If at first you don’t succeed…

Ford isn’t reviving the Esdel. Theranos won’t be coming back. And except for a brief appearance at the end of Guardians of the Galaxy, it’s unlikely Marvel will make another Howard the Duck movie.

But Vince McMahon, bless him, is reviving a football league that failed spectacularly in 2001.

The one thing everyone remembers about the original XFL.

Here’s a YouTube video about the new XFL, the long, sad history of spring football leagues, and some signs McMahon might have learned from the mistakes made nineteen years ago.

Some of these rule changes (including a 25-second play clock and a football version of the NHL shootout in overtime) sound intriguing, and the new XFL might find its niche in giving players too young for the NFL a chance to get paid instead of making money for bloated university athletic departments and the hopelessly corrupt and exploitative NCAA. I wouldn’t put any money on XFL 2.0 lasting, but I’ll give it a chance starting this weekend.

By the way, the most promising attempt at a spring NFL competitor was the USFL, which hung around for three seasons in the early eighties. And guess who drove that one into the ground?

Football and Family Law

A Pittsburgh couple are battling in family court over whether their teenaged son should be allowed to play high school football:

A father, John Orsini, has gone to court to prevent the youngest of his three sons from playing high school football because, he said, scientific studies have revealed the perils of repeated blows to the head — especially for an athlete, like his son, who has a history of concussions. The boy’s mother, Mr. Orsini’s ex-wife, believes he should be allowed to continue playing because he understands the risks.

“You always heard it sometimes, when one parent would say I don’t want him doing that because he might get hurt,” said Allan E. Mayefsky, a leading divorce lawyer and the former president of the New York chapter of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. “Usually, we thought the parent was just overprotective. Now, it’s more of a real medical issue.”

In the decade since scientists began to link football to long-term brain damage, the debate over the future of the sport has moved from research laboratories to the halls of Congress, to locker rooms and owners’ suites. Families, too, have grappled with the question of how dangerous the game is — and now parents’ concerns are surfacing in legal battles between divorced couples, leading to an increase in fights over whether to amend custody orders to prevent their children from playing the game.