MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) – The Memphis Showboats, the newest professional sports team in the 901, hit Simmons Bank Liberty Field on Tuesday for the start of USFL training camp.
“I’m really excited, I know our coaching staff is really excited and I know the players are excited,” Showboats head coach Todd Haley said. “We’re excited to have a great Memphis fan base come out here and support us, and then it’s on us to get a good product out there and win a bunch of games.”
Training camp is about getting acclimated, and some players are getting a little head start there, like former University of Memphis quarterback Brady White.
“Very comfortable man, this is my home field,” White said as he returned to his college stadium. “I call this my home, so yes, this is my home here and I’ve spent a lot of time here. So it feels great to be back.”
White isn’t the only one on the team rooting for 901. Defensive back Antonio Reed grew up in South Memphis and played high school ball at Southaven.
“Coming out of college, I never thought I’d be in this position,” Reed said. “But right now where I am, I’m excited to be here and bring football back here, like I said.”
No matter who you talk to around this team, there’s a word that starts with the letter “H” that everyone uses to describe it.
“Man, that’s a lot of hunger,” Reed said. “You can feel it every day in the locker room. The guys who get there first will be the same guys, the guys who get there last will be the same guys.
“I feel like those guys who want it the most are hungry, but you can feel it at practice, in the locker room and at the game, you just know who these guys are.”
“That’s what makes coaching fun,” Haley said. “You know, because it goes back to all these guys, they believe they have a chance to make the team first. Then, eventually, be a starter or have a big role in what we do.”
Kickoff with the Philadelphia Stars and the return of pro football in Memphis is just 25 days away, April 15.
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