"The new XFL will kick off in 2020, and quite frankly, we're gonna give the game of football back to fans," Vince McMahon said this afternoon as he announced the revival of the XFL.
At the start, there will be eight teams, 40-man rosters, a 10-game regular season, and a postseason with two semifinals and a championship game. They haven't decided on which cities will have teams yet, but the league won't be using a franchise model and there won't be individual owners.
Plans are for the season to start in January or early February, which is around the end of the NFL calendar.
There will be a multi-platform approach to presenting games, with them available on big screens and mobile devices. McMahon said there's been no initial talks with broadcast partners but claimed there's interest out there.
On the subject of WWE, McMahon said the XFL revival will not affect his current role. There will also be no crossover of talent between the groups. McMahon said WWE isn't involved with the XFL because the initial $100 million investment was too rich.
McMahon said the quality of the human being will be as important as the quality of the player when it comes to who plays in the XFL. He said they don't want players who have any criminality associated with them, and you won't play in the XFL even if you have a DUI.
McMahon noted that the league will have nothing to do with politics and will stay out of social issues. When asked if players would be required to stand for the national anthem, McMahon called it a time-honored tradition in sports to stand for the anthem and said players will know the rules and regulations.
The XFL will be hiring experienced executives and McMahon won't be the public face of the league.
McMahon said they'd be listening to fans, players, coaches, medical experts, technology executives, members of the media, and anyone else who loves football. He mentioned eliminating halftime, having fewer commercial breaks, making the game faster, and simplifying the rules as possible ideas. Their goal is for games to be approximately two hours long.
The original XFL ran for one unsuccessful season in 2001. An ESPN 30 for 30 documentary on the league premiered last year.
If you missed the announcement from today, here's the audio: