UFL Dispersal Draft by the numbers

United Football League (UFL)
United Football League (UFL)

With the former USFL and XFL merging to form the UFL, sixteen football teams from the former two leagues have become eight. The “dispersal” process to assign players to the remaining teams is now underway.

Obviously, the only group that benefits from this downsizing are the directors of player personnel and coaches in the newly formed UFL, as they suddenly have a double-sized pool of players to choose from. On the other hand, approximately half the players who played for the USFL and XFL in 2023 suddenly find themselves looking for a new playing opportunity.

First Dispersal Draft

In the first round of the dispersal draft, held on January 5, 2024, teams were allowed to protect a maximum of 42 players from their former roster and pick an additional 20 players from teams of their former league that were being liquidated.

Through this process, every team protected 42 players, but not all teams picked 20 players from other teams. Former USFL teams Houston (Gamblers) Roughnecks, Memphis Showboats, and Michigan Panthers maxed out their picks with 20, but the Birmingham Stallions only picked 11 players. Meanwhile, the XFL teams San Antonio Brahmas took 20 players, while the Arlington Renegades took 13, the St. Louis Battlehawks picked 12, and the D.C. defenders picked only 11.

Super Draft

Going into the next phase of the dispersal draft being held on January 15, 2024, nicknamed the “Super Draft,” players not protected or selected in this January 5th draft will be placed in a pool of players who will be available for all UFL teams to choose from, regardless of previous league, in another round of player dispersal on January 15.

To make up a projected training camp roster of 75 players, each UFL team has between 13 and 22 spots yet to fill.

The Numbers

Team Players Protected Jan 5 Picks Current roster number Potential Number of Jan 15 Selections
Arlington Renegades 42 13 55 20
Birmingham Stallions 42 11 53 22
D.C. Defenders 42 11 53 22
Houston Roughnecks 42 20 62 13
Memphis Showboats 42 20 62 13
Michigan Panthers 42 20 62 13
San Antonio Brahmas 42 20 62 13
St. Louis Battlehawks 42 12 54 21

Looking Forward

Each UFL team will arrive at a combined training camp in Arlington, Texas, on February 24, 2024, with 75 players on their roster. Afterward, each UFL team will travel to their respective markets to play games and return to the training hub in Arlington between games.

It is anticipated that the UFL 2024 game and TV schedule on FOX, ABC, and ESPN will be released in the middle of January. However, we already know the first game on the schedule will feature the champions of each former league, the Birmingham Stallions and Arlington Renegades, on March 30, 2024. It has not been confirmed, but the expectation is that this game will be held in Arlington at Choctaw Stadium.

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