NEW YORK (AP) -- Former NCAA president Cedric Dempsey is ready to give a new pro football league that ol' college try. Dempsey and 12 other people from the worlds of sports, education and business have teamed up to form the All American Football League, which is scheduled to start play next spring. The league plans to field eight teams based in college towns, playing in stadiums on campus or nearby. Though Dempsey declined to say where the teams will play, he said the cities will feature colleges from the Atlantic Coast Conference, Southeastern Conference and Big Ten. The league already has stadium usage agreements in place, he said, and now needs to find investors willing to spend between $2-3 million to buy franchise rights. Perhaps the most interesting part of the league: a player must have graduated to participate. That diploma will guarantee a healthy paycheck. AAFL players will earn about $100,000 a season, Dempsey said, better than minimums offered in the Arena Football League -- about $30,000 -- and NFL Europe for example. The league, not teams, will pay the players and coaches to control spending. Dempsey and the board of directors view the league as a continuation of the college game, hoping fervent fans will support a pro team in their town. "It was an intriguing idea from the beginning, and I wouldn't have had an interest in this if it was just another football league," Dempsey said at a news conference Wednesday. "But it had such a close tie back to higher education ... and it gives an incentive to finish school." Unlike the XFL, a spring pro league that failed, the AAFL has no plans to compete with the NFL. Instead, the AAFL, which will play under college rules, is aiming for a regional audience. To that end, teams will feature players who have starred in that college town, and from surrounding areas and conferences. The league hopes to sign players who haven't latched onto an NFL team. "I don't think these are going to be people that think of themselves as great football stars, but I think they're going to be people who enjoy the game, enjoy playing and would like to play a little while as they're beginning to start their careers," said board member Charles Young, former chancellor at UCLA and president at Florida. Dempsey said the league has gotten financing from a small group of investors but declined to specify an amount. Another source of money could be a television deal, but only preliminary talks have been held. Tickets to games will cost $30. "We're going to have to generate the money to make it work," Dempsey said. "That's obviously the next step. We've had a lot of discussions with potential franchise holders and obviously one issue has been is this really going to happen? This will take it another step." Among the others committed to the league: James Bailey, former executive vice president of the Browns and Ravens; former ACC commissioner Gene Corrigan; former UCLA athletic director Peter Dalis; former Tennessee defensive back Charles Davis; and former Tennessee and Florida coach Doug Dickey. The idea for the league started two years, and it plans a kickoff in the second week of April, with the first season running about 10 weeks. The group is committed to make it a success -- and forming a different niche for football fans. "We don't see ourselves as a competitor to the NFL," Bailey said. "They're going to get the best players, but we think there are plenty of good players who don't make the NFL that can play good quality football and good exciting football and have connections to their local areas." Copyright 2006 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.