XFL should consider a fall 2020 season

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College football could soon pull the plug on the fall 2020 season, even though players like Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence want to play. If Lawrence and others want to play this fall, and with the NFL not an option for them due to rules aimed at protecting the NFL’s free farm system, there’s a solution hiding in plain sight.

The XFL.

With Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson leading a new ownership group (the sale was approved in bankruptcy court on Friday) and instantly invigorating a brand that flashed in the pan twice in the last 20 years, there’s a rare and unique opportunity for XFL 3.0. Find one city, form a hard bubble, and throw the doors open for high-end college players who won’t be playing college football in the fall of 2020.

They’d be able to play football in a secure environment, they’d be tested regularly, they’d get to play football, and (wait for it) they’d get paid.

If college football goes away for the fall, FOX and ABC/ESPN would rush for the chance to broadcast XFL games featuring major college talent with recognizable names. And with no city affiliations necessary since all games would be played in one place, the players could be allocated to keep current teammates together.

One team could be primarily Alabama players. One could be primarily Clemson players. One would be Ohio State. And so on, until eight rosters (or maybe 12 or 16) are filled, with the best players from all other teams sprinkled in to complete the rosters.

Underclassmen most likely wouldn’t sacrifice their eligibility to play this fall. The XFL would provide a mechanism for giving players destined for the 2021 draft a chance to play this fall, to get paid, and to provide NFL scouts with more game film.

It’s such an obvious solution that it would be a surprise if it didn’t happen — if/when college football stands down for the fall of 2020.

And if anyone can pull something like this off, it’s Dwayne Johnson. It will be interesting to see whether he sees the opportunity, and whether he and his partners seize it.

41 responses to “XFL should consider a fall 2020 season

  1. This is actually brilliant. A league looking to put itself on the map could actually get their hands on a bundle of talented high end players. Quarterback performance has been a low point for the XFL so far and this would spark the fire. Unlikely, yes. Unrealistic, no. Good pitch Mike.

  2. Would love to see it. Not like there’s a lot of options out there right now. I think it could really find an audience.

  3. 100% agree.

    Only problem is what kind of salary those players would play for.

    Greg Rousseau and Micah Parsons aren’t setting foot on a field for less than 7 figures at a minimum. If you really command respect with a new league start ponying up big contracts for actual talent. The XFL failed twice because they made it about money and not the product. Only way it will work is with star power and name recognition. The Rock was the right choice to take a stab at it.

    But surely guys projected 4-7 would want a shot to make a name for themselves ahead of the NFL draft.

  4. I definitely would watch. XFL could also pull talent from the NFL. With nfl rosters at 80 instead of 90 that leaves a ton of extra potential talent to help field a competitive team. A bubble would be possible too if it’s only 8 teams. Sign me up.

  5. so you think a high end college player is going to the XFL for few hundred thousand when they could wait a year for millions in the NFL

  6. Fall would never work in any year but 2020. And would do nothing to build the teams in their home towns. They will focus on long term success

  7. Do a bubble and get it done. Dwayne could get Disney or whoever on board easily, especially if he does some behind-the-scenes TV show with it.

    I doubt you could get many college players to go for it but I’d still watch. It takes time for a team to gel, moreso one put together from scratch. The games were getting pretty entertaining in the later weeks.

  8. It would be interesting and no way would Lawrence, Fields or any other top pick play for peanuts and jeopardize an NFL career.

  9. This idea just might have some merit to it. One thing for sure this time more people would actually watch it.

  10. I’m willing to bet that the NFL might let it be known to its broadcast partners that they wouldn’t like to have anything that looks like competition with their free farm system, even on a one-year basis.

  11. Force quarantine/bubble in college dorms that aren’t being used anyway. Use college facilities. Seems like it could really work.

  12.  no way would Lawrence, Fields or any other top pick play for peanuts and jeopardize an NFL career.
    It’s not about the money….they play for nothing in College.

    It’s that you are now playing against fully developed men who may have no problem using you as a canvas to propel them to the big time.

    Not worth it.

  13. Trevor Lawrence will be the highest rated QB to ever come out of college. He’s not playing in any minor leagues. But it’s a good idea for others.

  14. The NFL, with all of its infrastructure and money, is barely managing to hold preseason practices. College football with all of its infrastructure and money, isn’t gonna have a season. How is the XFL going to manage to be operational in a safe and responsible way?

  15. why would college juniors and seniors, that hope for a career in the NFL, risk injury in a hastily thrown together minor league ?? They are better off training for the combine and the next NFL draft

  16. Horrible idea and business plan. Even saying it works for 1 season wheres the positive for the xfl? Unless theres never college football again it would have to be moved from the fall so your not really building a fan base. It’s no different than a tv show on broadcast network, if 10 episodes are shown the next 10 weeks but then it’s gone for over a year and a half and it moves time people arent as invested in it any longer.

  17. Well the NFL is paying 75 million for testing, can the XFL afford it?


    It would be far less expensive for the XFL. There are only 8 total teams with 40 man rosters where as the NFL has 32 teams with 53 man rosters. 320 tests is significantly less than 1696 tests.

  18. I think the best thing a young millionaire can do is spend 3 or 4 years on a college campus. The superstars are going to be the role models for our kids, and it’s always good when they can put a sentence together. Many of them also will have the responsibility of taking care of their parents, so it’s not a bad idea to gain a little wisdom when it comes to finances. A lot of these kids have “friends” who swear they can take their money and quadruple it. These are the players who end up broke. Any league that starts stealing kids away from college will immediately get rejected by a lot of parents. Parents who spend a lot of money on sports and entertainment. Also, NFL football has a lot of clout with the networks, so nobody’s going to bite the hand that feeds them. If a new league is going to survive, it will need the blessing of the NFL. America loves football, so there’s no reason this league shouldn’t survive. They just have to be smart about it. The last couple attempts have been hideous.

  19. Strikes me as both a cool idea but unfeasible given the time frame. I don’t think the greatest business and logistical minds in the world could get a football league up and running in just a couple of months.

  20. If it is possible for an idea to have less that a 0% chance, this is the idea. It would NEVER work, no way on earth. NFL should just suck it up and try to bubble up now or the season will be doomed.

  21. How would this work? After they bought the testing kits required to ensure everyone’s health, they would have enough money to pay everyone about $9 per hour. That leaves Seattle’s team unable to play this year because they can’t make the living wage.

  22. Now is not the time for the XFL to rush into anything. We have this little virus thing going on where I hate going to the grocery store not to mention sit in the stands with other people. And forget tv when people don’t care.

  23. I say stop trying to spend all this money on making it a farm system for the NFL or NFL Jr.

    Why not try be more of an indoor/arena league??

  24. That makes absolutely no sense If it’s not safe for them to play college football, why would the XFL work. And go up against the NFL? dumb, dumber, dumbest.

  25. The NFL shouldn’t play but the XFL should? What makes the XFL safer? Strange days are these

  26. Would take a WHOLE lot more than the 15 mil paid for the logo. It took McMahon 2 years to prep the season that just got it’s plug pulled.

  27. darth3234 says:

    August 9, 2020 at 11:25 pm

    Would take a WHOLE lot more than the 15 mil paid for the logo. It took McMahon 2 years to prep the season that just got it’s plug pulled.
    Although it’s a bad idea it wouldnt be nearly as hard to get it up and running time wise. Part of the time before was working out insurance issues in each state, securing stadium dates etc. With a bubble they would deal with only 1 state for insurance, only 1 company for location of games. Again I dont think the xfl playing in the fall is smart but it wouldnt be too difficult to get it setup

  28. XFL would’ve done better the 2nd go round if COVID didn’t wreak havoc on society

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