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CFL 2021


MJWalker45
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14 hours ago, IceCap said:

That's my point though. Say vaccine rollout on both sides of the border go off as well as can be expected and everything's reopened by August. It's entirely possible that if things are going that well that the CFL will be kicking off by then. And if that's the case there's a very real possibility that the CFL survives this. 

 

And if they do then what does the XFL offer? 

 

The game is different and the schedules don't line up. 

At most I could see some sort of agreement for talent sharing put in place so they don't have to worry about bidding wars. It's minor league football. Neither side can afford that. So I could see some sort of "pooled scouting/talent pool" arrangement with maybe some high profile player swaps for buzz. 

 

Beyond that though? It's hard to see how these leagues will "join." Not unless the CFL agrees to start their season in February or the XFL moves to the summer. 

The CFL won't change their schedule, I can tell you that much. So it would fall on the XFL- and I don't think they'd do it either. The prevailing thought among alt-league football since the USFL died has been "we start after the Super Bowl." 

Never mind that it hasn't worked yet, that's what everyone seems married to.

I'm unsure the XFL would be interested in ditching that notion. 

 

This is a fair point, but it also assumes that the league was in solid standing even before the pandemic. From all the reporting I've found out there, the attendance numbers for the CFL — which subsists on ticket sales far more than than most professional leagues — were trending downward, and fast. In 2019, the league averaged under 23,000 fans per game, a figure that's edging closer to its late '90s low of 21, 292 in 1997 and closer totals from when it was a startup league in the late '50s. 

 

Making matters worse, the league's largest markets — places that should be revenue centers for the league — are a driving cause for that attendance decline. Several media reports put BC and Montreal at around 17,000 per game, while Toronto - which doesn't report data consistently — is at a woeful 13,000. 

 

My point is that this dalliance with the XFL isn't purely pandemic related. Even if the CFL makes it through Covid-19 whole, it's still facing huge foundational challenges without an easy fix. 

 

I'm not suggesting the XFL is the panacea. I am, however, suggesting that they ought to be willing to explore everything, and that cosmetic half-steps like player sharing do nothing to solve the league's problems. At most, they're a waste of time. 

 

If some sort of merger doesn't come from this, then the league will stand pat and continue to slowly wither. Having a proud history isn't enough to keep it afloat. 

 

 

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59 minutes ago, BBTV said:

Regarding the XFL, what exactly is there to even merge with?  Isn't XFL 3.0 currently just a league office, some IP, and nothing more?

 

You're right. But while it may not have the existing infrastructure, and certainly not the history, it has one big thing the CFL doesn't: ambitious investors with deep pockets and an apparent willingness to see what's possible. That alone is worth exploring, even if it doesn't bear fruit. 

 

If anything, the fact that the XFL is a startup league, without a bunch of excess baggage (other than the brand's own history), could be an advantage. The XFL's only real hurdle is that its predecessors played a different schedule. But this is essentially a new league, and it can do whatever it wants. It can explore a business model that suits both league's needs without risking much. It would be much harder if you were talking about two long-standing leagues with their own conflicting business models. 

 

More than anything, that's probably why we haven't heard much from the XFL about how they were planning to launch in 2022. From what I've read, these talks with the CFL have been going on for a while. They wouldn't have made it public if the talks weren't going anywhere.

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1 hour ago, gosioux76 said:

without a bunch of excess baggage (other than the brand's own history),

 

I mean... that's kind of a big thing to many people, and could prevent it from ever being taken seriously.

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2 minutes ago, BBTV said:

 

I mean... that's kind of a big thing to many people, and could prevent it from ever being taken seriously.

 

But what people? Who really needs to be convinced? Anybody with an ounce of business savvy can see that the new XFL isn't the old XFL and will be judged by the plan it puts forward and not what happened in the past. If the league's new owners come forward with a convincing business model and the capital to make it work, why would Vince McMahon's failures even come into play? 

 

And it's not like XFL 2020 was an unmitigated failure: It struggled in some markets, was very successful in others, and received critical acclaim for the innovations it brought to the field, both in gameplay and in TV presentation. By most accounts I've read, it was on track to exist into a second season. That it was killed by the pandemic shouldn't be an indictment on its business plan any moreso than it should be for a restaurant or other business that closed. 

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On 3/10/2021 at 7:31 PM, Cujo said:

 

Ya. Pretty sure they were called the Baltimore Rough Riders

POTD?

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XFL season should start at the same as the CFL season if this is going to be a thing. Schedule should be the same length as the CFL as well. As I stated previously, restricting interleague play to the Grey Cup and an All-Star game would be the way to go so that both leagues are still largely separate.
 

Basically keep the CFL traditions but with XFL VC money backing it.

Edited by Red Comet
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1 minute ago, Red Comet said:

XFL season should start at the same as the CFL season if this is going to be a thing. Schedule should be the same length as the CFL as well. 
 

Basically keep the CFL traditions but with XFL VC money backing it.

 

What's the argument for that? I don't necessarily disagree, so don't take this as an argument. I'm just unclear as to why the CFL's June to November schedule is such a sacred cow to so many people. 

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Any talk of a merger seems to be putting the cart way in front of the horse at this point. From the Calgary Sun on March 10:

 

Quote

Speaking on Wednesday, CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie spoke plainly when he was asked directly about whether a merger might potentially be coming.

 

Here is his unedited response, in full:

 

“I say this with the greatest amount of respect, but you are way ahead of where we are,” Ambrosie said. “You know, today’s announcement, the reason why it felt so good was it was exactly what it was intended to be. It was to tell the world that we’re going to talk. We haven’t reached any conclusions, at all. It’s what we said: How do we grow the game? How do we help each other? How do we create more opportunities for fans and players? How do we create more fan engagement?

 

“Honestly, we don’t know where this is going to take us and it would be premature to speculate on what the outcome of this is. What we know for sure is it’s been very encouraging to talk to a group that loves the game of football the way we do and they have a particularly strong set of capabilities. Some of those capabilities around fan engagement and community building could be very helpful to us, and that’s where we’re going to start.”

 

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1 hour ago, gosioux76 said:

 

What's the argument for that? I don't necessarily disagree, so don't take this as an argument. I'm just unclear as to why the CFL's June to November schedule is such a sacred cow to so many people. 

 

Two main reasons,

  • Nobody wants to play in or go to an outdoor football game in Canada, especially on the Prairies, past November and up until March/April, which then leads into the second reason
  • The CFL doesn't want to go up against the NHL playoffs

Any other timeframe in the year wouldn't, and couldn't, work nearly as well for CFL as what they already use and have used forever.

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Also it allows for NFL teams late in the year to replenish their rosters. These players are depth pieces at best but that’s what these teams need in November and December.

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15 minutes ago, Red Comet said:

Also it allows for NFL teams late in the year to replenish their rosters. These players are depth pieces at best but that’s what these teams need in November and December.

... and the XFL could have a spring schedule and use that as a tryout/ off-season workout league if you will. I highly doubt the two leagues will truly merge or even have some type of player sharing agreement, because that would mean the players would have to play some 30 weeks. For the most part these other football leagues are really nothing more than a second job for most of the these players. I just hope XFL 3.0 will at least provide dental coverage.   

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If there is a merger of the leagues, big if for sure. But anyway, regarding the schedule...I think they should split the different. I never did like the AAF and XFL starting the week right after the Super Bowl. I get the thought process there...capitalize on the first weekend with no football. But for me at least, at that point during the year I want a little bit of a break from football. Give me a month or two, start in April and run through late spring into summer.

 

I grew up in the mid-80's and went to a ton of Tampa Bay Bandits games...yea, it was hot, but if you lived in Florida you were used to it. You went out and did what you wanted to do.

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2 hours ago, Skycast said:

If there is a merger of the leagues, big if for sure. But anyway, regarding the schedule...I think they should split the different. I never did like the AAF and XFL starting the week right after the Super Bowl. I get the thought process there...capitalize on the first weekend with no football. But for me at least, at that point during the year I want a little bit of a break from football. Give me a month or two, start in April and run through late spring into summer.

 

I grew up in the mid-80's and went to a ton of Tampa Bay Bandits games...yea, it was hot, but if you lived in Florida you were used to it. You went out and did what you wanted to do.

 

That would seem to be a reasonable compromise, though it doesn't address the concerns of overlap with the NHL playoffs. I'm not sure if that's avoidable. 

 

I don't hate the idea of the CFL's June to November schedule, but by late summer, any organized football in the U.S. that isn't D1 college or the NFL will be ignored. 

 

 

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On 3/15/2021 at 10:24 AM, BBTV said:

 

I mean... that's kind of a big thing to many people, and could prevent it from ever being taken seriously.

It was being taken seriously last year, because it wasn't anything like it's previous version. Was it a bit gimmicky to some people? Yes. But other than trying to figure out the new scoring and how they handled kickoffs, not too much changed from NFL football. I will say having everyone with a radio instead of the QB could have sped things up, but I think the coaches were putting woo much info out, right up to the snap. Maybe turn the mics off at 7 seconds. I think it's 15 seconds in the NFL. 

2 hours ago, Skycast said:

If there is a merger of the leagues, big if for sure. But anyway, regarding the schedule...I think they should split the different. I never did like the AAF and XFL starting the week right after the Super Bowl. I get the thought process there...capitalize on the first weekend with no football. But for me at least, at that point during the year I want a little bit of a break from football. Give me a month or two, start in April and run through late spring into summer.

 

I grew up in the mid-80's and went to a ton of Tampa Bay Bandits games...yea, it was hot, but if you lived in Florida you were used to it. You went out and did what you wanted to do.

I think the start of the WLAF is better for the leagues. It started the third full week of March which allowed fans to actually start missing football a bit instead of looking at the first couple weeks in February and going, "I've seen better" and turning the channel.

23 hours ago, DEAD! said:

... and the XFL could have a spring schedule and use that as a tryout/ off-season workout league if you will. I highly doubt the two leagues will truly merge or even have some type of player sharing agreement, because that would mean the players would have to play some 30 weeks. For the most part these other football leagues are really nothing more than a second job for most of the these players. I just hope XFL 3.0 will at least provide dental coverage.   

I wonder if the CFL might look at reducing the 18 game schedule in the future. I remember veterans that played in the USFL and NFL talking about how much earlier their careers probably ended because they were jumping between leagues. Even players that only played the 18 game USFL seasons were not happy with the amount of games that they played. 

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5 minutes ago, gosioux76 said:

 

That would seem to be a reasonable compromise, though it doesn't address the concerns of overlap with the NHL playoffs. I'm not sure if that's avoidable. 

 

I don't hate the idea of the CFL's June to November schedule, but by late summer, any organized football in the U.S. that isn't D1 college or the NFL will be ignored. 

 

 

FCF is a good example of this. It was a good laugh for the first couple weeks, but I really haven't felt a pull to look at them now that the FCS teams are playing all weekend on ESPN+. 

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1 minute ago, MJWalker45 said:

FCF is a good example of this. It was a good laugh for the first couple weeks, but I really haven't felt a pull to look at them now that the FCS teams are playing all weekend on ESPN+. 

 

Oh, i completely disagree. Maybe it's because I'm a fan of a FCS school — No. 2 UND — but I've watched several FCS games and I find that it's filling that void that the XFL succeeded in filling last year. I'm legitimately enjoying it. 

 

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42 minutes ago, MJWalker45 said:

I wonder if the CFL might look at reducing the 18 game schedule in the future. I remember veterans that played in the USFL and NFL talking about how much earlier their careers probably ended because they were jumping between leagues. Even players that only played the 18 game USFL seasons were not happy with the amount of games that they played. 

 

18 is definitely too many, especially when you've only got 9 teams

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1 hour ago, gosioux76 said:

 

Oh, i completely disagree. Maybe it's because I'm a fan of a FCS school — No. 2 UND — but I've watched several FCS games and I find that it's filling that void that the XFL succeeded in filling last year. I'm legitimately enjoying it. 

 

I meant FCFL vs FCS. 

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