AAF title game leaves Las Vegas, heads to Texas

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Goodbye, AAF title game. 

The new football league’s first championship is leaving Las Vegas for Frisco, Texas. Originally scheduled for April 27 at Sam Boyd Stadium, the game instead will be played at the Ford Center at The Star. 

In a statement, the Alliance cited its close relationship with Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, who operates the 12,000-seat facility, as reason for the move. Jones was spotted wearing an AAF cap at last month’s NFL combine. 

“The Alliance has built a foundation of high-quality football, revolutionary technology and world-class partnerships with the NFL, CBS and Turner Sports,” Jones said in a statement. “It was only natural that we at the Cowboys organization would want to join that great group of partners. I have always believed that our great game of football could use a league to give players the shot they needed to make it to the NFL, and Bill Polian, Tom Dundon and Charlie Ebersol, have done just that. We are proud to be able to host their inaugural Championship Game.” 

The facility is shared by the Cowboys, the city of Frisco and the Frisco Independent School District. 

While the title game’s new home is just a third the size of Sam Boyd, the Dallas-Fort Worth area is more geographically appealing for many Alliance teams. In its statement, the AAF also pointed out that its Texas team, the San Antonio Commanders, leads the league in home attendance. 

“Jerry Jones isn’t just a close friend of Tom, Charlie and mine, but he is also a great supporter of our league,” said Polian, the league’s co-founder. “To be able to showcase our brand of top-flight football on NFL Draft weekend in the state-of-the-art football facility built by Jerry is a Texas-sized win for our league. 

“Texas has played a huge support role in the launch of The Alliance. Our San Antonio Commanders average nearly 30,000 in attendance for home games, and we are sure football fans in Dallas/Fort Worth will support our Championship.” 

Saturday

Orlando Apollos at Memphis Express: The Apollos bounced back from their first loss with a 36-6 shellacking of Atlanta and claimed a playoff berth in the process. Though new Memphis quarterback Johnny Manziel played sparingly, the Express found some offense in a come-from-behind win over Birmingham. OVER

San Diego Fleet at Salt Lake Stallions: The Fleet remained winless on the road last week while the Stallions covered as a road underdog. STALLIONS

Sunday

Atlanta Legends at Birmingham Iron: After showing signs of life with Aaron Murray at quarterback, the Legends have dropped back-to-back games. UNDER

Arizona Hotshots at San Antonio Commanders: Are the Hotshots back? Arizona amassed more than 500 total yards in a 32-15 win over San Diego. The Hotshots have won two in a row after three straight defeats. OVER

Last week: 3-2

Season: 8-14

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About the Author

Ched Whitney

Ched Whitney has been a journalist in Las Vegas since 1994. He worked for the Las Vegas Review-Journal for 18 years, where he was the paper’s art director for 12. Since becoming a freelancer in 2012, his work has appeared at ESPN.com, AOL, The Seattle Times and UNLV Magazine, among others. ​

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