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USFL games start with season opener at Canton’s Hall of Fame Village

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A rally towel is among the promotions and giveaways during regular season USFL games being played this spring at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton. The towel will given out to those attending the April 23 game between the Pittsburgh Maulers and New Jersey Generals.

CANTON − Professional football is coming to Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium with promotional pizazz and retro style.

Following the start of its second season last weekend, the USFL will open regular season games in Canton on Sunday at the Hall of Fame Village for the first time. The New Jersey Generals and Pittsburgh Maulers square off at 1 p.m. followed by a 7 p.m. game between the Michigan Panthers and Philadelphia Stars.

Unlike last season, when ties between the original USFL and the newer version weren’t visibly promoted, the spring football league has changed course.

Crews cover the end zone at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton with USFL logos in preparation for Sunday's game.

USFL television promos now feature glimpses of players of the 1980s who went on to become NFL legends. And USFL alum and former Cleveland Browns defensive back Frank Minnifield will be part of Sunday’s opener when he performs the coin toss and signs autographs in the concourse.

Charlie Grandjean, a North Canton resident who played in the original USFL, said he plans to attend some games in Canton.

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“It should be a lot of fun,” said Grandjean, a former star Hoover High School athlete in the 1970s who played for the Birmingham Stallions in 1983 and once tackled New Jersey Generals star running back Herschel Walker. “I am very happy the league is going strong.”



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