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L.A. Wildcats Prepare for Inaugural Season
By Amanda Scurlock, Sports Writer
Published February 13, 2020

The L.A. Wildcats at their kickoff Block Party (Kevin Carden/LA Wildcats)

The XFL season has kicked off this past weekend and the Los Angeles Wildcats will play their first home game against the Dallas Renegades at the Dignity Health Sports Park on Sunday February 16 at noon.

The Wildcats are bouncing back from a tough 37-17 loss to the Houston Roughnecks. In the wake of the loss, Wildcats head coach and general manager Winston Moss relieved Pepper Johnson of his duties as defensive coordinator.

Despite the loss, safety LaDarius Wiley, wide receiver Nelson Spruce and defensive tackle Shawn Oakman made impressive plays for the Wildcats.

The XFL created rules that will enforce a fast-pace game which includes more variety of extra-point scoring after a touchdown, double-forward passes and a shoot-out overtime procedure.

After a touchdown, the team can attempt to score 1-3 extra points based on where their line of scrimmage is. On kickoffs, the two teams start five yards away from each other and cannot move until the returner catches the ball or the ball is on the ground for three seconds.

Punts that go in the endzone or out of bounds can put the opposing team to the 35-yard line.  The shot clock is shortened to 25 seconds, which is 40 seconds in the NFL. Inbound catch policies are more lenient, coaches cannot challenge calls, and offensive players can communicate to their coaches via helmet receivers.

The Roster contains a number of players who have experience competing for the Southland. Wideout Jalen Greene attended Serra High School of Gardena and USC. He helped the Serra Cavaliers win a state championship in 2012 and helped the Trojans win the 2017 Rose Bowl.

De’Quan Hampton is another former Trojan who transferred there from Long Beach City College. A native of Compton, Hampton attended Dominguez.

Quarterback Josh Johnson played for the University of San Diego from 2004-2007. Offensive linemen Nico Siragusa and Tyler Roemer played at San Diego State.

The Wildcats have two home games in February. After their battle against the Renegades, they play the D.C. Defenders on February 23 at Dignity Health Sports Park at 3:00pm.

For more information about the L.A. Wildcats and the XFL, visit https://www.xfl.com/en-US/teams/los-angeles.

Categories: Football | News (Sports) | Sports
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