Today, the Ultimate Gaming League (UGL) and Antares Gaming announced the launch of four gaming franchises that will be owned and operated by current and former NFL stars and pro players. Da Fam Gaming, Ochocinco Gaming, 4 Brothers Gaming, and Glitxh Gaming will invite millions of fans to not just watch the gameplay, but to join the team. Once fans join, they will have the chance to show off their content to a larger audience and earn exclusive rewards.
The official launch of the franchises will kick off with a draft on Monday, Dec. 21, where the captains of each team will bring on members to compete in seasons of Call of Duty, NBA 2K, Madden, and FIFA.
Da Fam Gaming is led by captain and San Francisco 49ers quarterback Josh Johnson and legendary running back Marshawn Lynch. Baltimore Ravens cornerback Marcus Peters and pro Madden player BAM will also be joining.
“Da Fam is an extension of ourselves, a way to show the world what we’re all about,” said Josh Johnson, who also serves as the Co-founder of Fam 1st Family Foundation, in a press release. “Just like with our foundation, Da Fam is a way for us to reach a new generation of thinkers and activists, connecting everyone together to build a better future. If you’re committed to make a better, more connected world and you’re a beast on the sticks, we want you.”
Ochocinco Gaming is headed by wide receiver Chad “Ochocinco” Johnson. He’ll be joined by cornerbacks Darius Slay from the Philadelphia Eagles and Desmond King from the Tennessee Titans.
“UGL and Antares are the next steps in the evolution of how gaming teams are built and run, and Ochocinco Gaming is at the pinnacle of that movement,” said Ochocinco. “Other teams—like Marshawn’s for example—simply can’t compete with mine.”
Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Maxx Crosby, captain of 4 Brothers Gaming, will be joined by running back Josh Jacobs and quarterback and gaming manager Brogan Roback.
“Gaming has always brought me, my friends and teammates together no matter where life took us,” Crosby stated. “Gaming builds a brotherhood no matter what walk of life you come from.”
Captain of Glitxh Gaming, Sidney Jones IV, is joined by NFL wide receivers Preston Williams of the Miami Dolphins and Rashard Higgins of the Cleveland Browns. Also joining is celebrity gamer and streamer BasicallyIDoWrk.
Each franchise will be “recruiting their army” of influencers to start off the first event – the Call of Duty Deathmatch Pros vs. Joes tournament, featuring 16 NFL athletes and the UGL community on Dec. 15.
“This is about building a diverse community of all ages, genders, races and ethnicities and opening up the broad possibilities gaming has to offer,” said Dushan Batrovic, CEO of Antares Gaming. “We enable celebs to build a real connection with their fans. Sure, if you’re good at Madden or CoD, come join one of our four launch teams. But that’s not all. We want the musicians, actors, comedians and philosophers who love gaming as well. Gaming is great but it could be so much more.”
Players from around the world have the opportunity to be drafted for competitive spots on each team. All spectators, gamers, and content creators are invited to be participants. More information and applications for the league can be found here.