Tampa Bay Bandits, remaining USFL teams to play 2022 season in Alabama

WPTV, WFLX to simulcast first game of reborn USFL
USFL to play in Birmingham, Alabama, in 2022
Posted at 3:19 PM, Jan 25, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-25 15:26:23-05

TAMPA, Fla. — The reincarnation of the Tampa Bay Bandits will play their inaugural season in Alabama, the USFL announced Tuesday.

A news release from the USFL said all eight teams in the reborn spring football league will play their inaugural season in Birmingham, Alabama. The games will be split between newly opened Protective Stadium, home of college football's UAB Blazers, and historic Legion Field.

Tampa Bay, which recently introduced former Kansas City Chiefs head coach Todd Haley in the same position with the Bandits, will join the Birmingham Stallions, Houston Gamblers and New Orleans Breakers in the South Division. The Michigan Panthers, Pittsburgh Maulers, New Jersey Generals and Philadelphia Stars will play in the North Division.

Todd Haley, Kansas City Chiefs head coach in 2011
Kansas City Chiefs head coach Todd Haley looks at the scoreboard during the first half of a game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Sunday, Nov. 27, 2011, at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Mo.

The first game between the Generals and Stallions will debut April 16 at 7:30 p.m. on WPTV. It will be simulcast on WFLX.

NBC will produce the pregame, halftime and postgame coverage, while Fox will produce the game coverage, which will be broadcast on both networks.

"Having two broadcast networks combine and start something like the USFL is not only unique but represents our commitment to making spring football succeed," Pete Bevacqua, chairman of NBC Sports, said in a statement.

The game will become the first scheduled sporting event to be broadcast live at the same time on network television since the inaugural Super Bowl in 1967, when CBS and NBC shared the duties.

"The first game played in any new league is itself historical and having the USFL's inaugural game simulcast by NBC and Fox makes it even more so," Eric Shanks, Fox Sports chief executive officer and executive producer, said in a statement.

NBC and Fox will also split coverage of the USFL throughout the season.