Kaw is the Law!


Kyle Kummer '23

This year, the XFL returned for the first time since 2020, when COVID-19 shut down the league and the world. With the return of the XFL also came the return of the Battlehawks to St. Louis. However, they did not return with the same roster as 2020, as many changes had occurred with both staff and players during the three year hiatus. Instead, the XFL held a draft on Nov. 15 through Nov. 17. This year the Battlehawks brought to St Louis a strong offensive team, with players such as Marcus Ateman (second overall pick in the XFL draft), Brian Hill (former NFL running back), and A.J. McCarron (former NFL guarterback).

The Battlehawks opened up their season with a very close win against the San Antonio Brahmas that ended in a very exciting fourth quarter comeback by the birds, using one of the XFL’s new rules, where the team that is trailing can maintain possession with a 4th-and-15 play from its own 25-yard line. Following that victory, the Battlehawks traveled north, where they defeated the Seattle Sea Dragons 20-18 after another exciting finish in which St. Louis marched down the field down a point late in the fourth quarter and kicked the game-winning field goal with zero seconds left on the clock. Despite the close victories, both the offense and defense looked strong, with A.J. McCarron throwing zero interceptions in his first two games and the defense forcing five turnovers.

The Battlehawks ran into their first challenge against the D.C. Defenders, who were also 2-0 and in the same conference as the Battlehawks. Despite fighting hard throughout the entire game, keeping the score within one for most of the game, the birds fell short 28-34, bringing their record to 2-1 and knocking them to second in the division. However, they quickly bounced back at their first home game of the season with a dominant performance against the Arlington Renegades, winning 24-11, with both the offense and defense putting in their best work of the season. Not only did the team as a whole perform outstandingly, but St. Louis showed up big time to the Dome to display their support for football in the city. A whopping 38,310 fans showed up to the Dome for the home opener, breaking both the XFL attendance record (formerly held by St. Louis, funnily enough), as well as the spring football attendance record.

After the strong victory, the Battlehawks faced the D.C Defenders once again at home, their most recent game as of writing this article. Once again, they trailed for much of the game and failed to come back in the fourth quarter, losing 20-28. The Battlehawks currently sit with a record of 3-2 and are second in the XFL North. A.J. McCarron is third in passing yards, behind Ben Dinucci of the Sea Dragons and Brandon Silvers of the Houston Renegades. Brian Hill is second in rushing yards, far behind Abram Smith, the first overall pick in the XFL draft and the Defenders’ starting running back. Hakeem Butler is second in receiving yards, behind Jahcour Pearson of the Sea Dragons. The Battlehawks’ two biggest flaws by far are the offensive and defensive lines. The Hawks have allowed multiple sacks per game, often without making any of their own on the other side of the ball. Hopefully, these flaws can be ironed out as they push through the second leg of the season, with their next game against the 1-4 Vegas Vipers.