GOLDEN, Colo. — Out on the gridiron, in Golden on Saturday, it was all about the girls.
“Girls who step on the football field—it’s like, there’s something really special about it,” said Jen Welter, who ran the girl’s football clinic at School of Mines.
Welter was the NFL’s first-ever female coach, and a former professional football player.
Now, she looks to build more than just technical skills on the field.
“For me, I want these girls to learn confidence through football.”
“It was very inspiring for me,” said incoming Roosevelt High School freshman Leah Brown.
Brown has played tackle football for several years now, and says she’s used to being the only girl on her team.
Saturday was a nice change of pace for her—running drills with former and current NFL players—and some of the best female football players in the country.
“I think it’s amazing. I feel like so many women out there are finally getting into it. Football isn’t just a men’s sport—the girls can [play] too,” said Brown.
It’s a path Welter has worked hard to pave for the next generation of female athletes.
“I think the fact that they have permission to dream in football is something really powerful, because I didn’t. And a lot of us didn’t,” Welter told Fox31.
Some of these athletes are dreaming big.
“I’m looking to become a Denver Bronco or a Denver Bandit—whichever one,” 15-year-old Alyssa Johnson said, with a big smile on her face.
“I want to go to a Super Bowl—I want to win a ring,” she added.
The skill level—and age—varied at the clinic, but Welter says that didn’t make a difference.
“You just see them light up. Every girl that catches a pass or snaps a football or throws it’s like life-changing to watch it.”
Welter says they’re just getting started.
“If this is the final frontier and we can change football, couldn’t we change the world?! And for these girls coming up—they get to see a world that has possibilities for them in football.”