Donald Trump

How Trump's USFL Debacle Predicted His Presidency

Matt Welch talks with sportswriter Jeff Pearlman about his new book, Football for a Buck


Sportswriter Jeff Pearlman has a new book out in three weeks titled Football for a Buck: The Crazy Rise and Crazier Demise of the USFL. Because this is 2018, the book has a trailer. Because the collapse of the USFL—which was a competitor to the National Football League from 1983-85—is inextricably linked to a certain sitting president, you need not imagine what the book trailer focuses on:

I will be interviewing Pearlman tomorrow this morning during the first hour of my last guest-hosting gig this week with Stand UP! with Pete Dominick on SiriusXM Insight (channel 121) from 9-12 a.m. ET, asking how Trump's '80s pro-football experience has colored his obsession with the NFL three decades later, and his overall managerial/business approach.

Other interview guests are scheduled to include:

* Journalist (and recent Reason podcast interview subject) Nancy Rommelmann, who will talk about the narrative-complicating charges and counter-charges and counter-counter-charges about Harvey Weinstein accuser Asia Argento paying a settlement to man she allegedly slept with when he was 17 years old.

* Comedian (and Nick Gillespie-debater on the topic of libertarianism and comedy) Jeremy McLellan on his unusual journey in becoming a comic beloved by Muslim audiences.

* L.A. Times columnist and Reason contributor (and recent Gillespie interview subject) Gustavo Arellano on his recent column thanking former California governor Pete Wilson for inspiring a backlash among the Golden State's Mexican-American population.

There will be more space than usual for slinging the bull with callers; take the bait! 1-877-974-7487.

NEXT: Brickbat: Just Walk It Off

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  1. I will be interviewing Pearlman tomorrow morning…

    So you’re saying Friday morning’s show? This is terrible planning. You put this post out today and give everyone a full day to forget about it.

  2. Lol. The song.

    1. Yeah, that should have come with a trigger warning for Trump fans.

  3. For Mr. Rap singer:

    He who lives in glass houses….something…I forget….yaddee-yaddaa…blah, blah.

    Ooo nelly!

    OMG! OMG! Trump bankruptcied!

  4. The USFL “debacle” is just like the casino “debacle” – Trump made a few bucks and a ton of publicity gambling with other people’s money so he counts that as a win. The investors that lost their asses? Those were dumb losers in Trump’s book. And never mind that, had things been run competently by somebody who had some skin in the game and understood win/win situations, Trump could have made a hell of a lot more money. It’s the greed and the selfishness of people who aren’t putting their own ass on the line that leads to incentivized failure – and that’s politics in a nutshell.

    1. I was a huge Baltimore/Philly Stars fan. It was decent football.

  5. Thumbs down.

  6. “How Trump’s USFL Debacle Predicted His Presidency”

    Weird, I don’t remember it being economically successful…

  7. USFL was fucking awesome. T put Flutie and Herschel Walker in the same backfield. Jim Kelly Steve Young Chuck Fusina and several others opted for the USFL instead of NFL

    it was anti-establishment. on network tv.

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