In a surprise move by owner William Clay Ford this week, Detroit Lions representatives announced the team's decision to leave the NFL, in favor of a competitive arena better suited to the team.
"With only two wins notched this year and none in the 2008 season, we feel that we'll have a better chance to win in a different league setting", says head coach Jim Schwartz. "The Michigan Catholic League will provide us both that opportunity and competitive challenge".
While the Lions overall record since 2001 stands at only 33 wins in 137 attempts, some critics feel that the Catholic High School League may be too difficult for the struggling NFL team. "Some of our boys stand over 6 feet tall and teeter on 300 pounds", says Detroit based De LaSalle High School coach Brick Hardarm. "I'm not sure it will be the cake walk they think it will be". One De LaSalle defensive lineman added, "Bring those pansies into our house and we'll show them what pain is all about."
Transitional plans are already underway. To qualify for entry into the Catholic League, all players must be enrolled into an approved Catholic high school program, which still fits well with most Lion player's needs for a basic education. High School classrooms will be constructed at Ford Field, while Franciscan Order monks and priests have been secured to staff the school. The proposed name for the school will be "Our Lady of Corporal Punishment".
2010 high school football schedules are being modified to include the OLCP Lions, and include a home opener at Ford Field against the always tough, University of Detroit Jesuit. Other cross town rivals will include Birmingham Brother Rice, Orchard Lake St. Marys, and Catholic Central High School.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell says, "We're sorry of course, to see them go. I mean, we have teams standing in line to play those guys. Now we need to change our scheduled and college draft procedures". Lions Coach Schwartz disagrees with Goodell on any changes to the draft. "We'll still need to draft key college players to help make us competitive, even in the Catholic Leagues." Goodell was overheard trying to explain to Schwartz that college players might not be interested in going back to play high school ball. Schwartz replied, "Oh, yeah. That's probably true."
Tickets for the OLCP Lions 2010 season go on sale in April 2010. A family four pack costs only $12, including vouchers for free hot dogs and small beverages.