Volume 93, Issue 75

Friday, February 11, 2000


SPORTS

Lancers thrown off their horses by purple attack

XFL bound to fade away

Substitutes allow no break for Athenas to slack off

XFL bound to fade away



The X-treme Football League. Sounds catchy, but I really doubt it'll work.

The XFL is the brain child of World Wrestling Federation chair Vince McMahon. McMahon misses the old style of football which he states was a "smash mouth" brand. So he's decided to create his own chair-swinging, table-breaking football league.

In all seriousness, it's interesting to see McMahon take on such a risky venture, but then, he is the man who put professional wrestling on the map and introduced such phrases as "suck it" and "whoop ass" into pop culture vernacular. Unfortunately, a couple of catch phrases do not equal a successful football league.

The XFL will begin play after the 2000-01 National Football League season concludes. It is being touted as an alternative to the NFL, but will turn out to be more of a cure for insomnia than an exciting substitute.

The irony of the creation of the XFL is that its creator runs a sports entertainment franchise with scripted endings, mediocre acting and predictable moves. Now he wants to be part of a legitimate sporting venture. It makes you wonder if the XFL will have the scripted endings or if the ref will be looking the other way when a team cheats.

I wonder if the cheerleaders will be overly endowed and if there will be "good" and "bad" teams. Maybe players on certain squads will be able to turn into heels and switch teams.

When you look at the other leagues which have opposed the NFL, such as the United States Football League or the World League of American Football, it becomes clear the XFL should last about two years, then fade into obscurity like a wrestler who doesn't click well with fans.

The only thing I hope McMahon doesn't do is name his teams after his wrestlers. I'd really hate to watch the Orlando Rocks face the Stone Cold Houston Stunners.

McMahon is good at one thing – marketing wrestling. He does it very well and has made billions through his shrewd manner of promoting the sport. But what he has failed to realize is that football fans will never give up their NFL football. The XFL will not offer anything different, although it may be a step above high school football.

The WWF is a great product (although not without its faults), but the XFL will not be a product with the similar quality because wrestling marketing cannot cross over to the arena of football. It will not be the American version of the Canadian Football League, which actually does offer a clear alternative to the boring football of the NFL.

The XFL will only prove to be an X-treme Financial Loss for McMahon.


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