Six former Nevada football players are among the nearly 800 players listed on the XFL's initial player pool list released thus far (the league is releasing about 200 players each day this week with the final list coming out Friday).
Thus far, Nevada alums who are draft eligible include running back James Butler; defensive back Khalid Wooten; defensive lineman Kaelin Burnett; defensive lineman Rykeem Yates; defensive back Tere Calloway; and quarterback David Cornwell. Also included on the draft list is former Reed High standout wide receiver Devin Gray, who played his college ball at Cincinnati and spent last season on the Atlanta Falcons' practice squad.
The draft will be held Oct. 15-16. Nearly 1,000 players opted into the XFL draft pool after accepting an invitation from the commissioner and passing a mandatory background check.
Butler played for Nevada from 2014-17 and had two 1,000-yard seasons. Butler rushed for 3,316 yards and 27 touchdowns in addition to hauling in 49 passes for 438 yards and three more scores. Butler transferred to Iowa for his senior season and was a backup. He had 91 rushes for 396 yards and a touchdown. After his college career ended, Butler has spent time in the CFL and the NFL. He was on the Oakland Raiders' practice squad last season and was in training camp with the team this year before being cut at the conclusion of the preseason.
Wooten was a member of Nevada's 2010 team and logged four seasons in Reno from 2009-12. He had 157 tackles, including four for loss, and 10 interceptions, recording at least two picks in each of his seasons. He scored two defensive touchdowns and recorded four forced fumbles. Wooten was a sixth-round pick by the Titans in the 2013 draft and appeared in three games for the team in 2014. He's played for three CFL teams and also has played in the AFL and NAL, two indoor leagues.
Burnett played for Nevada from 2009-11 and had 93 tackles, including 14 for loss, and 9.5 sacks in three seasons. He logged three NFL seasons from 2012-14. Burnett had stints with the Raiders, Cardinals and Titans, recording 14 tackles and one forced fumble in 27 games. The 30-year-old also has spent time in the CFL (with the Edmonton Eskimos and Saskatchewan Roughriders) and in indoor football (with the Spokane Empire and Massachusetts Pirates). He most recently played in the Alliance of American Football with the Arizona Hotshots before that league folded last April. Burnett also was a volunteer assistant coach at Nevada in 2016 before his time in the CFL.
Yates played for Nevada from 2012-15 and had 120 tackles, including 23 for loss, and 7.5 sacks. The 6-foot-2, 280-pound defensive lineman largely played on the interior for Nevada, adding two forced fumbles and adding seven passes defended and two fumble recoveries. His best season came in his junior year when he had 37 tackles and 10.5 tackles for loss. Yates has played professionally for the Edmonton Eskimos of the CFL and the Arizona Hotshots of the Alliance.
Calloway played from Nevada from 2013-15 and recorded 19 tackles with one interception and one tackle for loss before transferring to Alabama A&M. Playing in the FCS as a senior in 2017, the 5-foot-8, 190-pound Calloway had 41 tackles, including six for loss, along with a forced fumble and fumble recovery. Calloway took part in the Atlanta Falcons' 2018 rookie minicamp. Seattle's XFL franchise recently had a future on Calloway.
Cornwell came to Nevada as a transfer from Alabama for the 2017 season and was the first commitment in the Jay Norvell era. The former top prep recruit never found a foothold with the Wolf Pack, serving as the third-string quarterback before playing in one game, a 45-7 loss at Washington State, in 2017. He completed 13-of-25 passes for 97 yards and three interceptions against the Cougars and quit the team two days later. The Norman, Okla., native transferred to East Central, a Division II school in Ada, Okla., in 2018. In 11 games (six starts), he completed 75-of-158 passes (47.5 percent) for 684 yards, six touchdowns and five interceptions. Cornwell took part in the XFL Summer Showcase in July.
The XFL will assign one quarterback to all eight of its teams before next week's draft, which will have the following format.
Phase 1 (10 rounds): Offensive skill positions (other quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers, and tight ends)
Phase 2 (10 rounds): Offensive linemen (offensive tackles, guards, and centers)
Phase 3 (10 rounds): Defensive front seven players (defensive linemen and linebackers)
Phase 4 (10 rounds): Defensive backs (cornerbacks and safeties)
Phase 5 (30 rounds): Open draft (any position)
Training camps begin in January with the first games on Feb. 8. Players will have until the start of minicamps in December to accept an NFL offer. A supplemental draft will be held in November for players who were ineligible for the October draft. Those players would include players on NFL rosters during the October draft or players on college rosters. Each team is allowed up to 72 players in training camp before a mandatory cut down to 52 players for the regular season (46 are eligible each game). Each team will draft 71 players.
Including the six Wolf Pack players, there are 48 total players from Mountain West teams eligible in the draft. They include:
* Hawaii OL Dejon Allen
* Hawaii LS Noah Borden
* Hawaii DT Meffy Koloamatangi
* New Mexico S SaQwan Edwards
* New Mexico OT Avery Jordan
* New Mexico RB Jhurell Pressley
* New Mexico WR Lamar Jordan
* New Mexico WR Delaney Hart-Johnson
* UNLV OL Andrew Erbes
* UNLV LB Totauhelotu Lotulelei
* UNLV CB Darius Mouton
* UNLV TE Johnny Stanton
* UNLV RB Lexington Thomas
* Air Force WR Jalen Rowell
* Air Force S Jordan Onyechi
* Air Force LB Ryan Watson
San Jose State
* San Jose State LS Ryan Disalvo
* San Jose State LB Frank Ginda
* San Jose State CB Cleveland Wallace
* San Jose State DT Owen Roberts
San Diego State
* San Diego State WR Mikah Holder
* San Diego State K John Barton
* San Diego State TE Darryl Richardson
* San Diego State OL Terry Poole
* San Diego State WR Ezell Ruffin
* San Diego State NT Nico Siragusa
* Boise State K Ty Rausa
* Boise State DE Durrant Miles
* Fresno State S Mike Bell
* Fresno State CB Anthoula Kelly
* Fresno State QB Marcus McMaryion
* Fresno State C Micah St. Andrew
* Fresno State S Derron Smith
* Colorado State OL Trae Moxley
* Colorado State OL TJ Roundtree
* Wyoming LB Lucas Wacha
* Wyoming OT Ryan Cummings
* Wyoming S Marqueston Huff
* Wyoming DT Youhanna Ghaifan
* Wyoming RB Nico Evans
* Utah State WR Aaren Vaughns
* Utah State WR Jalen Greene