XFL returns as former Vista Murrieta kicker scores first points of the season

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The inaugural game of the 2020 XFL season kicked off Saturday, Feb. 8. Valley News/Courtesy photo

The XFL kicked off its season this past weekend, giving football fans a way to shake off those post-Super Bowl blues. The league reached multiyear agreements with ESPN and Fox Sports to broadcast its games this year, which is the second time Vince McMahon has launched a football league. The first version of the XFL lasted one season in 2001, a joint venture of WWE and NBC.

The inaugural game of the XFL kicked off Saturday in front of 17,000-plus fans inside of Audi Stadium and saw the D.C. Defenders (1-0) pull out a solid 31-19 victory against the Seattle Dragons (0-1).

Tyler Rausa, who played at Vista Murrieta and went on to kick at Boise State, is on the D.C. Defenders roster this season. Valley News/Courtesy photo

Led by former Ohio State star quarterback Cardale Jones, the Defenders came back from a 13-12 halftime deficit to outscore the Dragons 19-6. Jones, a fourth-round pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, finished the day 16-of-26 for 291 yards and two touchdowns, both of which came in the third quarter.

Defenders kicker Tyler Rausa, who played at Vista Murrieta High School and went on to kick at Boise State University, contributed the first points of the season with a 34-yarder. The former Bronco special teamer finished 2-of-3 on the day, including a career-best 54-yard FG to end the first half.

All 43 XFL games – 40 regular season, three playoffs – will be televised with 24 games broadcast on ABC or FOX. The remainder will air on ESPN, ESPN2, FS1 and FS2.

The XFL will have teams in Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, St. Louis, Seattle, Tampa Bay and Washington with most games being played Saturday and Sunday. ESPN will show the championship game April 26.

Here is the slate of ABC and ESPN games remaining for the 2020 XFL season (all games ET).

FEB. 15: New York Guardians vs. DC Defenders, ABC, 2 p.m.

FEB. 16: Dallas Renegades vs. Los Angeles Wildcats, ABC, 3 p.m.

FEB. 22: Houston Roughnecks vs. Tampa Bay Vipers, ABC, 2 p.m.

FEB. 23: New York Guardians vs. St. Louis BattleHawks, ESPN, 3 p.m.

FEB. 29: Los Angeles Wildcats vs. New York Guardians, ABC, 2 p.m.

MARCH 1: DC Defenders vs. Tampa Bay Vipers, ESPN2, 7 p.m.

MARCH 7: Seattle Dragons vs. Houston Roughnecks, ABC, 2 p.m.

MARCH 8: Tampa Bay Vipers vs. Los Angeles Wildcats, ESPN, 9 p.m.

MARCH 14: Houston Roughnecks vs. New York Guardians, ABC, 2 p.m.

MARCH 15: Los Angeles Wildcats vs. Seattle Dragons, ESPN2, 7 p.m.

MARCH 21: Dallas Renegades vs. Tampa Bay Vipers, ABC, 2 p.m.

MARCH 22: New York Guardians vs. Seattle Dragons, ABC, 3 p.m.

MARCH 28: Tampa Bay Vipers vs. DC Defenders, ABC, 2 p.m.

MARCH 29: Houston Roughnecks vs. Los Angeles Wildcats, ABC, 3 p.m.

APRIL 4: DC Defenders vs. New York Guardians, ABC, 2 p.m.

APRIL 5: Tampa Bay Vipers vs. St. Louis BattleHawks, ESPN, noon

APRIL 11: Houston Roughnecks vs. Seattle Dragons, ABC, 2 p.m.

APRIL 12: DC Defenders vs. St. Louis Battlehawks; or New York Guardians vs. Tampa Bay Vipers, ABC, 2 p.m.

APRIL 19: XFL West Division Final, ESPN, 3 p.m.

APRIL 26: XFL Championship, ESPN, 3 p.m.

JP Raineri can be reached by email at sports@reedermedia.com.