While the second season of the USFL is a few months away from kickoff, the league on Wednesday named Dr. Jim Ellis as its first chief medical officer.
Ellis will be tasked with leading USFL Player Health and Safety as well as “structuring new medical partnerships in current and future USFL cities,” the league said in a news release. Ellis comes to the USFL from the NFL, where he was the emergency preparedness consultant for NFL Player Health and Safety.
“This is a touchdown hire for the USFL and our players,” USFL president of football operations Brian Woods said in a statement. “One of the USFL’s most important success stories during our inaugural season was the comprehensive medical care our players received. Dr. Ellis becoming the USFL’s first-ever Chief Medical Officer will help us expand and surpass our already high standards for player health and safety as we head into Season 2.”
Ellis was previously a senior consultant for Medical Sports Group, which coordinated medical care for the NFL at the Super Bowl for more than 25 years, and was an emergency/physician associate team physician for the Atlanta Falcons for 13 seasons, among various other work in the sports-medical field.
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“Dr. Ellis’ extensive experience caring for athletes from a wide array of sports and his academic background emphasizes the USFL’s top priority, the health and safety of our players. It makes him the perfect choice for this critical position,” USFL executive vice president of football operations Daryl Johnston said. “The USFL is focused on building a player-centric football league, and I’m honored to welcome Dr. Ellis to the USFL Family. It’s another exciting addition to our league as we prepare for our second season.”
The announcement of Ellis’ new position comes about four months before the kickoff of the next USFL season.
The league will return with the Birmingham Stallions, Houston Gamblers, Michigan Panthers, Memphis Showboats, New Jersey Generals, New Orleans Breakers, Philadelphia Stars and Pittsburgh Maulers.
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