The USFL is set to return in April…we think.
The owners and executives of the original USFL have formally filed a lawsuit to block Fox from launching a league that uses the brand and team names of the spring league that was founded in 1983.
According to the lawsuit, a group of owners and executives from the original USFL claim that Fox’s new league has “no association” with the original and has no claim “to the name and logo of the original league, its team names, and team logos.”
The plaintiffs, which refer to themselves as “the Real USFL,” says they possess all rights and interest in USFL trademarks and they are wanting the court to force Fox to immediately stop using any USFL branding. They are also asking for Fox to hand over ownership of the league website and any financial information.
The plaintiff alleges that Fox’s USFL “is an unabashed counterfeit,” and that Fox has taken the league’s name, eight team names, and eight team logos “to which it has no right.”
“It has traded on the false narrative that Fox’s League and USFL teams are the offspring of the original,” the complaint contends at paragraph 4. “They are not.”
Last year when concerns were brought to Fox, they claimed that the USFL had been defunct for more than 30 years, and that it had abandoned its trademarks. Fox allegedly made it clear that it “had no intention of discussing the matter further.”
“Fox could have easily started its own league with new teams, but instead chose to take the goodwill and nostalgia of the original league without the permission of the people who actually created it,” attorney Alex Brown said in a press release. “Fox can’t dispute that the ‘Real USFL’ marks are recognizable and valued because they’re using them and purposefully confusing its league with the original. Rather than do the right thing, Fox has chosen to try and bully the prior owners into submission. That’s not going to happen.”
This lawsuit is now putting in danger that the new league will be able to start on time, if at all.
This has to make the folks over at the XFL pretty happy as they are set to begin play in 2023.