Renegades Beat Roughnecks to Reach 2023 XFL Championship as Fans Praise HC Bob Stoops

Renegades Beat Roughnecks to Reach 2023 XFL Championship as Fans Praise HC Bob Stoops

ARLINGTON, TX - MARCH 31: Arlington Renegades offensive lineman Mike Horton spikes the football after a touchdown during the game between the Arlington Renegades and the Seattle Seadragons on March 31, 2023 at Choctaw Stadium in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Matthew Pearce/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Matthew Pearce/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

In one of the most stunning upsets of the season, the Arlington Renegades are moving on to the XFL Championship Game.

The Renegades took down the Houston Roughnecks, the top-seeded team in the South Division, 26-11 on Saturday.

Not only did the Renegades enter the postseason as the only team with a losing record at 4-6, but Roughnecks also dominated them in their two meetings during the regular season.

The two teams met last week for the final game of the regular season, and Houston blew out its in-state rivals, 25-9.

But it’s extremely hard to beat a team three times in a year, which the Renegades only confirmed Saturday.

Led by legendary college coach Bob Stoops, Arlington had players all over the roster make a huge impact in the win, but none more than the duo of quarterback Luis Perez and receiver JaVonta Payton.

Perez threw for a game-high 289 yards to go along with three touchdowns and no interceptions while completing 19 of his 27 passes. Payton was benefactor of a handful of those passes, finishing with 121 yards and two scores.

Stoops’ defense came up big as well, holding an explosive Houston offense to only 11 points. It was previously held to under 20 points only three times during the regular season.

Twitter was singing Stoops’ praises following the win.

Erik “T-Bo” Thibault @ErikThibault

Bob Stoops masterclass in the first half #XFL2023

XFL Center @XFLCenter

The 4-6 #Renegades defeat the 7-3 #Roughnecks in the #XFL South Championship, 26-11.

Although nobody expected this to happen, you can’t take away from the ABSOLUTE CLINIC that Bob Stoops’ squad put on in all three phases tonight.#ARLvsHOU | #XFL2023

mr. pov 🇺🇸🇨🇦🇬🇧🇪🇺 @mrpovNA

Gotta give it to the @XFLRenegades. 👏👏

3rd game vs. each other and we’re seeing why Bob Stoops is a great football coach. The organization—what a nice rebound and effort to make the playoffs, win against a SB winning coach today and play for the #XFL Championship.

A big win!

Cason @ousoonerfan

Renegades are about to go to the XFL Championship!!! Way to go @CoachBobStoops

Cason @ousoonerfan

LFG!!!! That might have been the dagger for Bob and the Renegades.

Ryan Abernathy @absonjourney

Big Game Bob is in the @XFL2023 #Renegades

Matt Wilson 🌵 @TheWolf6674

They don’t call him Big Game Bob for nothing! Congrats to my guy Coach Stoops and our hometown @XFLRenegades on the South Division Championship!!!!

The Renegades winning the championship in the revamped league’s first season would be an incredible storyline considering how far they’ve come.

They’re set to face the winner of Sunday’s game between the DC Defenders and Seattle Sea Dragons, both of whom have been the best teams in the XFL for much of the year.

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