The Alliance of American Football is taking the football world by storm. Nobody was sure how this league would be received, but being the second watched show of the night is pretty good proof that people want football around the clock.
There was certainly more curiosity about the AAF than a regular-season National Basketball Association game.
"Well, it is a little unusual when you go out there to get ready for the opening kickoff and there is no opening kickoff", said a smiling Coyle. For the Salt Lake Stallions, former Utah Utes running back Matt Asiata, BYU receiver Jordan Leslie and Utah receiver Kaelin Clay will all be suiting up.
After a month-long training camp in San Antonio, the Apollos returned home to Orlando with their final 52-player roster to prepare to officially kick-off their first season within the AAF at UCF's Spectrum Stadium on Saturday against the Atlanta Legends.
If you're involved with the AAF, you're extremely happy with these numbers.
Other teams have more players with Bears connections right now, but the Hotshots roster has former third-round pick Will Sutton, who last played in Chicago in 2016.
There are many big names in the coaching staff throughout the league like Steve Spurrier, Mike Riley, and Mike Martz.
Hall of Famer Willie Lanier is an executive in the league office, where former Pittsburgh Steelers stars Hines Ward (head of football operations) and Troy Polamalu (head of player relations) also work. Orlando will be able to enjoy this victory for a day or two before starting to prepare for a road game against the San Antonio Commanders.
"We're not competitive, we're complementary", Ebersol said.
The football was fun and fast-paced, they're trying some new innovations like transparency on instant replay that might translate well to the NFL, the TV production was well done, the fans sounded like they thought they were getting their money's worth, and, most importantly, it's football at a time of year when we otherwise wouldn't have any to watch. "They're a partner. The goal is to improve and support the ecosystem of football".
The Alliance has built a proprietary tech platform that will allow for a real-time, rewards-based system of integrated gaming and in-game wagering for fans in states where sports gambling is legalized. The NFL Network has agreed to broadcast 19 games throughout the entire season, while CBS will air one AAF game per week. Erickson and Neuheisel bring a ton of coaching experience in both the collegiate and professional levels with them so the head-to-head chess match as they break in their new teams should be entertaining in and of itself.