NEWS ARCHIVE: 16-30 April 2001

Avery to Run as a Cowboy - 2001.04.29
It has been reported that the Dallas Cowboys have agreed to terms with Chicago Enforcers running back John Avery. Avery is reported to be ready to sign one year deal worth $389,000.

XFL could have a future without NBC
San Jose Mercury News - 2001.04.27
Just because the XFL's prime-time perch on NBC is about to be yanked away, and just because it was a monumental ratings and aesthetic embarrassment, don't assume that Vince McMahon's weird little football league is going to immediately vanish. Because if McMahon wants to continue -- and there's no doubt that his ego won't allow him to watch this fall apart or that his WWF-stuffed wallet can afford at least one more go-round -- the XFL certainly has enough life to motor on, with or without a major network. ... Click Here for More Information

NFL teams have been watching XFL
ESPN.COM - 2001.04.26
Corey Nelson caught merely nine passes for the Las Vegas Outlaws during the XFL season, but agent Derrick Fox claims he recently had six NFL teams battling for the wide receiver's services. Why would the NFL scramble for a part-time player from a team that failed to make the playoffs in a league it officially refused to acknowledge? Size and speed. Specifically, Nelson, who is 6-foot-1, 200 pounds, has been clocked in the 40-yard dash in a world-class 4.28 seconds. Ultimately, the Seattle Seahawks prevailed and signed him to a contract. "It's a game that's played with speed," Nelson said Wednesday from his home in Boise, Idaho. "You can't teach too many athletes to run fast." ... Click Here for More Information

XFL Names FIrst All-League Team
XFL Press Release - 2001.04.26
The XFL today named its first All-League Team as voted by players and coaches at the conclusion of the regular season. The All-XFL Team is made up of 24 players, 11 each from offense and defense, one kicker and one special teams addition. The XFL completed its first season last Saturday, with the Los Angeles Xtreme defeating the San Francisco Demons, 38-6, in the league's championship, "The Million Dollar Game." Ironically, the league champion Xtreme placed only two players on the All-League Team while the Demons had only one. ... Click Here for More Information

A Gamble that Didn't Pay Off
Wall Street Journal - 2001.04.25
...With NBC's approval, the WWF wrote the scripted material for game No. 1 in Las Vegas. WWF star Dwayne Johnson, a k a "The Rock," brayed that America was "psyched, pumped, geeked and cranked" about the XFL. In a taped bit aired during the game, a cheerleader said the Las Vegas quarterback knew "how to score"; he replied with a speech on how to "penetrate for the touchdown." At least six NBC and WWF executives -- including McMahon and Ebersol -- were in the production truck outside Sam Boyd Stadium shouting orders to Vasgersian and commentator Jesse Ventura. On the air, Ventura, the wrestler-turned-governor, was visibly nervous, and his hype-filled comments contrasted with the underwhelming quality of play... ... Click Here for More Information

Did XFL get fair shake from media?
Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel - 2001.04.25
"It was goofy," said Vasgersian, referring to the experience of the whole season. "It was just so weird. By the end of the season, we were doing a pretty good show, I thought. A lot of the things that were wrong with the telecast in the first six weeks were corrected. Unfortunately, viewers left and never came back." Vasgersian thinks the league did not get a fair shake in the media. "There were so many people who had an (aim) to bury this thing because of, I don't know, personal vendettas or the fact that they couldn't stand to see McMahon succeed in football, I don't know," he said. "Say what you will with McMahon's appearance with (Bob) Costas, when you take a lot of the show out of that, what Vince said was accurate. It was a start-up league. It was brand-building. Give it a break. Cut it some slack." ... Click Here for More Information

The Joke is Over: NFL to take look at 90 XFL players
USA Today - 2001.04.24
Hold those laughs about the XFL"s low TV ratings and adventurous games. In an interesting twist, the XFL is in the process of releasing about 90 players to leave early and try out with NFL teams. "So far, over 70 players have opted out of their contracts to work out and sign with the NFL," said Mike Keller, the XFL"s director of football operations. "We anticipate 80-90 players signing with the NFL. Every one of our games was scouted by NFL people." ... Click Here for More Information

LA Xtreme Conquer San Francisco's Demons
Associated Press - 2001.04.22
Former NFL backup Tommy Maddox threw for two touchdown passes, and Jose Cortez, a roofer from Oregon, kicked four field goals as the Los Angeles Xtreme beat the San Francisco Demons 38-6 on Saturday in the first XFL (news - web sites) championship game. The "Million Dollar Game'' drew a crowd of 24,153 to the 90,000-seat Los Angeles Coliseum. Attendance was some 10,000 fewer than the Xtreme's inaugural game at home, but almost double the gate of 13,081 for Los Angeles' semifinal victory over Chicago a week earlier. The Xtreme's defense, led by Ron Carpenter's two interceptions, shut out the Demons until the final 25 seconds after earlier blanking San Francisco in the regular-season finale. ... Click Here for More Information

Million Dollar Photo Gallery - 2001.04.22
Bryan Eggars, of, has captured the essence of the behind the scenes action of the Million Dollar Game. From Dick Butkus and Vince Mcmahon giving interviews to Linda McMahon signing autographs, this photo gallery shows the atmosphere at the LA Coliseum before and during the XFL championship game. ... Click Here for More Information

Today: The XFL's First Million Dollar Game - Associated Press - 2001.04.21
Home town fans could be sparse, but QB's on opposing teams both come out swinging in defense of their own league...The stands in the Coliseum are expected to be nearly empty and the national television audience may be the smallest ever for a pro sports title game. To the San Francisco Demons and Los Angeles Xtreme, it's still 60 minutes of football with a championship at stake when they meet today in The Million Dollar Game for the XFL's first title. ... Click Here for More Information

Message to the Sports World: Don't Write Off the XFL
Troy Pringle - 2001.04.20
This league has a lot to be proud of as it broke barriers in many aspects of sporting broadcasts. Although it does not admit its liking of the XFL, NFL officials have gone on the record saying it will incorporate some of the great ideas the XFL has introduced to the game of football. The XFL must take pride in its accomplishments, look at its strong spots and improve its weaknesses, a task which is already under way. ... Click Here for More Information

The Million Dollar Pick: A Look Ahead Against the Spread
The Masked Prognosticator - 2001.04.20
In the championship game we find Los Angeles laying 7 1/2 points again, and siding with favorites laying large playoff lines is tricky. Thanks to the new PAT rules a team down by 20 points can still tie a game with minutes left. Nonetheless this is such a one-sided affair that we think the Million Dollar Game will follow the NFL SuperBowl tradition of anti-climatic blowouts. As the recent XFL radio commercial says, "San Francisco is just trying to find a way to win" and boy, is that ever true. ... Click Here for More Information

McMahon: XFL to Return in 2002, but Not on NBC
LA Times - 2001.04.19
The XFL will be back next season, only its games will not be televised by NBC, league founder Vince McMahon said Wednesday. "There's nothing official, but as for NBC showing games on Saturday nights, that's not going to happen," McMahon said during an interview about the first year of his football league. ... Click Here for More Information

Orlando Rage's Galen Hall Named XFL Coach of the Year
XFL Press Release - 2001.04.19
The XFL today named Orlando Rage head coach Galen Hall as 2001 Coach of the Year, as voted upon by the XFL head coaches and general managers. Hall led the Rage to an 8-2 regular-season record, winning the Eastern Division regular-season championship by three games and finishing with the best mark in the XFL. Hall accomplished this feat despite the fact he lost starting QB Jeff Brohm, who would have been a serious XFL Player of the Year candidate, to a shoulder injury in week seven. ... Click Here for More Information

Million Dollar Game Comments - 2001.04.19
"We have to score more points than they do. I don't know about the running game, but I hope we make some changes. The last time we played them, it did not work so hot. We did not execute really well either, we definitely didn't bring our "A" game for that one. We made a lot of mistake and a lot of mental errors. You can't win playing against a good team making mental errors. They were in playoff form and at that point, we weren't. This has been a team that gets up for games all year long. The team has always found a way to win games and they showed it last week when we got up for the Orlando game and won that one. This team finds away to win when it is really focused." ... Click Here for More Information

The XFL's Xclamation Point On Saturday
Mike Mitchell - - 2001.04.19
It's been a wild season for the XFL. The misunderstood league has had a lot of ups and downs in it's first year. No sports league has ever recieved more scrutiny then the XFL. The league is trying to carve out a niche for itself in a sporting world that is not willing to accept it. Saturday Night at the Los Angeles Coliseum, the LA Xtreme are pumped up to claim one million dollars and the XFL's very first championship. They face the league's most popular team and their California rival, the San Fransisco Demons. The football experts predicted that LA would make it to the championship. San Fran wasn't expected to be there. ... Click Here for More Information

Los Angeles Xtreme QB Tommy Maddox Named XFL player of the Year
XFL Press Release - 2001.04.18
The XFL today named Los Angeles Xtreme quarterback Tommy Maddox its 2001 Player of the Year, as selected by a panel of XFL team executives, media and broadcasters. Maddox led the XFL in passing yards (2186) and touchdown passes (18), en route to guiding the Xtreme to a regular-season Western Division championship, as well as a berth in Saturday's "Million Dollar Game". An original territorial pick of the Xtreme, the UCLA product was the only XFL QB to start all 10 regular-season games. Maddox threw at least one TD pass in eight of ten games, and at least two TD passes in six regular-season outings. ... Click Here for More Information

XFL's attitude holds a place in Butkus' heart
Lancaster Intelligencer Journal - 2001.04.18
"The AFL was considered a schlock outfit, you know, throwing the ball over the place. Same thing here. We have a new league here and you have some commentators ripping the officials, ripping the players. But you've got to understand, man. When you get 70 guys on Jan. 2 and you play your first game on Feb. 3 you're going to have guys jumping offside, delay of game, illegal motion. Well, whaddya want? The football people knew that, but evidently the network people didn't. I guess they thought we were going to come out like we had been in camp and had six exhibition games." ... Click Here for More Information

McCullough, Harper, Huff and Egbuniwe the Fan's Choice for Player of the Week Players of the Week - 2001.04.17
At we'd like to think that the fans are the most important commodity in the equation. Who is better than to choose the XFL players of the Week than the same fans who cheer them on? Why should you vote? To let the players know that the fans appreciate their effort each and every week of the season! This week the fans have chosen Saladin McCullough, Dwayne Harper, Ben Huff and Chike Egbuniwe. Congratulations! ... Click Here for More Information

Ratings Improve
Associated Press - 2001.04.17
NBC's coverage of the XFL playoff game Saturday night between San Francisco and Orlando produced a 1.8 rating, highest in three weeks for the new league. The rating represented a 20 percent improvement from the season-low 1.5 the network got in the final regular-season week but was still less than half of the 4.5 the network had promised advertisers. UPN's rating for the Sunday night playoff game between Chicago and Los Angeles was 0.7, up from 0.6 the week before. Each ratings point represents 1.1 million homes. San Francisco defeated Orlando 26-25 and Los Angeles defeated Chicago 33-16. The league's championship game will be played at Los Angeles Saturday night.

Underdog Demons Win After a 16 point Deficit
Nstarz Ha - - 2001.04.17
Rage, take that! A home undefeated streak all gone. If only it was that easy. Turnover after turnover, the Demons were losing by a total of 16 points! And that wasn't even half way through the 1st quarter! Everything that went wrong happened in the first seven minute of the game. The Demons didn't score on their first drive, so they punted the ball to the Rage's 26-yard line. Four plays later including a 29 yard pass interference call, brought the Rage to the Demons' 30 yard line. In the next Demons' possession, they tried to start a scoring drive, but the pass was picked off and returned 17 yards for a touchdown. Score: 0-9 Rage. ... Click Here for More Information

LA Xtreme Advance to Final
Associated Press - 2001.04.16
Tommy Maddox threw two touchdown passes, and Saladin McCullough ran for 164 yards on 21 carries as the Los Angeles Xtreme advanced to the XFL's first championship game by beating the Chicago Enforcers 33-16 Sunday. The Xtreme will play the San Francisco Demons next Saturday at the Los Angeles Coliseum. The Demons advanced by beating the Orlando Rage 26-25 Saturday in the other semifinal. "Now with San Francisco, it's the best two-out-of-three for all the marbles,'' said Los Angeles coach Al Luginbill, whose team lost to the Demons 15-13 in the season-opener but won the rematch 24-0. ... Click Here for More Information


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