Stallions head coach Skip Holtz talks injuries, young players stepping up in win over Memphis

Birmingham dominates Memphis, 42-2, on Saturday
Another Stallions win in Week 2
Published: Apr. 24, 2023 at 12:47 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Birmingham may have been missing seven starters for Saturday’s game against Memphis, but that didn’t stop the Stallions from dominating Memphis, 42-2, inside Protective Stadium.

Head coach Skip Holtz said that dealing with injuries is just part of professional football.

“There’s a lot of talent on this roster and these guys have been working really hard, just waiting for their opportunity,” Holtz said Monday on WBRC Good Day Alabama. “Even with so many of those guys out, it was nice to see some of those guys step up.”

Alex McGough completed 21 passes for 301 yards and four touchdowns. Zaquandre White had a breakout game with the Stallions rushing for 75 yards and two scores in their blowout win over the Showboats.

“We got our first look at Zaquandre White, a running back who creates a lot of excitement,” Holtz said. “He’s one of those guys that when he goes in the game and plays, everybody needs to stand up because somebody’s fixing to score. Just an exciting and electric player.”

Quarterback J’Mar Smith is out for the year after tearing a tendon in his finger that required surgery. Holtz also mentioned that Bo Scarbrough is battling a knee injury, wide receiver Marlon Williams has a torn Achilles and Scooby Wright is out with a calf injury.

“Hopefully we can start to identify with some of these new names and some of these guys that have been working really hard,” Holtz said. “But I was really proud of the way they stepped up and the way went and played with focus and the way they went and played Saturday night in a 42-2 win.”

Holtz credits the mentality in the locker room as the reason his team was able to step up and dominate the way they did against Memphis with so many out for the game, saying it really is a “next man up mentality.”

“It’s really all about the intangibles, our focus, the way we work, the way we dial in, the way the focus on our assignments,” he said. “I think there’s a great culture right now.”

Birmingham now gets ready for a pivotal game against 2-0 New Orleans for and early season lead in the South Division.

Unlike past weeks, however, the Stallions will kickoff against the Breakers at 11:30 a.m. Holtz said the morning kickoff doesn’t change the teams preparation in any way.

“We just have to get out of bed and get going,” he said. “We can’t get a rolling start with a late game. We’ll have a pregame meal at about 7:30 in the morning. We’re going to have to get up and get after it early. New Orleans is a really good team. We’re both 2-0 and fighting for the South.”

Tickets for Birmingham’s game against New Orleans in Protective Stadium can be purchased at

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