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XFL Announces It's Returning To Meadowlands

New York Among 8 Locations Chosen For Teams

December 05, 2018 - 1:37 pm

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (WFAN) -- The XFL is returning to the Meadowlands.

Vince McMahon's professional football league announced Wednesday the eight cities that will field teams when the XFL relaunches in the spring of 2020. Among them is a New York team based at MetLife Stadium.

"This stadium is one of our nation's finest venues for sports and entertainment ... ," New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said at a news conference at MetLife Stadium. "It is home to two other football teams, and truth be told, it has room for a third. New Jersey couldn't be happier to be one of the eight host sites for the XFL's 2020 revival season."

The other sites are Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, St. Louis, Seattle, Tampa Bay and Washington. All eight teams are owned by the league. Team names will be assigned in 2019.

Each team will have 45-man rosters and seven-man practice squads. Teams will play a 10-game regular-season schedule and two-round playoffs in the months immediately following the NFL season. The league kicks off in February 2020.

The first attempt at the XFL flamed out after one season in 2001. It opened to impressive TV ratings, but audiences quickly tuned out a league that seemed too gimmicky -- TV cameras in the bathrooms, lascivious cheerleaders and jerseys that included self-chosen nicknames such as "He Hate Me."

Giants Stadium was home to the New York/New Jersey Hitmen of the original XFL.

McMahon, the league's founder, said he's confident the XFL will stick around this time because it has a long-term financial commitment and there is a "clamoring" from TV networks for live sports events.

He added that it will feature more innovative and exciting play, a sentiment echoed by commissioner Oliver Luck.

"You may ask yourself, what is football reimagined?" Luck said. "It's a game that's fast-paced, high-octane, up-tempo, with a great rhythm, a great flow, with fewer stoppages in play. Or, as you may have heard us say, less stall and more ball. It's a game where great attention is paid to player health and safety. It's a game that's fan-centric, innovative and technologically advanced with real-time fan engagement.

"The NFL and college football are as popular today as they've ever been, with tens of millions of fans engaging each and every week. And our research indicates that fans want more football, and we intend to provide it to them."

The XFL will face competition in the spring from the Alliance of American Football, which begins play in 2019.