Mason Espinosa returning to Columbus once again

by Alex Husting

The Columbus Lions are continuing to make big signings in the weeks leading up to the 2021 season. This week, the Lions have brought back a name many fans will remember, Mason Espinosa. Espinosa is one of the most successful quarterbacks in NAL history and had a great stint with the Lions only a few years ago.

For Espinosa, the return to the Lions during a pandemic that shutdown a whole season is yet another step in a long stories career. Espinosa got his start at Ohio Wesleyan University and played there from 2009 to 2012. In his four years, the four-time All-NCAC selection started all 40 games and finished with 17 different passing records. He also had the most passing yards (11,069), total yards (10,839) and completions (1,004) in conference history upon graduation.

When he left Ohio Wesleyan, the Pittsburgh Steelers invited him to their rookie mini-camp. Eventually, Espinosa headed to the Professional Indoor Football League (PIFL) and joined the Erie Explosion for the 2015 season. In his one season with the Explosion, Espinosa was an Honorable Mention for Rookie of the Year and Offensive Player of the Week in week 9. 

To start the 2016 season, Mason Espinosa headed to Columbus and joined the Lions, thought this time in American Indoor Football (AIF). Later in March of 2016, he signed with the Billings Wolves of the Indoor Football League (IFL). He led the Wolves to their first and only playoff appearance that year. 

Following his short stint with the Wolves, Espinosa headed back to Columbus and joined the Lions once again, this time in the NAL. Espinoas was brilliant in two years with the Lions, winning NAL Player of the Week twice in 2017 and being voted to 2nd team All-NAL while leading the Lions to the NAL championship game. His 2018 season was even better and he won the NAL Offensive Player of the Year award. Following two good seasons in Columbus, he signed with the Albany Empire of the Arena Football League (AFL) on March 5, 2019. The Empire were one of the top teams in the AFL and Espinosa actually served as a backup, only appearing in four games. He put up decent numbers in limited playing time but this was the first in his professional career that Espinosa was not the starting quarterback. When the AFL folded in November of 2019 Mason Espinosa headed back to Columbus for another run with the Lions. When the 2020 NAL season was cancelled, Espinosa had to wait even longer before seeing the field but he remained ready, constantly working out in order to stay in shape and stay prepared. Now, as the Lions have officially re-signed him, the former NAL Offensive Player of the Year brings an incredible amount of experience and success with him to the team. The Lions are continuing to load the roster with experience and talent and Mason Espinosa is another big addition.


The Columbus Lions are members of the National Arena League (NAL). Founded in 2007, the Columbus Lions are starting their 15th season in 2021. The Lions are a 3x league champion and 13 playoff appearances in their rich history. The Lions play their home games at Hughston Field in the Columbus Civic Center. Lions Season Ticket Memberships are on sale now call (706) 322-3336 or visit Follow the Lions on Facebook at, twitter @columbuslions and


The National Arena League was founded in 2016 and hosted its inaugural season in 2017 as the premier league in arena football. The National Arena League will kick off its fifth season in 2021. For more information regarding expansion opportunities or partnerships, contact Commissioner Chris Siegfried at For more information about the NAL visit,,,