The third time will hopefully be the charm for the XFL as a fledgling spring summer football alternative. The league is now under the ownership of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, former professional wrestler turned box office movie star. He will bring his outfit to Jackson State University on Saturday for a scouting mission of select HBCU players.
The invite-only showcase will be attended by Johnson along with XFL president Russ Brandon. All eight head coaches in the league will be there including former Virginia State and Alabama State head coach Reggie Barlow.
Former HBCU quarterbacks will get another shot
HBCU Gameday has learned that former Alabama A&M quarterback Aqeel Glass is expected to attend the camp along with former Alcorn State quarterback Felix Harper. Both had invites to NFL rookie camps earlier this spring. Other former HBCU players expected to attend to our knowledge include former Jackson State linebacker Keonte Hampton and former JSU quarterback Kare’ Lyles.
Also expected at the event is Jackson State head coach Deion Sanders. This will be the fourth of six showcases for the league. The event is closed to the public and cameras will not be allowed.
The XFL originally began in 2001 under Vince McMahon, owner of World Wrestling Entertainment. After a much hyped season opener on NBC, the league lasted one season before shutting down. The XFL had a revival in 2020, but the timing couldn’t have been worse with COVID wreaking havoc on everything that year. The season lasted only a couple of weeks.
This time around the environment seems to be more welcoming to spring football. The USFL just completed its first season with two HBCU players winning a championship this summer. The attendance was dismal because the league played in a bubble in Birmingham, but the tv ratings were enough for the Networks to sign up for another year. The big question will be if two separate spring leagues could co-exist. Something that only time could tell.