There has been a lot chatter this NFL offseason about the possibility of a return of other football leagues to prominence. The formerly failed USFL looks to be on pace for a return to the national stage with Spring and Summer football a very real possibility starting in March 2013. This afternoon, the UFL has returned with the announcement that a national television contract is in hand and they will return to television this fall.
According to the Associated Press, via the Las Vegas Sun, the UFL has announced a television contract with CBS Sports Network, which will televise their games for an eight-week period starting September 19th. CBS also announced that Marty Schottenheimer and Jim Fassel will return to the sidelines for two teams in the league in this upcoming season.
According to the AP, the league will broadcast games on Wednesday and Fridays this coming season, and this is what I feel is the problem with the UFL. Launching a network, even if it’s poised to be a developmental league for the NFL, is not going to generate a lot of interest while being broadcast concurrently with NFL and college football on television.
My job revolves around sports, so the argument I am going to make doesn’t work in my homestead, but it will in many households. The NFL is the major draw on television, there is no doubt about that. Three games broadcast nationally on Sunday, a Monday Night Football game, now a Thursday night game each week. College football games all day and night on Saturday. Now enter UFL games on Wednesday and Friday night? Wives and girlfriends which concede football games to their partners on the weekends and Monday nights are now going to allow their significant other to watch football five nights a week? I think when presented with the offer from the partner, I believe most men are going to opt for watching the NFL. Most wives and girlfriends do not allow sports streaming on television 18 hours a day as they do in my house.
This might be the last gasp for the UFL. I love the idea of developmental leagues, I just don’t like the idea of them running concurrently to the same time the NFL is underway. Starting in the month of September, the sports world gets crazy busy.Baseball is heading to the playoffs, the NBA and NHL is getting underway and the NFL is in full swing.
I love the idea of more football, I can’t get enough of the game. However, I think this might be a bad move by the UFL. I’m not wishing anything bad on the league, I’ll watch some games and cover them here at TPR. On the other hand, the UFL landed a television contract, something the resurgent USFL has not yet secured according to a recent interview with the league front office.