USFL bringing Spring pro football to Detroit
Are you ready for some Spring football, Detroit?
Starting in April, the United States Football League, or USFL, will launch its second season. Two of the teams will call Ford Field in Detroit home.
The league was created by Fox Sports, which broadcasts very popular National Football League games during the Fall and Winter. Actually “recreated” might be a more appropriate description. The original USFL was launched back in the 1980s to challenge the NFL’s dominance. It failed.
The Michigan Panthers won the first USFL championship in 1983. The team played one more year in Detroit, before heading west to California.
The new league’s resurrected Michigan Panthers will play at Ford Field, along with a team playing under the name of the Philadelphia Stars, named for but not playing in the City of Brotherly Love.
The USFL was created as a television product and that’s where its revenue is based. But Fox Sports president and USFL chairman Eric Shanks said they want to attract fans to the games to add to the excitement.
Shanks admitted the league may have some challenges convincing Detroit fans to root for a professional team not named the Lions.
“I think that we have the luxury of tweaking the marketing as we go...tweaking the offers as we go...to get people into the stands,” said Shanks.