Chris Rowland

Of the many spring football alternatives that have debuted over the last several years, the revamped USFL has been one of the few to complete an entire season. 

After a 40-year hiatus, the USFL returned in April and former Ravenwood and Tennessee State standout Chris Rowland has enjoyed a successful first campaign with the Philadelphia Stars.   

The Nolensville native was drafted by the Stars in the sixth round of the league's inaugural draft in March. Rowland played an important role for Philadelphia from the year's opening kickoff until the final game of the season.

In the season opener, Rowland grabbed a league-high seven catches for 74 yards. Over the past weekend, the Stars fell to the Birmingham Stallions 33-30 in the championship game. Rowland caught four passes for 55 yards and a touchdown, ran for 29 yards on just three carries, and added 59 return yards.

During his time at TSU, Rowland was named the 2019 Deacon Jones Black College Football Player of the Year and the OVC Offensive Player of the Year, set program single-season records for receptions (104) and receiving yards (1,437), was the only player in all of Division I to score a receiving, rushing, kick return, and punt return touchdown, and broke the HBCU single-season reception mark set by none other than Jerry Rice. 

Following his stellar career at TSU, the former Raptor signed with the Atlanta Falcons as an undrafted free agent before spending time on the Tennessee Titans practice squad in 2021.