A group of investors, led by former NCAA president Cedric Dempsey, have formed the All American Football League, scheduled to start play next spring.
Unfortunately, Vince McMahon is not expected to be involved.
The league plans to field eight teams based in college towns, playing in stadiums on campus or nearby. The expected cities will likely come from the ACC, SEC and Big Ten and already has stadium usage agreements (Purdue is believed to be one). The league, based in San Diego, will not have a West Coast team during the inaugural season. (Damn. )
Players will be required to have college degrees in order to prevent people like Maurice Clarett or Mike Williams from leaving school early. Or any members of the Bengals from ever joining the league once they are paroled. Or for the media to pretend that Reggie Bush will play for the league. AAFL players will earn about $100K per season, higher than both the Arena Football League and NFL Europe.
The league is pulling a lot of positives from failed spring leagues like the XFL and USFL. Players will be paid by the league, instead being paid by individual owners. Players will be placed in teams based on college affiliation. But unlike the XFL, the league owner is not going to shoot his mouth off about being real football. And hey, it will give Dick Butkus a chance to latch on to something new.
This idea should work. It will give those who ignore the NHL and NBA something to watch after March Madness. And if done correctly, it could grow into a real NFL developmental league. NFL owners currently investing in AFL team could instead turn to the AAFL. And NFL Europe could finally be chalked up as a bad idea. (Seriously, the thought of NFL Europe is as dumb as having a professional soccer league in the US. At least nobody has tried that.) No team in LA? There is an open stadium at Cal State Fullerton to become LA's franchise.
But seriously, Vince McMahon needs to be involved in this thing. Or if not, at least add this. Otherwise it just wouldn't be the same.