The Sacramento Mountain Lions of the United Football League finally started their 2012 season Thursday, with a morning practice session at Hughes Stadium on the campus of Sac City College.
The start of training camp was delayed, and the regular pushed back a week, as the league reportedly faced difficulties trying to arrange for workman’s comp insurance for its players. The Mountain Lions began signing players this past Tuesday, and planned for an evening practice on Wednesday.
However, two hours before practice was set to start, it was cancelled without explanation.
Thursday morning, the Mountain Lions hit the field with a signed roster of 56 players. The biggest name in the group is Josh Johnson, a quarterback who was one of the last cuts of the preseason by the San Francisco 49ers. In addition to his time with the 49ers, Johnson has also played in the NFL with Tampa Bay.
The only other quarterback on the current roster is Jerrod Johnson from Texas A&M. He was a draft choice in 2011 by the Pittsburgh Steelers.
According to the team, 40 of the 56 players on the current roster were in training camp with NFL teams.
Running back John David Washington, who was with the Mountain Lions last year, has returned for another season. Washington is the son of actor Denzel Washington, who was a frequent sideline visitor at Mountain Lions home games last season.
The Mountain Lions do not have much time to get ready for the first game. They are scheduled to host the Omaha Nighthawks on Friday, Sept. 28. All Mountain Lions home games will be played at Raley Field.