take the wind(Marty); etc…

    You need to keep the football very close to the same, but give it a twist to get the fans.


    Comment by Clint -

  332. When I heard that someone was taking on the NFL again, I thought \”Oh boy, here we go again.\” Traditionally, this venture fails. However, I think that if you don\’t compete with the NFL, you stand a decent chance of succeeding. The idea of moving UFL games to Friday is just silly. Football is on Sunday. You\’d have no competition. You could do 4 games on Sunday, assuming an 8 team league. I think the best move might be to make it a more fun version of the NFL. Let the QBs get hit. Correctly call pass interference. Allow touchdown celebrations. Don\’t radically change the rules like the XFL did.

    As far as cities, divide the league into two divisions: East and West. The West division could be LA, Las Vegas, Oklahoma City, and San Antonio. The East could be Orlando, Mobile, Louisville, and Memphis. They\’re all major cities that could use a major sports team, and in most cases already have the infrastructure in place.

    Just some thoughts to consider.

    Comment by Adam Licht -

  333. Hey honestly

    – did you say \”The NFL doesnt have competition?

    – How about College football? …

    – Your going to play on friday nights? / umm I would say 20% of more of your audience is going to be at or watching highschool games / or partying …

    – Sry but I wouldn\’t fund this idea …

    – Please save your money and better ideas for landmark theatres…

    – Ever think of buying some AMC theatres?

    Comment by forklift extensions -

  334. Enough with the XFL remarks. Does everyone forget that it was mildly successful when it launched? They had TV deals, merchandising, etc. all lined up, and regardless of what you say about the rules, some of them have had an impact on NFL and Arena rules changes.

    The real thing that went wrong with the XFL was 1) it was showcased from prime time, when NBC clearly needed something stronger for their liking (when the ratings and interest waned) and 2) McMahon tried to spark interest with stupid cheerleader and announcer/coach story lines, which obviously did not fit the product and doomed it to failure.

    There were other XFL players that \”made it\” other than Rod Smart, which I would dare say is not the most \”note worthy\” player from the league. That honor should go to Tommy Maddox, who won the XFL MVP in the only year they played, and revived his career, getting a starting spot with Pittsburgh and having a decent run for about a year and a half.

    Comment by Scott Prodigy -

  335. Mark, I think the idea is great! Being a football coach at the high school level, I beg you to reconsider playing games on Friday nights however. A majority of football fans are somehow involved with HS football, which is played on Friday nights.

    More football is always a good idea, but make it on a night that most football fans can attend without conflict.

    Comment by Labz -

  336. Hi Mark,

    Dilution of football talent is a significant issue. The colleges do not generate enough talent currently and I don\’t think Europe can fill the gap. The NFL should undergo a slight reduction in the number of teams so the talent is more concentrated. This should improve the quality of competition and produce some compelling must watch (at any cost) scenarios. The AFL offers a decent bridge between seasons and the format is interesting. AFL-2 is not a viable alternative because the talent is not worth watching (sorry AFL-2 fans).

    The NCAA seasons are exciting and it\’s a great experience and journey to watch the future of pro basketball & football develop and then transition to the NFL and NBA.

    How the heck can you expect to improve on the issue of limited talent by further diluting it (and fugging it up to the point that no one wants to watch pro football anymore)? I feed my passion with tickets, trips, cable and Dish packages. Why would I want to pay for a second rate experience?


    p.s. HDNET rocks!

    Comment by Lance -

  337. Mark,

    Just curious if this is the same UFL that I had heard about. I used to work with Jon Brod, and when he announced where he was leaving for, I was VERY VERY excited! I think it\’s a fantastic idea, that it will be in all major markets… especially if you slide a team into Shea Stadium! I only wish that I could land a spot as an assistant GM.

    Comment by Gary -

  338. Count me in if you need sports marketing expertise on this winning endeavor.

    Comment by Joel Cohen -

  339. The odds are against this working… just look at the XFL and USFL… Although the WLAF did become NFL Europe, so that has been a success.
    Who cares if this isnt going to work. It\’s worth a shot, don\’t you think. If anyone can pull this off its Mark Cuban. If I had 2 billion dollars, I would try every business venture that was interesting enough. I just hope a team comes to Portland, Oregon. We really need some football in this market. With the Blazers on the verge of being a contender this would be a perfect time to expand this market!

    Comment by Rickey -

  340. Mark,

    I have always enjoyed \”rival\” leagues, for their novelty. I don\’t know if you read these comments, but if you do, let me offer some suggestions.

    1) Choose a fan of the game as your commissioner. The players will have their union (you know they will). The owners have each other. But the fans have no voice in the sport in terms of how it\’s run. Having a fan (not a celebrity fan, like Bob Costas) running things means that the fans are always represented in the league.

    2) No gimmicks. Keep the scoring system and method of scoring the same as in the NFL. No \”Action Points\” like the WFL. No funky scoring for long field goals. Keep the game true to the game.

    3) Lighten up. Football is a sport played with passion, and enjoyed with passion. Let the players show their emotions and passion when they make a great play. If the celebration takes too long, then, yes, flag for delay of game and move on. Have a uniform code, but be reasonable in enforcement.

    4) Hold the players to a standard of conduct from Day One. The whole situation with NFL players being arrested left and right is embarrassing to me as a fan of the game. Establish the fact that it is a privilege to play in the UFL from Day One. Get that statement into every player contract. Establish a policy for off-field behavior that makes it plain and clear, up front, that players are expected to behave as model citizens while under UFL contract. And make sure the rules are \”one size fits all\” … that the star QB in the league and the fourth-string punter are equal in the eyes of this policy.

    5) Steroid use. I read your remarks about this, but I think that the UFL should be a drug-free, steroid-free environment from Day One. Steroids are illegal in many cases, and I don\’t believe condoning the breaking of a law that one may disagree with is the right thing to do. Establish a drug, alcohol, and steroids policy before you open the doors. Make it something that is non-negotiable in any collective bargaining agreement so that the league can control it.

    Just some ideas from someone who loves football, and would enjoy seeing the UFL get started and stay in business.


    Comment by Brien Martin -

  341. Mark:

    Greetings from Northern Kentucky, I am Sensei Kurt ( I am with the Tribat Fighting Society (TFS) in the greater Cincinnati area. I also am a working martial arts instructor (in Shotokan karate and jujitsu) and a life long student of the martial arts. When the UFC first started, I grew increasingly tired of the grapplers claim that grappling is superior to stand-up fighting. We both know that in reality it is not that cut and dry! We both also know it is not as exciting as a good slug-fest with lots of kicks and stikes!!!

    I have studied and taught jujitsu (both Japanese and Brazilian) for many years and know all to well its inherent strengths and weaknesses. With that in mind, we would like to talk to you and discuss and unleash an exciting world event that would take the ultimate fighters to the next \’ultimate\” test of ones fighting skill.

    With UFC, IFL, etc. are out there, now is the time to take it to the next level!!
    Today provides a perfect opportunity to capitalize upon our world\’s fascination with and involvement in the martial arts as entertainment. All that is needed is a unique and exciting martial arts concept that transcends normal and familiar events. Our new and inovative concept fulfills this need. With the right marketing, it is guaranteed to draw in HUGE viewership.

    Would you please let me know if you would be interested in looking further into our new ideas (I have a Powerpoint I can send you). I would really like to discuss these ideas and concepts with you!

    This is the next stage of Ultimate Combat!

    Mark,hope to hear from you soon.

    Best Regards,
    Sensei Kurt


  342. Football works because Friday night is for high school ball, Saturday for college and Sunday for the pros. No one wants to see pro ball friday night.

    Comment by DOug Kovacs -

  343. Spend your money on buying the Rangers. Surely you are pulling our leg with investing in this third rate joke.

    If you\’re needing to funnel some cash into a lossing operation for a tax write-off, feel free to contact me.

    Comment by bsmall -

  344. Good arguement – wrong sport. How about something to compete with NASCAR? They have turned it into a IROC truck non-sport with the COT (Car Of Tomorrow or more correctly Crap Of Today). There is a huge market for racing by cars off the showroom floor (Or slightly modified for safety). I want to see that Monte Carlo go against that Fusion – for real. They have ghost rules and mostly go to boring look-alike tracks (their\’s).

    Comment by Mike McClain -

  345. I just don\’t think you can have more than one \”top\” league in any sport. Basketball has the NBA. Football the NFL. Hockey the NHL. I think most people view it as the natural order of sports. The best talent advances to the \”next\” level, and naturally there can only be one \”ultimate level\” for talent, and therefore that level should be the best league. Any other league that is started to compete with the current \”top\” league will be viewed by most as kind of a minor league where players that couldn\’t \”cut it\” in the NFL, NBA, NHL or whatever, go to play. Much like Arena Football. People will watch it to some extent, but I don\’t think they will ever be as devoted or crazy about it as the current top league.

    Comment by Jay -

  346. Trying to start another league to compete with the NFL has been tried a couple of times before without staying power. The idea to broadcast on Friday nights conflicts with local football ro dating or anything else. There more pro football than most people care to watch and cities with marginal markets. But it you want to blow your fortune down that hole, how about shipping a couple of million to me. I can put it to good use for my daughter\’s college education and such. You\’re a good NBA owner and have had success in that arena, but that doesn\’t mean you have the formula for success in other arenas. What should be done in professional sports is cleaning up the image and setting standards and roles to live by. There are a lot of good athletes who are good people, but the bad apples are hurting these folks so peer pressure need to come to bear down. Kids really need the good examples and they need to be out there in front showing the way.

    Comment by Paul -

  347. I think the idea has some substance. Depending on how it is structured will depend on its success. I dont believe competing head to head on Sundays will be the best strategy, but if you get dynamic players that people want to see and that make the game interesting (see the controversy storms of players like TO, Chad Johnson, etc.) it can be a package that I believe people will buy into, especially in areas that have large potential for a football franchise but for whatever reason, the NFL has not placed (or in some cases replaced) football in various cities (Los Angeles, San Antonio, Oklahoma City, etc.).

    Furthermore, what is the timeline of the creation of this league, even though it is still in its infant stages, and will more information be made available soon? While there\’s interest would be a good time to start recruiting potential players from the 2007 draft (and cuts) instead of allowing these players to go play in the Canadian or Arena Football Leagues. Just a thought.

    Comment by James -

  348. Mark if you think that some negative publicity on the NFL might help this league succeed I have just the story. Hint: some trades in NFL are not what they appear to be.

    Comment by inside guy -

  349. I wish I could believe this was a money making proposition, but it seems more like an ego driven proposition (especially given Bill Hambrecht\’s previous involvement in the USFL). I think the demand for football in this country is very high, but that is adaquately fulfilled by High School football, College, and the NFL. Arena football has even succeeded in surviving, and now has a contract with ESPN primarily by trying to complement the NFL, not eclipse it. Your first major problem is finding a TV deal. The XFL was only created because NBC lost its NFL television contract. Now with CBS, FOX, NBC, and ABC/ESPN all having NFL games (plus the NFL with its own network), there is no network to show the games. The existing networks are not going to step on the NFL\’s toes for a chance at some startup league, and you\’ll just end up showing games on HDNet. I think from an investment growth standpoint, you would be best served by building up a lesser known professional sports league for a different sport such as the WNBA, MLS, or MLL (Major League Lacrosse). MLS would love to have an owner with deep pockets such as yourself, and it would benefit from the promotional experience you could provide (you already provide great coverage on HDNet). Major League Lacrosse could probably be bought completely as a league, and it has the potential for tremendous growth because Lacrosse is the only team sport in this country with Elite division 1 completion and no adequate professional sports league. Lacrosse is played in almost every high school in the nation and packs the Baltimore Ravens stadium every memorial day weekend for the final four. It is the final frontier of sports growth in this country, with enormous upside supported by tons of high school and college fans and players.

    Mark, you\’re a great business man that has pulled off two legendary accomplishments (sale of, resurrection of the Mavs). Don\’t tarnish your legacy by taking on the NFL, even if the initial cash outlay is not too heavy. Go for the higher upside, and seriously take a look at Major League Lacrosse.

    Comment by Damian -

  350. Mark, trade Jason Terry and Josh Howard for Kobe. That will be 2/5 of the All NBA team starting next season!

    Comment by matt -

  351. Mark
    I was a season ticket holder of the USFL\’s General\’s and I agree with you, there is a huge untapped market that is there. Its not just in secondary cities, last year I finally become a NY Giant season ticket, I put my name on the waiting list in 1979, I have heard the list is now longer.

    Comment by phil -



  353. Good morning, I found this blog following a link from a newspaper article discussing the idea of a new Pro Football League in the United States.

    If I may I\’d like to bring to Mr Cuban\’s attention a few things to consider regards Football as a sport, it\’s international appeal and how taking on the NFL model isn\’t going to help the sport.

    1. The NFL is a successful pro football league, the success of the league can easily be measured by the cost of purchasing a franchise in the league.

    The NFL Model works well for the NFL. At most 4 days a week of competition (Thursday&Saturday game are rare of course) but normally played over 2 days.

    There is not really more demand for Pro Football than there is supply. There might be demand for quality football for players who have since graduated college or have missed out on even getting into college. But Pro Football of the Megabucks market ala the NFL isn\’t suffering from demand higher than supply.

    A low cost league paying fair wages (and one that delivers on after playing pensions to cater for later in life complications from playing football) may succeed. Offering those priced out of NFL and College tickets an alternative might succeed. But on a Friday evening it would clash with high school football which already has too much pressure on it to succeed.

    Adding an additional NFL Model League or USFL Model etc – won\’t help the sport and I doubt it will make money.

    2. Internationally the sport of Football is played in hundreds of towns and cities. From New Zealand to Mexico to Scotland. These leagues are at best semi-pro and in most cases are self funding with the players paying to play the game. These leagues are always in the Shadow of the NFL. Often football fans will choose to watch the NFL rather than support a local team.

    However if investments were made in these leagues to help provide marketing power, advertising and cover the costs of training and playing (my team\’s budget in Scotland is close to $20,000 a year) then it would benefit the sport internationally and lead to more people playing and supporting the sport.

    Assuming that 50 teams in the UK were given a grant of $20,000 each that $1m investment year on year would allow the clubs to expand rapidly and build the sport. I doubt very much that an investment like that is forth coming, but it would make an impact and help the sport.

    If football is the key driver here to improve the sport by investing internationally would be a far better use of the money earmarked for another professional league in the USA.

    3. While there may be demand in other areas in the USA with out a professional/NFL franchise the demand will disappear if results don\’t go well or ticket prices increase. Look at Jacksonville as an example.

    I argue there are other ways to invest in the sport which would have better ramifications for the sport internationally than setting up a Pro league to try and take on the NFL. However the reason for a pro league is to make money and in that case it probably will make financial sense to keep within the core sport market of the USA.

    Douglas Adamson
    Edinburgh Wolves American Football Club, Scotland, United Kingdom

    Comment by Douglas Adamson -

  354. I like the idea of signing college players and having them enter into contracts requiring buyouts if the NFL wants them.

    I also think the XFL had some decent ideas, particularly the removal of PATs. Instead having the ball on the 2 yard line for 1 point, and the 5 for 2 points and finally the 10 for 3 points.

    For announcers, I\’d like each team to vote one announcer by a fan vote. Now of course this would lead to a \’glorified cheerleader\’ (to borrow the phrase) but if you put each team\’s announcer in each game for a commentary, it\’d create a great live broadcast intensity.

    Oh, and if the UFL can be the only US sports team to actually have a rational outlook on sports betting, that\’d be a nice change.

    Comment by Adam -

  355. I think this could be a very good idea. Here is another that might go along with it a little. I don\’t know how it would work, or if i could work, but make your team a true World Champion by getting the CFL and NFL Europe (might be harder to get then the CFL b/c its owned/operated by the NFL) to agree to a playoff with all three leagues. If you could get the top three teams from UFL and CFL and the top two teams from NFL Europe that would make it a great tournament. This might even be good for the other two leagues b/c people from other countries will see how their teams hold up against the American teams. Again this is just a wild thought.

    Comment by Brandon -

  356. Sounds great, though given your blog last july about basketball ( ) I\’m a little surprised you want to take the NFL head-on, but you\’re right on #5, there are a lot of people involved in this who are a hell of a lot smarter about sports and business than I am.

    Will the UFL put a higher priority on parity within the league (salary caps/league-financed salaries) or attracting eyeballs? If you want to put together the UFL equivalent of the New York Cosmos, can you do that? Or will you have a league full of owners who are willing to take big losses in the short term to cash in down the road?

    Comment by James -

  357. Mark,
    I think it\’s a great idea, but there\’s one problem…you\’re gonna play in the FALL? Few people remember, the USFL actually was pretty successful because it played in the SPRING. I think spring football is the way to go here. Instead of competing with the NFL, you\’ll be competing with the AFL and NFL Europe. If you go against the NFL, no offence, you\’ll be laughingstock. The reason the XFL failed was because NBC didn\’t want it, but attendance was really good, even in San Francisco! Good luck, and if you want someone to work for you, lemme know 🙂

    Comment by David Livingston -

  358. This could work out well, if you do it right. You have to skip the growing pain years of the NFL years when the Uniforms looked plain and unsophisticated. With all the creative design talent, (not over the top stripes) they need very professional styled uniforms, high level (not low level showboats. Players with skilled but football/basketball athletic maneuvers and player showmanship. It could be great and plenty of women with cash have never been to an NFL game. The quality of the fan would be very high in some cities, esppecially if the talent was coached and managed at a \”very higher standard\” than the NFL. Think about talent that is overlooked for a bunch of reasons that are more personal and subjective. The NFL expects you to come in shape, but the guys just gain more weight instead of getting faster and stronger. It slows down the game. You don\’t need to be over 300 lbs to block, you need to be stronger, and everyone else needs to be more muscular, and faster, with more knowledge about the game. I have looked into technology to improve the athlete by orders of magnitude from the knowledge and decision making standpoint. I am interested.

    Comment by Will Ray -

  359. you have to fill a niche if you\’re not the nfl. the cfl\’s niche is canada and their league\’s history which is almost as long as the nfl. nfl europe\’s niche is teams 5,000 miles away from us and being funded by nfl owners who want a minor league for their players. arena football\’s niche is the gimmicky part and a concerted effort to be fan-friendly.

    people will NOT watch this league if it\’s too similar to the nfl. the USFL proved that. they also will not watch this league if it\’s too different. the XFL proved that.

    Comment by robert -

  360. i think the sticking point for a new league is the media coverage. there might be curiosity initially, but don\’t underestimate the NFL\’s ability to bully networks, cities, players, and media that want to participate in this new league. anyone willing to participate for you might be risking their football future should this not pan out.

    Comment by robert -

  361. Cube,
    I disagree with all those other idiots who posted here. Great idea.
    Consider the two most recent legit independent leagues that have tried to steal some of the NFL\’s thunder: the USFL and the XFL. Both were actually solid in theory, and could have succeeeded. What killed them was stupidity.
    USFL: Died because Donald Trump was stupid. He tried (against the will of the other owners in the league) to move the league\’s schedule into the fall, to directly compete with the NFL, in an attempt to force an AFL-style merger. Instead, Trump killed the baby. They had the star power (in terms of players) to give the NFL a scare had they lasted, say, another four years and just kept plugging along.
    XFL: Died because of Vince McMahon\’s stupid TV deal with NBC. Had the XFL negotiated a smaller-scope TV deal, with, say, a network like ESPN, FSN, Spike, or Versus (had it existed then), then the enormous investment that NBC put into the league would not have been necessary, and thus been the collateral that the network had to sacrifice after one measly season. The XFL could have lasted more than one year, had NBC not killed it.
    The moral of the story: this can work, if you and the owners are smart about it. If you guys don\’t get greedy and try to cut the NFL\’s legs out from under it in the formative years, and if you are able to negotiate lucrative TV deals without mortgaging the financial future of the league, it has a chance. I know I\’d watch.
    PS – And while you\’re at it, how about a team in Orlando? If so, I\’m your play-by-play man.

    Comment by Jeff -

  362. Whether this works or not remains to be seen, but the reason it has a chance to work is really because of the way the NCAA is setup. The new league will have to take advantage of the weaknesses in BOTH of those \”leagues.\”

    There are a variety of journalists and academics who have taken the NCAA football industrial complex to task and exposed it for what it is…the athletic version of walmart style employee relations.

    If you think this league will fail consider how many very talented (but not quite talented enough to make the NFL) players attend college exclusively to play football. They do not go to class, they play football in return for essentially room, board, and memories. When the bowl games are over, and their eligibility is up they head home to get a \”real job\” or kick around a semi pro league.

    Now consider the offer of a well funded(!) league owned and run almost exclusively of owners who made their own fortune. They come to you whether in HS, after your freshman, sophomore, junior, or senior year and say \”We will give you everything Notre Dame will give you except the charade that you are a \’student athlete\’ and we will pay you $250K a year.\” You are naive if you think VERY talented players will be very interested in that conversation. Not all of them. And most likely the new league will not have the same talent as the NFL, but you are foolish if you do not think there are weaknesses in the NFL armor.

    Comment by Nic -

  363. Mr. Cuban,
    I believe that a Spring/Summer league would be nice. I disagree with those who disagree with rule changes. Look at the other successful non-NFL league, the AFL. The Arena Football League has been ultra-sucessful, mainly because of its uniqueness. And, as much as I am a WWE fan, I do not recomend resurecting the XFL in any way shape or form. The changes should not be too extreme and keep to the basic NFL rules. Okay, well this does sound like an extreme change:
    No punting
    A field goal post hoised over the 50-yard line
    Well, there\’s my only sugestion that could give life to this league.

    Comment by Travis, 14 -


    Mark, does the UFL have a site yet? I can\’t find it via Yahoo!
    Please post contact info,

    Comment by NFL2LA -

  365. Mark,
    My first reaction to this is to say, no way, it will be second rate and nobody will care. Then I was reminded of my Friday lunch crew. It\’s a bunch of guys that get together for lunch every couple of Fridays at a sports bar.

    Nearly every time NFL news pops up on the screen and someone remarks how badly they want the season to start now and how much they want year round football. Several discussions have popped up regarding why in the world the NFL doesn\’t bring NFL Europe to the US and play a spring/summer schedule.

    Why do we care? As insane as it is, we want to play fantasy football every week of every month of the year. The growth and attention on the NFL is due in large part to fantasy football. We all want to know the next sleeper or underground star. If you had a league with strong fantasy support the media and your target demographic will take notice.

    1. Don\’t go head to head.
    2. Cater to FF freaks.

    I don\’t see any other way to succeed.

    Good luck.

    Comment by Josh Lewis -

  366. Mark,
    I agree with you that this is an idea far overdue, and it could be something very doable in the future. I have played semi-pro football for the last 3 years, and it would give guys overlooked by the NFl a chance to showcase their talents on a national stage. I\’m all for it! In all seriousness, if you are looking for a football mind to work on this project, I can do anything! Marketing, broadcasting, anything. I am a football junkie!!! Email me!

    Comment by Jeremy -

  367. Personally, I can\’t wait. I think it\’s a great idea.

    Comment by yogi -

  368. Mr. Mark Cuban I believe this could be potentially a good thing, but why compete in fall, why not compete with World Football League during minicamp times with the drafts that didn\’t make it, this way they will also compete with CFL, but it sounds lucrative and interesting. If you need help with thoughts or ideas on cities like San Antonio, El Paso, Las Vegas, Omaha, Des Moines, Portland. thank you

    Comment by damian -

  369. What about Grand Rapids, MI? it\’s a larger media market than Oklahoma City, Las VEgas and only two spots back from San Antonio. It is not a not a well-known area nationwide, but there are a lot of football fans on this side of the state that have no loyalty to any nfl teams outside of bandwagons because the lions are terrible.

    Comment by Rob Clark -

  370. UFL Vision = To Change the World

    To compete against the NFL, do something different. The UFL is built to change the world; help end world hunger, help end world poverty and to create peace all around the world.

    In the NFL there are constant problems with players and owners making way too much money, and players getting into way too many problems. I beleive fans are tired of this.

    There is a huge market for football and there are thousands of amazing atheletes that would play for less money, especially if they are making a difference in the world. So how about creating the UFL so that the players are change agents in the world. Instead of drastic salaries, half their salaries are donated to non-profits around the world. In the off season each player could be part in building a self-sustaining community. They could get children of the streets and into good homes and or schools. The league itself could be a stand against all the poverty in the world. Not only would each player make a huge difference, the league itself could make HUGE changes. Your \”superbowl\” could benefit all types of work. Each commercial, specially at 1 mill a pop, could make such a difference.

    I believe the world is changing. I believe all types of entertainment needs to change. Fans are wanting more. We want to see more than some guy that\’s making 10 million a year complaining about not getting paid, breaking the law, and getting off because who he is. We want more players who play for the love of the game. Now add to that. They play for the love of the game, and they play to change the world.

    I believe there would be a amazing market for this, and this would be an amazing alternative to the monolopy of the NFL. Take all the money and profits out of it, and instead, be a service to the world.

    Thank you for reading.

    Comment by Jeremiah A Forest -

  371. Stick with the MLL. Just like Hockey, MLL in HD is worth the ticket.

    Fastest growing sport in the nation.

    Investment is a lot less than the UFL and the market is growing instead of tapped out.

    Let\’s see.. Spend a combined $200million or more hoping to create demand.

    Or spend about $10Million increasing awareness and creating demand?

    Right now it is the die hard fans who watch because they grew up on the East Coast playing, or played in college and understand the rules. I say change the MLL rules to allow more violence (big hits) and you\’ll see the fans who don\’t understand the game go nuts.

    Comment by PSC -

  372. Marc, if there was money to be made in another league the NFL would have done it long ago…even their development league is in Europe.
    And speaking of a developmental league, are NBA\’s minor league teams making money?
    Lower level talent may serve a need for pro development, but it isn\’t going to pay the bills.

    Comment by Jim R -

  373. Mark,

    This idea is awesome. Don\’t listen to those who immediately mention the failures of the XFL. The WWE was so good at promoting the XFL they convinced the general public the XFL was direct competition with the NFL when it wasn\’t. It was an alternative. The XFL suffered from lack of clear brand identity. Plus, you can\’t expect good football with only two months prep time. You have to give the teams at least a year.

    The XFL financial model was solid. Unfortunately, football played second fiddle to the WWE style, which didn\’t go over well. The whole cheerleaders/stripper image thing was horrible too. Enough bashing on the XFL.

    Despite all the problems with the XFL, they did prove a couple things. One, the beloved xcam or skycam is now used heavily in the NFL games. That came from the XFL, much overused in the premiere game though.

    Like you said, there are cities who crave pro football. The USFL and the XFL proved that. Look at Las Vegas. The UPN station in that market killed in the ratings. We\’re talking double digit Nielsen numbers in a fifty-plus market.

    I think starting fresh allows you and the other principal interests to start a solid foundation. Take what the NFL does and improve it. However, I wouldn\’t attack the NFL. I would approach the UFL it as a pro football alternative. Let the football people do their jobs and make it a viable alternative, something the WWE/XFL didn\’t do.

    I loved football when it was only Sunday and Monday. I\’m not a fan of the Thursday games. It really messes with tradition. But since the NFL has tossed tradition to the wind, why not put games on Friday nights. However, I do think the numbers might not be there because of how big high school football is in various parts of the country. But if the model is there to do it, then go for it. Don\’t do it in the spring. Football is a fall/winter sport. That\’s where it needs to stay.

    As for getting television coverage, the television landscape has changed quickly since the XFL was around. I\’m sure MyNetworkTV would jump all over it. Heck, they\’re running movies on Friday nights.

    I would also embrace the fantasy football fanatic. Fantasy football drives the NFL. It took them too long enough to recognize it. Heck, I\’ve been doing it since \’89.

    With today\’s media landscape, you never know what will or won\’t work. I mean, if cornhole is on television then why not a second pro football league?


    Comment by Matt -

  374. I can see you haveing a successful 8 leauge team LA, Mex City, San Antonio, Portland, Anaheim, Toronto, Las Vegas, and Orlando would be ideal…then eventually you could be engulfed into the NFL..which would then have 40 teams 5 divisions of 4…north south east west pacific maybe? then you would have your dream of becoming an nfl owner for a lot less than you could now…sounds like a plan to me!

    Comment by Z-man -

  375. Mark,

    This is a great idea, but the wrong season. I have always thought the USFL would have survived and grown strong if they stayed in the Spring. Why do people think the draft got so popular in April, because fans want football year-round… and Arena football is NOT football.

    Instead of playing Friday nights in the Fall, why not have training camp start January 14th, have two exhibition games and then Opening Weekend on February 17 and 18th on Presidents Day.

    Play in two divisions. Each team plays two games against the division opponents and one against the other division for a ten-week schedule of Sunday and Monday Night games. have the UFL Championship played on Memorial Day every year… a national holiday!

    Anyway, good luck with the league but please consider the Spring.

    Comment by Sean McEnany -

  376. Roger Goodell and the empire known as the NFL will eat you alive and spit out your carcass! Find a good public company to invest in instead; a better use of your funds…

    Comment by Ryan -

  377. Mark,

    I say good luck to you. I think trying to become the equivelant, or better, of the NFL someday may be a bit of a reach. But, I do believe there are enough football fans to support another league that offers a quality product.

    There are many quality football players not on active NFL rosters, you will still need to pull some stars. I think being a supplement to the NFL could be a successful business venture, but trying to take the NFL on mano a mano won\’t work, at least until your league proves it has staying power and star power.

    But hey, I will watch and be a fan as long as the league offers exciting players and quality teams.

    Comment by Shotzy -

  378. People keep mentioning the XFL as a failed league. It was never given a chance to make it. After the first season NBC wanted out, but the other broadcast partners (UPN and TNN) wanted to go on. McMahon\’s mistake was total league ownership of all teams. Thus, when his partner, NBC, wanted out, he had to pull the plug. If he\’d taken an approach similar to what is being proposed for the UFL, namely split ownership between the league and an owner for each team, they would have been able to continue.

    As for cities for franchises, there are a host of places:

    Virginia Beach
    Long Island
    Oklahoma City
    San Antonio
    Las Vegas
    Los Angeles

    And if you do this, you have to revive the best rivalry in pro football that no one knows about:

    Birmingham and Memphis

    BTW, some have mentioned the USFL….people don\’t seem to realize that they WON their suit proving the NFL was a monopoly. If the lawsuit was filed in Memphis, Birmingham, Oklahoma City, or Jacksonville, instead of New York, they\’d have broken the bank.

    Comment by TLDietrich -

  379. The key to competing with the NFL is to duplicate as many aspects of their product as possible:

    1) Play in the fall and on Sundays
    2) Put teams in the same cities to capitalize on existing rivalries
    3) Play in the same stadiums (to the extent possible)
    4) Utilize the same rules
    5) Hire top NFL coaches
    6) Play an \”unbalanced\” schedule like the NFL to create the perception of parity
    7) Utilize same draft approach and format
    8) Maintain a hard salary cap and the same rules regarding talent. (Pro football is a man\’s game – kid\’s simply cant compete on this level.)
    Etc., etc., etc….

    Early on the talent will be weaker but perhaps not discernable by the average fan. This lack of talent could be mitigated somewhat by bringing on the brightest NFL coaches. I would estimate that over 5 years the UFL will have similar talent to the NFL. There is no reason the NFL can\’t compete but dont change a very successful product/game!

    Comment by John Koepke -

  380. Mark,

    Please move forward with all due haste. Make it fun, make it a little different, I\’ll watch and I will buy the sponsors products. I loved the XFL if only for the fact it made the titans of the NFL squirm and they had the guts to challange the \”ivory broadcasting tower\”. Ha, I still have a jersey! Be different and take them on, it\’s what you do best.

    Comment by Joe Adkisson -

  381. Mark,

    This is a tremendous business opportunity with a great upside. People who say the XFL is an example of why it cannot work are obviously not familiar with the realities relating to the XFL. Projects like a new football league take time and patience. The XFL was a great concept that was not given enough time to grow. I hope you go for it!

    Comment by Matt Johnson -

  382. When the UFL does start to materialize, do yourselves 1 huge favor. Sign a contract with Visual Concepts and 2K, the creators of the ESPN 2K series football games.

    Visual Concepts made better football games than EA did with Madden back in 2005. ESPN NFL 2K5, the game, was a superior game to Madden \’05 quality-wise, yet the price point was $19.99 for the 2K football game. This point caused Electronic Arts to drop the price of their Madden game. Clearly this angered or annoyed EA, and then EA went ahead and signed a deal with the NFL to give the Madden game franchise exclusive player and team rights. No more 2K NFL games, and it was a sad day for the gaming community.

    The 2K NFL game brought competition to the Madden games and each company had to innovate to better the other. Now that competition is gone and only the consumers and gamers suffer.

    One other thing: don\’t be an intellectual property whore like the NFL. The NFL gets pissed if someone uses \”Super Bowl\” and they got pissed when someone used \”The Big Game\” and then the NFL wanted to trademark \”The Big Game.\” Plain foolishness.

    If you ever need anything that has to do with the gaming industry and the UFL, I\’ll gladly give my ideas and input.

    Comment by James Stevens -

  383. Cuban,
    you dumb son of a pumpkin….I feel like Talia Shire in the Rocky movie…\”YOU CAN\”T WIN\”!!!

    Is it possible, sure..I guess….but my wife won\’t give up Friday nights now too….Saturday afternoons (college) and Sundays….

    Plus, I\’m in Eagles fan….maybe twice a year, I scrape up $200 and go to an Eagles game….so you put a franchise in Philly…maybe you\’ll play your games at Villanova or something….and you want me to pay $800 a year for season tickets…twice what i pay to go see the Eagles, even if it is only twice…McNabb, Westbrook…what are you givin me …Tony Hunt and Kevin Kolb??

    Anyway..Good luck…I\’d love to see you do it…everyone needs competition..

    But you know what might work, bro??

    Take 8 average guys and their friends…armchair QBS….fantasy draft junkies…etc….give the $100K each to go out and build a team of 21 players for 10 weeks…..8 teams total …they coach them..they are the GMS…everything…and then get corporate sponsors…\’ve got the Pepsi team in Pepsi uniforms…..Viagara team in purple…whatever…play in the Coliseum, the Astrodome…any stadiums where they\’ve played in the past that are still viable….and give all access in the locker room and on the field in HD….the American Idol and Survivor meets Joe Football…now I\’m excited!! But then again, what do I know?


    Comment by Frank D -

  384. I like it.
    It seems like the UFL folks have a pretty good plan. Friday nights are open for pro football on network TV (Thursday too really since most don\’t have NFL network). NBC needs sports, verses network needs it. There is a demand.

    The UFL is basically following the best parts of the USFL plan — sign free agents and secondary players and then a few headliners. If the league is competitive and the games are interesting it could work.

    As for the XFL, that is a totally different animal. That was a single-entity wrestling spin off that tried to claim it was more violent and more sexy than the NFL. But there were no wrestling story-lines or rivalries (though they tried) and when the WWF-fan viewers realized it was just plain football, they quickly lost interest. The XFL sucked, but that doesn\’t mean the UFL has to suck too.

    If this league is marketed as a supplement to the NFL or alternative but not a rival, it could succeed.

    First 8 cities…

    Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and Mexico City —all make great sense and can be geographic rivals. Add to those three Orlando and San Antonio for obvioius reasons. Then you have 3 spots left. If the league adds Chicago and NYC for TV purposes, I think it will be a mistake. THe XFL did the same and those franchises didn\’t do well –but in the fall it would totally not work. Better to go to other markets like Columbus Ohio and Detroit (since the Lions continue to suck –Michigan Panthers of USFL were popular) and perhaps Portland or Shreveport.

    Comment by Fez -

  385. this has problems. the average age of an nfl football fan is like 50 i.e. they have a big problem on the horizon. studies show that sports are passed from parent/adult role model to child. in other words, get them while they\’re young. the breakup of the nuclear family leaves a big gap in future fan recruitment with a lot of males. another thing is that sports watching is pretty passive and competes with the same base that gaming does – where gaming is active.

    i read some comments above that indicated friday night games in the fall? wow. how will u compete with beer – and chicks, and …?

    IMO sports is huge growth market in Europe because of the older demo. football can definitely grow there – as can basketball, etc.

    i\’m 27 – and despite playing high school and college sports – i don\’t watch any at all. i do participate a lot in athletic activity but i don\’t watch and neither do my friends. it\’s anecdotal evidence but sports in general has to deal with that issue of dimishing generational returns.

    Comment by blyx -

  386. Mark,
    I believe the demand for more top level professional football from the day after the Super Bowl until NFL preseason begins greatly exceeds excess demand during the college and NFL seasons. During that time, fans, including myself, track potential trades, draft prospects, and how those players perform in camp. We\’re trying in part to fill a void. I expect we would still follow those NFL transactions and activities, but would like to have games too. If you decide to compete in the NFL season and Friday night\’s work for UFL, couldn\’t the NFL simply add games that night? I also agree with those who believe league play should resemble the NFL. Many fans are looking for more of the same, but only after the Super Bowl.

    Comment by Jim -

  387. Love the idea. One rule change from the NFL though. No field goals. 4th down or nothing. You should also beat the NFL and put a team in London, England. Wembley just got a remake. Or maybe get a team in Cuba and call them the Cuba Cubans.

    P.S Buy Arsenal!!

    Comment by Leovaldo Rodriguez Jr. -

  388. Mark
    Please all I ask is to make the seats close to the field CHEAP.
    I would want to go to a game and pay no more that $10 instead of watching a nfl game.

    Comment by MidgetMarine -

  389. the great thing is that all the games will be in HD. right now i still get CBS regional games that are not in HD.

    also, if you need some help. let me know. i would love to be a part of it.

    Comment by ty webb -

  390. oops! Meant to say the rest are NOT good enough.

    By percentage, how many draft picks lower than 7 make it in the NFL? That\’s the type of talent you will be dealing with. The guys that were CUT by the NFL. I\’ll watch college football if I want to see the majority of players that aren\’t good enough to make it in the NFL

    Comment by Dave -

  391. I have a couple thoughts. First off, I think having no age limit is a foolish idea. I think it\’s easy to say that everyone will want to come to the UFL because they can get started there faster, but there\’s some pretty blatant flaws…

    1) Wouldn\’t those stars rather wait a few years and then go for the guaranteed money that the spotlights of the NFL bring?

    2) For every all-star you get jumping straight into the UFL, another all-star will get horribly injured and people will wonder if that could\’ve been prevented with the training and extra growing time that college provides, and for each career-ending injury because of the age restriction, the more people question the league…

    I guess I\’m not really sure why you want to compete with a product that isn\’t really… broken. If you had, for example, jumped in on hockey during that one year and completely renovated it, you could\’ve done something powerful indeed.

    Instead of fixing a sport that doesn\’t need it, focus on the other things. I agree with the poster who talked about soccer…
    Either outdoor or indoor.

    There used to be an indoor soccer league… but I believe it folded. Indoor soccer is just as fast/exciting as hockey, and I think you\’d have both a challenge and a great success on your hands if you could figure out a way to bring indoor soccer to the masses.

    Or professional lacrosse?

    If you give customers what they\’re expecting, it won\’t be new. If you give them something novel and with substance, they\’ll be interested and then won over.

    Comment by Alex Jeffries -

  392. Mark –

    You are on crack, but I love it!!! Being an entrepreneur myself, I think its a good idea. I think it would be a better idea for you to buy the Cubbies instead. Take something that already has a ground to stand on and some players and build it into a Championship team like you have done with the Mavs.


    PS – Fantastic PR stunt. I love it. You get more PR when you fart in public than most people get their entire life. Keep up the great job!

    Comment by Aaron -

  393. Hmmm… didn\’t we try this before? AFL (subsumed by NFL), WFL, XFL, NFL Europe. Plus there is Canadian Football.

    Do you want really diluted talent in this league? There\’s a reason there are only 1,760 NFL players. The rest are good enough.

    Whenever you expand a league the talent get diluted. If I want to watch teams made up of players not good enough to play in the NFL, I can do that today by watching the Arena league or the CFL. Or NFL Europe.

    Trying to start another football league with the NFL around is like trying to start another cola beverage. You won\’t get the shelf space or distribution.

    Comment by Dave -

  394. You guys have probably found some info on the UFL by now, but just in case….

    Comment by Ed Parrott -

  395. there are some markets that want pro sports teams until they get them. And if you don\’t bring them a winning team, fans aren\’t really up for wasting their money and afternoon. look at Charlotte NC. When the Panthers aren\’t winning, you can\’t give away tickets to that stadium.

    You might want to consider the true \”pro league\” that competes with the NFL – it\’s called the NCAA (or at least the BCS teams). You don\’t see USC as a pro team? Or LSU? Or Bama? Sure the players don\’t get paid, but fans still have to pay a fortune for those tickets – including donations to the scholarship fund to get the best seats.

    For a guy who complained about hearing the same old pitches for HDNet, you are giving the same reasons that came out of Donald Trump\’s mouth during the USFL.

    Comment by Joe Corey -

  396. There already is a rival to the NFL. It is called College Football. Overall not a horrible idea, but I think it will be an uphill battle the entire way. I don\’t see it being overly successful, just another version of the Canadian Football League or the NFL Europe. A place athletes go after college where they will try tune their skills up in order to compete in the NFL.

    Comment by Jonathan D. -

  397. This is an outstanding idea and there is definitely a market for it if the teams play in the right cities.

    I would not count out some current cities with NFL teams, such as Washington.

    The league would do better as a minor league playing during the NFL season. You can have somewhere in the neighborhood of 10-16 teams that affiliate with NFL teams and play their players under a certain age, or over a certain age if they clear waivers.

    This brings in an enormous, ready-built fan base.

    As a second tier league, you are really competing with college football and Arena football. People will want to watch the stars of tomorrow. A minor league would allow star draft pick quarterbacks to play in their first year under the same system as their affiliate.

    Competition with the NFL might work if you get some names at first but the real market is for a minor league system.

    Comment by Rick Davis -

  398. I am very much a believer in the free market. However, I am also a lover of football. I think, if successful, a second pro football league at the same level as the nfl would dilute the over all talent level.

    As of right now, less teams = higher concentration of talent and a higher level of football

    Comment by Josh -

  399. Mark,

    I like the idea of a professional product which could compete for the football demand in this country, but I don\’t like the idea of Friday nights. Why not Tuesday Night Football? I like the idea of Friday nights if the season starts after high school football season is over. So you could begin in late November and run the playoffs in March and not be messing with pulling any attention away from the high school sub-culture. I don\’t even watch high school football, but it would still seem unnatural for me to see pro games pitted against HS football. If you wanted to compete for viewers during the NFL season, Tuesday Night Football would be awesome. The whole league plays during prime time. You could have the regional games on at 6 and a national game at 9. Sunday is the NFL. Monday night is the NFL. Wednesday night is church night for your teenage audience. Thursday night is college football. Friday is HS football. Saturday is college football. Tuesday would be the way to go with putting an attractive product out there people could embrace. Otherwise, start after the HS football season and overlap the end of the NFL season and get the football only people exclusively for a couple months after the NFL season is over.

    Comment by Tim D. -

  400. I subscribe to your blog, Mark, and have never commented until now. While the curiousity will likely bring some intitial success to the UFL (as it did for the XFL), the fact of the matter is that the talent pool is diluted enough in the NFL, so there certainly isn\’t enough out there to field an entirely new league. Assuming there are initially 8 teams fielding a roster of about 50 players each, you\’re looking at 400 more players. I just don\’t understand where they\’re coming from?

    It would seem to me that a more viable option may be to try and privately aquire the CFL. You\’d be able to inherit existing broadcast contracts, talent, fan bases and league infrastructure, so it could be a foundation to build what you\’re really looking to acheive.

    Comment by Natron -

  401. cuban please give up

    Comment by Mao -

  402. Best of luck with this venture!

    From a competitive perspective, not only do you have the CBA in your favor, but you have the NFL\’s own culture of monopoly. They simply aren\’t used to the idea of competing for audiences, and it will take them some time to adapt.

    If you show fewer (or shorter) commercials, there will be fewer TV time outs. That\’d be a big plus for fan satisfaction, not only at games but also at home.

    Just whatever you do, don\’t go the XFL route of favoring spectacle over sport. In fact, you could very well establish yourself as more sporting than the NFL by offering more offense/defense balanced rules, whereas the NFL has become so score centric that it\’s practically illegal to defend anything, especially in the passing game.

    If you focus on quality, integrity, and a great fan experience, you\’ll have great success here.

    Comment by Brooks -

  403. mark u wanna blow the NFL out of the water?

    here\’s how:

    totally remove any age restriction, ie let kids come right out of high school to the league. get the top college recruits and prospects to come to ur league instead of the college football. what if the next peyton manning goes straight to the pros and instead of biding his time in NCAA. or michael irvin? adrian peterson if he had gone straight to the pros? we all know the fight the NFL has had with keeping kids out. reverse that trend and ull get the talent. connect it all to full scholarships at top tier schools that dont have football teams for the kids as a kind of fallback for the future.

    these guys will remember the loyalty and if they dont the NFL will still have to buy out their contracts when they goto poach them a la european soccer.

    Comment by Jay Slick -

  404. I have no idea whether or not the UFL will work, but I have to assume that there\’s a market for second-tier sports leagues, since the market for both pros and college is huge. Counting on revenue from local fans and expecting some losses, rather than trying to cash in on huge TV contracts also makes a lot of sense.

    My real skepticism is the schedule, like a couple of other commenters have pointed out. NFL football is already on all day Sunday in the fall, Monday evening, and occasionally on other days. College football is on all day Saturday. Are people really clamoring for more football in the fall? Will women, who already endure their husbands watching hours upon hours of football on fall weekends, really be okay with their husbands tying up literally the whole weekend with watching football? Will men want to do nothing with their lives but watch football?

    College football has an incredibly loyal fan base which makes it a solid product; pro football has the best talent in the world. A new league would effectively be competing with not one but two ridiculously formidable products.

    So why not spring? Or summer? By late Spring, I think a lot of people would like to watch football, which is why Arena Football, which is fairly silly, has managed to do well. I just can\’t figure out why a new league would try to launch in the fall.

    Comment by brad -

  405. Mark,
    Don\’t do it. The NFL will crush the league in a year,two tops. They are the strongest league in all of professional sports and have shown since the 70\’s that they don\’t like outsiders playing on their turf. You want a football fix? Then buy a struggling franchise and move them to LA. However, I doubt the NFL will let you buy one of their teams for various reasons. Good luck though if you decide to pursue this… are gonna need a lot of it!

    Comment by Mike -

  406. Mark, please buy the Pittsburgh Pirates. Please.

    Comment by Brad -

  407. Is professional football really a growth industry? Can the fan base support both the NFL and another major league? I\’m not convinced.

    Considering that a full generation of kids (both girls and boys) have been brought up playing soccer, and the worldwide appeal of that sport, I would think that bolstering the U.S. soccer presence would be a growth endeavor.

    What are the numbers of U.S. households whose children currently participate or have participated in league-based and/or school-based soccer vs. league-based and school-based football? Soccer has a fan base that can span genders and due to the participation of their children in the sport, both parents and their children would enjoy watching professionals participate in the sport as well.

    Football is to sports as long distance is to the telecommunications market. No growth in a flat industry.

    Comment by Scott J. -

  408. Mark,

    Imagine, if you will, twenty years from now, when the Super Bowl champ plays the UFL champ in a continent-wide extravaganza. Is this so far fetched? I think not! As long as you do not fight head to head with the NFL on a city by city basis during the first few years of infancy, I think there is a strong chance for success. I wouldn\’t compare the UFL to the XFL like others have The XFL was all about nicknames, rough play, and wrestling-ness. I think the UFL could be a fierce competitor to the NFL with cities like Vegas, LA, Ok City, and others in the mix. Please, I\’m on board, if you need help, call on me. I BELIEVE!!!!!!!!!!!

    Comment by Micah Fening -

  409. Mark, do you know what city you will end up owning, let me go down a list of potental cities

    San Antonio TX
    Las Angeles CA
    Sacramento CA
    Las Vegas NV
    Oklahoma City OK
    Milwaukee WI
    Birmingham AL
    Richmond VA
    Maybe one of the CFL cities
    and Mexico City

    please do Orlando, their renovating the Citrus bowl for 2009 so it should be good.

    Comment by Nawaid -

  410. Mark,

    God bless you for trying to get this thing going. I don\’t care what kind of football is shown to me … I\’ll watch it anyway. I\’ll stay at home Friday nights to watch football, I don\’t care. People who are quick to judge this league aren\’t real football fans. People need to give it a chance. Football is still America\’s sport and there are quite a few good players that would be willing to play in this league. The more football the better! You can never have enough!

    I only wish I was a billionaire because I would take part in this league just like you are.

    Top 5 things to make the league go:
    1. Lower the age limit. Let athletes from high school make the jump.
    2. Don\’t make colossal changes to the game like the XFL did … even though I watched the XFL religiously regardless of what rules they had. We have to appease the \”fair-weather\” football fans out there.
    3. Start the games as early as possible on Friday. It\’s tricky because you want to make sure people get home from work/school, but you want it before they go out for the night.
    4. Keep the uniforms as basic as possible and don\’t try to sway too much from the NFL\’s uniforms (big mistake, xfl)
    5. Make sure the cities getting football teams have the biggest media and fan base possible. Simply put: if you can\’t see it or can\’t hear it, you can\’t follow it and keep up with it.

    PS I\’m a Chicagoan and I\’m just wondering how your pursuit of the Cubs is shaking out.

    Comment by Ryan -

  411. Mark, if anyone can pull this off it\’d be the brain trust involved with this new league of yours but obv there are a lot of doubts. Images of the XFL and \”He Hate Me\” with wheels of cheerleader costumes and white trash fans still linger in my mind.

    Personally I\’m with fans that would like a minor league system rather than a head on competitor. It seems like you\’ll be losing money for years before you\’d be making any money, but what do I know.

    It just seems to me that Football season would get pretty crowded TV-wise with a slew of NFL games, college and then UFL games happening at the same time. I\’d kind of be interested in a season that started in February but I suppose that might be failed from the beginning. Good luck sir.

    Comment by Jay -

  412. i don\’t think trying to compete with the nfl is great idea
    maybe have the ufl play in the off season of the nfl and then maybe it could work and put a team in LA not a good idea at all unless you want to move the team later to oakland or st.louis
    i wish you luck no matter what you do i\’m a fan yours for life
    just for what you did with the mavs what evere happened to your intrest with cubs? thats a no brainer easily make a profit and turn a loveable loser into a winner but anyways good luck

    Comment by jacob -

  413. I would have said the same thing, but I believe that with patience it can happen. The AAFC and the AFL both survived and eventually merged as equals with the NFL.

    Comment by Phil green -

  414. Excellent point about professional football supply and demand, but Friday nights in the Fall and Winter? A real spring football league would fly a lot further with NFL fans like me. I love pro football. I even watched the XFL. A pro-rules SPRING league would appeal to me more than watching NFL castoffs play the Friday before the game.

    Comment by John -

  415. Great idea!! Maybe you can get rid of the age limit for players.

    Comment by Jill -

  416. God bless you and good luck competing with college football.

    Comment by solomonrex -

  417. Mark,

    You understand a target audience….I am your target and no way I am watching a second rate league on a Friday night. The NFL has a true competitive advantage so don\’t waste your time or money. I truly respect your views on a variety of subjects but respectfully, don\’t think you can pull another

    Johnny \”I ain\’t no yes man\” Ballson

    Comment by john qb -

  418. It\’s all about execution Mark. I wish you well against the NFL Juggernaut. It\’ll take more than money.

    Comment by Blackjsus -

  419. This doesn\’t sound completely stupid; I\’m wondering how nation(continent?)-wide this league would be if the cities so far mentioned are LA, LV, Mexico, Orlando, and San Antonio. But perhaps being more regional would help justify its existence. And those are the markets everyone wants to be in right?

    It can only end successfully if it doesn\’t seem like a second rate product (especially in LA, fans in non-NFL cities can turn to college football instead), but it sounds like the untapped gate revenue holds appeal. 30,000 fans at 50 a seat for 8 home games is 16 mil, and if you call that your player budget it\’s enough to pay 50 players an average salary of 240,000. Those are your optimistic numbers 2-3 years in.

    Is that enough to keep a group of owners together and serve as a launching pad for a real league with a quality product? (I wouldn\’t count on big TV or merch deals in the first couple years, but you guys are savvy and connected so maybe I\’m underestimating).

    I wish I had the money to buy in and see.

    Comment by MJK -

  420. Sorry, I just don\’t think this will fly. I have suffered most of my life as a die-hard Cleveland Browns fan and I can\’t imagine anything changing that. But, it\’s not my money so knock yourself out. Good luck!

    Comment by Jackie -

  421. Mark, does the ufl have a site yet? I can\’t find it via google. What are the potential markets other than LA and Vegas you are looking at?
    Please don\’t do stupid rule changes like the xfl had. people care less about the theatrics and wwe type stuff they threw in there and more about the quality game.

    Comment by Brian Breslin -

  422. Mark, you are one of the best owners in sports and a very smart man, but this is just plain foolishness. Please take a look at what a fellow billionaire, Vince McMahon, did with the XFL and realize that it will not work. Just stick to getting the Mavs back to the finals and maybe consider taking the Rangers off Tom Hicks\’ hands so they might win a few games.

    Comment by Nathan Nichols -

Comments are closed.