WWE chairman Vince McMahon announced on Thursday afternoon that the XFL will be returning in 2020. The league ran for one season in 2001, but poor ratings and lost money forced NBC to back out of its TV contract with the WWF. As such, the XFL ceased operations after its inaugural year.
McMahon had worked for a while in bringing back the XFL. PWInsider.com had reported that the WWE is waiting until 2020, so they have enough time to find proper medical personnel, head coaches and players. He also stated that anyone with a DUI will not be allowed to play in the XFL.
"Football is America's favorite sports. There is seven months of no football on the gridiron. There's 70 million fans, so why not now? Now's the perfect opportunity, and I've always wanted to bring it back," he told reporters.
When the XFL formed, McMahon's vision was to provide fans with American Football during the NFL offseason. Players were allowed to be more physical, as referees allowed the "anything goes" style.
On top of that, punters would be penalized for kicking the ball out of bounds. Instead of kicking the extra point, teams had to run a play from the two-yard line to earn the point.
"We're going to hire people who really know what they're doing. Experienced executives who will be out in front. It won't be me," McMahon said.
When questioned by a reporter about if the NFL's rating slump convinced him to bring back the XFL, Vince rejected the notion, saying he always wanted to "relaunch, and had the plan for some time."
He also didn't specify which markets will be looked at for XFL teams, saying "every city is on our radar." The four XFL teams from 2001 were based in Orlando, Chicago, New York/New Jersey, Birmingham, Memphis, Las Vegas, Los Angeles and San Francisco.
Vince also said it wouldn't "exactly be a spring league," and the season will start in January and February. The very first XFL game took place on Feb. 3, 2001 - six days after the Baltimore Ravens won Super Bowl XXXV.
McMahon is close friends with U.S. President, Donald Trump. Asked about his potential involvement, McMahon said The "the XFL will have nothing to do with politics or social issues, just good football."