Former Mountaineers Ready For Start Of XFL Action
The past Sunday’s Super Bowl brought an end to the NFL’s 2019-20 season.
Fans won’t have to wait long to get another professional football fix, though, as the XFL beings its inaugural season this weekend.
The new eight-team league will feature two games this Saturday – the Seattle Dragons at the D.C. Defenders at 2 p.m., and the Los Angeles Wildcats at the Houston Roughnecks at 5 p.m. – with two more contests on Sunday – the Tampa Bay Vipers at the New York Guardians at 2 p.m., and the St. Louis BattleHawks at the Dallas Renegades at 5 p.m.
ABC/ESPN and FOX/FS1 will split the television contract for all the XFL games throughout the 10-week regular season that runs through April 12, and then the two rounds of playoffs, concluding with the championship game on Sunday, April 26.
For West Virginia fans looking for some Blue & Gold flavor, there are a number of former Mountaineers on XFL rosters:
D.C. Defenders – defensive tackle Kenny Bigelow
New York Guardians – safety Dravon Askew-Henry
St. Louis BattleHawks – safety Kenny Robinson, linebacker Terence Garvin and defensive lineman Will Clarke
Tampa Bay Vipers – offensive lineman Marquis Lucas
In addition, one-time West Virginia secondary coach Will Lewis (1995) is the assistant director of player personnel for the Houston Roughnecks.
And, of course, former WVU quarterback (1978-81) and director of athletics (2010-14) Oliver Luck is the CEO and commissioner of the XFL.
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Former Mountaineer quarterback Jack Allison has found a new home, as he revealed on Wednesday that he will be spending his final season of collegiate eligibility at West Liberty (W.Va.) University.
He is one of nine former WVU underclassmen who placed their names in the NCAA transfer portal since last September. Seven of them have announced their transfer destinations. Besides Allison, running back Martell Pettaway is headed to Middle Tennessee State, wide receiver Ricky Johns is bound for the University of Albany, offensive lineman Josh Sills is going Oklahoma State, safety JoVanni Stewart will join Houston, receiver Tevin Bush is moving to Nicholls and safety Kwantel Raines will join Temple.
That leaves just two former Mountaineers in the portal – tight end Jovani Haskins and offensive lineman Tyler Thurmond – who have not yet announced their transfer destinations.
Also, former WVU safety E.J. Brown, who departed the program for Iowa Central Community College, signed with Buffalo, where he will have two years of eligibility remaining.