Week 9 of the XFL is looking once again pretty average when it comes to viewership, still underperforming expectations set during the minor league’s 2020 ‘XFL 2.0’ return as fans dubbed it before Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson’s purchase and reboot of the league from Vince McMahon several years ago.
After pulling in 760,000 views this past week, now the league will have to face a very real competition for views thanks to the returning USFL which is still riding high from their very popular 2022 season. This direct competition for the XFL will be their first major stress test to prove whether or not they have the ‘it’ factor that can help them remain relevant.
Week 8 of the XFL brought some impressive numbers for the league as the Houston Roughnecks faced the San Antonio Brahmas delivered a season high of 2 million views over on ABC while the Vegas Vipers competed abasing the St. Louis Battlehawks on ESPN came in with 1.18 million.
Things dipped however this weekend when the Roughnecks vs Vipers game averaged roughly 878,00 viewers. Saturday’s Orlando Guardians vs Brahmas game was met with an underwhelming 235,000 views. Sunday’s game with the popular D.C. Defenders facing the Arlington Renegades performed better, just barely breaking past half a million with 670,000.
How did the USFL do while having their games air at the exact same time as their immediate competitors? According to XFL News Hub, “The returning USFL averaged 837,000 viewers in their afternoon game and 864,000 viewers in their primetime slot.”
Sunday was another smacker, with the USFL bringing to the table 974,000 viewers over at NBC as the Michigan Panthers faced the Houston Gamblers.
All this to say, who is the real winner as the two small leagues compete for the love of football fans who are more typically accustomed to the far more familiar faces over at the heavily scrutinized NFL? Or those that know the top players across the board for college football?
Football fans, who love the game for the sake of the game with an added layer of fans who feel the NFL specifically has become too toxic and far too woke for its own good.
The combined 1.64 million viewers who watched either the XFL or the USFL on Sunday showed that there is an audience at least who just wants to enjoy a good game. Who will end up on top though as the two leagues compete for the love of fans? Only time will tell.
Which league is getting your attention? Let us know in the comments below and across social media!