Is Powderpuff Enough?

Amaeka Effiong, Editor in Chief

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With all of the excitement surrounding the current football season and the upcoming powderpuff game, the idea of a potential girls’ football team has been raised.

Football has been known worldwide as a “man’s” sport with few women teams that are taken seriously.

According to CNN, there is no professional paid league for women like there is for men.

Though girls are allowed to play on the boys’ team at OHS, it is not the same experience as having an all girls sports team like there is for other sports such as Basketball and Soccer.

Female students have voiced their support for having an all girls football team.

“I would be interested in joining a girls football team,” Emily Barr (10) said. “I think it would be really fun to play a sport I don’t usually play.”

Emilee Nussdorfer (10) showed excitement regarding the topic.

“It’d be fun to play football!” Nussdorfer said.

According to the Women’s Football Alliance, there are 65 teams in the top women’s professional league, which actually exceeds the 32 teams in the NFL.

Lillian Covell (11) also expressed her interest in a girls’ football team at OHS.

“Having a girls football team would be cool,” Covell said. “I would participate definitely.”

Female students like Julia Mocny (10) would want to play in an all girls’ football team, but recognize the large setbacks.

“They can’t get enough girls that are willing to put in all the time to come to practices and what not on top of what they’re already doing, [especially] when there’s no high ceiling for achievement in it like playing in college or playing pro,” Mocny said.  

Mocny’s claim is supported by the statement from CNN that each woman player in the Women’s Football Alliance has to pay $500 to $1000 every season in order to play, while still not receiving any payment in return.

Clarisse Pendo (12) shared why a girls’ football team may not be such a good idea.

“Some girls will feel like they don’t know how to play and they’ll feel embarrassed to play.” Pendo said.

The Varsity football coach, Jack Wallace, did not want to comment on the topic.

Female students are not the only ones missing out on a sports opportunity at Okemos High School. There is no OHS volleyball team for Male students, even though many students express a desire for one to be made.  

“I think Volleyball is fun and I would be interested in having a boys volleyball team,” Saheth Edupuganti (11) said.

Kevin Naing (12) would be happy to see a boys’ volleyball team.

“I would like to watch the games.” Naing said.

Although there is not a boys’ volleyball team at OHS, Men’s volleyball still receives more worldwide recognition that women’s football. It is an official sport in the Olympics and is offered at dozens of universities nationwide, while women’s football can not be found in any.

Hunter Hollenbeck (10) who is very eager to have an OHS boys’ volleyball team, believes that there is not one because of how the sport is perceived.

“A lot of guys think that’s kind of a girly sport so they wouldn’t want to play it, but it’s actually really fun, it’s really intense,” Hollenbeck said. “Especially when guys play it.”

Varsity Volleyball Coach Jamie Ianni gave some insight as to why OHS does not have a boys’ volleyball team.

“Based on gender equity and Title Nine, public institutions need to have the same amount of girl sports as boy sports,” Ianni said. “So if we were to add a boys volleyball team, now what girls sport would we add? They’ve talked about potentially bringing in girls’ field hockey, and then you could bring in a boys volleyball team. The problem with that is scheduling, because there are no teams. There are teams on the east side of the state, some that play boys volleyball, [but] there’s just pockets of those sports, so it makes scheduling very difficult. You [would] have to travel quite far to find competition.”

Ira Childress (Athletic Director) explained the complicated process of starting a new sports team at Okemos High School.

“We would have to see significant interest in several student athletes, and even then it usually takes multiple years because it would have to be then approved by the board,” Childress said. “A lot of times what people don’t understand about creating a sport it’s not just like, ‘hey, let’s create a team,’ it’s let’s create a team, and then where’s the funding going to come from from adding that into the budget because then we have to support the team. And then the other part of it is who are you going to compete against. Obviously part of that funding is travel, facility, I mean there’s just a lot of things that go into creating a new sport,” Childress said.