When Andrew Myer, ’16, ’18, heard there was a XFL professional football team coming to St. Louis, he knew he needed to be part of the franchise. After a rigorous interview process, Myer was hired as the team’s third employee.
The opportunity is once-in-a-lifetime; ever since St. Louis was named one of the franchise markets for the XFL, it has had a huge following. Thousands of fans connect via social media, creating their own hashtags and devising rivalry games. Weekly happy hours hosted across the city draw loyal followers including 76-year-old Lois Linton, known to friends and team officials as “Mother Hawk,” who wears wings and blue jeans painted with swords. The excitement is contagious.
Myer brings a wealth of experience to his new role as ticket sales and experience manager. He previously served as a direct sales representative for the St. Louis Cardinals and also learned valuable marketing and event management skills as an intern for the St. Louis Blues and the St. Louis Sports Commission. He also participated in numerous volunteer opportunities with professional sports teams while a student in Maryville’s Rawlings Sport Business Management Program.
“My Maryville professors, especially Jason Williams, director of the Rawlings Sport Business Management Program and associate professor of sport business, taught me important lessons you can’t learn from a textbook,” Myer said.
The XFL promises to maximize the fan experience and has tweaked the rules to encourage faster games and enhanced player safety. Myer has spent the last six months building the BattleHawks brand from the ground up and compares his day-to-day like working for a startup. “I originally thought I would keep a planner, but when I come to work, I never know how the day is going to end up,” he said. “It’s all hands on deck.”
As one of its marketing strategies, the BattleHawks have hosted red carpet experiences throughout the St. Louis region. The events give fans a chance to try on BattleHawks jerseys and helmets and hold an official XFL game ball, and then take their picture against a branded backdrop. Fans walk down a red carpet lined with velvet stanchions to participate.
One of these red carpet experiences came to the Maryville campus in January. The event featured a Q&A with BattleHawks representatives including Myer and BattleHawks president Kurt Hunzeker, who previously served as an adjunct professor for the Rawlings Sport Business Management Program.
“It’s all about celebration and bringing football back to St. Louis,” Myer said. “We’re proud to be born and raised in St. Louis. And we’re dedicated to making games fun and affordable for all fans, especially families.”
Maryville’s Office of Alumni Relations is offering a special ticket opportunity for the BattleHawks home opener, at The Dome at America’s Center, on February 23 at 2 p.m. Get your tickets today and join fellow Maryville alumni in the stands! To purchase tickets, visit maryville.edu/battlehawks.