Every University of Dallas student looks forward to our school’s unique tradition of celebrating Groundhog Day with food, beer and music out in the woods. However, as much as I enjoy that aspect of Groundhog, my favorite part of the Groundhog celebrations is the annual Groundhog Powder Puff football game.
The Powder Puff game is a flag football match that pits the junior and senior girls against the freshmen and sophomore girls. According to senior Danny Sauer, the recreational programming coordinator, “Powder Puff football is the only all-female intramural sport currently offered by the school.”
The rules for the Powder Puff game “will be the same as regulation flag-football rules that were held with the men’s intramural season,” says Sauer. These rules keep the same game structure as tackle-football while preventing dangerous physical contact, in order to have a game that is fun and safe at the same time.
For the week before the game, both teams will be holding practices to prepare for the big game. Since many girls do not have a lot of experience playing football – however much they may love the sport – the coaches’ knowledge and experience are important. The coaches for the upperclassmen are juniors Michael Tann and Jonathan Wolfe, while the underclassmen are coached by Will Narduzzi and Anthony Campise.
All of the participants are very competitive, from the freshmen playing in their first Powder Puff game to the seniors playing in their last. When asked who was going to win the game, freshman Brigid Callahan quickly answered, “The underclassmen, obviously.”
Senior Clare McDonough was just as confident in the upperclassmen team’s ability to come away with a victory, and added, “We have a reputation to uphold. And our reputation doesn’t come out of nowhere.”
The reputation McDonough is talking about is the undefeated record of the current seniors. Since their freshman year, the class of 2012 has not lost a Powder Puff game, with two wins and one tie to their name. However, the freshmen and sophomore girls are just as anxious to win as the upperclassmen, and they will not go down without a fight.
According to Sauer, about 30 girls signed up to play on each team. The players are hoping for a good crowd to cheer for them on game day.
“The game is before the actual Groundhog party, so it kicks off the celebration,” says Callahan. Sauer says that he has “arranged [for]there to be hot chocolate, hot cider and donuts on the sidelines for all the fans to enjoy for free.”
Besides the prospect of free food, the fans will enjoy a good game of football.
“A good defense is always fun to watch, I think – someone taking down the quarterback is fun. The best part is to watch [senior] Kellie Fitzpatrick play safety,” says McDonough.
The Powder Puff game will be held on the rugby pitch at 1 p.m. this Saturday, Feb. 4. Come out to support your class and kick off the Groundhog celebration!