Ex-Hawaii, SMU coach June Jones named head coach, general manager of XFL Houston franchise

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The XFL announced Monday that former Atlanta Falcons, SMU and Hawaii coach June Jones has been hired as head coach and general manager of the XFL’s franchise in Houston. Jones comes to the startup league after spending two seasons with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the CFL.

Jones’ career as a head coach spans multiple leagues at multiple levels. His first head coaching job came with the NFL‘s Atlanta Falcons from 1994-96, where he posted a 19-29 record. He then took to the college game, and went 76-41 as the head coach at Hawaii — one of three schools where he played quarterback — from 1999-2007. In his final season at the helm, he led Hawaii to a 12-1 record and an appearance in the Sugar Bowl. He went 36-43 in seven seasons at SMU from 2008-2014 before resigning early in the 2014 season. He was a wide receivers coach for the Houston Gamblers of the USFL in 1984 as well as quarterbacks coach of the Houston Oilers from 1987-88.

“I’ve spent a few years coaching in Houston, and having a chance to return to be a head coach in the XFL is an opportunity I couldn’t pass up,” said Jones. “I had a really great time coaching in the CFL, but this new fresh opportunity to build a team from the ground up is extremely rare in this game, and I’m looking forward to working with [team president] Brian Cooper and our coaches to give football fans in Houston a team that’s truly exciting to watch and worthy of their support.”

The Houston franchise will play its home games at the TDECU Stadium, home of college football‘s Houston Cougars. 

“We’re extremely proud to add Coach Jones, a man with four decades in football, as an XFL head coach,” said XFL commissioner Oliver Luck. “June has coached the game in three different pro leagues, including the NFL, as well as major college and high school football. The experience he’s gained at every stop along the way will no doubt serve him well as he helps us reimagine the game and build our Houston team into something special.”

Jones is the eighth and final coach tabbed to lead XFL franchises. Below is a list of the seven other coaches in the league.

  • Kevin Gilbride (New York)
  • Pep Hamilton (Washington, D.C.)
  • Jonathan Hayes (St. Louis)
  • Winston Moss (Los Angeles)
  • Bob Stoops (Dallas)
  • Marc Trestman (Tampa Bay)
  • Jim Zorn (Seattle)

The eight-team XFL is scheduled to begin play in February 2020.

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