The USFL is the first spring football league to make it a full 10-week season since the original XFL in 2001. Last weekend the league wrapped up the semi-finals, and the Birmingham Stallions and Philadelphia Stars are set to meetup this weekend in the inaugural USFL Championship.
With the first season nearly in the books, we’ve recently heard confirmation that season two is a go for the USFL. Beyond that, the league is looking to expand into more hubs. At the moment, it sounds like the league working to move to either two or four hubs next year. As for where, we’ve heard New Jersey and Detroit could be potential candidates.
We’ve looked at the ratings all season, and the playoffs are no different. With the semi-finals complete, how did they fare in viewership? Thanks to Seth Lessans, we have the numbers.
Do you know what time it is? It’s #USFL Playoff rating’s time! The first game on FOX (Stars v Generals) managed 957k viewers while the NBC game (Breakers v Stallions) scored 998k viewers. So how does this compare to other sports? Keep reading… 1/
— Seth “Collector of Footballs” Lessans (@TujuMaster) June 28, 2022
The early matchup between the New Jersey Generals and Philadelphia Stars pulled in 957k viewers on FOX. This is a step up from previous weeks, so that definitely promising.
The New Orleans Breakers and Birmingham Stallions came in just shy of 1M, drawing 998k viewers for the battle for the south.
To add some context to these numbers, the USFL more than doubled the MLS broadcast on NBC. Additionally, when compared to the first round of the NHL Playoffs, the USFL topped the 768k avg per game.
Looking towards next week, we’d expect to see the championship top 1 Million viewers. We were close this week, but with everything on the line, it’s sure to bring in a few extra eyes on the product.
Earlier this week it was reported that both FOX and NBC executives were happy with the product and viewership. On the NBC side, it was even stated that the USFL product is already profitable for them. John Ourand (Sport Business Journal) mentioned that the league has already sold over half of their ad sports for the 2023 season.
Beyond being the first spring league to complete a season since 2001, they’ll now become the first to host a second season in over three decades. The last to accomplish this feat was the original USFL.
Which team are you rooting for in the USFL Championship this Sunday? Let us know your thoughts down in the comments below or join the conversation on Discord.