When she reaches the semi-circle of players, she will lead a loud, celebratory count-off of the number of games the team has won that season. She is, literally, a ring-leader. She is JC, D-line, #54.[NB: Below are JC’s interview questions followed by her answers, which are then followed by some commentary by me in italics.]
You’ve been playing tackle football for quite some time. When did you start? How do you think women’s football has changed since then?
I’ve been playing football for 13 years. I started with the New England Storm, then played with the Boston Warriors/Rampage and now I play for the Militia. The changes from when I started playing include the number of different leagues, the total teams involved and the exposure that the sport gets.In addition to playing football, you also coach a girls’ basketball team, and have been involved in multiple other sports. What have you played, and in what ways do you think girls benefit from playing sports?
I was the assistant basketball coach at Simmons College for one season, and I recently concluded a season as assistant basketball coach at the Winsor School in Boston. I played basketball for four years at Emmanuel College, and in high school I played basketball and softball. (I tried volleyball but was not feeling the tiny shorts.)
I believe that playing sports can help give girls a sense of empowerment, self-confidence, commitment and respect.
MC: It’s likely that the theme of girls playing sports may come up frequently in my writing this season; as I adjust to being the parent of two young boys, I have been giving a lot of thought to kids’ emotional development and what we as adults can do to help both boys and girls grow up safe and healthy (both physically and emotionally). JC’s answer above is a great starting point for what I’d like to examine further.
Tell us one of your favorite moments from any of the games you’ve played.
One of my favorite moments was scoring a touchdown off a fumble recovery. And coming close to another TD last season, if [player’s name redacted] didn’t let some 300-pound girl outrun her. (OK, she wasn’t 300 pounds. But [player’s name redacted] did miss the block.)What is something that’s made you feel supported as a Militia player?
Well, I’m more of the emotional leader of my team. I feel the love and support when my Militia teammates allow for me to do my thing before and after the game – I’m like the Ray Lewis for my team.
MC: Conversation at our house yesterday:
Militia Cheerleader: Hey, JC says she’s the Ray Lewis of the Boston Militia.
Backseat Coach: What, she cries all the time?
MC: I don’t think that’s what she meant.
BSC: Well, I think she’s WAY tougher than Ray Lewis.
MC: No shit.
What is something you’d like see happen that would make you feel more supported?
I would like to see bigger crowds at the games (standing-room-only type of shit), and media coverage on a consistent basis.
MC: This (poor promotion and poor media coverage) will also be a theme on this blog this season. Spoiler: I plan to blame the WFA, mainstream media, team management and ingrained misogyny.
Tiny Coach’s second birthday is coming up towards the end of April. What should Backseat Coach and I get him?
An “AWWWWW shhhhhhhh” t-shirt!!!!
MC: BRING IT ON.