08/26/1997 at 12:00 AM EDT

It's over for the XFL. The renegade football league's co-owners, World Wrestling Federation Entertainment and NBC (which had each anted up $50 million to launch the franchise), pulled the plug Thursday night, citing the XFL's mounting operating costs and hopeless ratings as the main reasons for dissolving the partnership. "We feel that it is in the best interests of our shareholders and our partners to discontinue the XFL," WWFE chairman Vince McMahon said in a statement. NBC Sports chairman Dick Ebersol said, "The bottom line is that we didn't deliver what they wanted to see. They came, but they just didn't come back."

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