Graphic: Igor Lazarevic
In unfortunate news out of Mexico, Fútbol Americano de México, FAM, one of the two professional football leagues in Mexico, has folded after four years of operation.
The announcement comes after a 2022 season where they returned from a two year hiatus from the COVID-19 pandemic culminating in the Rojos de la Ciudad de México winning the Balón de Plata against the favored Parrilleros de Monterrey 21-14.
On Instagram on September 30, the league sent a message announcing its dissolution which read:
To our fans:
We appreciate these years of passion, dedication, enjoying national and foreign talent, sports rivalries, thank you for being part of the sport we love so much, American football.
The American Football League of Mexico (FAM) has made the decision to cancel all activity of our organization as of 2023.
Terminating the relationship with the FAM franchisees from this statement, valuing the effort made by them for the continuation of our league.
During this past season, there were organizational issues around the league related to finances and according to a number of sources the league was viewed as being on shaky financial grounds compared to the more prosperous Liga de Fútbol Americano Profesional (LFA). The league’s main sponsor, YOXa sports trading company, was basically carrying the entire load. In fact, the league was officially named FAM-YOX.
After their last regular season game, Carlos Lazo, the owner of YOX and the Rojos announced that his team would play in both the FAM and the LFA as well. Most were skeptical as to how that would work since this year the schedules of the two leagues overlapped, causing many to believe this is just a smokescreen for the Rojos to transfer to the rival LFA.
Then after the season ended and the Rojos won it all, they were presented officially as a member of LFA. With that, the FAM was suddenly without their main sponsor. This was clearly a money-saving move on the part of YOX and a message that they did not view FAM as viable.
The Rojos became the second of three teams so far to transfer to the LFAthe other two being the Rarámuris de Chihuahua who were announced back in May, and the Jefes de Ciudad Juárez, who were announced on October 17. This brings the total number of teams for the LFA to 10, with a potential to bring as many as two more from the FAM before the 2023 season gets underway.