Thursday, June 10, 2010

Lingerie Football League: Fringe sport favorite prepares for its second season

Pretty soon it will be football season again. Athletes will put on their shoulder pads, helmets and sexy lingerie and hit the gridiron.
Of course, I’m talking about the Lingerie Football League, not the NFL.
Launched last year, the LFL is preparing for its second season. The league is holding its all-star game in Monterrey, Mexico, today. The LFL will show the game on its website, LFLUS.com, for free at 9 p.m. EST Friday June 18.
The LFL survived its inaugural season despite launching during the Great Recession and doing a poor job promoting its sport. At the end of last season, I wrote about changes that the LFL should make.
The LFL needs a national cable TV deal. It needs the exposure that advertiser-supported television can offer. That would generate interest among potential fans and likely would raise attendance at games. So far, LFL games only have been available on pay-per-view.
The LFL is doing a lousy job keeping fans informed. It’s always late posting scores, stats and news and doesn’t provide detailed game highlights or analysis.
The league failed at something as simple as posting the outcome of the 2010 championship game in February. As the blog Nerve noted, you couldn’t find the results anywhere on the Web after it was over.
The LFL has a decent Facebook page, a woefully out-of-date MySpace page (still lists the failed New York Majesty and Denver Dream franchises as active teams), and a pretty good blog, LFL Unlaced, for feature stories.
The LFL needs to be more open and encourage coverage from independent sports blogs. That’s where the good coverage is coming from. The mainstream press has largely ignored the LFL. And the league has to accept negative coverage as part of the deal.
The Bleacher Report had a good story recently about struggles some LFL teams were having. It also published a critical story about technical problems with the Lingerie Bowl.
And lighten up, LFL. Putting two players on probation for wearing too much during a photo shoot for the New Times of South Florida was a low blow. The Huffington Post covered the story as well.
The LFL has two new teams this year: the Orlando Fantasy and Baltimore Charm. Unfortunately none of the 10 teams are in the Tri-State Region, so fans around New York City are out of luck.
Single tear running down cheek. Sniff.

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