The start of the USFL's second season will take place where the league's inaugural season ended. The league announced on Wednesday that their 2023 season will begin with a game between the Pittsburgh Maulers and New Jersey Generals at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium, which hosted the league's three playoff games this past summer. The game will take place on Sunday, April 23.
The league also announced that the Maulers and Generals will play each of their remaining games in Canton, Ohio. The USFL is branching out this year after playing all of their regular season games last season in Birmingham, Alabama. Canton will again host the league's postseason.
"The USFL is excited that the Pittsburgh Maulers and the New Jersey Generals will practice and play games in Canton during the 2023 regular season," said Daryl Johnston, the USFL Executive Vice President of Football Operations. "The outstanding regional support we received during our first postseason from football fans in Ohio and Pennsylvania, including the great city of Pittsburgh, coupled with our successful partnership with the Hall of Fame Village, led to this moment."
The Maulers recently made news after announcing that they were switching jersey colors ahead of the upcoming season. The Maulers have joined Pittsburgh's other pro sports teams after switching to black and gold uniforms.
We had to make a change for season 2 😏🔥— Pittsburgh Maulers (@USFLMaulers) January 24, 2023
Your Pittsburgh Maulers will now be BLACK & GOLD ⚫️🟡 pic.twitter.com/RC4zcEmmPe
New Maulers head coach Ray Horton sees the move to Canton -- which is roughly 90 miles from downtown Pittsburgh and less than 60 miles from downtown Cleveland -- as a chance to build a regional fan base.
"Because I've been a defensive coach for both the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Cleveland Browns, I know how passionate football fans are in Western Pennsylvania and Northeast Ohio," Horton said. "As the USFL works to eventually move the Maulers into Pittsburgh, playing the 2023 regular season games in Canton presents an incredible opportunity for fans throughout the region to check us out and see first-hand the high-quality professional football being played in the USFL.
"My staff and I are working tirelessly to build a championship-caliber team, so we're excited about having fans visit the Pro Football Hall of Fame stadium to have a fun time and hopefully become lifelong Maulers fans."
The Maulers' Canton roommates, the Generals, saw their 2022 season end in Canton after falling to the Philadelphia Stars in the first round of the playoffs. New Jersey, which went 9-1 during the regular season, boasted a talented roster that included 2022 league MVP and current Dallas Cowboys Pro Bowl returner KaVontae Turpin.