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Apr 25, 2022

With the rebooted (though still potentially trademark-infringing) USFL now in full swing, we take a look back at one of the clubs from the original version that didn't make the cut this time around - the Washington Federals.
Washington Post sports reporter Jake Russell ("As the USFL Restarts, A Look Back at the Washington Federals") takes us inside his pursuit to decode the numerous curiosities of one of the first league's poorest-performing franchises - both on the field (a 7-22 record over two seasons), and in the stands (the USFL's second-worst average home attendances each year at venerable RFK Stadium).
Snakebitten from the start by: an initial owner who instead swapped for a franchise in Birmingham, AL; a convoluted, decision-slowing three-company joint venture/limited-partnership ownership structure; and a newly ascendant Redskins team celebrating its first NFL title in 41 years just weeks before the new team's debut - the Federals' journey in the USFL was beset by revenue shortfalls, poor timing and just plain bad luck.
Still, the Feds had their moments - and Russell takes us inside some of his conversations with notable names in the team's brief, but colorful history (including one of the league's best logo/color schemes) like veteran QB Kim McQuilken, rookie QB Mike Hohensee, RB Craig James, and WR Joey Walters.