The Future is Coming in the World of Sports
A young woman by the name of Lauren Silberman walked into the NFL tryouts for kicker on Sunday and, unfortunately, didn’t do what she wanted to do. Being the very first woman to try out for the NFL, Silberman was more than excited for the opportunity. However, after just her second kickoff attempt, she was basically finished. Because of injury, not for lack of determination or skill. And, believe it or not, her competitors as well as spokespeople for the NFL did not say it was because she was a woman that she wasn’t getting another chance – it was, literally, just because of the injury.
Silberman made her kicks inside the N.Y. Jets facility in Florham Park, N.J. with fellow prospects that were all male. And, no, they didn’t do all that great either. But, for anyone who saw the Jets season, these kickers did a far better job than the actual team did.
Even though Lauren Silberman didn’t accomplish her goal, her impact on the history of the league was definitely felt. Silberman is the first woman to perform at an NFL regional combine, but won’t be the last. Females will be seen coming to camps and combines such as this to prove that they, too, can work in the NFL. Why? Because the future is coming…
This is not the first time that a female presence was seen in mostly ‘male’ worlds. And it was certainly not the only time a female has made a name for themselves in the world of sports.
Many will remember Nancy Lieberman. She is the woman who came back at the age of fifty to play for the WNBA’s Detroit Shock. This is a woman who had played for the L.A. Lakers summer league team and even the talented Kobe Bryant spoke to her and tried to learn the obviously well-kept secret to her longevity.
If we head into the world of tennis, females have most certainly made their mark. Billie Jean King will always be the big gun. And when she beat Bobby Riggs in the game that made headlines as, “The Battle of the Sexes,” she absolutely proved that girls ruled. Yes, she was in her twenties and Riggs was closer to the age of Dumbledore, but winning is winning and the girl walked away with it!
In the realm of horse racing there was a major headline back in 1993 that showed the world that chicks can ride a horse even better than dudes. Julie Krone won the Belmont Stakes in 1993. Before she made her mark, no other woman had ever ridden a horse that won any leg of The Triple Crown.
And, no offense NFL guys, it is a well-known fact that being a jockey is tougher than being an offensive or even defensive back.
Let’s go out to the ballgame….
Yup, there will always be the big names, but there is one baseball player by the name of Jackie Mitchell that actually struck out Murderer’s Row in 1931. The beloved Yankees played an exhibition game against the Chattanooga Lookouts (a minor-league team), that boasted having not only a female pitcher, but also a 17-year-old female. In the very first inning, Jackie struck out Babe Ruth with only four pitches. Was it a setup? Not even close. Ruth was beyond angry and more than a little embarrassed. He actually vowed on that day to never bat against a woman again. Lou Gehrig was up next and it only took three to strike him out. (Gehrig wasn’t exactly what you would call happy either.)
For anyone who believes this was a prank, all you have to do is call up the picture that graced the front page of the Times and see the completely angry looks on these icon’s faces. And, not surprisingly, after that game was over this young girl’s contract was voided by Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis. And his excuse was that women were simply unfit to play baseball because it was “too strenuous.”
Whether people like it or not, or they wish to simply state that women have their own leagues and should stay in them, the future will bring a great many changes…and it won’t just be the newest iPhone. Look out world, cause the females are coming!
This moment in sports is brought to you by: Be First Media Group
Until Next Time, Everybody,