Rick Neuheisel named head coach of Alliance Phoenix team

The Alliance of American Football, a new professional football league, introduced the Alliance Phoenix team and head coach Rick Neuheisel on Friday.

Co-Founder and CEO Charlie Ebersol said that Neuheisel made it “his life’s mission” to bring a team to the Phoenix/Tempe area when he found out about the league.

Neuheisel is a 1979 graduate of McClintock High School. For Neuheisel, returning home to Tempe to be head coach of the Alliance Phoenix team is a “thrill,” he said.

“I can’t even begin to describe the feeling of returning to a place where I played in 1977 for a State Championship,” Neuheisel said. “This is the perfect fit for me…Where else do you want to be in January, February, March, April than right here in the Valley of the Sun.”

Phoenix is the fifth Alliance team introduced. Teams have been introduced in Orlando, Atlanta, Memphis and Salt Lake thus far with three more expected to be announced to make up the eight teams in the league.

Teams will play a 10-game regular season, with five home games and five away games. Home games for the Alliance Phoenix team will be played at Sun Devil Stadium.

The official team name is still to be determined. Ebersol said that research is being done to designate a name that reflects the community.

The Alliance league season is set to begin on Feb. 9, 2019.