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The Game Changing Difference Between the USFL, XFL 1.0 and XFL 2.0

I was a huge fan of the old USFL and can vividly recall tuning in on March 6, 1983 to watch my team the New Jersey Generals play their inaugural game against the Los Angeles Express before a sparsely attended crowd in the cavernous Los Angeles Coliseum.

As a fan of the nascent start-up that had the nerve to take on the well-established behemoth that was the NFL - I took a lot of heat from family and friends for supporting what they considered to be sub-par football played by nothing more than bench warmers and washed up has-beens.

Back in the day, the sporting media pretty much backed this view, too. The USFL did not get a lot of love from the press. Games weren't prevalent beyond the weekly airing on ABC. But, somehow through word of mouth and quality of play - the upstart league did find a foothold in many major and emerging markets. At least until Donald J. Trump spearheaded the move to the fall. But, that is a story for another day.

The point of today's message is that the USFL and to a large extent the first incarnation of the XFL existed in a world without social media and before everyone with a cell phone and a computer could become a newscaster through sites like YouTube and Vimeo. I'm not knocking these rebel reporters, either.

What I am saying is that the XFL 2.0 has been reborn into a Brave New World with incredible opportunities where the old concept of "word of mouth" now exists on steroids.

I did a YouTube search for the term "XFL" following the league's successful re-launch weekend and what I discovered was simply amazing. What I found were dozens of fan commentaries and week 1 highlight packages with enormous view counts. Consider these numbers for example:

598,438 views so far - XFL 2020 / Best of Week 1 by Highlight Heaven

319,842 views so far - St. Louis BattleHawks vs. Dallas Renegades, Week 1 2020 XFL Highlights, by ESPN

318,730 views so far - Why the XFL is Already A Success & Better Than AAF by ThatsGoodSports

260,657 views so far - XFL Biggest Hits of Week 1 HD by Ding Productions

This is just the tip of the iceberg and these incredibly impressive numbers represent an element of fan support that fans and league officials of the old USFL and XFL 1.0 could only dream about. Based on the across the board positive reviews of the Week 1 games combined with strong interest exhibited by these online video views - I expect that to translate into many more bodies in the door for the Week 2 game match-ups. This makes me both happy and sad. Happy that the new league has amazing resources that will help it sustain itself over time. Sad because my old beloved USFL didn't stand a chance in the dark ages that were the 1980's.


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