The XFL season starts with Orlando vs. Houston. The Orlando team transferred from New York, which couldn’t fill up MetLife Stadium. The Orlando team has more Florida ties than any other team in the XFL (I don’t care if it’s not true, I’m from Florida and I love the collegiate ties.) They will play the Houston Roughnecks (better variation of “Oilers”) in the primetime game of Opening weekend. The Roughnecks are coached by Coach Wade Phillips and play at TDECU Stadium on the campus of the University of Houston.
Orlando has personality
The General Manager and Coach of the team is none other than Terrell Buckley, FSU Cornerback. The Wide Receivers coach is Lamar Thomas and the Quarterbacks coach is former Florida Gator, Shane Matthews. Finally, the defensive backs coach is former Florida State player Tony Carter. Buckley is a Mississippi native and had been the cornerbacks coach at Ole Miss for the two previous seasons. He still has the interception record at FSU. What does this do for the fan base in Orlando? Orlando last had a football team with the AAF’s Orlando Apollos, but they have had a history of football teams (Arena football Predators, XFL’s Orlando Rage, Orlando Thunder, World League.)
Best XFL team logos
The Roughnecks have the best team logos. Orlando has a sabertooth tiger as their team mascot but their team name is the “Guardians.” The colors are pretty good. Houston went with a typical blue, red, grey scheme which was already taken by the Texans. Orlando will have a craft beer named after them by the Ivanhoe Brewing Co. Look at their blog announcement here. Houston will have a watch party this weekend at Bar Louie (great club name) in Sugarland, Texas. Look at the announcement on the Allevents.in website, here. If Houston would’ve copped the old Oilers color scheme and rebooted the “Luv Ya Blue” then that would’ve been epic. All the other team logos are generic and could be selected on Madden, but the Houston and Orlando logos stand apart.
XFL will survive with marketing
There’s a very small contingent of fans that will watch football, just to watch football. The XFL should work to keep the “football feel” alive through the spring and summer. What is the “football feel?” People will bet on the games but regular fans will watch more on social media with highlight plays and on streaming TV with individual performances. They have to make fans notice from their beer or cocktail and say, “Did you see that catch? That game was pretty good, huh. Then they will go to the “Watch Parties” and they will catch games at home after work. Deadspin wrote about how all the team logos sound like car names here. Well, if one of the big car companies would offer a package to trick somebody’s car in Roughneck colors?! We got a following!
Remember “HE HATE ME”?! The Vegas Vipers and the Seattle Sea Dragons have the most NFL noteworthy players like Vic Beasley, Martavis Bryant, Josh Gordon and Ben DiNucci. Jorden Hampton writes about ex-NFL players on the San Antonio Brahmas here. CBS Sports has more players in this primer on the XFL here. The best investment that the XFL made to possibly ensure its longevity, is that it has partnered with the NFL to share information and collaborate on health and safety initiatives. Read more on the deal here. Players that have been bouncing around NFL rosters can have this chance to help themselves and play outstanding for another shot.
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