The Alliance of American Football said they were heading west, and they meant it. the new spring football league launching in February 2019, announced Phoenix as its fifth city just days after announcing its fourth city Salt Lake City. The team, Alliance Phoenix, will play its home games at Sun Devil Stadium on the campus of Arizona State University in nearby Tempe. The Phoenix and Salt Lake announcements come on the heels of the league’s decision to locate three teams in the Southeast – Orlando, Atlanta, and Memphis.
We are LIVE from Sun Devil Stadium! https://t.co/8rjtFxtqTZ
— AAF (@TheAAF) May 18, 2018
The Alliance of American Football will launch its inaugural season on February 9, one week after the NFL Super Bowl. The league plans include an eight-team league playing a 10-week regular season, followed by a playoff, and a championship game weekend scheduled for the weekend of April 26-28
Additionally, Rick Neuheisel was named the Alliance Phoenix’s first head coach. This will be something of a homecoming for Neuheisel who grew up watching the Sun Devils play and lead his high school team, the McClintock Chargers, to a state championship during his junior years. “Just remember back in 1977, (McClintock) won the state championship, 14-9, so hoping we can rekindle that in 2019,” Neuheisel says in an article posted on azcentral.com. “To jump back to coaching is unbelievably exciting.”
— Arizona State Sun Devils (@TheSunDevils) May 18, 2018
Neuheisel played college football for the UCLA Bruins, capturing a Rose Bowl victory in 1984. He bypassed the NFL and, instead, accepted an offer to join the San Antonio Gunslingers of the USFL, playing in that league during its final two seasons in 1984 and 1985. He rose to fame in coaching circles as the head coach of the Colorado Buffaloes and the Washington Huskies.
The new spring league is planning to introduce some new innovations to the sport to make games more exciting, trim the number of commercial breaks and unnecessary timeouts, and cut the time of games to about 150 minutes, as compared to the NFL average of 180 minutes. Some of the rule innovations will include, eliminating kickoffs and starting possessions on the 25-yard line; a 30-second play clock, 10 seconds faster than the NFL clock; teams will be required to attempt a two-point conversion after touchdowns instead of kicking an extra point; and two coach’s challenges per game will be the only replays.
Learn more at aaf.com