Former Central Valley and Idaho Vandals kicker Austin Rehkow’s professional career will continue.
Ex-Vandals quarterback Matt Linehan is apparently done trying.
Rehkow was taken Wednesday in the XFL’s inaugural draft, selected by the Houston Roughnecks, one of the league’s eight teams.
The XFL, a secondary professional league that is set to begin in February 2020, is funded by Vince McMahon, CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE).
Much like the recent, short-lived Alliance American Football (AAF), the XFL aims to give another professional football avenue to former college stars and players who didn’t last in the NFL.
An All-American at Idaho, Rehkow had brief stints with the Buffalo Bills and New York Giants before earning a starting job with the AAF’s Salt Lake Stallions before the league ceased operations in April, two months into the season.
Rehkow reportedly had a workout with the New England Patriots on Tuesday.
Linehan, Rehkow’s teammate at Idaho and with Salt Lake, was one of the 1,000 players whose name was in the XFL draft pool. His name wasn’t called.
He announced his retirement on Twitter when the draft concluded.
“It is with a humble heart today that I’ve come to grips that my that my playing career has come to an end,” Linehan said. “The last two years have been incredibly frustrating, and I know deep down I can’t keep sitting around for a call that won’t come.”
Former Idaho receiver Reuben Mwehla was also taken in the draft on Wednesday by the Seattle Dragons. Mwehla joins a Seattle Dragons roster that includes ex-Idaho and Freeman High offensive lineman Jordan Rose, who was selected Tuesday.
Other former area college players who were in the draft pool but weren’t selected include safety Robert Taylor, receiver Kyle Sweet and kicker Erik Powell from Washington State; punter Jordan Dascalo, who ended his career at Eastern Washington; and former Idaho defensive end Quinton Bradley.
Local journalism is essential.
Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.
Subscribe to the sports newsletter
Get the day’s top sports headlines and breaking news delivered to your inbox by subscribing here.