UW-Platteville female tries out for Pioneer football teamBy Jimmy Flannery • October 7, 2010 • Category: Uncategorized
Kassandra McCarthy, freshman agribusiness major, has had an interesting start to her college career. McCarthy was recruited by the UW-Platteville football team to be in the running to follow All-American Tony Smidl, who graduated last year, as the Pioneer’s new kicker.
After finishing her high school career at Waunakee high school by winning a state championship, McCarthy chose to come to UW-P and try out for the football team, partly because she wanted the agribusiness major that the school offers.
Ulz Daueber, the Pioneers’ special teams coach, recruited McCarthy.
“I called her and invited her for a visit,” said Daueber, who made no secret of the fact that McCarthy would not receive either favorable or unfair treatment because she is a woman.
Daueber wanted to make sure that McCarthy understood that she would compete for the kicking position fairly.
McCarthy was very happy with the reaction she received from the Pioneer players and coaches when she arrived.
“Everybody was really friendly and welcoming,” said McCarthy, who was told by her doctor that she wouldn’t be able to play this season due to medical reasons.
Female football players are not a foreign subject to head Pioneer football coach Mike Emendorfer, whose daughter also plays on the gridiron.
“It opened my eyes, personally, having a daughter that plays football,” said Emendorfer.
Emendorfer, like Daueber, had no intention of having a player on his team for any other reason than their quality as a person and player that could compete on the football field.
“We’re going to accept any young person that is qualified,” said Emendorfer.
For coaches Emendorfer and Daueber, having a female on the football team would be a good thing for the team and the university as a whole.
“I think we’re a university that wants and needs to diversify,” said Daueber.
Emendorfer believes that diversity gets boiled down to skin color all too often. Religion and gender may not get the attention that they need, according to the head coach.
Neither coach was concerned about the other players’ reaction to having a female teammate, alluding to the fact that they have great respect for their players and their attitudes.
“We do a lot with attitude training and respect,” said Emendorfer.
McCarthy has been contacted by other females thinking of playing football and she tells them to try it and see if they like it.
“So many people have ‘Facebook-ed’ me and contacted me,” said McCarthy.
McCarthy isn’t sure if she wants to try out for the team again next year, due to the academic pressures of being in college, but knows that she found the right college.
“I love it here, I love all of my classes,” said McCarthy. “It feels like home.”