Last year it was announced that the USFL would be returning on FOX, but at the time not much known about the new league. Since then, especially in the new year, we’ve learned a lot more.
With a little over two months to go until kickoff, everything seems to be coming together. Now that all eight head coaches have been revealed, all eyes are on the USFL draft set for later this month where each team will build out their roster for the upcoming season.
Today during FOX Corporations earnings call, we heard some mentions of the new USFL.
UPDATE: After speaking with sources close to the USFL, the quotes listed below are wrongly attributed to Rupert Murdoch. It was Lachlan Murdoch which addressed the new league during the FOX earning call. The article has been updated to reflect the correct attributions.
Fox CEO Murdoch: Outside investors in league have 'effectively underwritten' league for next two or three years. Co. is 'ambitious but disciplined' on its investment in USFL
— Brian Steinberg (@bristei) February 9, 2022
Brian Steinberg of Variety shared some snippets of the call, where get a look at the CEO’s perspective and thoughts on the league.
Interestingly enough, Murdoch says that the NFL helped FOX ‘think through’ structure and rules of play for the USFL. For fans that were hoping that we wouldn’t see gimmicks in the new league, it seems you’re safe. Ultimately, this was expected. Especially so after the hiring of Mike Pereira to serve as the leagues head of officiating.
Additionally, Murdoch states “We control the digital rights”. In the modern age of cord-cutters, this is more important than ever. We’ve already seen the network capitalize on those rights, by signing a multi-year deal with NBC.
Murdoch says that outside investors in the league have ‘effectively underwritten’ the USFL for the next two or three years. We know that the league is getting funding from a couple groups in Birmingham, as well as from the deal with NBC; and those already seem to be paying dividends. Beyond the partners we mentioned, the USFL is also actively scouting potential team owners; which can only help the situation.
Ending things off, Murdoch says that FOX is ‘ambitious but disciplined’ on its investment in the USFL.
Overall, everything was positive about the new league and it looks like FOX has the pieces in place to keep it around for a while.
With the USFL season approaching soon, we expect even more news to coming through the pipeline. Stay tuned for more.
Who do you think we’ll see in the USFL Championship this year? Let us know down in the comments below or join the conversation on Discord.