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Greater Birmingham Convention & Visitors Bureau makes commitment to USFL games

Published: Oct. 22, 2021 at 8:25 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Friday was a deadline for coming up with money to support efforts to bring all of the old teams of the USFL to Birmingham.

Fox Sports is behind efforts to create a spring football league.

The Greater Birmingham Convention & Visitors Bureau’s board of directors voted to put up $2 million to help in covering an estimated $3.7 million that will be necessary to cover operational costs of the league.

The bureau does not want to lose the chance at landing the USFL playing all of its games in Birmingham.

WBRC FOX6 News has obtained a memorandum of understanding that calls for Fox Sports putting all eight teams of the old USFL playing a 40 game schedule plus three championship games at Protective Stadium. The new spring league wants to start playing on April 15 through July 3.

This will be like the NBA when all of their teams played in a bubble during the pandemic. Fox Sports plans the spring football league as an attraction for TV.

The Greater Birmingham Convention & Visitors Bureau wanted to make the $2 million dollar commitment to ensure the project stays alive until other parties, including Birmingham, Jefferson County and some in the private sector can come up with funding.

The head of the bureau believes it’s worth the investment.

“It’s national exposure for Birmingham and Jefferson County for our sports facilities. It’s an opportunity. It’s heads and beds here. We are going to have people in Uptown. It’s going to be a great opportunity for local residents to come out into the spring,” said John Oros, CEO of the Greater Birmingham Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Birmingham will be offered for free two 30 second commercials during the games to promote the area. So far, Jefferson County and Birmingham have not committed any funding to the project. Possibly some private businesses could help cover some of the remaining $1.7 million dollars which will be needed to pull this off.

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