First female Division 1 football coach talks about paving the way for others


In honor of National Girls and Women in Sports Day, Thomas Worthington High School invited NBC4’s Audrey Hasson and four distinguished women in sports to talk to the female athletes in the Worthington School District. They spoke about the impact playing high school sports made on our lives, and how athletics helped shape our future careers. 

Today’s event featured Callie Brownson, the first female Division I College Football Coach in history. Brownson’s the Offensive Quality Control Coach at Dartmouth University. Even though she has embraced her role as a pioneer for females in college football, her journey towards the sidelines has not come without negative criticism.

“Football is this masculine ball of just… it’s this part of American society that people hold so dear, so any time they feel that that’s threatened, it’s this defense mechanism, so I expected it, I’ve been dealing with it,” said Brownson.

But Brownson told me she is surrounded by the Big Green’s players and coaches that all support and trust her as an equal.

“So the noise just …it drowns out, and none of it mattered because in the world that I was living in, this was a phenomenal thing and we were going to knock it out of the park, we were going to do something that no one else had the guts to do, and we were going to do it well,” she continued.

Dartmouth had a great season, finishing 2nd in the Ivy League with a 9-1 overall record, and Brownson hopes to build off her first season on the coaching staff.

“Get better, you know and continue to be a part of a program that speaks to its actions about equality and the future of football involves females,” said Brownson.

The future of football involving more females stood a crucial part of her message she delivered to hundreds of female athletes at today’s assembly.

“It’s my job in this position to put all that ‘I’m tired and this is hard behind me..’ and show me them that it’s possible and that I’m going to hand them a better world than what I found, and I hope they do the same for the next generation after that.”

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