Memphis Express News

Memphis Express Announces Inaugural Radio Deal and Play-By-Play Announcer

The Alliance of American Football’s Memphis Express announced a partnership, naming iHeart’s 101.9 Kiss FM the radio home of Memphis Express football for the 2019 inaugural season. Sports 56 Middays co-host Greg Gaston will serve as the play-by-play “Voice of The Express.” “We at iHeart Media Memphis are so excited about being part of the Memphis Express with Kiss 101.9,” said Kevin Klein, area president Memphis/Mississippi Region, iHeart Media. “The partnership with the Express and iHeart is a perfect fit for both our brands. We look forward to starting some rivalries with the Birmingham, Atlanta and Orlando markets.” The partnership with Kiss FM features pregame and postgame shows, a weekly Memphis Express magazine show, the potential to develop more digital inventory including podcasts and social content. iHeart agreed to a sponsorship of the pregame experience on-site at the Liberty Bowl on game days, creating an opportunity to highlight different stations, local and national recording artists. “Our goal is to create a unique experience for all Memphis Express fans,” said Kosha Irby, team president, Memphis Express. “We feel our partnership with iHeart allows us to build on their broadcast and special event expertise.” All 10 Memphis Express regular season games and postseason games will air on KWNW-FM 101.9. Each game will be preceded by a 30-minute pregame show and followed by a half-hour postgame show, featuring head coach Mike Singletary and Express players. “The iHeartMedia team is excited about the addition of professional football in our city and so happy to partner with the Express on making game broadcasts available on 101.9 Kiss FM and iHeartRadio,” said Grant Thompson, area senior vice president of sales. Greg Gaston – Play-by-play Announcer The Emmy and Edward R. Murrow Award-Winning Greg Gaston has been entertaining Mid-South sports fans since arriving in Memphis in December of 1995. In addition to his always-entertaining role as co-host of Middays with Greg & Eli, Gaston has been seen on Memphis television screens for more than a decade. He was the sports director and weeknight Sports Anchor for ABC 24/UPN 30 for 12 years before moving on in August of 2007. Gaston worked for three years as a sports reporter/anchor at WHBQ-TV in Memphis from 2008-2010. Gaston also hosted Sports Files on WKNO-TV for four years. Gaston came to Memphis from WMDT-TV in Salisbury, Maryland where he worked from 1985-1995. Through the years, Gaston has complied an impressive list of honors and awards, including 16 Associated Press awards, as well as individual honors from the Radio/TV News Directors’ Association (RTNDA). In 2010, Gaston won the prestigious Edward R. Murrow Award for Sports Journalism and a Telly Award for his story on former Memphis Tigers star David Vaughn. Gaston has also called numerous University of Memphis basketball and football games on television since his arrival in Memphis. In addition, Gaston has been behind the microphone for everything from boxing and MMA matches to baseball and tennis. Gaston has called games on ESPN, CSS, Comcast and FSN.

Memphis Express Single Game Tickets On Sale Now

Single game tickets for The Alliance of American Football’s Memphis Express are on sale now with new seating options available for fans planning to attend games at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium beginning February 16. Tickets start at $20 in the general admission Family Section and Super Saver reserved seating area. Reserved seating in the corners runs $30. The Hub, a general admission destination for the most enthusiastic fans, and the Flight Deck, a new social area at the Liberty Bowl unique to Memphis Express home games, both retail for $35 and include one drink coupon per person. Two ticketing options feature all-inclusive food and beverage: the Stadium Club ($160), a fully climate controlled area with general admission seating and Express Loge ($135), a brand new area in the Liberty Bowl with table space. Priority Sideline ($125) comes with a $10 concessions credit and fixed chairback seating at midfield. Stadium Club, Express Loge and Priority Sideline include one parking pass for every four tickets purchased. Group discounts are available for fans purchasing 10 tickets or more. Take advantage by booking a Field-Level Cabana, an all-inclusive on-field suite for 16 people, another first-time offering exclusive to Memphis Express home games. Reserved seating at midfield costs $35 and $60 for lower midfield. Tickets are available by visiting Memphis-Express.com, calling 901-881-3344 or emailing Sales.Express@aaf.com. The Memphis Express opens its home schedule on February 16, 2019 against the Arizona Hotshots led by Rick Neuheisel.

‘Night of the Express’ Pairs Players and Local Youth Organizations at Main Event Memphis

The Alliance of American Football’s Memphis Express opened minicamp on Saturday and wasted no time engaging with its newfound community, hosting an event for local youth organizations CodeCrew and Memphis Athletic Ministries at Main Event, a games and entertainment facility in Memphis. “This means a lot,” said Audrey Willis, CodeCrew co-founder. “These are folks these kids will see on TV and playing on the field, and they’ll have a personal relationship with them. For kids growing up in Memphis, we don’t get football players here, now those folks are in their lives, playing, and in their community. It means a lot when there’s a corporate organization giving back not just in dollars but in time. These guys have been here for hours playing with our kids. It means a whole lot.” CodeCrew’s summer camps, after school programs, in-school electives, internships and special events have taught more than 1,000 students to code since May 2015. Of the 250 kids they serve weekly 91 percent are African-American and Hispanic youth, 41 percent are girls, and overall, 89 percent of their students become more likely to study computer science. “We try to make sure that we’re lending a hand before extending a hand,” said Greg Herring, Memphis Express vice president  of marketing. “We don’t want to ask the community for support without becoming a part of it, ingrained from the start. The players have been in town less than 24 hours, and here we are with local youth, playing games, eating some food, and having a great time here at Main Event.” Upon arrival at Main Event, Memphis Express players were paired with a child and spent the next few hours bowling, playing laser tag, having dinner, and forming a connection. The overwhelming response from both sides expressed an appreciation for the importance of the evening. “It’s huge,” said Rendon Bradley, director, Memphis Athletic Ministries Neighborhood. “The players get a connection to the community, seeing these kids and their parents. You can see it in the kids eyes. They’ve never met a pro athlete. They’re laughing and enjoying it, loving every minute.” Founded in 1998, Memphis Athletic Ministries (MAM) exists to coach, grow, and lead the youth of Memphis by helping them discover their identity in Christ and their purpose in the community. MAM’s vision is to see identity found, hope restored, and lives changed. Minicamp continues for the Express on Sunday, with the team’s first practices. On Monday, players will meet with media for the first time, with practice open to press for filming from 11:30 am to Noon at the Liberty Bowl. selected players and coaches will be available for comment from 12-12:30 pm. Minicamp wraps on Tuesday.

The Alliance Announces its First Weekend Game Times

By Kareem Yasin Football season ends in February? We think not. The Alliance of American Football launches its inaugural 10-week season one weekend after the Super Bowl, and game times for the first weekend’s match-ups have just been announced. Who will come out victorious when our 8 teams take the field for the very first time? Which teams will come out on top when they meet for the very first time? Saturday, Feb. 9 Atlanta Legends vs. Orlando Apollos Where: Spectrum Stadium, Orlando, FL When: 8:00pm ET (5:00pm PT) San Diego Fleet vs. San Antonio Commanders Where: Alamodome, San Antonio, TX When: 8:00pm ET (7:00pm CT) Sunday, Feb. 10 Memphis Express vs. Birmingham Iron Where: Legion Field, Birmingham, AL When: 2:00pm ET (1:00pm CT) Salt Lake Stallions vs. Arizona Hotshots Where: Sun Devil Stadium, Tempe, AZ When: 4:00pm ET (2:00pm AZ) Who will win those first week games? Tune in or be there to see it live: season tickets available now!

Results: The Alliance of American Football Inaugural Quarterback Draft

By Dinn Mann (Photo: Benjamin Brinker) The Alliance of American Football’s inaugural Quarterback Draft aired on CBS Sports Network on Tuesday night, showcasing some of the faces hoping to lead the league’s eight teams when the historic first season begins in February. Coaches, GMs, media, fans, friends and family gathered at the HypeX eSports Arena in Las Vegas, and the Alliance’s unique “Protect or Pick” event was part of a breakthrough day of festivities from coast to coast. Riding the wave of uniform and helmet unveilings earlier in the day, the first-of-its-kind draft format had an intriguing twist in the first round. It called for teams to “protect” one of the players allocated to them in advance (based on regional ties) or “pick” a player from another territory. The San Diego Fleet had first dibs, with GM Dave Boller and coach Mike Martz calling the shots. They chose to protect a quarterback with ties to the region, the University of San Diego’s Josh Johnson, as their number one selection. On hand for the historic occasion was Johnson’s cousin, Super Bowl-winning running back Marshawn Lynch. It was a magical moment, Johnson said, to be introduced on live TV by Hall of Famer Kurt Warner as the Alliance’s number one quarterback pick, and then be greeted on stage by Super Bowl hero Hines Ward, as well as Martz, a Vince Lombardi Trophy winner himself. Doesn’t get much better than that! We’ll let Johnson’s tweet speak for itself: SD I’m back!!!!!!! Juiced to go #1 to the @AAFFleet return to familiar stopping grounds and start building to win ASAP. Thanks @TheAAF @DaveB_AAF for letting be apart of this history #SDFleet #protectorpick pic.twitter.com/huTKWDzyhR — Head8cke (@Fam1stFamilyQB) November 28, 2018 Drafted by the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the fifth round in 2008, Johnson spent time playing for the Jets, Browns, 49ers, Raiders, and Giants. But now, he’s back in San Diego and eager to get reps on an exciting spring stage. The Alliance begins its inaugural season the weekend after the upcoming Super Bowl. Here’s how the rest of the draft played out: ROUND 1: San Diego Fleet (Protect): Josh Johnson, San Diego Atlanta Legends (Protect): Aaron Murray, Georgia Memphis Express (Protect): Troy Cook, University Tennessee at Martin San Antonio Commanders (Protect): Dustin Vaughan, West Texas A&M Birmingham Iron (Pick): Luis Perez, Texas A&M-Commerce Arizona Hotshots (Pick): Trevor Knight, Texas A&M Orlando Apollos (Pick): Garrett Gilbert, Southern Methodist Salt Lake Stallions (Pick): Josh Woodrum, Liberty ROUND 2: San Diego Fleet: Mike Bercovici, Arizona State Birmingham Iron: Blake Sims, Alabama Arizona Hotshots: John Wolford, Wake Forest Orlando Apollos: Stephen Morris, Miami Atlanta Legends: Matt Simms, Tennessee Salt Lake Stallions: B.J. Daniels, South Florida Memphis Express: Christian Hackenberg, Penn State San Antonio Commanders: Marquise Williams, North Carolina ROUND 3: San Antonio Commanders: Logan Woodside, Toledo Memphis Express: Brandon Silvers, Troy Salt Lake Stallions: Austin Allen, Arkansas Atlanta Legends: Peter Pujals, Holy Cross Orlando Apollos: Austin Appleby, Purdue Arizona Hotshots: Quinn McQueary, Montana Tech Birmingham Iron: Scott Tolzien, Wisconsin San Diego Fleet: Philip Nelson, East Carolina ROUND 4: San Antonio Commanders: Dalton Sturm, Texas-San Antonio Memphis Express: Zach Mettenberger, LSU Salt Lake Stallions: Matt Linehan, Idaho Atlanta Legends: […]

The Alliance of American Football Unveils its Inaugural Uniforms

By Kareem Yasin New league, new look! The Alliance of American Football has unveiled the uniforms for its inaugural season, kicking off on February 9, 2019.  Designed by Starter and produced by G-III Sports, these uniforms feature color combinations and designs specifically chosen for each Alliance team. Each captures the unique spirit of the cities our teams are representing and the fierce dynamism of the league’s players. The uniforms feature stretch characteristics and twill used in the torso and numbers allowing for a professional, modern fit. They also include helmets and shoulder pads designed by Riddell, whose SpeedFlex and Speed platforms have a proven track-record of exceptional performance and on-field protection. Orlando Apollos: Like the Greek god of the sun, the sunshine state’s Apollos uniform is a testament to power and energy, using navy blue and orange to reflect the warm Florida sunshine. Atlanta Legends: The purple, white, and gold sported by the Legends capture the rich heritage of Atlanta, a city where legends are made. Birmingham Iron: The colors of Birmingham Iron are black, dark grey, and light grey, derived from the three elements used to make steel, namely: iron ore, coal, and flux. Memphis Express: Memphis is the birthplace of rock and roll and home to the nation’s biggest cargo airport. What better colors to represent it than the unmistakably American red, white, and blue? San Antonio Commanders: The state of Texas is represented by the color red, with maroon capturing San Antonio and silver referencing the dress military swords carried by officers. Arizona Hotshots: Inspired by the uniforms worn by many hotshot crews, the Arizona Hotshots uniform colors are a fitting orange, golden yellow, and forest green. San Diego Fleet: The anthracite gray of the San Diego Fleet uniforms represents the U.S. Navy’s Pacific fleet, complemented by the battleship gray of Navy ships and the warm yellows of the California sun. Salt Lake Stallions: You can almost see the silver tips of the Wasatch Mountains amidst the royal blue of Utah’s great salt lake in the Salt Lake Stallions’ uniform, while the team logo resembles a car hood reflecting the city’s fastest and most famous cars. The Alliance of American Football starts February 9, 2019 on CBS.  

LIVE: The Alliance of American Football Quarterback Draft

By Kareem Yasin and Dinn Mann It’s the kind of occasion that simulates a quarterback’s adrenaline rush during a game-winning drive. The Alliance of American Football is conducting its inaugural “Protect or Pick” QB Draft at 8ET/5PT tonight on CBS Sports Network, live from Las Vegas. More than 50 aspiring pro quarterbacks progressed through the scouting process after tryouts, combines and an elite camp to reach this point. A couple handfuls of those players are attending the draft, each hoping to become faces of franchises when the spring league’s historic first season begins the weekend after the upcoming Super Bowl. The site of the QB Draft is Las Vegas’ HyperX Esports Arena, where attendees will wait for their chance to join host Hines Ward, head of player relations for The Alliance, on stage as the unique process unfolds. “The quarterback position is critical to a team’s success, so we knew the importance of making sure each Alliance team had a top-tier quarterback at the helm,” said Alliance co-founder Bill Polian, explaining how league coaches, front office executives and CEO/co-founder Charlie Ebersol collectively agreed on the format. The league’s “Protect or Pick” draft approach begins with a round in which teams have the option of claiming (“protecting”) a player for whom that team had first dibs based on geographic proximity. The alternative is to “pick” a player from another region if, say, a competitor’s territory had a surplus of talent or a prospect more specifically aligned with a coach’s style of play. Regardless of the way a team chooses to go, each of the 8 teams will complete the first round with a QB to call its own. The intrigue only grows from there as rival teams conceivably will pounce on quarterbacks that for whatever reason became available to push for starting jobs in regions beyond their first-dib footprints. The Draft, with live analysis from NFL Hall of Famer Kurt Warner, will last 4 rounds, with teams protecting/picking in the following order: San Diego Fleet Birmingham Iron Arizona Hotshots Orlando Apollos Atlanta Legends Salt Lake Stallions Memphis Express San Antonio Commanders If a team opts to pick instead of protect, it stays in this order after all who’ve protected voice those decisions. The draft order was determined with each team pulling a number from a helmet. The second, third and fourth rounds have no protect element, so it’s purely picking after Round 1. The order goes as listed above in Round 2. It reverses in Round 3, then snakes back in the fourth round. Check back for updates as the drumroll builds throughout today’s festivities, which also include unveilings of uniforms for each of the eight teams: the Arizona Hotshots (coached by Rick Neuheisel), Atlanta Legends (Brad Childress), Birmingham Iron (Tim Lewis), Memphis Express (Mike Singletary), Orlando Apollos (Steve Spurrier), Salt Lake Stallions (Dennis Erickson), San Antonio Express (Mike Riley) and San Diego Fleet (Mike Martz). ROUND 1: Protect or Pick San Diego Fleet, Atlanta Legends, Memphis Express, and San Antonio Commanders elected to protect. Protect: San Diego Fleet protects: Josh Johnson Atlanta Legends protects: Aaron Murray Memphis Express protects: Troy Cook San […]

QB Camp – Road to the Draft

The Alliance QB hopefuls take the field at the San Antonio Alamodome. Photo by Ben Brinker.  QB Camp – Road to the Draft By Kareem Yasin The Alliance of American Football launches in February, the weekend after the Super Bowl, which means hundreds of players — all hungry for their pro football breakthrough — will perform on this inaugural spring stage for 1 of 8 Alliance teams. After more than 1,000 players put their dreams on the line at combines in LA, Houston, and Atlanta in the hopes of making it into The Alliance, more than 50 aspiring quarterbacks took part in an elite-level QB Camp earlier this month in San Antonio. Each QB taking part in the 2-day evaluations at the Alamodome performed dozens of drills that tested speed, agility, concentration and leadership in team settings. This was a competitive platform to showcase their best qualities for coaches and GMs gathered for the purpose of assembling rosters to compete for the Alliance of American Football’s first championship. The Alliance, co-founded by Bill Polian and Charlie Ebersol, is conducting its one-of-a-kind “Protect or Pick” QB Draft at 8ET/5PT Tuesday evening in Las Vegas. The unique event will be televised and streamed live by CBS Sports Network. With a lineup of proven, innovative coaches, the stage is set. The Alliance head coaches, as a reminder, are: Brad Childress (Atlanta Legends), Dennis Erickson (Salt Lake Stallions), Tim Lewis (Birmingham Iron), Mike Martz (San Diego Fleet), Rick Neuheisel (Arizona Hotshots), Mike Riley (San Antonio Commanders), Mike Singletary (Memphis Express) and Steve Spurrier (Orlando Apollos). Mini-camps begin in December. Training camps follow in January. The drumroll is on. The quarterbacks are ready for their close-ups. Their teammates will include many familiar faces to fans in The Alliance’s eight initial markets. Players were allocated based on where they made names for themselves at the collegiate levels and in many cases professionally. Tune-in to CBS Sports Network on Tuesday 11/27 at 8PM ET / 5PM PT to watch. Tyler Ferguson of Western Kentucky University: B.J. Daniels, who played 5 seasons with pro NFL teams including the Seattle Seahawks and Houston Texans: Stephen Morris, formerly of the Philadelphia Eagles and Indianapolis Colts:   Stephen Garcia of the University of South Carolina:   Tommy Armstrong, Jr. of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln:

KURT WARNER NAMED LEAD ANALYST FOR ‘PROTECT OR PICK’ QB DRAFT

Brent Stover and Dana Jacobson to join Warner for Inaugural QB Draft ‘Protect or Pick’ QB Draft Airs Tuesday, November 27, 2018 at 8:00 pm ET LIVE on CBS Sports Network SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – November 21, 2018 – Kurt Warner, a Super Bowl champion, MVP and Hall of Fame quarterback, has been named lead analyst for The Alliance of American Football’s “Protect or Pick” quarterback draft, live from the new Esports Arena Las Vegas at The Luxor on November 27, 2018. Joining Alliance executive and Super Bowl champion Hines Ward, Warner will provide viewers with insight into the quarterback class and dissect each selection, drawing on his 15-year pro career behind center. Alongside Warner will be CBS Sports Network studio host Brent Stover, CBS Sports correspondent and anchor Dana Jacobson and Jason Fisher. CBS Sports Network will televise the first-of-its-kind draft for The Alliance at 8:00 pm ET/5:00 pm PT. “The Alliance represents an amazing opportunity for these quarterbacks to begin, extend or revitalize their pro careers,” said Kurt Warner. “They faced adversity and are out to prove themselves, now they have a shot to show what they can do. Having gone undrafted and overlooked, I can relate to their pursuit. I look forward to seeing how this unique draft unfolds and who rises to the top during the inaugural season of The Alliance.” 52 Alliance-signed quarterbacks will be eligible for the “Protect or Pick” draft with additional players being added. Full list can be found here. The “Protect or Pick” draft format begins with each team deciding if they want to protect one quarterback that has been allocated to them from their region. If a team elects to protect, they name the player they are protecting as their first selection in the draft. If they decide to pick, they wait until every other team has made their decision. Once each team makes their decision, the teams that elected to not protect a player make their selection, in the order of the draft, from the remaining pool of all available quarterbacks regardless of region. All selected quarterbacks must be under contract to The Alliance at the time of the draft. The Alliance quarterback draft will be comprised of four rounds. The San Diego Fleet have the first pick in the draft, followed by the Birmingham Iron, Arizona Hotshots, Orlando Apollos, Atlanta Legends, Salt Lake Stallions, Memphis Express and San Antonio Commanders. Quarterbacks are allocated based on where they competed in college. If a player’s college is outside The Alliance footprint, he is allocated based on his last NFL/CFL team. If a player’s college is outside The Alliance allocation footprint and he did not play in the NFL or CFL, then he is unallocated. The Alliance’s 2019 and 2020 championship games will be held in Las Vegas at Sam Boyd stadium, with the 2019 championship taking place Saturday, April 27, 2019, at 8:00 pm ET / 5:00 pm PT on CBS. Draft Order Round 1: 1. San Diego Fleet 2. Birmingham Iron 3. Arizona Hotshots 4. Orlando Apollos 5. Atlanta Legends 6. Salt Lake Stallions 7. Memphis Express 8. San Antonio […]

Hines Ward – Player Relations Executive

By Kareem Yasin As a wide receiver for the Pittsburgh Steelers, Hines Ward earned two Super Bowl titles, a Super Bowl MVP trophy and made 1,000+ receptions during his 14-year career. Now, he’s mentoring a new generation of up-and-coming pro players in the Alliance of American football. Ward brought his experience and knowledge to The Alliance’s two combines in Atlanta, giving players advice, a listening ear and mentorship that helped them advance through a rigorous set of drills and exercises, all with the idea of earning roster spots at the next level.  

Combines Set Stage for The Alliance

Combines Set Stage for The Alliance By Mark Newman   For 1,155 players who came to compete and give everything they had in four Scouting Combines across the country, it was a golden opportunity to make a lifelong dream come true. Who knows? Some of them might become your favorite players when the Alliance of American Football turns its talent loose starting the weekend after the Super Bowl this February. The Alliance has purposefully and competitively been building rosters in recent months through various means, and one important step was these Combines overseen by league personnel. The events were held in Los Angeles on Aug. 4, Houston on Aug. 18, and in Atlanta on Aug. 25-26. “When we started this, we started with the idea that there were a lot of really good ballers who weren’t getting a shot,” said Charlie Ebersol, CEO and co-founder of The Alliance along with the legendary Bill Polian. “This is about opportunity, this is about not giving up, this is about trying to find those diamonds in the rough.” The Alliance rosters were up to 661 signings for the eight teams as of Nov. 9, and Combine participants went a long way toward reaching that number. They faced tests and positional drills, with defensive players working the morning sessions and offensive players in the afternoons. Tests included height and weight, arm and hand measurements; running the 40, to show burst and acceleration, and speed; 3 Cone, an agility drill that shows body balance, control, burst and acceleration; and standing broad jump to gauge lower-body explosion. “We evaluate not only your athletic ability, we evaluate how you handle yourself,” Stephen Austin, The Alliance Combine Director, told assembled athletes. “At the pro level, you’ve got to have the whole package.” The nation’s top 300 collegiate players go to the NFL Combine each year, and John Aaron, The Alliance Combine Director, noted that “301 to 1,000 are great football players.” That’s the whole point of this new league, which begins play the Saturday and Sunday after the Super Bowl. People want to keep watching football, and there is big-time talent just waiting to fill that void. Tony Softli, Scouting Director for The Alliance, said he expected the Combines to result in roster additions: “What we wanted to see is what talent is out there, what’s out on the street. There has been some talent that we found in this Combine, and it’s been well worth it.” Michael Vick, the Atlanta Legends’ offensive coordinator, was clearly moved by the stories he heard from some of those going through the tests and drills — including the athlete who told him about his 9-to-5 job. “There are guys who played two or three years in the NFL, got cut, went and played in Canada,” Vick said. “These guys better be hungry. This is another chance. This is another shot. Not too many opportunities come around. This is about taking advantage of what’s in the moment.” Former Alabama State cornerback Ronnie Scott was one of those who hoped to take advantage. Many of the Combine participants were names football fans recognize. […]

THE ALLIANCE OF AMERICAN FOOTBALL SIGNS QUARTERBACK AARON MURRAY

Former Georgia Bulldogs and SEC’s All-Time Passing Leader Joins The Alliance with Rights Allocated to The Atlanta Legends San Francisco, Calif. – November 20, 2018 – The Alliance of American Football announced today that quarterback Aaron Murray has signed a player contract with his rights allocated to The Atlanta Legends. Murray, along with the 51 other quarterbacks — and counting, who have signed Alliance contracts, will be eligible for the “Protect or Pick” Quarterback Draft on November 27, 2018 in Las Vegas. The live show will air at 8 pm ET/5 pm PT on CBS Sports Network. Murray was a fifth-round NFL draft choice of the Kansas City Chiefs in 2014 after his record-breaking career in Athens, Georgia. The Tampa, Florida native played with the Chiefs for two seasons from 2014-15 working with Legends head coach Brad Childress. Murray also played for the Philadelphia Eagles (2016), Arizona Cardinals (2016) and Los Angeles Rams (2017) during his stint in the NFL. A four-year starter at Georgia, the Bulldogs under Murray’s direction totaled 38 victories during his successful tenure at the helm from 2010-13. His productive junior campaign in 2012 included a second straight SEC East crown en route to a trip to the conference championship game. Murray guided UGA to within eight-yards of capturing an SEC title against Alabama at the Georgia Dome before falling in the final seconds, 32-28. Murray’s signing makes him available for The Alliance of American Football’s “Protect or Pick” quarterback draft scheduled for November 27 at 8:00 PM ET/5:00 PM PT at the Esports Arena Las Vegas at The Luxor.

THE ALLIANCE TO HOST ‘PROTECT OR PICK’ QB DRAFT ON CBS SPORTS NETWORK

Inaugural QB Draft Scheduled for Tuesday, November 27, 2018 at 8:00pm ET SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – October 31, 2018 – The Alliance of American Football will hold a “Protect or Pick” quarterback draft, live from the new Esports Arena Las Vegas at The Luxor on November 27, 2018. CBS Sports Network will broadcast the first-of-its-kind draft for The Alliance at 8:00 pm ET/5:00 pm PT. Former Super Bowl champion and head of football development for The Alliance, Hines Ward, will host the draft. “From combines held over the summer, to our upcoming quarterback camp in San Antonio, our experienced group of GM’s and scouts from each team continue to be impressed with the level of talent on display and available to them,” said Bill Polian, co-founder and head of football, The Alliance. “Our regional allocation system and the ‘Protect or Pick’ draft format were designed to strike a competitive balance across the league and fuel local market interest. The quarterback position is critical to a team’s success, so we knew the importance of making sure each Alliance team had a top-tier quarterback at the helm. We’re confident this group represents the best available players in the market. They are looking forward to the opportunity to begin, extend or revitalize their professional careers, and we’re going to do everything in our power to help them succeed on and off the field.” The “Protect or Pick” draft format begins with each team deciding if they want to protect one quarterback that has been allocated to them from their region. If a team elects to protect, they name the player they are protecting as their first selection in the draft. If they decide to pick, they wait until every other team has made their decision. Once each team makes their decision, the teams that elected to not protect a player make their selection, in the order of the draft, from the remaining pool of all available quarterbacks regardless of region. All selected quarterbacks must be under contract to The Alliance at the time of the draft. The Alliance quarterback draft will be comprised of four rounds. The San Diego Fleet have the first pick in the draft, followed by the Birmingham Iron, Arizona Hotshots, Orlando Apollos, Atlanta Legends, Salt Lake Stallions, Memphis Express and San Antonio Commanders. “We look forward to working closely with CBS Sports Network to tell the stories behind this amazing group of talented, determined and motivated quarterbacks — live from Las Vegas,” said Charlie Ebersol, co-founder and CEO, The Alliance. “Our unique ‘Protect or Pick’ format adds intrigue to our first-ever live broadcast while ensuring we stay true to our guiding principles of putting high quality football on the field and creating strong, authentic connections with our local market fans by keeping hometown favorites, home.” Quarterbacks are allocated based on where they competed in college. If a player’s college is outside The Alliance footprint, he is allocated based on his last NFL/CFL team. If a player’s college is outside The Alliance allocation footprint and he did not play in the NFL or CFL, then he is unallocated. The Alliance […]

Orlando Apollos in force as College GameDay comes to UCF

By Joel Poiley ORLANDO – As University of Central Florida (UCF) fans whipped themselves into a frenzy in front of the ESPN College GameDay crew here Saturday, Orlando Apollos vice president of marketing and strategic communications Mike Harris pictured the excitement the Apollos will offer when they begin play in the Alliance of American Football’s inaugural season against Atlanta on Feb. 9. Like UCF, the Apollos will play their home games at Spectrum Stadium. Harris is taking aim to fill the 44,000-seat venue for the Steve Spurrier-led Apollos. “We want the stadium sold out for game number one so we can show people just how much football means to this city,” Harris said. “The energy that the UCF fans have is tremendous. They call it The Bounce House because they make the place bounce all night long. That’s one of the things we want to bring to our games. They’ll be exciting. We’ll have the head ball coach with his Fun-and-Gun fast-paced style of offense we think the fans will enjoy.” Orlando’s sales team has been aggressive, with events like Saturday’s presence scheduled throughout November to give out schedules, swag and information to drum up interest in the new team and league. The effort has paid off in the two weeks tickets have been on sale, but there’s more work to be done. Harris and his staff, soaking in the scene around unbeaten UCF’s 38-13 victory over Cincinnati, know the interest is there. “Even today, we had people coming up to our table saying they heard about us and want to know more about the league and were buying season tickets,” Harris said. “People love football here, that’s why there are all the college bowl games here, the Pro Bowl did well here … it’s a football hotbed. “People are excited we’re in town. We’re trying to engage the community and develop a one-on-one relationship where our fans are connected to the Apollos. Just like our ad says, football season doesn’t have to end after the Super Bowl.” That mantra, which The Alliance co-founder and CEO Charlie Ebersol has trumpeted since introducing The Alliance in March, is resonating with fans. Give them quality play on the field and they will come. The UCF game Saturday was televised nationally, and similarly, the Apollos will open on the prime-time stage, on CBS. Austin Bosch, 25, attended the University of Mississippi and now lives in St. Petersburg. He said he gladly will make the trip to Orlando to watch pro football in the spring. “For sure I’d come over here because I love football,” Bosch said. “It’s such a cool thing because there were so many players that we loved watching in college that maybe didn’t make it in such a tight roster spot in the NFL, and this give us a second chance to watch them again.” His buddy, 27-year-old Wade Russom, works in downtown Orlando and said he likes how The Alliance fills the football void after the NFL season. “Plus, it’s great to see the head ball coach coaching again,” Russom said. “I love that guy and his style of play.” Bo Armstrong, an Orlando business owner, said he is interested in purchasing season tickets to help support the area’s newest professional sports franchise. “With us being a local business, we do everything […]

32 PLAYERS SIGN NEW CONTRACTS WITH THE ALLIANCE

The Alliance Signed 32 Additional Players to Contracts for the 2019 Inaugural Season Beginning February 9, 2019 on CBS   SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – November 9, 2018 – The Alliance of American Football has signed the following 32 players to contracts for the 2019 inaugural season bringing the league total to 661 players signed: Team Last First Pos College ARIZONA Johnson Steven LB Kansas ARIZONA Moore Rahim DB UCLA ATLANTA Howard Bug WR North Carolina ATLANTA Motuapuaka Andrew LB Virginia Tech ATLANTA Simmons Antonio DE Georgia Tech BIRMINGHAM Brown Leon G Alabama BIRMINGHAM Etta-Tawo Amba WR Maryland BIRMINGHAM Faulk Jeremy DL Garden City CC BIRMINGHAM Fry Elliott K South Carolina BIRMINGHAM Saxton Wes TE South Alabama BIRMINGHAM Schleuger Chris G Alabama-Birmingham MEMPHIS East Andrew LS Vanderbilt MEMPHIS Stribling Channing DB Michigan ORLANDO Eatmon Quinterrius T South Florida ORLANDO Myers Mark DB Southeastern (FL) SALT LAKE Anderson Dres WR Utah SALT LAKE Jennings Adonis WR Temple SALT LAKE Robertson Korey WR Southern Mississippi SAN ANTONIO Ayers Demarcus WR Houston SAN ANTONIO Porter Mo T Baylor SAN ANTONIO Williams Jaboree LB Wake Forest SAN ANTONIO Wren Erick C Oklahoma SAN DIEGO Barrett Alex DT San Diego State SAN DIEGO Fleer Austin T Colorado-Mesa SAN DIEGO Kolone Jeremiah T San Jose State SAN DIEGO Lewis Kyle WR Cal Poly SAN DIEGO Lotuleli John LB Nevada-Las Vegas SAN DIEGO Okeke Tobenna LB Fresno State SAN DIEGO Owusu Francis WR Stanford SAN DIEGO Pericak Will G Colorado   *ALL QUARTERBACKS WHO HAVE SIGNED WITH THE ALLIANCE HAVE RECEIVED ROSTER EXEMPTIONS AND ARE ELIGIBLE FOR A QUARTERBACK DRAFT WHICH WILL OCCUR ON NOVEMBER 27, 2018 IN LAS VEGAS. Last First Pos College *Tolzien Scott QB Wisconsin *Hackenberg Christian QB Penn State   THE FOLLOWING PLAYERS’ RIGHTS HAVE BEEN WAIVED BY THEIR ALLIANCE TEAM AND HAVE BECOME FREE AGENTS ELIGIBLE TO SIGN WITH ANY TEAM Last First Pos College Waived By Eugene Dwayne LB Arkansas MEMPHIS Tucker D’Maujeric RB E. New Mexico State MEMPHIS Bell Wilson G Florida State ORLANDO Durant Davon LB Marshall ORLANDO Johnson Drico DB Central Florida ORLANDO Smith Tyler LB South Carolina State ORLANDO

THE ALLIANCE OF AMERICAN FOOTBALL SURPASSES 600 PLAYERS SIGNED

The Alliance Signed 34 Additional Players to Contracts for the 2019 Inaugural Season Beginning February 9, 2019 on CBS SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – October 26, 2018 – The Alliance of American Football has signed the following 37 players to contracts for the 2019 inaugural season bringing the league total to 629 players signed: Team Last First Position College ARIZONA Bunche Malcolm T UCLA ARIZONA Langford Ryan LB New Mexico ARIZONA Lucien Devin WR Arizona State ARIZONA Murphy Pace G Northwestern State ARIZONA Symmank Taylor P Texas Tech ARIZONA Yates Rykeem DE Nevada-Reno ATLANTA #Folston Tarean RB Notre Dame ATLANTA Garrett Keyarris WR Tulsa ATLANTA Griffin Corey DB Georgia Tech ATLANTA Holba Colin LS Louisville ATLANTA Jones J.T. DE Miami (OH) ATLANTA Marvin David P Wofford BIRMINGHAM Dickson Xzavier LP Alabama BIRMINGHAM Greene Brandon T Alabama BIRMINGHAM Taylor Devin DE South Carolina ORLANDO Ferris Drew LS Florida ORLANDO Horton Justin LB Jacksonville ORLANDO Price Sean TE South Florida ORLANDO Northrup Reggie LB Florida State ORLANDO #Orndoff Scott TE Pittsburgh ORLANDO Bracy-Williams Marvin WR Florida State SAN ANTONIO Clear Cameron TE Texas A&M SAN ANTONIO Daly Scott LS Notre Dame SAN ANTONIO Mays Boomer LB Northern Illinois SAN ANTONIO Noil Speedy WR Texas A&M SAN ANTONIO Teuhema Maea SE Louisiana SAN ANTONIO Jones-Smith Jaryd T Pittsburgh SAN DIEGO Baugh Marcus TE Ohio State SAN DIEGO Green Darrell G San Diego State SAN DIEGO Irwin-Hill Sam P Arkansas SAN DIEGO James Kendall DB Maine SAN DIEGO Kelly Kameron DB San Diego State SAN DIEGO Montelus John T Notre Dame *ALL QUARTERBACKS WHO HAVE SIGNED WITH THE ALLIANCE HAVE RECEIVED ROSTER EXEMPTIONS AND ARE ELIGIBLE FOR A QUARTERBACK DRAFT WHICH WILL OCCUR LATER THIS YEAR. Last First Position College *Holman Justin QB Central Florida *Nelson Phillip QB East Carolina *Woodrum Josh QB Liberty

MEMPHIS EXPRESS COACHING STAFF SET TO TAKE OFF

Six Coaching Positions Filled Including Defensive Coordinator MEMPHIS, TN. – October 9, 2018 – Today, The Alliance of American Football’s Memphis Express announced six additions to head coach Mike Singletary’s staff. Dennis Thurman joins the Memphis Express as defensive coordinator and Tom Mason as linebackers coach. Matt Singletary will serve as defensive line coach and David Lee as quarterbacks coach. T. Seth Gibson will serve as a quality control coach. “We have an opportunity to build something truly special here in Memphis, and these additions to my coaching staff symbolize continued progress toward our goal of putting together a championship caliber team,” said Coach Singletary. “I have brought in knowledgeable coaches from all levels, each bringing their own expertise to the Memphis Express. We want to put our players in the best position to succeed on and off the field, and I believe the first step to accomplishing that is building a great coaching staff. Fans can expect us to be aggressive on both sides of the ball.” Dennis Thurman – Defensive Coordinator Dennis Thurman began his coaching career with the Phoenix Cardinals in 1988 where he was the defensive backs coach for two seasons. Thurman spent the next eight seasons with the USC Trojans, where he mentored multiple future NFL players including The Alliance of American Football’s head of player relations Troy Polamalu. Following his time with the Trojans, Thurman returned to the NFL, coaching defensive backs for the Baltimore Ravens (2002-2007) and New York Jets (2008-2014). Thurman spent his final two seasons with the Jets as defensive coordinator. Thurman most recently served as the defensive coordinator for the Buffalo Bills (2015-2016) under head coach Rex Ryan. Tom Mason – Linebackers Coach Tom Mason began his coaching career in 1981 with Eastern Washington University where he worked with the linebackers and special teams. Over the next 35+ years, Mason held coaching positions with 12 different teams, including stints as interim head coach with Boise State and SMU, the latter following a seven year run as defensive coordinator, during which he transformed the defense into one of the nation’s best. Masonalso spent time in the CFL and XFL. Matt Singletary – Defensive Line Coach Matt Singletary, son of Memphis Express head coach Mike Singletary, started his college football career at Baylor University, where his father had played. After redshirting his freshman year, Matt played two more seasons at Baylor before transferring to West Valley College and then to California Polytechnic State University where he played 11 games at defensive end. Matt is making his coaching debut as part of the Memphis Express coaching staff. David Lee – Quarterback Coach David Lee played college football for the Vanderbilt Commodores, where he was the starting quarterback and team captain for the 1974 season. The following year, Lee began his coaching career at the University of Tennessee at Martin as the quarterbacks and wide receivers coach. Over the next 40+ years, Lee coached 12 different teams, including five seasons as head coach for the UTEP Miners and four seasons as an offensive assistant with the Dallas Cowboys (2003-2006). Lee most recently held the […]

Over Five Hundred Players Signed to The Alliance

The Alliance of American Football has reached a milestone in player acquisition, signing over 500 players to contracts for the 2019 inaugural season. The mark was surpassed with the latest batch of signings highlighted below, bringing the total to 515 players signed to contracts. “As we get closer to our first snap on February 9th, our experienced general managers and personnel teams have been working around the clock to build their rosters and offer players a chance to begin, extend or revitalize their careers,” said Bill Polian, co-founder, The Alliance. “I know the pressure and dedication that goes into building a championship-caliber team and it’s been exciting to see our rosters fill up with talented athletes that have come from all over the country – from small universities in the Midwest to powerhouse SEC schools and successful NFL franchises. They are all vying for another shot in professional football.” “Each day, when I see the personnel notice come across my desk, I’m reminded of why The Alliance is a league of opportunity — these players deserve a chance to continue their football careers and I’m honored they chose The Alliance,” said Charlie Ebersol, co-founder, The Alliance. “With our Super Bowl champion league executives, our best-in-class coaches and general managers, these players will take the field in February prepared and supported by those who have been there before them with an opportunity to compete at a high level in front of passionate, engaged fans. We welcome these 515 players to The Alliance.” Rosters Arizona Hotshots Atlanta Legends Birmingham Iron Memphis Express Orlando Apollos Salt Lake Stallions San Antonio Commanders San Diego Fleet

Introducing the Memphis Express

Former Jets RB Stacy runs for the Express

If you were watching Monday Night Football on Oct. 28, 2013, you probably had Zac Stacy pegged for stardom and might even have celebrated his status on your fantasy team. On that night, he was a Rams rookie running wild against a stingy Seattle defense, finishing with 26 carries for 134 yards, on his way to back-to-back 100-plus performances. Stacy’s professional path did not turn out to be nearly as easy as it was through the Seahawks defense that night, but five years later he has a new lease on football life. He will try to reinvent himself and realize that demonstrated potential as a running back just signed by the new Memphis team in The Alliance of American Football. Stacy was drafted out of Vanderbilt by the Rams in the fifth round (160th overall) in 2013, and he made an immediate impact as a rookie. That season, he rushed 250 times for 973 yards and seven touchdowns and another 141 yards receiving. His NFL peak came in that MNF game, and the next week, he ran for 127 yards on 27 rushes and two TDs. His rushes declined from 250 to 76 in 2014, though, and the Rams caused a stir by selecting running back Todd Gurley in the 2015 NFL Draft. Stacy tweeted the simple word “yikes” upon seeing that first-round selection as his obvious replacement . . . and promptly requested a trade. The Rams accommodated him, sending Stacy to the Jets in exchange for New York’s 2015 seventh-round pick. Stacy appeared in eight games for the Jets, carrying 31 times for 89 yards, but broke an ankle against the Bills on that Nov. 12. He went on injured reserve a day later, and the Jets released him the next summer after he failed a physical. Stacy announced his retirement from the NFL on Instagram, and came out of retirement this past May to sign with Saskatchewan of the Canadian Football League. That figured to be his comeback. He led the team in rushing in both preseason games, with 51 yards on 11 carries, yet lost out to Tre Mason in the battle for that job, despite more usage. “He’s tough. He’s gritty. And he’s got unbelievable hands. He can get out of the backfield and do some things,” Saskatchewan running backs coach Kent Maugeri said. “The way he carries himself, he’s a pro. You don’t have to worry about him.” Now The Alliance offers Stacy a new chance to earn back that spotlight and possibly reach the potential he showed everyone with 3,143 rushing yards at Vandy and then with his initial NFL splash. He might look a little different, though, because he tweeted on Sept. 19: “I’ve been locked in for so long I done got dreads ….” One thing hasn’t changed about Stacy, and that is his positive perspective. He has a lot of it, thanks largely to growing up with a younger brother, Justin, who has Down Syndrome. “Absolutely, my brother Justin just teaches me that it’s bigger than football sometimes,” Stacy said. “You’ve got to get outside that bubble a little bit, […]

Express LB Alexander ‘eager to get started’

By Mark Newman When the Memphis team in The Alliance of American Football signed Donnie Alexander to a new contract, one of his first official acts was to ask a former Louisiana State teammate for some advice. “Honestly, this is going to be my first time going to Memphis,” Alexander said. “I don’t know too much about the place, but what I remember from my partner Big Frank, who played at LSU with me, it’s a good place to play, a good city.” “Big Frank” is Frank Herron, a Memphis native who was one of the final preseason cuts by the New England Patriots and subsequently added to the Seattle Seahawks’ practice squad and then released on Sept. 11. Memphis residents jumped in on Alexander’s Twitter comments, recommending several barbecue joints. As fans get to know the large battalion of former LSU players who will be preparing for The Alliance’s inaugural season starting a week after the Super Bowl, they will no doubt notice Alexander. He is from New Orleans and has Mardi Gras style and panache. As a senior inside linebacker last season, Alexander was a sartorial superstar, starting the “suit n sack” tradition by wearing a suit with a peacock as he came off the team bus. The 2018 Tigers are continuing his tradition, while Alexander gets to know his own new town and people. “I’m extremely excited about it because this has given me another opportunity to reach my ultimate goal,” Alexander said in his “Meet The Alliance” video selfie. Alexander wears some familiar LSU gear in the video, keeping him connected to heady college days. As a senior, he registered 51 tackles (12 alone in a win over Arkansas), one sack, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. He missed the bowl games against Notre Dame (shoulder). Now he will be playing for one of the greatest linebackers in NFL history, Memphis coach Mike Singletary. “I’m just eager to get started,” Alexander said. Other former LSU players around him will include quarterback Zach Mettenberger, running back Kenny Hilliard, tight end Colin Jeter, defensive end Deondre Clark and kicker Josh Jasper.

It’s here! ‘Get on board the Memphis Express’

By Mark Newman The Memphis Express has arrived! The city’s new team in The Alliance of American Football revealed its name on Thursday, and make no mistake: This is all about being the best. It is a team in a city on the fast track to making a difference, proud of its famous heritage, excited by its future, strong and never settling. “The name stands for progression, passion and fun, which are all traits that I find in the everyday Memphian,” said Kosha Irby, President of the Express. “The city will be able to connect with this name and this identity because I think it truly represents not only today, but the future.”  The red, white, and blue in the logo reflect Memphis’ place at the heart of America. As for when fans should get excited, Irby did not hesitate. “Today is the day to get on board the Memphis Express,” he said. Speed is of the essence, because speed is the essence.   Fast, unstoppable up the middle, and reliable — like a high-speed train or jet or breakthrough. And this rush comes with a schedule as well, one that begins in February, one week after the Super Bowl. The Express was one of four teams that celebrated its name reveal on Thursday, along with the Atlanta Legends, Birmingham Iron and Orlando Apollos. The other four teams in The Alliance will be announced soon. In Memphis specifically, excitement builds as more and more players are signed to a roster that will be coached by Hall of Famer Mike Singletary. Under his leadership and that of GM Will Lewis and Irby, the Express is all about the pairing of precision and urgency. Memphis moves swiftly, purposefully, determined to move forward, to raise the bar and earn respect every day. Anyone who walks the city’s streets knows what this great American town is made of. It’s on the cutting edge in medicine, music and logistics, and Memphis does whatever it takes to bring delight. The football team pledges to be no different: The Memphis Express, performing gracefully, successfully and in record time. Memphis dreams big. This team. This place. On the fast track. Anything less is not acceptable.

Singletary set to lead Memphis Pro Football Team

By Jason King The inaugural season of The Alliance of American Football is fast approaching in five months, and the league’s Memphis franchise is already attracting national headlines. This is even before the players who’ll roam the field are in uniform. What’s getting much-deserved attention is a certain figure who’ll stand tall on the sideline. Hall-of-Fame linebacker Mike Singletary—the Chicago Bears legend and one of the top defensive players in NFL history—agreed in May to become the head coach of the Memphis Alliance when AAF games begin in February. The league boasts other big names such as Steve Spurrier (Orlando), Brad Childress (Atlanta) and Dennis Erickson (Salt Lake City). But Memphis’ signing of NFL icon Singletary put his team on the map like an emphatic, successful, high-stakes blitz. Shortly after his hiring in May, Singletary promised Memphis fans that he’d deliver “a brand of football you’re going to enjoy.” “We’re going to play fast,” he said. “And we’re going to play tough.” Singletary exuded both of those qualities during his 11-year career with the Bears, 10 of which ended with Pro Bowl invites. His most notable season came in 1985, when Singletary flourished in Chicago’s “46 Defense,” which allowed him to go unblocked on almost every snap. Singletary recorded 161 total tackles and won NFL Defensive MVP honors as the Bears cruised to a 43-10 victory over New England in the Super Bowl. Singletary’s pregame speeches during the Bears’ playoff run that season became the stuff of legend, as teammates once became so inspired that they picked up tables and chairs and hurled them across the room before storming the field. More than three decades later, AAF officials are hoping Singletary’s motivational skills will have a rousing impact on Memphis and players and fans, too. “It’s going to be a team effort,” Singletary said during a May interview with “The Jason & John Show” on 92.9 FM in Memphis. “It’s about making sure we have an offense that’s moving fast and getting the ball out of the quarterback’s hands. And at the same time, when we’re running the ball, we’ve got to make sure we’re getting the ball down the field and complementing the pass, creating a balance.” Singletary, 59, was just weeks removed from accepting the head coaching position at Trinity Christian Academy—a private high school in the Dallas suburb of Addison—when AAF officials contacted him about the Memphis job in March. He said the involvement of longtime Indianapolis Colts president and general manager Bill Polian immediately caught his attention and made him believe the league will not only succeed, but thrive. Polian is the AAF’s co-founder. “For Bill Polian to be involved … I had to take a step back and listen to what he was saying,” Singletary told the radio station. “He’s been around a while. He’s been a part of great organizations. He knows what’s taking bout about. For him to be involved, I knew there must be something very positive about it.” Singletary is coaching high school ball this fall and will join The Alliance in the spring. He said he especially looks forward to […]

THE ALLIANCE OF AMERICAN FOOTBALL NAMES TEAM PRESIDENTS

New Professional Football League Names Seven Team Presidents for Atlanta, Birmingham, Orlando, Phoenix, San Antonio, San Diego and Salt Lake City SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – August 28, 2018 – The Alliance of American Football has named seven team Presidents who will lead all business operations for The Alliance in their respective cities. The Alliance announced that David Livingston (Atlanta), Tom Ward (Birmingham), Mike Waddell (Orlando), Scott Brubaker (Phoenix), Tyler Howell (Salt Lake City), Vic Gregovits (San Antonio) and Jeff Garner (San Diego) are joining Alliance Memphis team president Kosha Irby, who was announced in May, in the new professional football league. “As we began our journey to find the right leader for each organization, we had a specific set of criteria that we felt was uniquely specific to each city,” said Tom Veit, head of business operations, The Alliance. “Ultimately we were able to find an incredible group of team presidents that possess the intellect, leadership, and strategic mindset necessary to build our alliance.” “As we expand our footprint in each of our eight Alliance markets, our team presidents will build thoughtful community partnerships to ensure we are active and engaged members building lasting and meaningful relationships.” Among the additions announced today are respected executives in a variety of sports and entertainment fields which include: ATLANTA: As an experienced marketer with a career forged building brand programs and platforms connected to sports and entertainment, W. David Livingston joins Alliance Atlanta from Comcast Spectacor’s Spectra Venue Management team where he served as director, national corporate partnerships. Livingston also spent time with the Cleveland Cavaliers and 15 years leading sales and business development for IMG Golf in Cleveland. He began his career in brand management at Procter and Gamble. BIRMINGHAM: A well-rounded and results-driven sports executive with 25 years of experience in marketing, sales, partnership, broadcasting, arena/stadium naming rights and business development, Tom Ward joins Alliance Birmingham after serving as the senior vice president, brand, community, partnership development for the Carolina Hurricanes of the National Hockey League. Ward is a veteran award-winning storyteller who has played an integral role in the launching of multiple professional sports franchises and opening arenas and stadiums. ORLANDO: A veteran professional sports and college athletics administrator, Mike Waddell joins Alliance Orlando after spending the previous two years as vice president of Richmond Raceway. In his role with NASCAR, Waddell’s responsibilities included oversight over all marketing, ticketing, strategic communications, creative, digital strategy, eaSports and fan engagement operations for the raceway, which operates as one of the 12 motorsports facilities of International Speedway Corporation. PHOENIX: A well-respected sports sponsorship sales professional with deep Arizona roots, Scott Brubaker joins Alliance Phoenix from Learfield bringing with him more than 30 years of experience. While with Learfield, Brubaker held a variety of senior roles within the company across multiple properties, the last of which was vice president, national sales located in Chicago and Atlanta. SALT LAKE CITY: A veteran sports industry sales professional with over 20 years in leadership experience, Tyler Howell joins Alliance Salt Lake City following an impressive stint with the Portland Trail Blazers. During his time in Portland, Howell had […]

THE ALLIANCE OF AMERICAN FOOTBALL ADDS 105 PLAYERS

The Alliance Signs 105 Players to Contracts for the 2019 Inaugural Season Beginning February 9, 2019 Latest Signings Bring League Total to 205 Players SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – August 17, 2018 – The Alliance of American Football has signed the following 105 players to contracts for the 2019 inaugural season:

THE ALLIANCE OF AMERICAN FOOTBALL SIGNS FIRST 100 PLAYERS

New Professional Football League Begins Player Acquisition Process for 2019 Inaugural Season SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – August 6, 2018 – The Alliance of American Football has signed its first 100 players to compete in the new professional league launching on February 9, 2019. The Alliance recently began the process of offering player contracts to potential prospects following an extensive evaluation process by the personnel staff of The Alliance’s eight teams. “Today marks an exciting step in our journey to providing fans and players with top-flight football in the spring, as we begin to establish a competitive foundation and base of talent that will keep expanding throughout this fall and winter,” explained Bill Polian, co-founder and head of football, The Alliance. “These athletes will now have an opportunity to begin, extend or revitalize their professional football careers and continue playing the game we all love.” He added, “Our personnel staff, general managers and coaches will continue to recruit aggressively in the days and months to come. Team-building is a never ending task and we are excited to attack that challenge and to build on this very positive start.” The standard Alliance player contract offers players a base salary of $250,000 over three years with a comprehensive bonus system which will award financial compensation based on a variety of metrics such as performance, win, and fan engagement. Additionally, players who make final rosters will be offered postsecondary education assistance and health and wellness benefits. Players are allocated to Alliance teams based on where they competed in college. If a player’s college is outside The Alliance footprint, he will be allocated based on his most recent NFL/CFL team. If a player’s college is outside The Alliance allocation footprint AND he did not play in the NFL or CFL, then he is unallocated and available to be tendered a contract by any Alliance team. If a player signs with The Alliance and is then offered a contract to play in the National Football League, the player will be granted permission to pursue that opportunity.

Another new professional football league will start next February, getting a head start on the XFL

Spring football is returning — and sooner than we thought. The Alliance of American Football league was announced Tuesday and will debut on Feb. 9, 2019, a week after Super Bowl LIII and at least a year before the XFL resurfaces sometime in 2020. Charlie Ebersol — whose father, Dick Ebersol, founded the original XFL with WWE's Vince McMahon almost two decades ago — created the new league along with Pro Football Hall of Fame member Bill Polian, formerly NFL general manager and currently an ESPN analyst. {{ vc_btn:title=Learn+More&shape=square&link=url%3Ahttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.latimes.com%252Fsports%252Fsportsnow%252Fla-sp-alliance-american-football-20180320-story.html%7C%7Ctarget%3A%2520_blank%7C }}

New AAF pro football league, set for 2019 debut, described as ‘complementary’ to NFL

The XFL won’t be the only new professional football league set to launch over the next couple of years.

Troy Polamalu, Hines Ward, More to Oversee Alliance of America Football League

The new Alliance of American Football will include the involvement of former NFL general manager Bill Polian as well as former NFL players Troy Polamalu, Hines Ward and Justin Tuck. {{ vc_btn:title=Learn+More&shape=square&link=url%3Ahttps%253A%252F%252Fwww.sportsbusinessdaily.com%252FDaily%252FMorning-Buzz%252F2018%252F03%252F20%252FAlliance-of-American-Football.aspx%7C%7Ctarget%3A%2520_blank%7C }}

Why A New Football League Thinks It Has What It Takes To Survive

The All American Football League, United Football League, United States Football League, Fall Experimental Football League, Major League Football and North American Football League all have something in common -- {{ vc_btn:title=Learn+More&shape=square&link=url%3Ahttps%253A%252F%252Fwww.forbes.com%252Fsites%252Fdarrenheitner%252F2018%252F03%252F21%252Fwhy-a-new-football-league-thinks-it-has-what-it-takes-to-survive%252F%252338bb2810555a%7C%7Ctarget%3A%2520_blank%7C }}

Charlie Ebersol The Latest To Try Hand At Spring Football League

Vince McMahon in January announced plans to launch a new XFL by ‘20. At a media event in N.Y. this morning, Charlie Ebersol announced his plans to launch a competing, single-entity spring football league called the Alliance of American Football in February. Longtime NBC Sports boss Dick Ebersol, Charlie’s father and a driving force behind the original XFL, will be on the AAF's BOD. The AAF carries a roster of high-profile investors including The Chernin Group and Founders Fund, which was an early investor in Facebook, Space-X and Lyft. M Ventures, entrepreneur Keith Rabois and former NFLer Jared Allen also are investing in the league. Charlie Ebersol would not say how much he raised or how much the league needs to succeed. “Getting a lot of money was obviously important, but getting the right money was even more important,” Ebersol said. “All of these previous attempts have been based on the idea of a one- or two-year business model. I went out and said, ‘Look, I need money for seven-to-10 years.’ They were the type of people that jumped on board.” The AAF already has a deal in place with CBS Sports, which has committed to show the league’s first game in primetime on its broadcast network on Feb. 9. That is the week following Super Bowl LII, which will be produced by CBS. The broadcast network also has committed to show the league’s first championship game in primetime the weekend of April 26-28. CBS Sports Network will carry a weekly regular-season game. All games will be live streamed for free via the league’s app, which will allow for an in-game fantasy component. {{ vc_btn:title=Learn+More&shape=square&link=url%3Ahttps%253A%252F%252Fwww.sportsbusinessdaily.com%252FDaily%252FMorning-Buzz%252F2018%252F03%252F20%252FAlliance-of-American-Football.aspx%7C%7Ctarget%3A%2520_blank%7C }}

XFL documentary maker plans new football league

While Vince McMahon promises to bring back a revamped XFL in 2020, a son of McMahon's partner in the original short-lived XFL venture said his football league will come first. And some big NFL names will be involved. Charlie Ebersol, who directed a documentary on the XFL that aired last year as part of ESPN's 30 for 30 series, announced Tuesday that his league, the Alliance of American Football, plans to debut Feb. 9, 2019, the week after Super Bowl LIII. The season will run 10 weeks and will have 50-man teams. {{ vc_btn:title=Learn+More&shape=square&link=url%3Ahttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.espn.com%252Fnfl%252Fstory%252F_%252Fid%252F22844453%252Fxfl-documentary-maker-plans-own-football-league%7C%7Ctarget%3A%2520_blank%7C }}

New Pro Football League Sets 2019 Debut With CBS Sports Pact

Charlie Ebersol made a documentary about why the XFL failed. Now he’s set to launch an eight-team pro football league in 2019 with a CBS Sports broadcast deal and a roster of ex-NFL players in executive and advisory roles – a year ahead of WWE chairman Vince McMahon’s planned XFL reboot.