USFL opens season with a Birmingham game stunner

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USFL, United States Football League

By WVUA 23 Digital Reporter Jeremy Bryant

The United States Football League has finally begun after weeks of promotion, and the season opener gave viewers a different aspect of what it’s like to be part of a professional football game. The Birmingham Stallions kicked off the league’s inaugural season against the New Jersey Generals in Protective Stadium Saturday with a game that came down to the last moments.

The USFL promised to give to give a never before seen look, and they delivered on their promise. Viewers got up close and personal with the team, hearing live audio from players and coaches along with sideline interviews and unique camera angles that sparked social media’s interest, including a drone camera.

The new league was designed to give former college and professional players a chance to grasp NFL looks to gain another shot at making it to the top level of competition. The Generals and Stallions displayed some familiar names, including former college studs Scooby Wright and Josh Shaw. The coaches also have the chance to prove they are fitting of landing a new job in a new location, like longtime Louisiana Tech head coach Skip Holtz after the school decided to go in a new direction last year.

Once the game started both sides showed the hype was well promoted with the fourth quarter setting up for a heated finish. The Generals took a unorthodox approach when faced with the chance to secure the lead. They ran the ball over 18 consecutive plays upon the legs of their running backs and their speedy backup quarterback De’Andre Johnson, who ran for 92 yards.

The Generals held the lead for most of the contest, but the game was always in arms’ reach for both squads. Starting jobs were being tested after Generals kicker Nick Rose missed his first two field goal attempts, but snuck the final 47-yard kick through the uprights giving his team a 24-21 lead.

The game clock featured 1:49 left, leaving the Stallions backup quarterback J’Mar Smith one last chance to make the most of the team’s final opportunity in the game after starting quarterback Alex McGough left the game with an injury. He smoothly drove the ball down the field down to the goal line, and decided to bulldoze the game winning touchdown in himself, giving the Stallions a 28-24 victory.

The Birmingham Stallions will face the Houston Gamblers 7 p.m. Friday airing on USA Network.

Categories: Sports