Football | St. Louis Public Radio


The St. Louis Battlehawks will begin its inaugural season in the XFL on Feburary 8.

The XFL is a planned professional U.S. football league with the mission of reimagining America’s favorite sport. The league originally debuted in 2001 and only lasted one season. XFL games are set to begin again in February 2020.

The St. Louis BattleHawks were one of the league’s eight teams announced this week.

Jonathan Ahl | St. Louis Public Radio

Small towns love their high school football team. 

So much so, that every year around this time there are scam artists who try to prey upon that pride to get money from local businesses.

The scam works like this: An out-of-town printing company calls businesses saying it is printing items to promote the high school team, and asks them to be sponsors by buying an ad. 

But the money doesn’t go to support the team, and the items may never be printed.

Commentary: Bounty hunters in New Orleans

Jul 2, 2019

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, March 15, 2012 - There is a concise explanation of our continuing need for regulations, rules, referees and the red tape these restrictions on human freedom entail. It can be rather succinctly summarized in two words: People cheat.

The Sumner High School football team huddles during the 2011 homecoming game against Vashon High School. The game attracts thousands of Sumner alumni to The Ville each fall.
File | Wiley Price | St. Louis American

Tory Russell has been roaming the halls and cafeteria of Sumner High School in a maroon Bulldogs hoodie, a laptop open in his hands. He has one question for every boy he finds: “Wanna play football?”

Russell, an assistant coach, is fervently trying to save St. Louis’ winningest high-school football program by getting kids signed up to play. Right now, the Bulldogs football team doesn’t have enough players to take the field. That means there’s a good chance this storied football program has played its last game.

Donato Maffin | U.S. Marine Corps

Children with concussions should be able to continue exercising and using electronics, according to new treatment guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics.

For years, doctors have recommended children who suffered a concussion stay in a dark room with few distractions with the belief it would speed up healing. The new guidance encourages pediatricians to recommend that children engage in moderate exercise and electronics use.

Who's St. Louis' NFL team now?

Jan 26, 2017
Bill Greenblatt | UPI | File Photo

Since the Rams went west (and south, if you count their record), who did St. Louis pay attention to in the NFL this season?

Jim Schroeder checks the grill outside the dome where the St. Louis Rams used to play. He tailgated with family and friends Saturday, July 23, 2016 before going to an exhibition game played by members of the 1999 championship team.
Camille Phillips | St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis Rams fans had a chance to relive some memories from the team’s glory days Saturday.

Former Rams players, including members of the 1999 Super Bowl championship team, played a game of flag football in the Dome at America’s Center. It’s likely one of the last times Rams players, past or present, step foot on the Dome’s turf now that Stan Kroenke has moved his team to Los Angeles.

Missouri History Museum

Last week after the St. Louis Rams officially became no more and opted to move to Los Angeles, the Missouri History Museum sent out a little email. It read:

“While some organizations are leaving St. Louis, we’re staying. Today we’re launching the #staySTL campaign. We need you to join with us and show the world how much we love the St. Louis region. Visit Facebook, Twitter, change your profile picture and help us share the #staySTL logo.

Sam Sextro lights candles across the street from the Edward Jones Dome while mourning the city's loss of the Rams. Sextro and a friend, who ran a St. Louis University High Rams fan club, met outside the stadium Wednesday for a "final tailgate."
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

This commentary was originally posted on St. Louis Public Radio reporter Maria Altman’s Facebook page on January 14, 2016. It was recorded for “St. Louis on the Air” on January 19, 2016. Listen to the radio commentary here:

Some thought on the Rams leaving for L.A.:

Nick Perryman motions at passing cars as he stands across the street from the Edward Jones Dome on Jan. 13, 2016 showing both his displeasure with Rams owner Stan Kroenke and love for his hometown team.
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

“St. Louis on the Air” is starting a new segment on Fridays called “Behind the Headlines.” Every week, we’ll feature several reporters on the show to discuss the week’s best, most interesting, most talked about, or quirkiest stories the St. Louis Public Radio newsroom is covering.

If you see a topic that you’d like to get more depth on, or hear a piece from one of our reporters you’d like to know more about, please email us at with what you’d like to hear in this recurring Friday segment.

Adam Procter | flickr

A pre-filed bill that would have revoked the scholarships of college athletes who boycott games has been withdrawn.

Mizzou football players last month joined other students in calling for the resignation of university system president Tim Wolfe, saying that they would not play another game until he quit or was fired.

Gary Pinkel is the winningest football coach in Mizzou history, and will retire at the end of the 2015 season.
Courtesy MU Tigers

Mizzou head football coach Gary Pinkel will retire at the end of this season.

According to a statement from the University’s Athletics Department this afternoon, Pinkel’s decision is "health-based." Pinkel, the winningest coach in Mizzou history, was diagnosed with lymphoma in May, but was able to continue his coaching duties as he was being treated.

Parents cheer during a football game against Christian Brothers College High School at St. Louis University High on Friday. At left, Verlion Evans cheers for her nephew, Andrew Clair.
Durrie Bouscaren | St. Louis Public Radio

When she was a student at Maplewood Richmond Heights High School back in the 70s, Betty Pearson would ring a cowbell every time the Blue Devils made a touchdown. Her high school sweetheart — now her husband — played football, and their oldest son later followed in his footsteps. So when the school board announced they were ending the district's high school football program due to a lack of interest, Pearson was pretty shocked.

“I was first sad! I was like, 'Oh wow.' You know?” Pearson said.

Architectural historian Lynn Josse tells a tour group about the history of the Laclede Power Plant built in 1901 on Saturday, June 6, 2015.
Camille Phillips | St. Louis Public Radio

The National Register of Historic Places has four listings within the footprint of the proposed riverfront football stadium in St. Louis. A group of preservationists wants the NFL Stadium Task Force to take a second look at their plan to demolish the historic buildings that date back as far as the 1870s.

Proposed Carson, California stadium
L.A. Times| Manica Architecture

The Rams' future in St. Louis continues to be uncertain.

National Football League owners are meeting this week in San Francisco and are expected to receive updates on stadium plans in St. Louis and two Los Angeles suburbs: Carson and Inglewood.

Kevin Rejent
Provided by Mr. Rejent

After the announcement last week of a plan to build a stadium on the Mississippi riverfront, pundits and politicians were quick to react with assorted pros and cons.

Likewise, St. Louis Public Radio followers were eager to share, through the Public Insight Network, just what the plan — introduced by a team appointed by Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon — means to them.

Ex-NFL Lineman Tackles Issue Of Masculinity

Nov 6, 2014
Joe Ehrmann speaks at TEDxBaltimore on Jan. 25, 2013.
TEDxBaltimore via Flickr

Joe Ehrmann, a minister and retired professional football lineman, says many of society’s problems can be traced back to three words.

“The three scariest words every boy receives is when he’s young and told ‘Be a man,’” Ehrmann told “St. Louis on the Air” host Don Marsh this week. “That’s always in the context of stop acting that way, stop with the tears, stop with the emotions, don’t be a mama’s boy. At a very early age, boys start to separate their hearts from their head(s).”

Michael Sam Just Wants To Play Football

May 13, 2014
Jess Jiang / St. Louis Public Radio

Michael Sam, the only openly gay professional football player, was introduced at a news conference at Rams Park Tuesday. 

Sam received unprecedented attention for a 249th pick in the NFL draft. He answered questions for nearly half an hour during the news conference. That's much longer than what even No. 2 draft pick, fellow St. Louis rookie, Greg Robinson, had to endure.

Commentary: This football fan takes a timeout

May 3, 2013

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, May 2, 2013 - In deference to everybody’s least favorite high school teacher, let’s begin today’s column with a pop quiz. How many of the following people can you identify?

Dale Meinert, Sam “The Rifle” Etcheverry, Billy Stacy, Bill Koman, King Hill, Luke and Don Owens.

Commentary: This football fan takes a timeout

May 2, 2013

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: In deference to everybody’s least favorite high school teacher, let’s begin today’s column with a pop quiz. How many of the following people can you identify?

Dale Meinert, Sam “The Rifle” Etcheverry, Billy Stacy, Bill Koman, King Hill, Luke and Don Owens.

Commentary: How do you judge the value of pro football?

Nov 28, 2012

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Nov. 28, 2012 - Twenty-five years ago, St. Louis lost a professional football team because it refused to invest in a stadium.

The baseball Cardinals and football Cardinals, or Big Red, shared the old Busch Stadium. Two years earlier Bill Bidwill, owner of Big Red, gave the city an ultimatum: Build me a 70,000-seat domed stadium, or I’ll take the team to a city that will.

Commentary: Without zebras, the game's a zoo

Sep 27, 2012

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Sept. 27, 2012 - My editor had an interesting idea for this week’s column. She suggested I write about the replacement referees working in the NFL, likening them to amateur cops who were no where near ready for prime time. The metaphor appealed to me. 

There's nothing like a ready-made crowd to help a group get its message out. That's why a conservative political organization set up shop Sunday outside the St. Louis Rams-Washington Redskins NFL football game.

Why mix politics and football?

"People are here," explained Patrick Werner, Missouri state director for Americans for Prosperity.

Football fans are used to encountering promotional tents for sports-talk radio stations and brands of beer and mixed nuts on their way to the game. Not so many of them expect to discuss politics as part of the pregame festivities.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Aug. 27, 2012 - As the mercury began to fall in early August, local high school football coaches – and their players – began to breathe sighs of relief. The hottest summer in decades was relenting just before it could scorch players returning to preseason practices.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, May 10, 2012 - Examining the brain of an NFL player who died at a relatively young age, a doctor found large deposits of “tau proteins.” In layman’s terms, these  are the equivalent of sludge in the engine of thought. They are believed to be caused by trauma.

Junior Seau was an All-Pro linebacker in the National Football League. He played most of his career in San Diego, where he became something of a cultural icon by being as likable off the field as he was dangerous upon it.

Commentary: Oh Bob, where art thou?

Feb 9, 2012

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb 9, 2012 - A friend claims to have spotted Baton Bob in a crowd shot from the pregame festivities in Indianapolis last weekend. Imagine that: local talent makes his national TV debut at the Super Bowl.

For the uninitiated, I should explain that Baton Bob is a fairly good-sized, middle-aged black man who used to dress up like a drum majorette and march around the Central West End here in St. Louis.

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

On the football schedule at least, the University of Missouri is officially a member of the Southeastern Conference.

Though Mizzou does not officially join the SEC until July 1, it's included on the conference football schedule released today. Here's what it looks like for Mizzou:

Los Angeles courting Rams for possible return to California

Jun 10, 2011
courtesy AEG

A sports and entertainment company seeking to build an NFL stadium in downtown Los Angeles has spoken to the St. Louis Rams.

AEG President Tim Leiweke told the Orange County Register that he is reaching out to the Minnesota Vikings, San Diego Chargers, Oakland Raiders, St. Louis Rams and Jacksonville Jaguars.

The Rams future in St. Louis may hinge on the status of their downtown stadium, The Edward Jones Dome.

NFL players, owners appeal labor dispute in St. Louis

Jun 3, 2011
Adam Allington / St. Louis Public Radio

Adversaries in the contentious pro football labor battle convened in a Federal Appeals Court in St. Louis on Friday.

The National Football League is appealing an April injunction from a Minnesota Judge that temporarily lifted the lockout.

The NFL Players Association is in the process of suing the league, claiming that the lockout in violation of federal anti-trust laws.

Paul Clement is an attorney for the NFL team owners; he told a three-judge panel that the issue before them is one for labor laws to decide.

Commentary: The game wasn't always super

Feb 3, 2011

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 3, 2011 - As the Roman poet Juvenal understood, the people require bread and circuses. There will be plenty of both on display this Sunday.

According to people who profess to know such things, Americans will consume 1 billion chicken wings and drink 325.5 million gallons of beer while watching the Steelers and the Packers vie for pro football's most treasured prize. That's enough beer to fill 493 Olympic-sized swimming pools. Antacid sales will increase by 20 percent on Monday, and 7 million employees will fail to make it to work.