ESPN reporter explains what it's like to ask questions to XFL players and coaches during the game

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Monday, February 27, 2023
ESPN reporter gives fans all access pass to XFL players during a game
The XFL is back, and so are the unique views it gives football fans and we're not talking about camera angles but what TV crews can do.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A week after its return, fans and reporters enjoy the unique access the XFL provides.

The video above is from a previous report.

The XFL is back, and so are the unique views it can give football fans. We're not talking about camera angles, but what TV crews can do.

"For me, it's been a blast to be in a place where you're not normally allowed to be during a game," ESPN reporter Tiffany Blackmon explained.

Blackmon roamed the sidelines of Sunday's Houston Roughnecks game. In other football leagues, she can report on what she sees.

In the XFL, she has the ability to walk to a coach or player and ask them questions during the game. "The biggest thing is we can bring the fans an instant answer," Blackmon explained. "Why did the coach make this play? What was going through a player's mind when he ran for 50 yards? That's like the coolest thing about it."

It's not only the good, but the bad. Reporters ask questions after players make a mistake. "It can feel awkward, but you get in, and you get out, and you just try to get the answers that maybe everybody back home is trying to look for," Blackmon said.

How are they different from the fans? The league also gives access to the replay booth.

"A lot of times we as fans see a call one way, and we're almost positive we're right," Roughnecks fan Debbie Kerschen said. "Then, when we get the call, it's the opposite of what we think. At least with the way the XFL is doing it, we kind of see what they're looking at, and it's better to understand what they're seeing versus what we didn't see originally."

A return three years in the making, but one that was worth the wait for some fans and crew.

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"We love that too," Roughnecks fan Joey Crispin said. "When the players have a microphone in their hand. They're actually talking to their coaches about things. I think everybody really likes that."

"This is a lot different, but like in a good way," Blackmon explained. "Again, I go back to that word 'access.' It's just so unique and cool to be able to be in the bench area, talk to guys, see their reaction instantly off their faces or talk to them about what happened on a specific play."

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