May 3, 2024 - News

Girls flag football could become official high school sport

A girls flag football team from Washington state at the NFL draft at Seahawks invitation.

The Emerald Ridge High School girls flag football team appeared on stage with Seahawks wide receiver Tyler Lockett in Detroit. Photo: Courtesy of the Emerald Ridge High School Jaguars

The Seattle Seahawks are backing an effort to make girls flag football a sanctioned sport in Washington.

Why it matters: The push to recognize and support the sport is growing as interest in women's sports skyrockets nationally.

State of play: Late last month, the Emerald Ridge High School girls flag football team appeared onstage with Seahawks wide receiver Tyler Lockett when he announced the NFL team's third-round pick.

  • The Jaguars were chosen by the Seahawks to be the faces of the sport after they won the Western Washington Championship in their first season, per The Seattle Times.
  • The Seahawks have now donated more than $324,000 in grant funding since 2021 to launch girls flag football teams, per the Seahawks.
  • There are now more than 80 high schools across the state scheduled to offer girls flag football during the 2024–2025 school year, the team says.

What they're saying: "My girls have been great trailblazers, but it's not just about them," Emerald Ridge coach Ayanna Arceneaux told Axios.

  • "It's important to all the young girls growing up, a golden movement for change, and a chance for girls to ignore the stereotypes and stigmas, and enjoy the sport."

What's next: The 53 members of the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association Representative Assembly are slated to vote soon on whether girls flag football will become sanctioned.

  • If approved, Washington could become the 12th state to sanction girls flag football as a high school sport.
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