The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have recently announced that they are opening a scholarship program that is designed to help female football players in high school. What does this scheme involve, and who can benefit from it?
More importantly, what kind of beneficial effect might it have on women’s football in the future?
The Full Details
The full name of the program is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Girls in Football Scholarship Fund. It has been made possible due to a generous $250,000 donation from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Foundation.
Anyone female high school senior across the country can register to take part in it. One of the few qualifying details is that they need to currently play in any one of the formally sanctioned flag or tackle football programs in their region. The academic requirements are listed a little bit further down.
Darcie Glazer Kassewitz is the President of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Foundation, and she has been behind many of their most worthwhile initiatives in recent years. She said that there are 260 sanctioned girls flag football teams in Florida alone, but that there are “no scholarship opportunities for those female athletes after high school”.
The idea of this program is to “fill that void by creating a scholarship program”. This will reward young female athletes for their academic success, as well as motivating them to keep on playing football.
What Are the Requirements?
To apply for a place on this program, students need to be planning to enroll in a full-time accredited four-year college or university course. They also need to have earned good grades during their high school. This translates as a minimum of a 3.0 grade point average scored on a 4.0 scale.
The first scholarships to be awarded in this way will be handed out at the end of the 2020 academic year. If you want to see more, then this video explains the program and inspires students to get involved.
How Will This Benefit Female Football?
The Buccaneers are the first NFL team to provide this sort of opportunity for young female football players. It isn’t known whether this might stimulate other teams to do the same sort of thing.
This is another example of how they are attempting to help the growth of women’s sport in a responsible, sustainable way. For those who watch football or bet on the Superbowl wagers and trends on online websites like BetAmerica, the arrival of a strong female league would be a welcome addition to the sporting calendar.
This isn’t the first idea from the Buccaneers to help the growth of female football. For example, last year they teamed up with the City of Tampa Parks and Recreation department to create the Jr. Bucs Girls Flag Football League. The 24 teams in this league all received brand new equipment from the team.
You may also remember that they gave flag football equipment to 35,000 female students in middle schools. They provided this to more than 90 schools that offer flag football programs. All of this is part of their overall plan to empower female players who strive to be the best that they can in the sport.
This scholarship program is aimed at encouraging female students to combine good academic results with a sporting career. If it is successful, then it should lead to more female football players getting the chance to play the sport they love without having to sacrifice their studies.
There is still a long way to go before women’s football gets the platform that it deserves. This and other worthwhile initiatives from the Tampa Bay Buccaneer Foundation will help to drive the sport forward and should lead to greater opportunities in the future for promising players.