Birmingham, Ala. will soon be the new home of a new, yet-to-be-named professional football team franchise.
The Alliance of American Football (AAF) announced the decision on Monday to include Birmingham as part of a new eight-team league, which will start a twelve-week season starting in February of 2019, culminating in a championship game in April of 2019.
Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin shared his excitement over the announcement via Facebook by sharing a video of Mike Vick welcoming the city to the alliance.
“Welcome to Birmingham AAF! Excited to hit the field with you! #AllianceBirmingham.,” Woodfin posted.
Other teams in the league include: Atlanta, Memphis, Orlando, Phoenix, San Diego and Salt Lake City. The Birmingham team will play its first two seasons at legion field, then move to the new stadium planned for the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex (BJCC), according to the Birmingham Business Journal.
A head coach has not been selected for the team, but the league is expected to make further announcements later this week regarding all the details of the team.
With a pro-football team coming to the city, the controversial decision made by the Birmingham City Council in March to invest $90 million over the next 30 years to renovate the BJCC and construct of a new downtown stadium, doesn’t look so terrible.
However, Birmingham has experienced problems in the past, of getting professional football leagues to hold. The city has been home to several leagues over the past 20 years, and while many developed a notable fan base in the area, the teams “ultimately couldn’t overcome financial or other challenges that come with trying to compete in the shadow of the NFL and college football,” according to the Birmingham Business Journal.