Steve Spurrier, who was the University of Florida's first Heisman Trophy winner and later coached the Gators to six Southeastern Conference titles and the program’s first national title, is returning to football.
On Saturday, The Alliance of American Football, a new professional spring startup league set to debut in Orlando next February a week after the Super Bowl, announced Spurrier as its first coach of an as-yet unnamed Orlando team, CBS Sports reported.
Spurrier, born in Miami Beach 72 years ago, joined the Alliance's co-founder Charlie Ebersol and former NFL star Hines Ward, the executive director of player relations, on "CBS This Morning: Saturday."
The trio chatted about the new league, which will feature eight teams in a 10-game season. Alliance games will run two-and-a-half hours, with 30 seconds in between plays and feature players who are not in the NFL.
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"It's a fine line between who makes a team and who doesn't in the NFL. We don't have a minor league of professional football," Spurrier said on the CBS progam. "Those players get a chance to continue playing even if they don't play at the highest level and then maybe someday they play well enough to go to the highest level."
Games will be played at the University of Central Florida's Spectrum Stadium. Season-ticket seat deposits will go on sale beginning at 4 p.m. April 17 at aaf.com. Ticket pricing and seating will be announced in the summer, The Orlando Sentinel reported.
Spurrier last coached for the South Carolina Gamecocks and resigned from the college team in 2015 after a successful 10-year run. He served as a consultant and ambassador at the University of Florida, a role he'll continue until the Alliance's season begins on Feb. 9.
In his days on the field as a player, Spurrier was a two-time All-American quarterback and the University of Florida’s first Heisman Trophy winner in 1966. The next year he joined the San Francisco 49ers.
In 2016, UF named the Steve Spurrier-Florida Field at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in his honor.
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