Vince McMahon has had a very particular dream for decades: He wants to create a professional football league. As Forbes writes, he first attempted this in 2001 when he joined forces with NBC to create the XFL. The league played its first (and, so far, last) season in 2001, and as ESPN notes, it attempted to stand out with gimmicks, flashy cheerleaders, and a wilder set of rules than the NFL. However, the XFL failed to captivate the public, and lost McMahon and NBC a whopping $70 million. To this day, it remains the WWE mogul’s biggest financial failure.
Despite this significant setback, the dream remained. In early 2018, Vince McMahon announced that he was giving XFL a second shot, and this time he would do it all by himself. McMahon plans to use $100 million of his own money to finance the spring league, which is set to kick off in 2020 with eight teams that he will also own. Although some have expressed doubts regarding the born-again league’s chances, McMahon seems to feel confident. He says he aims to keep the games at a more manageable two-hour length and will not allow players with criminal records to compete. As a likely nod to his good relationship with President Donald Trump (who has frequently criticized NFL players who kneel during the national anthem), McMahon has also said that he’ll keep social and political issues off the field.