What an end to the inaugural UFL season!
The day after Thanksgiving, I boarded an early flight to Las Vegas for the first UFL Championship game between the undefeated Florida Tuskers and the Las Vegas Locomotives. Having already beat the Vegas team twice, Ryan's team was favored to win the game, though we knew it wouldn't be easy.
In the end, the Tuskers were defeated 20-17 in overtime. It was disappointing enough to lose the game. Even more disappointing were some aspects of the game and some things revealed later. For starters, the Tuskers were supposed to be the "home" team having a better record than the Locos. Of course, we were in Locos territory, playing in the stadium they called home all season. The site was anything but neutral. The announcer was clearly the regular Locos announcer. Every time the Locos took the field, the announcer led the crowd in a huge cheer. The Tuskers weren't given the same consideration. Every time the Locos gained a first down, the sounds of a locomotive screamed through the stands. No such celebration was announced when the Tuskers scored their first downs. Everything about the location favored the Vegas team - they definitely had home field advantage.
After the game, I asked a friend who played for the Vegas team where they were staying. When he told me the Renaissance, I about flipped! Our guys had stayed at the Hampton Inn all week where there wasn't even room service available, and the Vegas team was staying at the Renaissance? How is that fair?
And the kicker (pun intended) - rumor has it that the Locos' game winning field goal was wide right and not even good! It's apparently clear from the game film that the kick was bad. The Tuskers should've gotten the ball back. Sounds like the Vegas team was handed this win. Sure makes for good t.v. though right? I'm sure the UFL is thrilled with the outcome.
We had a great time Friday after the game though hanging out with Ryan's teammates at Jet nightclub. We sauntered back into the glamorous Hampton Inn around 3:30 a.m. That's when I realized I'd been up for more than 24 hours! I hadn't done that since college and I'm still paying for it!
Now we're waiting again, hoping for an NFL team to call in these last few weeks of the pro-football regular season and pick Ryan up. I'll keep you posted!