XFL merges with USFL
January 2, 2024
The United Football League (UFL), the spring US football league that will result from the merger of the XFL and USFL, has been unveiled.
The 2024 season for the UFL is set to kick off on March 30th. Russ Brandon, former President and CEO of the XFL, will lead the UFL as President and CEO. Daryl Johnston, former USFL President of Football Operations, will lead football operations.
The news was first announced by Dany Garcia and Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson (pictured) on Fox NFL Sunday. Additional details about team markets and football operations will be announced in due course.
Eric Shanks, Chief Executive Officer and Executive Producer of Fox Sports, commented: “Fox is football, and the success of the USFL has proven that there’s a bright future for spring football. The opportunity to bring together our two leagues — each with a commitment to advancing broadcast practices, rule innovations and the community — only furthers the potential of the United Football League and solidifies its spot on the sports calendar.”
Jimmy Pitaro, Chairman at ESPN, said: “The United Football League — a powerful combination of the XFL and USFL — will provide passionate sports fans with an entertaining, innovative, and action-packed season. With compelling storytelling across traditional and digital platforms, fan-friendly innovations, and tremendous reach, this visionary league is well-positioned, and we look forward to our continued collaboration.”
Dany Garcia, Founder, CEO and Chairwoman of The Garcia Companies, said: “This new venture is possible because of a shared visionary mindset, a profound passion for the game, and first-hand experience living and creating the opportunities that football makes possible. As a unified spring league, we are able to deepen our commitment to unlocking and surpassing the dreams of our players, coaches, staff and fans. This league represents continued legacy and evolution, and we look forward to building the universe of spring football.”
Johnson, Founder and CEO of Seven Bucks Companies, added: “From day one, our mission has been to expand the game of football and be a league of opportunity, culture and innovation. As we come together to create the UFL, we can build something powerful, exciting and very cool for football fans – a spring league with lasting impact for all the players with a dream to play pro football and the ‘hardest workers in the room’ mentality to make their dreams come true.”
Gerry Cardinale, Founder and Managing Partner of RedBird Capital Partners, concluded: “When you combine the entertainment and marketing expertise of Dwayne Johnson and Dany Garcia, the broadcast and network reach of Fox and ESPN, and the strategic capital and company-building mentality of RedBird, there is a tremendous opportunity to achieve something unique — a valuable and scalable live event entertainment platform that will continue to work closely with the NFL on innovation and player development and have a legitimate shot at becoming one of the top professional leagues in the country after the big four. “