Salt Lake Stallions Set To Kickoff At Rice-Eccles Stadium in Spring 2019
by Elisabeth Osmeloski
Following an exciting fall season of football in Utah, the state’s newest professional sports team is ramping up to give local and regional football fans a united hometown team to get behind.
It can’t come soon enough for the hungry fans in Utah, who have been long divided by local college ties and those who are starved for gridiron action after the college bowl season and Super Bowl Sunday passes.
Playing a total of five home games in the inaugural season, the Salt Lake Stallions will take to the turf at Rice-Eccles Stadium beginning in late February 2019, with four Saturday games and one Friday night game to close out the regular season on April 12th. (Full game schedule here. Kickoff times TBA.)
As the most northern team in The Alliance, the toughness of the Stallions and local fans in attendance should make the rest of the country take notice of how seriously the Wasatch region takes its passion for quality football. Colder temps and the possibility of snow during games won’t stop fans from coming out for games, as those who flock to Provo, Logan and SLC for collegiate play and to Sandy for RSL games in late fall and early March can attest.
The Stallions will be banking on this as a home field advantage over its southern, warm-weather opponents: the Arizona Hotshots, Orlando Apollos, Memphis Express, San Diego Fleet and the San Antonio Commanders, who will play indoors at the famed Alamodome. Adding to the challenge for the competition will be the high altitude of the stadium, clocking in at 4,637 feet above sea level.
After a round of playoffs to determine the Western and Eastern Conference Division champions, the winners will head to nearby Las Vegas to face off during The Alliance championship weekend April 26-28, 2019.
Meet the Salt Lake Stallions
The Alliance of American Football created a system of regional player allocation as they stacked talent on each new team in the league.
“That’s one of the really exciting things about the league. If they played at Utah State or Utah or BYU, we get their first rights,” Team President Tyler Howell told KSL news at the team’s uniform unveiling event. “To have guys like Jeremiah (Poutasi) or Cardon (Malan) here from Utah and Weber State is awesome; there’s already a fanbase built. We already have four years of loyalty to these guys, so we get to just extend that.”
As a result, the Stallions’ player roster features a number of players that Utahns will recognize from their snaps as a BYU Cougar, Utah Ute, Utah State Aggie, alongside a few from Southern Utah University and Weber State, all coming together on one team to represent the state’s passion for quality football.
In addition, they’ll get support from teammates who played for Idaho, Oregon and Colorado State. The roster is also rounded out with talent coming to Utah, fresh from other top collegiate programs (Arkansas, Nebraska, Purdue, Duke and Virginia Tech) and veteran players with professional experience playing on NFL teams and in other pro leagues.
Heading into a December mini-camp here in Salt Lake, that roster includes local favorites who spent time in the NFL, including running back Matt Asiata (Utah – ‘10), wide receiver Dres Anderson (Utah – ‘14), defensive back Will Davis (Utah State – ‘13), and lineman Trevor Reilly (Utah – ‘14), who also earned a Super Bowl ring as part of the New England Patriots practice squad.
Following the league-wide QB Draft on November 27th, the Salt Lake Stallions also picked up four talented quarterbacks: Josh Woodrum (Liberty), BJ Daniels (South Florida), Austin Allen (Arkansas), and Matt Linehan (Idaho).
Woodrum most recently clocked time with the Baltimore Ravens after coming over from the New York Giants who signed him as an undrafted free agent in 2016.
Daniels is also ready to share his depth of experience after spending six years in the NFL with the Houston Texans, San Francisco 49ers and Seattle Seahawks, making three Super Bowl appearances and earning a ring with Seattle, younger teammates will look to him as a seasoned leader.
Speaking of leadership, Head Coach Dennis Erickson — who not only has spent time on the sidelines for the University of Utah, but also has a storied career as a coach for NFL teams and led multiple college teams to championships — has assembled a stellar coaching staff to help the team to victory.
Stallions season tickets are available now for as low as $75 per seat, with prime spots in the lower bowl and end zones giving fans the opportunity to score amazing seats from the beginning, at an unbelievable value. Premium seating and VIP suite options are also available for corporate and group buys. Single game tickets are on sale to the public beginning December 10th.