Ron Jaworski Leading AFL Effort To Launch Indoor Game In China
A group fronted by ESPN NFL analyst and AFL Philadelphia Soul co-Owner Ron Jaworski was in Beijing yesterday to announce that the AFL is "working on building a bridgehead in China," according to Dusty Lane of CHINA DAILY. Jaworski said, "They will pick up on football very quickly. I watched the Olympics and watched those weightlifters, and I think I'd like to have some of those guys on my offensive line." Lane reported the group will stage a series of exhibitions next fall, "then launch what it hopes" will be a six-team, 10-game schedule in Oct. '14. Games will be held in the fall and winter "to allow AFL coaches and trainers the freedom to come to China during their offseason and teach their Chinese counterparts how to build teams on their own." The league will begin as a mix of Chinese and U.S. players, "with the goal of converting to all-Chinese rosters as quickly as possible." Soul co-Owner Marty Judge said, "Our goal is in China, for China." Former NFL coach Dick Vermeil also is "backing the project" (CHINA DAILY, 8/27).