It's a common complaint that some women don't understand the ins and outs of football enough to truly follow the game, a factor which many point to as limiting their passion for the sport, whether their children compete in the game or not. Now, one high school football coach is taking steps to close that gap with a unique hands-on approach that brings moms into the game … literally.
As reported by Cleveland ABC affiliate WEWS, Hudson (Oh.) High football coach Ron Wright hosted a hands-on football night at the school's stadium, designed to bring mothers of his players into the game. First, Wright walked them through rules of the game in an explanatory session in the schools auditorium. Focusing on basic rules and terminology, Wright helped explain how plays evolve and some basic strategy behind his (and all other coaches' decisions).
Then, Wright put his teaching into action, taking the mothers out onto the football field and getting them to participate in the drills and plays he had just explained. In a brilliant move, the coach had each mother line up in the position in which their son participates, helping them get a more firm grasp of precisely what their child is asked to do in a game.
In a final touch of authenticity, each mom even wore her son's jersey, putting her completely in his shoes (or, more directly, his jersey).
"Before he sat down with us, moms were saying, 'I think we're going to throw a little screen pass,' 'Oh gosh, I don't know what a screen pass is!'" one unidentified mother told WEWS.
While the unique effort certainly will help bridge the football gender gap, it may also have the unintended consequence of creating a new set of critics at home after each game. Something tells Prep Rally that prep athletes would probably rather have it that way, with their mothers fully invested, than toil with only token understanding of what these student athletes are going through.
That appreciation certainly carried through to the mothers themselves.
"It's awesome, scary," another unidentified mom told WEWS. "It's more complicated than I imagined."