It’s not very often that we see a girl trot onto the football field, especially at the college level. Regardless of its rarity, the Virginia Tech Hokies might get the opportunity to see that exact sight every day during practice next year.
After an apparently impressive tryout, freshman Lauren Luttrell earned an invite to the Hokies’ 2012 spring practice from head coach Frank Beamer. Although that’s no guarantee that she’ll see the field or even make the team, it’s a big win for those token female footballers out there.
“Right now it’s kind of tough to come out there and get a lot of attention,” said Beamer. “Things are happening so fast right now. But I was impressed with her and we’ll bring her back out in the spring.”
During her senior year at Spotsylvania High, Luttrell connected on 10 extra points and a 31-yard field goal. Although those numbers don’t exactly scream “kicking phenom”, the whole she’s-a-girl thing makes it impressive.
There has only been one female kicker in NCAA football history to ever compete and score at the Division 1 level. Katie Hnida, a kicker for New Mexico State, made two extra points during the Lobos’ 72-8 stomping of Texas State. She was also the first female to participate in a bowl game, although her one extra point attempt was blocked.
Hnida started her college kicking career at Colorado University, where she was allegedly a victim of rape as well as numerous accounts of sexual harassment. Those issues led to an eventual transfer to Santa Barbara City College, where she opted not to grace the gridiron. In 2002, she headed to New Mexico State as a walk-on.
All we can do is hope that Luttrell doesn’t draw the same hand that Hnida did if she does manage to make the team next spring.