Key Points:

  • UFL’s gradual development strategy and talent concentration
  • Anticipation of new UFL rules and their impact
  • Mike Nolan’s perspective on coaching and his experience with Dan Campbell

In an insightful interview on WRIF, Mike Nolan, the head coach of the Michigan Panthers in the United Football League (UFL), shared his thoughts on the league’s development, upcoming rule changes, his semi-retired status, and experiences with Dan Campbell. The conversation provided insights into Nolan’s outlook on the future of spring football and his coaching philosophy.

UFL’s Future Development Strategy

Mike Nolan expressed confidence in the UFL’s strategic approach to growth and development. He emphasized the importance of a gradual progression, starting from basic steps and advancing steadily, a philosophy advocated by Daryl Johnson.

“I think they’re starting the right way and kind of build it as Daryl Johnson has know, kind of start crawling, then get to walking, then get to jogging and running.”

Anticipated UFL Rule Changes

The upcoming week is significant for the UFL as it is expected to bring new rule announcements. Nolan discussed the merger of different rule sets from the XFL and USFL and expressed his anticipation for the revised rules.

Within this week, I believe next week we’re supposed to get some of the rules because the XFL had a set of rules that were a little different than NFL. USFL had a few rules that were different from the NFL as well.”

Concept of Punting Instead of Kickoffs

Nolan shared an innovative idea concerning kickoffs, suggesting a punt instead. He believes this could improve the safety and dynamics of the game.

“One of the ideas to replace the kickoff that I heard that was really a pretty darn good idea was if you punt the ball rather than kick it off, you get a better hang time, you get better coverage.”

Nolan’s Semi-Retired Status and Motivations

Discussing his current phase of life, Nolan mentioned he is semi-retired and enjoys focusing on helping players reach their NFL aspirations, moving away from the more ego-driven aspects of coaching.

“It’s a lot of fun. I kind of semi retired, I guess you could say, after the 2020 season… It’s not about me anymore, if that makes perfect sense. The ego is kind of gone.”

Coaching Experience with Dan Campbell

Reflecting on his time working with Dan Campbell, Nolan praised Campbell’s people skills and his fit as the head coach for the Detroit Lions, highlighting his ability to motivate and lead the team effectively.

“I coached with Dan twice, we were together at the Miami Dolphins for two years, and then three years at the New Orleans Saints… He’s a great guy… He’s a perfect fit for them.”


Mike Nolan’s interview with Meltdown on WRIF provided valuable insights into the UFL’s strategic growth, the excitement around the upcoming rule changes, innovative ideas for game safety, and personal reflections on coaching. Nolan’s experience and perspective offer a unique look into the dynamics of professional football coaching and the evolving landscape of the UFL.

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author avatar
Mark Perry Editor
Mark Perry, a devoted sports journalist and founder of UFL News Hub, has been a key figure in XFL, USFL and UFL coverage since 2018.

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