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Six USF football alumni make their debuts in XFL spring league

KJ Sails of the D.C. Defenders was a star defensive back at USF for two seasons. TWITTER @KJ2LiVE

Just because the NFL is over doesn’t mean it’s the end of football season. The XFL is making its return, featuring six former Bulls making their semi-professional debuts.

Four of the eight XFL teams feature former Bulls, the Arlington Renegades, D.C. Defenders, St. Louis Battlehawks and Vegas Vipers.

The XFL is a semi-professional football league making its first return since its suspension due to COVID-19 in 2020. The league was reintroduced in 2023 under a new ownership group headed by Dwayne Johnson. It features a variety of former DI and NFL talents, including former NFL All-Pro’s Vic Beasley and Josh Gordon.

Standout cornerback KJ Sails was picked up by the DC Defenders in the seventh round. Sails started from 2019-20 after transferring from North Carolina. He was named to the AAC All-Conference Second Team in 2019 and earned an invitation to the annual East-West Shrine Game. He spent time with the Los Angeles Chargers during training camp before being released in 2021.

Sails’ former teammate Mike Hampton also started as a defensive back during his career at USF from 2017-20. He ranked eighth in the nation in 2019 with 18 passes defended. After going unselected in the 2020 NFL draft, he was selected during the 11th round of the XFL draft by the St. Louis Battlehawks.

Former Bulls’ defensive lineman Bruce Hector was drafted by the Arlington Renegades in the sixth round of the XFL draft. Hector played for USF from 2014-17, racking up 18 career sacks. He signed with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2018 after going unselected in the NFL draft.

Three South Florida alumni will be featured on the Vegas Vipers. Tight end Sean Price played from 2013-15 and finished with 897 career receiving yards, the most in USF history by a tight end at the time. Defensive end Kelvin Pinkney made 50 career starts from 2017-21, totaling 76 tackles and 4.5 sacks. Both players will be making their semi-professional debuts since playing at USF.

Offensive lineman Quinterrius Eatmon played for the Bulls from 2010-14, making 46 career starts. He was named to the AAC All-Conference Second Team in 2014, becoming one of the greatest Bulls to ever start on the offensive line. He was drafted by the Vipers in the seventh round after participating in training camp with the Carolina Panthers in 2018.

Each team will play a 10-game schedule followed by playoff semifinals and the championship on May 13 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. Games will be featured on ABC, ESPN and FX.