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Do We Already Have a Sweetheart Team?

Every year, there is a sweetheart team. A team that everyone can be okay with winning it all regardless of our fan affiliation. Think the Warriors in the NBA when Steph and Klay started taking over the league or think Tiger when he dominated the Masters. They are a team or athlete that captures our imagination as a sports fan. We have yet to complete Week 2 but the Birmingham Stallions may be that team.

Head Coach Skip Holtz has been a giant advocate for this newly developed league. Everything has been positive and he has seemed to thoroughly enjoy it. When he talked about the draft, it was like a kid in the candy store. He talked about he had never done it but the process intrigued him. The son of a legendary college coach was now the face of a franchise. And not any franchise but the team that represents the HUB city of Birmingham.

The draft was a quick process but you can see a theme with a lot of picks by the Stallions. He drafted football guys that he seemed to be familiar with. He took his own recruit and star QB in Jmar Smith with his second QB pick. Once again, Holtz seemed to want that familiarity.

But he did draft Alex McGough with the first quarterback selection. McGough was another player that Holtz had known as McGough had terrorized Conference USA defenses including Holtz at Louisiana Tech. But the Alex McGough era has seemed to be put on pause after a misfortunate injury in the opening game. Insert Jmar.

Jmar had a terrific game replacing McGough and became the first USFL Offensive Player of the Week. Jmar lead the Stallions to a triumphant win on the simulcast against the Generals. He captured the attention of the spring football fans. And then he had an up and down game where you can hear Holtz communicate with against the Houston Gamblers. There was talk about Smith "seeing ghosts" but the familiarity helped settle the nerves. The contrast between the two sidelines was evident. Sumlin and the Gambler QBs seemed to be reading different books as Holtz with Smith seemed to be reciting the book together.

The back and forth outcome captured the football audience. Twitter was active about the Stallions making play after play when they needed it the most. The familiarity had worked again and thus making difficult to root against these Stallions.

The thought of being the sweetheart team is one to ponder. We love characters, which we have it with Holtz and his group. Scooby Wright and his antics are a plus. Bobby Holly (another La Tech player) laying blocks are a plus. DeMarquis Gates and Bryan Allen making plays on the defense when the team needs it the most are another plus. And then we need to have the magician as the star. And we have that with Jmar. This may be the sweetheart team for this league. Will America "Giddy Up"?


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