Vince McMahon, American professional wrestling promoter and football executive, announced in 2018 that he was planning to rebrand and bring back the defunct XFL American Football League in 2020.
The league’s ultimate goal was to give football players who did not make the National Football League or whose hopes and dreams are to make the NFL a platform to display their talents.
Three alumni from the university were selected in the inaugural XFL draft. Max Lyons was selected by the New York Guardians, Maea Teuhema to the Dallas Renegades and Harlan Miller to the Los Angeles Wildcats.
Lyons explained how it felt and where he was when he got drafted.
“It felt good,” shared Lyons. “Honestly, when the draft was happening I forgot about it. Me and my mom were in her room talking about something totally different and we kind of lost track of the draft. I got a call, and they told me I was going to be playing for New York.”
The Los Angeles native shared what he was doing for work before he got his chance in the revamped football league.
“I have been non-stop training for a while now,” stated Lyons. “I had multiple chances and opportunities to play in the NFL but they just did not work out. I have not only been training myself, but I have been training others too.”
Lyons explained what his ultimate goal is with the XFL.
“It’s great that I have the opportunity to display my talent in the XFL,” stated Lyons. “My ultimate goal is to make my presence known at the XFL to give me a shot in the NFL. I only plan to be in the XFL for a little while and use it as a stepping stone.”
Lyon’s former Southeastern teammate Teuhema explained how it felt to be selected in the XFL open phase draft.
“You know it was a huge weight lifted off of my shoulders,” stated Teuhema. “I can’t wait to showcase my abilities on the national stage in a new league that everyone is going to watch. I want this to help me develop my talents and game for the NFL.”
Teuhema played for the San Antonio Commanders in the Alliance of American Football. After the league folded in 2019 Teuhema had to look for another job.
“I was working multiple jobs actually,” stated Teuhema. “I worked construction with my dad, I did Uber Eats for a while and then also worked at a pizza restaurant. It just feels good to change it up and do something else.”
The native of Keller, Texas explained how it felt to be drafted by his hometown team.
“It’s awesome I get to stay and play in Dallas,” shared Teuhema. “My family gets to see me play, and I am going to be playing where I grew up.”
With Teuhema’s older brother Sione playing for the Carolina Panthers of the NFL, he shared how his older brother helped him in his football career.
“Sione paved the way for me and my career for football,” expressed Teuhema. “From LSU to Southeastern, until now he has done a great job leading me to where I am today. He showed me everything I know, hopefully, I can make it to the NFL just like he did soon.”
The Dallas Renegades will open their 2020 season at home against the St. Louis BattleHawks while the New York Guardians will host the Tampa Bay Vipers to kick off their season on Sunday Feb. 9.