Women's Football Leagues Justify Their ExistenceS

The hiring of a female coach for a boys' HS football team does more to legitimize women's football (yes, even lingerie football) than a thousand Katie Hnidas.

Natalie Randolph's ascent to head coach of DC-area Coolidge High School's varsity team is remarkable for its unremarkability. An athlete in college, five years of semi-pro ball with the D.C. Divas of the National Women's Football Association, two years as an assistant coach for another high school, and finally getting the Coolidge job this week.

It's a noteworthy career path because that's exactly how a man has to do it. This is no publicity stunt, like Hnida's time at Colorado and New Mexico was. Randolph's got experience playing and coaching, so no one can dismiss her hiring.

It's "experience" that's the key word here. The reason there are no female coaches at any level of the game isn't some kind of sexist conspiracy to keep girls out, but rather a coach needs to have some kind of familiarity with the X's and O's of the game. The only way to get that is to play it. Heck, even in the Lingerie Football League, they can gain experience under the former NFL players and coaches.

So it's no longer valid to dismiss women's football just because no one wants to watch it. While they'll probably never make a career out of playing, there's no reason they can't use it to start their coaching careers.

Coaching is the only on-field aspect of sports where there's no inherent gender advantage. It's heartening, and not unexpected, to see the playing field being leveled.

Natalie Randolph to coach Coolidge High School football team [Washington Post]
Washington D.C. woman lands prep football head coaching gig [USA Today]