Posted on August 31, 2019, by Travis Pulver

Vince McMahon is not a foolish person. He is a smart businessman that doesn’t want to flush hundreds of millions of dollars down the drain when his football league kicks off next spring. So, to that end, he has been taking his time setting everything up to make sure things are done right.

But it appears that one sportsbook has decided not to be patient and wait for players to sign on with the league. They’ve already released odds on who is going to win the inaugural season of the new and improved XFL.

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The Odds

Bovada.lv recently released odds on which of the leagues eight teams will win its inaugural championship game—assuming it lasts long enough to get to it (unlike the Alliance of American Football):

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  • New York Guardians, Los Angeles Wildcats     +300
  • Dallas Renegades           +350
  • Tampa Bay Vipers           +450
  • Houston Roughnecks, St. Louis BattleHawks, Seattle Dragons, D.C. Defenders +900

As it turns out, the odds at Bovada.lv are not the only ones in town. SBRpicks.com has also released odds for the XFL Championship:

  • New York Guardians, Los Angeles Wildcats, D.C. Defenders     +1000
  • Dallas Renegades, Houston Roughnecks +300
  • Tampa Bay Vipers           +800
  • St. Louis BattleHawks    +1200
  • Seattle Dragons               +600

Only one player has even signed on with the league, former Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Landry Jones. But logos and team names were just announced only days ago (former Baylor defensive lineman Shawn Oakman has accepted an invitation to the draft).

So, all we actually know about each team is who their head coach/general manager is:

  • New York Guardians: Kevin Gilbride
  • Los Angeles Wildcats: Winston Moss
  • Dallas Renegades: Bob Stoops
  • Tampa Bay Vipers: Marc Trestman
  • Houston Roughnecks: June Jones
  • St. Louis BattleHawks: Jonathan Hayes
  • Seattle Dragons: Jim Zorn
  • D.C. Defenders: Pep Hamilton

Our Betting Tip/ Prediction For The XFL Championship

How on Earth is anyone supposed to bet on a team when there are no players on it yet? That will likely change in the days ahead as the NFL’s 32 teams cut their training camp rosters down to size. But the draft is not going to be until late October.  

It looks like, if you really want to put some money down on who will win the 2020 XFL Championship, the only thing you have to go on is the reputation of the head coach. So—who should you bet on?

Bob Stoops (Dallas) has not coached at the professional level before, but he was incredibly successful during his time at Oklahoma. June Jones (Houston) has been coaching for decades at many different levels of the game, most recently in Canada with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.

Winston Moss is well regarded, but he doesn’t have a ton of coaching experience. Kevin Gilbride, though, has coached in the NFL and was the offensive coordinator for the Giants during their last two Super Bowl wins.

Marc Trestman has seen a lot of success in the Canadian League but not so much in the NFL. June Jones has been involved in coaching for decades but was more successful as a college head coach than in the NFL or CFL.

Jim Zorn was a great player back in his day and a good offensive coordinator. But he has been out of coaching since 2012. Fans will remember Pep Hamilton best as the architect of Andrew Luck’s offense at Stanford and with the Colts. He was last with Michigan in 2018 as the assistant head coach/passing game coordinator.

Jonathan Hayes may be the least experienced of the bunch. He has been involved in coaching for a long time; a few years with the Sooners and then 15-16 years with the Bengals—but as a position coach (2003-18). Will the move from tight ends to head coach be too much?

Based on the head coaches alone—take the Dallas Renegades. Stoops has never coached at the professional level. But he knows how to build championship-caliber teams and may feel like he has something to prove.

Of course, the odds are going to change drastically when they finally have the draft. But if you have to bet now, take Dallas.  

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