St Louis Battlehawks

Seeking to prove the NFL made a mistake, a vibrant fan base emerges for the XFL’s St. Louis BattleHawks – The Athletic

ST. LOUIS — The silver and purple feather wings spread across her petite shoulders. Painted on the side of her blue jeans is a silver sword, which she enthusiastically points to. Standing last month in a smoky St. Louis County bar — yes, such spots still exist replete with waitresses in tight-fitting referee uniforms — she is adorned in a branded shirt of her favorite team with the words “Est. 2020.”

Meet “Mother Hawk,” who despite her postdated apparel, is not a time traveler who flew in from the future to this neon-lit bar scene in the last month of the 2010s. She is a walking advertisement for a team that’s yet to hike a single game snap, the XFL’s St. Louis BattleHawks, whose logo incorporates her wings and the sword. Lois Linton, 76, or Mother Hawk to friends and team officials, represents the bubbling energy for the Hawks in the Mississippi River city, losers of two NFL teams (the Cardinals and Rams) in a 28-year span marked by declining population…