By R.L. Bynum
Larry Fedora will get another chance to be a head coach in the latest iteration of the United States Football League.
Fedora, 59, is the head coach of the New Orleans Breakers, one of eight teams for the league that begins play on April 16. He was Baylor’s offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach for the 2020 season but head coach Dave Aranda replaced him with Jeff Grimes after that season.
Fedora and Michigan Panthers coach Jeff Fisher, a former NFL head coach, were the final two league coaches named.
In seven seasons at Carolina, Fedora’s teams went 45–43. The Tar Heels won the Belk Bowl in 2013 and a Coastal Division title in 2015, when they finished 11–3. After UNC fired him following a 2–9 season in 2018, he was an analyst for Texas in the 2019 season.
Before Gene Chizik was named UNC’s defensive coordinator, there were rumors that he might be a USFL head coach. In a tweet on Jan. 6, Chizik acknowledged that there had been discussions but said nothing had been finalized. Two days later, UNC announced his return as the Tar Heels’ defensive coordinator.
The league’s other head coaches are former East Carolina and South Carolina coach Skip Holtz (Birmingham Stallions), former NFL assistant coach Kirby Wilson (Pittsburgh Maulers), former Oregon State and NFL coach Mike Riley (New Jersey Generals), former Kansas City coach Todd Haley (Tampa Bay Bandits), former Houston, Texas A&M and Arizona coach Kevin Sumlin (Houston Gamblers) and former NFL assistant coach Bart Andrus (Philadelphia Stars).
The league will have a player selection meeting Feb. 22–23, with training camps opening on March 21. Each team will have a 38-player active roster and a seven-player practice squad.
The inaugural game at 7:30 Saturday, April 16 will match the New Jersey Generals and the Birmingham Stallions and air on Fox and NBC. The rest of the schedule hasn’t been announced.
Each team plays 10 games, facing division opponents twice. The top two teams in each division play each other in the semifinals of the playoffs, with the title game a week later. Michigan, New Jersey, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh are in the North Division, with Birmingham, Houston, New Orleans and Tampa Bay in the South Division.
All games will be played in Birmingham, Ala., at either Protective Stadium or Legion Field.
The original USFL played three seasons from 1983 to 1985, with former UNC star Kelvin Bryant of the Philadelphia Stars the MVP in the league’s inaugural season.
Photo via @USFLBreakers