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XFL to Launch in Eight Cities in 2020, Reveals Markets

by Fran Stuchbury
December 6, 2018 - XFL (XFL)

The XFL on Wednesday announced the eight cities and venues league teams will call home when the XFL launches the weekend of February 8-9, 2020.

Here are the locations and venues:

Dallas: Playing at Globe Life Park - The stadium be vacant when the MLB Texas Rangers move to Globe Life Field. It will be retrofitted for football and will seat about 25,000.

Houston: Playing at TDECU Stadium - The site of Houston Cougars college football, it opened in 2014 and seats 40,000 for football games.

Los Angeles: Playing at the StubHub Center - The venue is the home of the Major League Soccer's LA Galaxy and the NFL's Los Angeles Chargers until the latter moves to the new Los Angeles Stadium with the LA Rams in 2020. StubHub opened in 2003 and seats 27,000 for football.

New York: Playing at MetLife Stadium - MetLife hosts the New York Giants and New York Jets. It opened in 2010 and seats 82,000 for football. It will also be the home of WWE WrestleMania 34 in April.

St. Louis: Playing at The Dome at America's Center - The former home of the St. Louis Rams until the team moved to Los Angeles after the 2015 season, the Dome seats 67,000 for football. The St. Louis team will practice and be headquartered at what was formerly known as Rams Park - now the Lou Fusz Athletic Center in Earth City.

Seattle: CenturyLink Field - The home of the NFL Seattle Seahawks and MLS Seattle Sounders FC, CenturyLink opened in 2002 and seats 72,000 for football.

Tampa Bay: Raymond James Stadium - Host of the NFL Tampa Bay Buccaneers and college football's South Florida Bulls, it opened in 1998 and seats 66,000.

Washington DC: Audi Field - The league's newest venue also hosts DC United of MLS. It opened in July of this year and seats 20,000.

Proximity sets up two good rivalries with New York and Washington in addition to Dallas and Houston.

"After months of research and consideration, we're thrilled to announce the cities and venues of the XFL's eight inaugural teams," said XFL Commissioner and CEO Oliver Luck. "We are committed to being ingrained in the local community and extremely fortunate that our teams will have world-class facilities to call home."

Teams will have 45-man rosters with seven-member practice squads. A centralized "Team Nine" of players under contract to the league will be available to replenish rosters as needed.

The XFL will have 10-week regular season schedule, with a post-season consisting of two semifinal playoff games and a championship game. Head coaches will be announced in early 2019 and they will also serve as general managers.

The XFL is not competing against the NFL. They will be playing football in February when the NFL season is over.

The league decided to target large markets: New York #1, Los Angeles #2, Dallas #5, Washington D.C. #6, Houston #7, Tampa Bay #11, Seattle #13, and St. Louis #21. The strategy could help the league attract national television partners which could also be announced in January.

Seven of the eight league markets host NFL teams. Going to NFL games is very expensive especially for families. Average ticket prices for NFL teams in the seven XFL cities are hefty: Los Angeles ($199 for Chargers, $110.78 for Rams), Washington ($117.13 for the Redskins), New York ($115.31 for Giants, $94.16 for Jets), Dallas ($112.05 for the Cowboys), Houston ($107.67 for Texans), Seattle ($96.36 for the Seahawks), Tampa Bay ($85.07 for the Buccaneers.)

On the Schwartz on Sports podcast on nysportsday.com, XFL Commissioner and CEO Oliver Luck stated, "We would like to have for a family of four Four Pack: four seats, four sodas, four hot dogs or popcorn for around $100, giving fans the opportunity to enjoy the fan experience in person!"

The XFL plans to feature a fast-paced game that finishes in under three hours. One possibility is utilizing a 25-second play clock which would be similar to the Canadian Football which has a 20 second play clock.

In Mississippi, the XFL had "theories testing" in partnership with National Junior College Athletic Association on Wednesday afternoon, as it sought to "re-imagine" the game of football.

Testing focused on the two-minute drill, new linemen rules and tiered point-after conversions that would eliminate the extra kick. Instead teams could add one point from the 2-yard line, two points from the 5-yard line or three points from the 15-yard line.

In 2019 The Spring League, which bills itself as an elite development league and scouting event for professional football talent, will test the new rules the XFL has an interest in using in four games.

The XFL is now taking $50 season ticket deposits for all eight cities. Season ticket benefits include:

  • Seat selection in advance of general public
  • Access to special events
  • Confirmed same seat location for all 2020 home games
  • First priority for playoff ticket purchases

With over a year to sell tickets and promote the league, the XFL has given itself an opportunity to build fan support in all eight cities.

Author Fran Stuchbury covered the XFL extensively for OurSports Central in 2001.

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The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer(s), and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.


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