MEMPHIS, Tenn. (localmemphis.com) - I sat down to watch the first-ever Alliance of American Football game on Saturday night with zero expectations.
I was pleasantly surprised.
The quality of the broadcast, the sky judge, the buzz on social media, STEVE SPURRIER.... who said we can't have fun football all year long?
So, when it came time for the Memphis Express game on Sunday, I was excited to see what Coach Mike Singletary and his crew brought to the new league.
It was... not a lot.
As the national media put a spotlight on a successful weekend for the AAF, their coverage of Memphis consisted solely of the struggle of quarterback Christian Hackenberg.
Hackenberg went from Penn State star to New York Jets bust to Express starter. And his start wasn't good.
He finished the game 10-of-23 for 87 yards and an interception.
But Singletary is sticking with him when the Express make their home-debut at the Liberty Bowl on Saturday against the Arizona Hotshots.
"Let's see what statement you have," Singletary said in a press conference on Monday.
And we'll see what statement the Express has.
The host-cities of opening weekend drew pretty impressive crowds. There's certainly some level of a "Week 1 intrigue" factor, but now it's up to Memphis to drag that intrigue into week two at the Liberty Bowl. 26-0 losses make that more difficult. So does a 7:00 p.m. kickoff in Memphis in February. It's supposed to be 40-degrees. Bring your hand warmers.
If this past weekend taught us anything, it's that the AAF has potential. Now it's up to the Express to prove to the city of Memphis that they do, too.