Alabama Newspaper Previews Football Event For Women With A Heaping Helping Of Sexism
"Football can be a confusing and often vexing concept, especially for women." Readers weren't happy.
Al.com, the website for the Alabama Press-Register, ran a preview for "Girls of Fall," portraying the event as one that would teach confused women about the game of football.
The piece previews a women's "clinic" by the Senior Bowl in conjunction with Al.com. This is the initial opening to the article:
Football can be a confusing and often vexing concept, especially for women. To the uninitiated it appears to be a swirling mass off big-bodied young men flying about a field, trying to wrestle an odd-shaped ball from a bunch of other muscle-bound men. It is four-hours of yelling and screaming running about in frenzy of color and pageantry.
Well, there is one thing that women understand about the game of football and all the hoopla that goes with it and that is the actual game is a good excuse for a party. And every party, regardless of the setting, needs a good menu to keep the party going.
Readers commented, and they weren't happy.
The author responded, saying the article had been edited in response to feedback.
Randy Kennedy, the community news director for Al.com, spoke to BuzzFeed about the article.
"We apologize for the turn of phrase that offended people. We take very seriously the concerns of our readers and viewers and want to act appropriately."
He said that while the Senior Bowl website says AI.com is co-hosting the event, it is just doing promotion for it.
He echoed Holloway's comments that the event is not aimed at the many female football experts who read the site but those who want to know more about the sport.
"We take responsibility that we did not make that distinction clear on our end," Kennedy said.
The Senior Bowl website described the event as well, which will take place at its mobile convention center.
Ever wonder what's really going on between the lines during a football game? Perhaps you are looking for some new and creative tailgating ideas. Or, maybe curious what will be the hot 'look' for the upcoming football season? If you are -- and you are a female -- then the Senior Bowl has an answer for you. To all three questions. It's the first-ever 'Girls of Fall: Food, Fashion and Fun.' It's a one-of-a-kind 'clinic' hosted by the Senior Bowl and AL.com, set for Thursday, August 22 in downtown Mobile.
Rob Lehocky, the director of public relations for the Senior Bowl, gave a statement to BuzzFeed:
"The Senior Bowl is trying to provide a fun evening for the female football fans in our area, from the most avid and knowledgeable fan to the 'rookie.' Our hope is to make our event different than the hundreds of other female football clinics offered by various colleges and NFL clubs by providing some 'non-football' elements to the evening, such as party ideas and fashion trends. It's designed to be fun for everyone and even the most knowledgeable fan will walk away with a better understanding of the game after listening to an SEC official talk about rules and a former NFL General Manager, Director of Player Personnel, scout and coach discuss the X's and O's."