First and Short ... on Clothes

By Features FOXBusiness

They're L.A.'s only pro football team, but don't expect to see any hulking linebackers on this field.

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The LA Temptations are in the lingerie league.

"A lot of fans are coming to our stadiums and arenas expecting a big bachelor party, said Mitchell Mortaza, founder and chairman of the Lingerie Football League. “You know, just a bunch of T and A. And they're finding it couldn't be further from the truth. Yes, it's a sexy game, but these women are intense, their football IQs are high,"

Seven years ago Mortaza created a Lingerie Bowl. Last year he decided to expand the concept and kicked of the league, a multi-million dollar venture that placed teams in key NFL markets, including Chicago, New York and Los Angeles.

"Convincing people that women playing tackle football in lingerie is going to sell wasn't the easiest thing to do," he said.

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Ticket sales are the main source of revenue for the league, Mortaza said. Good seats run about $150, while nosebleeds go for as low as $15.

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The players and coaches are paid a percentage of box office sales -- the winning teams get paid more. And the players say that provides much incentive.

Make no mistake. This is a sport where nails get broken. “The hardest thing I'd say is preparing for the level of the intensity of the game,” said running back and wide receiver Riley Maddex, a business student and fitness coach who now trains three days a week with the LA Temptations. 

“We're hitting each other as hard as we can, just like guys do with less padding, so it's definitely not powder-puff football.”

Linebacker Niki Ghazian has put her modeling career on hold to play with the team.

"Once I stop playing I could definitely take more modeling jobs. But right now I'm way too buff and way too bruised, and that's okay cause I love football," Ghazian said.

The league has signed sponsorship deals, but hasn't turned a profit yet, Mortaza said. And he’s OK with that. He said right now, he's just focusing on the product.

“We unfortunately don't have the $150-to-$200 million NFL marketing budget, so we rely on a lot of viral marketing, word of mouth and that's really worked for us," he said.

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