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Female officials coming soon to the NFL

sarahthomas AP

The NFL has never had a woman work as an on-field game official. That may change soon.

NFL V.P. of Officiating Carl Johnson told Jane McManus of ESPN.com that he expects to hire a female official.

We have some in our pipeline, and I expect we’ll see it soon,” Johnson said.

Johnson wouldn’t say who the female officials in the pipeline are, but he was presumably talking about either Sarah Thomas, a Conference USA official who was the first woman to officiate a major college football game, or Terri Valenti, who was the second female official in major college football and the first in pro football when she worked a UFL game last year.

Thomas said she likes the idea of moving up to the NFL.

“Any professional sport is at the highest level, and if they asked me to officiate at that level, I would not turn them down,” Thomas said.

Valenti has also said she wants to be an NFL official.

I’d love to make it to the NFL; if I could get to the top of my profession that would be just awesome,” Valenti said after becoming the UFL’s only female official last year.

“Our goal,” Johnson said, “is to get the best people working this game.”

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176 Responses to “Female officials coming soon to the NFL”
  1. firerosenthalthebastard says: Aug 13, 2011 1:47 PM

    Well just make sure you hire her because she knows the rules well, can think quick on her feet and she has good eye for the game…. not other reasons.

  2. jessieboom says: Aug 13, 2011 1:48 PM

    No problem with that. As long as their isn’t no silly “Rooney Rule” about it anyway.

  3. joshsports6000 says: Aug 13, 2011 1:48 PM

    Don’t see a problem with it at all, and I wonder what’s taken so long. I just don’t know if the players (or the coaches) are going to respect them. At least not the Jets anyway. I guess we’ll see.

  4. hobartbaker says: Aug 13, 2011 1:49 PM

    While she is more popular and well known than Thomas and Valenti, “Mistress Ingrid” is not a serious candidate for employment by the league, said Johnson.

  5. theroguescripter says: Aug 13, 2011 1:49 PM

    Ummmm… NO.

  6. realnflmaster says: Aug 13, 2011 1:49 PM

    what does this have to do with the JETS?

  7. kilo0986 says: Aug 13, 2011 1:49 PM

    Umm… yeah nvm..

  8. everydayimfumbilin says: Aug 13, 2011 1:49 PM

    lol can you imagine a women lineman

  9. myspaceyourface says: Aug 13, 2011 1:50 PM

    As long as they replace some of the 70 year old men that are still in the game I’m okay with it.

    Tripplet needs to go.

  10. bdawkhit20 says: Aug 13, 2011 1:50 PM

    Now when they are smashed in an inadvertent collision in suffer an injury then what!? Get the *tampons* and popcorn ready!! T.O. Style!!!

  11. redguy12588 says: Aug 13, 2011 1:50 PM

    But there’s no kitchens on the field.

  12. pftequalsgreatjournalism says: Aug 13, 2011 1:50 PM

    Maybe they will hire one who is a Pittsburgh fan…

  13. steelernationisstartingitsownleague says: Aug 13, 2011 1:50 PM

    It seems forced. Just like the women reporters on ESPN or NFL Network. You’d think they were on a talk show the way they laugh and joke around. Most have no idea what they’re talking about. Not saying all of them are props, just some.

  14. xstaticonradio says: Aug 13, 2011 1:50 PM

    Are they going to move the reviewing booth to a kitchen, to better accommodate the women?

  15. jersey73 says: Aug 13, 2011 1:51 PM

    Gives new meaning to “illegal use of the hands”

  16. rickditka says: Aug 13, 2011 1:51 PM

    that’s cool… you never know when someone might need a sandwich.

  17. steelernationisstartingitsownleague says: Aug 13, 2011 1:51 PM

    *most

  18. steelernationisstartingitsownleague says: Aug 13, 2011 1:51 PM

    HERE WE GO STEELERS, HERE WE GO

  19. 7370355q says: Aug 13, 2011 1:52 PM

    Great now there will be even more talking and verbage when describing the infraction

  20. joeflaccosunibrow says: Aug 13, 2011 1:52 PM

    As if my Ravens weren’t flagged enough!

    These chicks are going to give us Unsportsmanlike Conduct penalties when they see how ugly Suggs is up close!

    The man keeping us down again!

  21. shaunymac424 says: Aug 13, 2011 1:52 PM

    Holy bad idea Batman. Didn’t we learn from allowing women reporters into the locker room?

    How long before a player starts dating a female ref and starts getting favorable calls?

    Or on the other hand, what if they date and break up, who’s to say there will be no grudge?

    HORRIBLE IDEA.

  22. ravensallday420 says: Aug 13, 2011 1:56 PM

    keep them away from rapeistburger

  23. rolandsloan says: Aug 13, 2011 1:57 PM

    Please.Give me a break. Do we have to mess with
    EVERYTHING? Can’t some “guy stuff” stay “guy stuff”? I may abandon the NFL yet. Crap.

  24. coleman121280 says: Aug 13, 2011 1:57 PM

    WHY!?

  25. wacco4flacco says: Aug 13, 2011 1:58 PM

    “Our goal,” Johnson said, “is to get the best people working this game.”

    Agreed. It shouldn’t matter if they are a male or female, the NFL should have the best officials they possibly can.

  26. ehsdrumline says: Aug 13, 2011 1:58 PM

    Kris Jenkins is out of the league, should be OK

  27. philwauke says: Aug 13, 2011 1:58 PM

    Know her personally. Excellent official and better person.

  28. maverick0 says: Aug 13, 2011 1:58 PM

    Bad enough to have to listen to women do college “play-by-play” (Pam Ward)…now female NFL officials?!? Can we get past this “PC” era, already!

  29. sbxxix says: Aug 13, 2011 1:59 PM

    As long as they can make the calls and keep up with the players I dont have a problem with it. If they are the best out there, get em. I’m sure they’re better than some officials in the NFL right now.

  30. bandwidththief says: Aug 13, 2011 2:00 PM

    But, but, but……..there is no crying in football.

  31. trbowman says: Aug 13, 2011 2:01 PM

    Facepalm

  32. fissels says: Aug 13, 2011 2:01 PM

    I’m all for it. Doesnt matter who makes the call as long as its the right one.

  33. coleman121280 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:02 PM

    Lets say one of these female officials makes a call that cost any team a win, the first thing out of my mouth will be “why the heck is a woman deciding this game” not “why the heck is a referee deciding this game”.

    Not to mention if a player were to accidently push down female referee like he was a man, as in the case of that OT from the browns that took a flag to the eye, I can see all of this becoming a problem that the NFL is not foreseeing.

    Isn’t it enough we have to have our men wear PINK for a freaking month…

  34. drgfri says: Aug 13, 2011 2:03 PM

    Bravo! It’s about time…. Though they better watch out when the Jets are in town (between the all the catcalls and Cromartie’s child rearing prowess). Then again, Roethlisberger takes it to a new level (better guard the bathrooms from him and his bodyguards). Some of these moronic players won’t be able to handle professionalism when women are concerned….

  35. chc36 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:04 PM

    Hey, this is unfair to the male officials, if they can’t ref from the comfort of their own homes then women shouldn’t be allowed to ref from the kitchen!

    J/k, good for them, always good to see some equality, especially after I’ve been seeing a bunch of adds for tv shows that set womens rights back 2 decades

  36. tzoppi says: Aug 13, 2011 2:05 PM

    Challenges are about to get real emotional

  37. dgforreal says: Aug 13, 2011 2:06 PM

    I think this is cool.

  38. bordner says: Aug 13, 2011 2:07 PM

    I’m no chauvinist, but this just doesn’t seem right. What’s next – male cheerleaders?

  39. wacco4flacco says: Aug 13, 2011 2:07 PM

    the NFL should be careful letting any female referee any game Ben Roethlisberger is playing in

  40. theduuuuuuuuuude says: Aug 13, 2011 2:08 PM

    I’m all for putting men and women on an equal footing in most areas of life, but I can just imagine a female ref getting blasted my a linebacker or a wide receiver going across the middle. I happens a few times a season to male referees and I could see a female ref getting messed up pretty bad in an inadvertent collision, and I’d hate to see that. I’m not trying to marginalize women or insinuate that they’re less qualified to referee football then men are, just a random thought.

  41. reed380 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:09 PM

    What about Mike Perrera?

  42. phillychzstk2012 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:09 PM

    Oh god. Dont get me wrong I LOVE WOMEN but seriously please no PLEASE NO!

  43. icelovinbrotha215 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:10 PM

    Well if she calls a good game then it shouldn’t be a problem.

  44. clawledge says: Aug 13, 2011 2:10 PM

    Here we go again…

  45. Single Filament says: Aug 13, 2011 2:10 PM

    First we let them own land, then we let them vote, now this??!

  46. kom2k10 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:10 PM

    Why???

  47. sharkcatcher says: Aug 13, 2011 2:11 PM

    Fine then …just Rememer ” There’s no Crying In Football”

  48. tkraw33 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:12 PM

    What bothers me the most is that these two women would simply be promoted to the NFL simply BECAUSE they are women. You mean to tell me they’re the two most qualified officials on the collegiate level?

  49. myeaglescantwin says: Aug 13, 2011 2:12 PM

    emmmmmmm,,,, ahhhhhhhhhhh..

    i wanna say this is dumb,, but i have no justification.

  50. canadianvikingfaniii says: Aug 13, 2011 2:14 PM

    Hey if they can do the job then I don’t see why it should matter.

  51. hobartbaker says: Aug 13, 2011 2:14 PM

    Carl sees no gender problems arising. “Heck, we lose our older guys to the Lingerie League all the time…”.

  52. seanb20124 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:15 PM

    Probably stems off some NOW lawsuit. Wussification of the USA continues

  53. cardmagnet says: Aug 13, 2011 2:15 PM

    If many NFL players can’t handle female reporters or female staff, how are they going to handle a female in a position of power? Good luck, female referees. Sincerely, good luck, because the NFL is filled with goons who will just see you for what you are underneath the stripes.

  54. sterlingrodgers says: Aug 13, 2011 2:15 PM

    The next issue to address is the fact that there aren’t any female players in the NFL. This can be addressed gradually- we can start by mandating that NFL rosters have no fewer than 5 women in 2014, teams must reserve 10 roster spots for women in 2016, etc.

  55. hobartbaker says: Aug 13, 2011 2:16 PM

    “Is that Hochuli out there, coach?”.

    “Naw, it’s that new female ref they brought in. Looks like Ed though.”.

  56. fitzmagical says: Aug 13, 2011 2:17 PM

    I wanna see me some female officials in body paint with black and white stripes in the form of a bikini. Just do it! : ) schwinng!

  57. stairwayto7 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:18 PM

    We have some in our pipeline, and I expect we’ll see it soon,” Johnson said.
    ———————————————————- Did the NFL mean to say “laying some pipeline!”

  58. hobartbaker says: Aug 13, 2011 2:20 PM

    Carl Johnson explained to Jane McManus that the league was working to establish gender sensitivity and equality in a male dominated environment. Then he pinched her ass.

  59. thetooloftools says: Aug 13, 2011 2:24 PM

    I’M GOING TO SAY THIS ONE LAST TIME… it’s bad enough that you have officials running around on the field with no head protection (other then a baseball cap) on a field with some of the most violent players in the world… so instead of giving them even a hockey helmet…. your going to trot a woman out there.
    Is someone is going to get killed or turn into a vegetable before the NFL reacts? And now your going to trot a women out there.
    Why to base coaches in MLB now wear batting helmets? Because some guy died when he got his dome cracked by a line drive. Yea.. nobody saw that coming either and he got killed.

  60. fb1979 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:26 PM

    they cant be much worse then the clowns out there now

  61. weswelkerspornstash says: Aug 13, 2011 2:27 PM

    How many Ed Hoculi jokes are in the pipeline? Other than that I don’t see a problem.. Watch out big ben

  62. sullybleedsgreen says: Aug 13, 2011 2:27 PM

    Wonder what they are going to wear??? Hot pants and sport bra’s? Is it going to be OK to smack them on the @ss?

  63. corvusrex96 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:28 PM

    @sterlingrodgers says:Aug 13, 2011 2:15 PM

    “The next issue to address is the fact that there aren’t any female players in the NFL. ..”

    There already are female players in the NFL, we just happen to call them kickers. :-O

  64. harpoo51 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:29 PM

    Will they be throwing pink flags?

    @bordner…Male cheerleaders? Like the ones in The Longest Yard? The original…not that remake piece of crap.

    “You got to be a football heeero!”

  65. cowboysfan18 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:30 PM

    Let’s see what happens after one of them gets smashed across the middle. There will be a new rule; officials get the right of way.

  66. jfluke65 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:31 PM

    “Our goal,” Johnson said, “is to get the best people working this game.”

    Great! Then when can we expect see to see fulltime refs? Lets do that first, then worry about gender.

  67. rugdog100 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:33 PM

    Beulah Balbricker for NFL Referee.

  68. mrplow3 says: Aug 13, 2011 2:39 PM

    I knew as soon as I read the headline before I even clicked on the story there would be some hillarious comments.

    Thank you for not disapointing guys, LOL:

    “First we let them own land, then we let them vote, now this??!”

    “that’s cool… you never know when someone might need a sandwich.”

    “But there’s no kitchens on the field.”

  69. eagleseagleseagles says: Aug 13, 2011 2:44 PM

    will they make me a sandwich on the field?……..NO.

  70. purplehayseuss says: Aug 13, 2011 2:46 PM

    bandwidththief says: Aug 13, 2011 2:00 PM

    But, but, but……..there is no crying in football.

    I refer you to most of the occupants of the NFL Hall of Fame. And Dick Vermeil.

  71. oxnardcalif says: Aug 13, 2011 2:48 PM

    she MUST be smokin’

  72. bison4me says: Aug 13, 2011 2:49 PM

    I know I’m going to catch a lot of you know what for saying this, but when I see an official get pinged in the head by the ball, an LB running them over while in pursuit of the ball carrier, or one being pushed in the scrum for a fumble, I think nothing of it. If I saw it happen to a woman, I’d probably cringe, that is something I would never want to see. Please don’t do it.

  73. rodneyharrisonstruckstick says: Aug 13, 2011 2:50 PM

    Oh but hey, they officiated a couple college games, and did a cfl game. So their gonna leap frog other more qualified male refs why?

  74. deadeye says: Aug 13, 2011 2:51 PM

    Wonderful, I guess fans won’t complain as much about getting screwed by the refs if said refs look like the cheerleaders.

  75. welzy says: Aug 13, 2011 2:55 PM

    This idea is purely PR. Are you telling me there aren’t literally THOUSANDS of male referees with more experience that could do the job better?

  76. riverhorsey says: Aug 13, 2011 2:57 PM

    After some of the calls last year they might as well pick up some bikini babes from the beach.

  77. jealousyisanuglything says: Aug 13, 2011 2:57 PM

    @Bordner The ravens DO have male cheerleaders!!!

  78. jealousyisanuglything says: Aug 13, 2011 3:02 PM

    Maybe a female can give Slacco (oh I mean Flacco) some tips on how to trim those eyebrows

  79. sfkforever says: Aug 13, 2011 3:08 PM

    NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!

  80. majikalmushr0om says: Aug 13, 2011 3:10 PM

    First we let them vote now this?!?!

    I’d hate to see a 5 yard penalty because someone said the B-word

  81. deadeye says: Aug 13, 2011 3:10 PM

    We’ll see a sharp increase in penalties about every fourth game or so.

  82. paintersforms says: Aug 13, 2011 3:11 PM

    “Our goal,” Johnson said, “is to keep women watching this game.”

  83. lemmam says: Aug 13, 2011 3:12 PM

    it is forced. these two are being advanced because of their gender. I am a current ncaa official and due to the sensitivity of this I will not reveal my name. there are hundreds of officials that are better than these two, but due to politics they are being advanced

  84. sbxxix says: Aug 13, 2011 3:12 PM

    Relax guys it’s not going to be that bad. We still have instant replay just in case lol.

  85. steelerhypocrite says: Aug 13, 2011 3:13 PM

    Unless they look like the cheerleaders, we don’t want them. Football is one of the last places/events that men can go and enjoy themselves without being nagged by some broad who thinks she knows better.

    But then again, the NFL is wussifying the sport, so why not inject a bunch of women into the mix…

  86. Nikhil Balakumar says: Aug 13, 2011 3:14 PM

    i would hope that they’re hot

  87. tednancy says: Aug 13, 2011 3:16 PM

    I can only hope that the NFL hires the best Refs., period – without playing the affirmative action game.

    If a female Ref. happens to be the best candidate for an opening, then make the move. However, it should be done with no fanfare – just another hire.

    If the NFL tries to cash in on the free publicity then it will be viewed as a cheap, PC stunt and there will be backlash.

    Tread carefully, NFL.

  88. rolandsloan says: Aug 13, 2011 3:17 PM

    Where will it all end? Very disturbing.

  89. chuxtah says: Aug 13, 2011 3:17 PM

    It was the one thing in my life that I knew a woman couldn’t f up, there goes that.

  90. calvikefan1 says: Aug 13, 2011 3:18 PM

    If they have a bad day of pms watch for the yellow flags to be flyin !!!!

  91. imasturbate says: Aug 13, 2011 3:21 PM

    As long as they’re hot! No pigs Goodell!

  92. duffer58 says: Aug 13, 2011 3:29 PM

    The Rooney rule is one of best things NFL ever did. You have got to be nuts or a racist to believe otherwise.

  93. mavajo says: Aug 13, 2011 3:33 PM

    A male sport should have male officials.

    Do we really need a woman trying to claw her way into the bottom of a scrum to see who has possession, or trying to break up a fight between two guys that are 6′ 4″ 250lbs and jacked out of their minds?

  94. green41563 says: Aug 13, 2011 3:39 PM

    This isn’t about “equality.” It’s about conducting a glorified treehouse raid for spite.

    Most women prefer female gynecologists even though men are just as qualified. Why? Because they have concluded–quite correctly–that, with some things, it’s better to be around PEOPLE LIKE YOU.

    And what happens the first time that “Linda” makes a bad call and gets called a “f***ing bish” by a player?
    Press conference? Sensitivity training? Protests? Lawsuits?

  95. cheezheadz says: Aug 13, 2011 3:42 PM

    Good timing now that Ol Man Favre is out of the league. Safer working environment.

  96. glac1 says: Aug 13, 2011 3:43 PM

    They better have EARNED the job… but in today’s world I’m sure they got it because of some ACLU endorsed quota…..

  97. msadpoet says: Aug 13, 2011 3:47 PM

    The games will be better officiated. Women see and hear everything. Everything…

  98. msadpoet says: Aug 13, 2011 3:49 PM

    The games will be better officiated. Women see and hear everything. Everything…and are never wrong. Just ask one.

  99. axespray says: Aug 13, 2011 3:55 PM

    notice all the fines for trash talking during games in the NBA….

    now factor in the trash talk during NFL games, there’s gonna be some “langauge” that offends some people (cough, Females, cough), and with how hot headed some dudes get, how long til some players go off on a “Se-Ex-U-el Harrassment” type diatribe and are fined for their comments?

  100. tiffpats4eva says: Aug 13, 2011 3:56 PM

    As a woman, I don’t want to see women anywhere near the field.

    Nothing against them.

  101. acmepacker says: Aug 13, 2011 3:59 PM

    i don’t really have anything against this but I do believe if you’re going to officiate a game, you should have played it. That being said, I’m not sure all our officials now have played the game, but if they didn’t, they should have.

  102. backuppunter says: Aug 13, 2011 4:02 PM

    there is nothing in this story that implies the nfl is being forced to have female refs, and why shouldn’t a female be able to ref? the fox news babboons, (sorry baboons) are really showing there stupidity on the comments page today. not surprising, not surprising at all.

  103. andrejohnsonforpresident says: Aug 13, 2011 4:03 PM

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

    Next thing you know there’s rules like the nba have about players yelling at officials because they’re too sensative. Screw that! Sorry I have nothing against women officials but I don’t want to hear every week about players being fined and what not for cursing or being to loud with officials. Guys can handle it more and thats it. Thank you!

  104. philyeagles5 says: Aug 13, 2011 4:05 PM

    are they old like the guys are? i cant imagine.

  105. bhooks says: Aug 13, 2011 4:13 PM

    I can’t wait til a knock out gets well… Knocked Out in a play.

    This is a mans sport, leave it as such. There are plenty of reasons to walk away…

    I say this is a slap in the face to NFL officiating.

  106. dino2997 says: Aug 13, 2011 4:13 PM

    As long as the female officials are dressed in some revealing cheerleading outfits I’m fine with it.

  107. bearfan51 says: Aug 13, 2011 4:16 PM

    “Holding… offense…but first… you guys really have to understand that I am feeling emotional because I just talked to my mother because my boyfriend said these zebra stripes make me look fat…”

    Seriously though… this just seems like a bad idea. Some player is going to say something that a guy would shrug off, but the female ref is going to take it to the league office as harassment.

  108. patpatriotagain says: Aug 13, 2011 4:17 PM

    just wait until coaches use the “ref screen” plays.

  109. FinFan68 says: Aug 13, 2011 4:26 PM

    No problem as long as they are the most competent/qualified candidates. There is not much worse than filling a position based on some perceived injustice or PC quota to fill. If she is the #1 candidate then do it; if she’s the #6 candidate, don’t.

  110. Mr. Super-Cool Awesome says: Aug 13, 2011 4:27 PM

    As long as they have on booty shorts its all good.

  111. pnut87 says: Aug 13, 2011 4:35 PM

    Maybe they can get a right call…

  112. Deb says: Aug 13, 2011 4:37 PM

    bandwidththief says:

    But, but, but……..there is no crying in football.

    ————————————————-
    You wouldn’t know it by some of these comments.

    The most important issue is competent officiating, and we haven’t had that in a long time. Instead of worrying about the gender of the officials, the league should be implementing the NCAA booth system, ensuring its officials are physically able to keep up with the action, providing them with appropriate safety gear, and making sure they know the rulebook. Much as I love football, it’s a male sport, and I don’t want to change that. If women do enter the officiating ranks, I hope they represent better than the typical Barbie Sideline Reporter.

  113. perry1977 says: Aug 13, 2011 5:05 PM

    There goes the universe.

  114. watermelon1 says: Aug 13, 2011 5:06 PM

    The NFL has been focused on NOTHING but “SAFETY” the last couple years.

    My first reaction to this is… “you’ve got to be kidding!” How are you going to have women on the field with 350 pound men, running full speed, with protective gear and helmets that they openly use as weapons.

    But after thinking about it… most of the officials are guys who are way too old in the first place. So I have to assume if the women are younger, they’re probably more physically fit and can probably protect themselves better than these older men.

    And honestly, about the actual officiating… can it really get any worse than it already is?

  115. senordickhaus says: Aug 13, 2011 5:21 PM

    I hope the refs get their own locker rooms away from the players (Big Ben and Perrish Cox)

  116. thefoodrapist says: Aug 13, 2011 5:27 PM

    POLITICAL CORRECTNESS RUN AMUCK!
    typical — more social engineering by the liberals at NFL. It’s like the women play-by-play announcers on ESPiN. They’ve never played a down of competitive football in their life — I don’t want to hear them doing play-by-play. I’m sure, a lot of people are going to whine and say that’s sexist, but I don’t really care.
    It’d be like hearing a male voice over commentate a tampons commercial — it just isn’t normal.
    Quit pushing this social agenda garbage down our throats! NFL, ESPN, etc. —– the country. has officially become SISSIFIED. The sissification of the this country is now complete.

    POLITICAL CORRECTNESS RUN AMUCK!

    By the way, for the female referee’s safety: I’d say the average female is about 5’5” 130 ….. good luck when you get run over by a 6’5” 330 pound lineman who can run a sub 4.5. —– seriously, you’ll get killed. On the field.
    Greeeeeeat idea.

  117. dempsey63 says: Aug 13, 2011 5:27 PM

    Maybe the NFL has some Beulah Balbricker / Ed Hochuli offspring in the supply chain?

    I’m thinking that the league will have to hire both women and assign them to the same crew because–like the Mercury 13 group of female astronauts that were denied the opportunity to orbit the earth in the single-seat capsule–women are incapable of going to the bathroom alone.

    (I once debated my sister-in-law and her friend on that very same issue. They denied that there was any truth to the assertion. “We’ll just have to agree to disagree,” my relative said. “Anyway, I’ve got to use the restroom.”

    “Wait!” shouted her companion. “I’ll come with you!”

    Victory doesn’t come much sweeter than that.)

  118. thefoodrapist says: Aug 13, 2011 5:28 PM

    * 6’5” 330 pound DLineman who can run a sub 5.0 flat 40 time, I mean

  119. soumiss says: Aug 13, 2011 5:41 PM

    Sara Thomas is an outstanding Division I Official. She is a very competent Line Judge. She is now in her 5th year in D1. She will make a great NFL official. Just google her and read up on her qualifications. I know her and am very impressed with her qualifications and her as a person.

  120. cowboynation919 says: Aug 13, 2011 5:49 PM

    I have no problem with this. But how many crucial calls could be made because of officials being on their monthly cycle and having cramps and being crabby?

    Or are you going to get up if someone along the likes of Ray Lewis, Demarcus ware, or Urlacher accidently plow you over? Or would you start to cry and lay on the field?

    I know it sounds bad, but as a guy we all know most women base decisions on there emotions.

  121. jetsetfred says: Aug 13, 2011 6:07 PM

    I can imagine a 70 year old Grandma with a Refs Uni.. and a Fat Diaper on…

  122. 10kmp says: Aug 13, 2011 6:10 PM

    Are you freakin kidding me? Where is Hootie Johnson when you need him…

  123. orthodoxdj says: Aug 13, 2011 6:14 PM

    San Diego already has a girl for a quarterback, so I guess this makes sense.

  124. jsrdc says: Aug 13, 2011 6:15 PM

    My alter ego thinks this:

    James Harrison is all smiles over this – what female ref is gonna throw a flag and then get intimidated by him disagreeing with a “bad” call? Unless she is a bull dyke and looks like Dolph Lundgren, I say don’t hire her to throw flags for penalties where 300 pound guys can roid rage about the call.

    Now what I really think. It was only a matter of time, and I agree with firerosenthalthebastard when he said:

    “Well just make sure you hire her because she knows the rules well, can think quick on her feet and she has good eye for the game…. not other reasons”.

  125. Robert Chandler says: Aug 13, 2011 6:21 PM

    I’ll be honest and say I really can’t stand the idea of women in the NFL. I am personally sick of the myriad female commentators. Every network has a bunch of them, and they talk out their @sses in my opinion. Why do women have to feel they need to infiltrate every conceivable male bastion. I watch the NFL to find an escape from the yammering, know-it-all females that dominate the world. I couldn’t care less if you want to outlaw the stupid cheerleaders, too. That whole bit is asinine. The fans don’t need “help” to know when to cheer or boo.

    I wish women would frikken let men have at least one or two things where we can escape from them. I mean it. I’m sorry if this makes me a dinosaur, but for the love of God- I am so sick of this PC world. In TRUTH, do you really think someone like Erin Andrews is actually BETTER (more well-versed in football knowledge, more eloquent, etc.) than the one thousand males who would give anything to have that job? Truthfully? She is there because the honchos think some tart with blonde hair and a nice rack will mean more fans. I kind of doubt even the lowest knuckle-dragging neanderthal actually watches one NFL broadcast over another because they trot out some less-qualified chick out in front of the cameras. Gimme a break.

    If the NFL really does FORCE female officials down the public’s throats, they should be ashamed of themselves. Women have, like minorities of all types, been able to steal jobs from many far more qualified men, ever since all this affirmative action crap started. I personally know highly educated, and vastly superior, qualified professionals who got passed over because the college where I worked HAS to hire far less qualified minorities. Where is the justice in that? And the students suffer, through no fault of their own. Really makes sense.

    It’s one thing if someone is TRULY the MOST qualified. Then, I say hire them. But do not tell me there are women refs out there who are honestly superior in qualifications to the hundreds of male candidates who want that job just as badly. It seems to me that men let women walk all over them in this country. And we hold them and other minorities to a much lower standard, which has made our country even weaker. Makes me sick.

  126. redbear18 says: Aug 13, 2011 6:38 PM

    Cool, good for them, especially if they’re more competent than a lot of the refs we have now. As long as they know what they’re doing, great.

  127. minime6846 says: Aug 13, 2011 6:45 PM

    nfl just doing something so that they dont get sued for not having women officials. lets put them at the umpire position and watch them get knocked around and see how they do. they shouldnt be treated any differently. pathetic if this does come to fruition. I played 3 years of varsity football, 4 years of college and have officiated 3 years. no way a women has watched or understands football better than I.

  128. mrvikingsfan11 says: Aug 13, 2011 7:01 PM

    I’m down as long as she is great at what she does and of course has a good eye.

  129. steeelfann says: Aug 13, 2011 7:06 PM

    Wow.

    We had a girl ref in college rec league. She was the only female ref. Sports Mgt major. ABSOLUTE disaster, would have got her ace kicked if she was a male, that is how lame she was.

    This reeks of liberals telling us how to live again, more social engineering. Just give us freedom and keep the government and lawyers away from us.

  130. yajas says: Aug 13, 2011 7:07 PM

    Just hire the best. If anyone can’t handle the gender, race, religion, or sexual orientation of whoever the best happen to be, then they can go cry in the corner.

  131. yajas says: Aug 13, 2011 7:14 PM

    Robert Chandler says: “…outlaw the stupid cheerleaders…fans don’t need help to know when to cheer or boo.”

    I think you’re missing the point of having cheerleaders.

  132. Deb says: Aug 13, 2011 7:16 PM

    minime6846 says:
    I played 3 years of varsity football, 4 years of college and have officiated 3 years. no way a women has watched or understands football better than I.
    ****************************************
    I love the game, have watched and studied it for many years and will match my knowledge against most fans. But you’re correct–you have a different depth of understanding. Why can’t people love a thing without wanting to jump into it? I respect the game enough not to want to be in the men’s locker room or take a sideline reporting job away from an ex-player. I’m a woman who fell in love with a man’s sport. I don’t need to be part of the action.

  133. lance19 says: Aug 13, 2011 7:35 PM

    I’m totally good with Terri Valenti’s
    desire to get on top.

  134. titletowneric says: Aug 13, 2011 8:09 PM

    Based on this breaking news, I just read a report that Brett Favre has announced that he is definitely coming back this year.

  135. critter69 says: Aug 13, 2011 8:43 PM

    Do I detect just a wee bit of male chauvinism in these posts?

    I wonder what these posts would have looked like in 1965 when Burl Toler was the first black NFL official; or in 1966, when Emmett Ashford became the first black umpire in Major League Baseball; or in 1968, when Jackie White broke the color barrier in the National Basketball Association.

    Or maybe it would be interesting to see what these posts would have looked like in 1947, just before and when Jackie Robinson broke into the Brooklyn Doders’ lineup.

    I’m betting most of the posts wouldn’t have looked too different. They would just have been written using a bit different language.

  136. tunescribe says: Aug 13, 2011 8:58 PM

    Sheesh. Does that mean they’ll put bathrooms on the sideline now too?

  137. mrklutch says: Aug 14, 2011 12:23 AM

    Women always gotta butt into everything. I’m sure espnw.com will have a huge story about this now.

  138. pigeonpea says: Aug 14, 2011 1:05 AM

    With everything else Goodell is doing to pussify the NFL, this does not surprise me in the least. If it is any consolation to the terrible calls we’ll undoubtedly suffer as a result of this stupid decision, I suspect the only “qualifications” they’ll be looking at to hire these officials will be a tight body and nice rack like the other 99% of women you typically see on American television.

  139. rolandsloan says: Aug 14, 2011 1:19 AM

    critter69 says:

    Do I detect a wee bit of male chauvinism
    these posts?

    No! You detect a s–tload of male chauvinism in
    these posts! We are biased in our devotion to NFL
    football. Please leave SOMETHING to us. We don’t need to have everything we do or everything
    we like, changed or “improved” by the presence
    of females. It’s not necessary or needed. It’s not about equal rights. It’s about leaving good enough alone. Look. Don’t Touch!

  140. schemefactory says: Aug 14, 2011 1:48 AM

    holycripes, you’ve come a long way, baby. now just reset the balls, and don’t throw the rag around too much..

  141. Mr. Wright 212 says: Aug 14, 2011 2:17 AM

    rolandsloan says: Aug 13, 2011 1:57 PM

    Please.Give me a break. Do we have to mess with
    EVERYTHING? Can’t some “guy stuff” stay “guy stuff”? I may abandon the NFL yet. Crap.
    —————

    That’s the way I feel about this. Otherwise, why bother? We HAVE to have things that are just MEN things only.

  142. rajbais says: Aug 14, 2011 9:06 AM

    They better be hot!!!

  143. rajbais says: Aug 14, 2011 9:08 AM

    If you actually do think about it, if the female referees ended up being attractive the wide receivers will likely forget to run their routes.

  144. nickster2k says: Aug 14, 2011 9:52 AM

    7370355q says:
    Aug 13, 2011 1:52 PM
    Great now there will be even more talking and verbage when describing the infraction

    =====================

    lol…awesome!

  145. nickster2k says: Aug 14, 2011 10:20 AM

    tednancy says:
    Aug 13, 2011 3:16 PM
    I can only hope that the NFL hires the best Refs., period – without playing the affirmative action game.

    If a female Ref. happens to be the best candidate for an opening, then make the move. However, it should be done with no fanfare – just another hire.

    If the NFL tries to cash in on the free publicity then it will be viewed as a cheap, PC stunt and there will be backlash.

    Tread carefully, NFL.

    =====================

    I think you’re right about the publicity stunt. This reeks of Goodell’s effort to pull in more female viewers. I just hope he understands the consequences of a 250 lb linebacker accidentally blindsiding a 120 lb woman at full speed.

  146. nickster2k says: Aug 14, 2011 10:33 AM

    jealousyisanuglything says:
    Aug 13, 2011 2:57 PM
    @Bordner The ravens DO have male cheerleaders!!!

    ==================

    it’s mandated by Flacco’s contract.

  147. richm2256 says: Aug 14, 2011 10:36 AM

    “Any professional sport is at the highest level, and if they asked me to officiate at that level, I would not turn them down,” Thomas said.

    ——————————————————-

    How big of you….. honey.

    Seriously, can you image if we had TWO female officials on the field in the same game, and a decision had to be made:

    Ref Chick1: Well, he DID hit #11 pretty hard, and it was after he threw that brown thingy

    Ref Chick2: Yeah, but I don’t think he’s a very bad man, he probably didn’t mean to hurt him, do you?

    Ref Chick1: I see your point, but he didn’t say he was sorry, either. I think if both men just talked this out it probably wouldn’t happen again.

    Both Ref Chicks: Okay, everybody HUG!!!!!

  148. itsmebobd says: Aug 14, 2011 12:30 PM

    If it isnt broke dont fix it. Right now we need to replace refs with YOUNGER refs, not mixed genders. My problem with this, is that a woman (just like affirmative blacktion) gets the job ONLY because of being a woman. I want the most qualified professional on the field at all times. Lets be real fellas, these women would obviously know the game, and be avid football fans not your typical woman who knows nothing about football but knows what brand snookie wears to the club on jersey shore. I personally dont like it, there are potential problems (women being in relationships with players could cause crooked calls), women are alot more emotional than men, and would be more easily swayed by argument and begging by a player, than a male coach. Honestly I just dont want it to affect the integrity of the game, and I think we should allow female refs the day we allow female front line INFANTRY in the military. Yup, Female refs the day we have female navy seals….. see?
    Plus lets face it, women are more brittle than men, sometimes they get in the way and get hurt, alot of those times if they had been women they’d have been hurt. Also, Im worried that if we allow this, they will allow female players 1 day, and well, I dont want that.

  149. cleonslamminsalmon says: Aug 14, 2011 12:58 PM

    Bad idea. Can’t they just add a couple of extra cheerleaders?

  150. goawayeverybody says: Aug 14, 2011 5:22 PM

    Just don’t let them officiate any Steelers games. You know how Ben Roethlisberger gets around women….

  151. rmm9090 says: Aug 14, 2011 8:11 PM

    If female officiating happens, then the “pussification” of the NFL will be complete.

    R. Chandler is right, outdated moronic affirmative action decisions like this are what is wrong with this country…Makes me wanna puke!

  152. dwhitehurst says: Aug 14, 2011 9:27 PM

    …Oh, and, one other thing, since nothing is sacred and holy anymore, including gender and gender-appropriate roles, then for the NFL to be consistent and so indiscrimate as they claim to be, they should also have male cheerleaders. I shudder at the horror: Some “Brüno” or Johan van der Smut Goldmember type doing his routine at the 50 yr line during halftime. Yeesh.

  153. kevpft says: Aug 14, 2011 11:02 PM

    What I love most about all the complaining here is that 99.9% of it is from guys whose experience calling games comes entirely from sitting on their butts at home watching TV and thinking they know what the hell they’re talking about.

    …while the women being considered for these roles have actual professional experience calling ACTUAL football games. They’ve already done it, for real, many times.

    And you lunkheads think you know more than they do, just because you’re guys? Let’s just say you’re undermining your argument that guys are inherently smart about this kind of thing. Ha!

  154. stampnhawk says: Aug 15, 2011 12:45 AM

    Easy way to stop this from happening, before or after it is implemented; switch the ref from “slimming” vertical stripes to “hip accentuating” horizontal stripes.

  155. pigeonpea says: Aug 15, 2011 1:01 AM

    rmm9090 says:
    If female officiating happens, then the “pussification” of the NFL will be complete.

    The pussification of the NFL will be complete when we have a female player signed to a roster. The way that Goodell is banning hard hits and any touching of pretty boy QBs makes me think this is exactly what his agenda is. Gods help us.

    itsmebobd says:
    Honestly I just dont want it to affect the integrity of the game, and I think we should allow female refs the day we allow female front line INFANTRY in the military.

    The day a woman dies on the front lines defending this country will be the day this country is no longer worth defending.

    kevpft says:
    …while the women being considered for these roles have actual professional experience calling ACTUAL football games. They’ve already done it, for real, many times.

    Really… So where did they get all this experience? The lingerie league? It certainly didn’t come from actually playing at a college or pro level, or officiating at a pro level game. Pop Warner doesn’t count for squat, son.

  156. CKL says: Aug 15, 2011 2:00 AM

    All you men complaining about the women on TV talking about football: you DO realize that tv hires women to do those things to please YOU, not us women. I started loving the game when people like Phyllis George and Jayne Kennedy were on football shows and even when I was a preteen, they made me cringe because it was so obvious why they were there and it wasn’t to interest ME in the game.

    Women who truly love football want competence in announcing, reporting and refereeing, not people who are there for some PC or “sex sells”agenda.

  157. bturner032002 says: Aug 15, 2011 12:50 PM

    I say we use half naked hooter girls as officials and just replay every play while the girls jump up and down while we wait.

  158. proftbllvr says: Aug 15, 2011 4:27 PM

    Why, because its the right thing to do? Next thing you know the’ll have them suit up for the games and be on the roster. Thats when they loose me as a fan, whats wrong with segregation?

  159. ilovefoolsball says: Aug 15, 2011 7:31 PM

    Will the players be able to do the butt slap and say “good effort” like they do now?

  160. Deb says: Aug 15, 2011 11:53 PM

    CKL says:
    All you men complaining about the women on TV talking about football: you DO realize that tv hires women to do those things to please YOU, not us women. … Women who truly love football want competence in announcing, reporting and refereeing, not people who are there for some PC or “sex sells”agenda. (Amen, sister!!!)

    bturner032002 says:
    I say we use half naked hooter girls as officials and just replay every play while the girls jump up and down while we wait.

    *************
    Well, CKL, he rests your case :lol:

  161. Deb says: Aug 16, 2011 12:17 AM

    pigeonpea says:

    The day a woman dies on the front lines defending this country will be the day this country is no longer worth defending.

    ———————————————–

    More than 113 women have been killed in action and more than 533 have been wounded in action serving in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. Since you’re completely ignorant of our current wars, dishonor the memory of our fallen soldiers, and by your own words, consider our nation no longer worth defending, please leave.

  162. kevpft says: Aug 16, 2011 2:15 AM

    pigeonpea says: Aug 15, 2011 1:01 AM
    Really… So where did they get all this experience? The lingerie league? It certainly didn’t come from actually playing at a college or pro level, or officiating at a pro level game. Pop Warner doesn’t count for squat, son.

    Did you read the story? It’s NCAA and UFL, not Pop Warner, “son”.

  163. jrs1972 says: Aug 16, 2011 3:59 PM

    Just make sure any female ref’s are out of high school, mark sanchez will not be able to concentrate on a game with underage women roaming the field.

  164. jediwrstlr says: Aug 16, 2011 11:32 PM

    to quote Ron Burgandy; “Our brains are bigger….its science”

  165. paulieorkid says: Aug 17, 2011 9:10 AM

    For all the guys asking “WHY?”, here’s why.

    The NFL is all about continuing to increase the revenue “pie.” With the domestic male market all but saturated, they’re looking for other ways to grow the pie.

    This is also why the NFL has elected to play/aggressively market games in Japan, Europe, Mexico, Canada, etc. Foreign money spends too, and the NFL wants to tap into it.

    It is why the NFL dedicates October to “Breast Awareness Month,” and FORCES the widespread leaguewide utilization of pink into the uniform scheme plus that of the coaching staff. Why? There are lots of forms of cancer not to mention other lethal diseases, but breast cancer was hand-picked to cater specifically to the largely untapped female market. Money from females spends too, and the NFL wants to tap into it.

    All of this is very transparent. The pink uniforms b.s. for a full month is ridiculous – and such an obvious ploy to curry favor.

    Now, they’re forcing female officials onto NFL fields. Why? Does that question even need to be answered?

  166. olcap says: Aug 17, 2011 11:31 AM

    This is all because Rog Gooddell is tired of being the only feminine force in the NFL.

  167. purpwalk says: Aug 17, 2011 2:13 PM

    GUYS, C’MON! let’s not be sexist here…

    they’re might be some benefits to this

    will they hike up their skirts for us?

  168. ravenschick says: Aug 17, 2011 2:40 PM

    Wow, so many knuckledraggers! And I’d bet that half of them don’t have girlfriends/wives, and the other half that do, they don’t get laid a lot or would get a verbal tongue lashing if their girlfriend/wife knew what they were saying.

    That being said, if these women aren’t the best, they shouldn’t be NFL refs. Let them make it on their own merits. I do it everyday in a male-dominated industry.

    As for getting knocked down…there are women fighting and dying (thanks for the stats Deb) in Afghanistan, putting out fires and protecting our communities. They’re as tough as they come. And if pregancy and child birth aren’t tough, I don’t know what is. I guarantee that the human race would be extinct if men had to birth children.

    steelerhypocrite says: Aug 13, 2011 3:13 PM
    Unless they look like the cheerleaders, we don’t want them. Football is one of the last places/events that men can go and enjoy themselves without being nagged by some broad who thinks she knows better.

    Uh, 42% OF THE NFL’S FAN BASE IS MADE UP OF WOMEN like me. And I would almost guarantee that I know more football (Xs and Os) than 60% of the men on here. You don’t get laid much, do you?

    acmepacker says: Aug 13, 2011 3:59 PM
    i don’t really have anything against this but I do believe if you’re going to officiate a game, you should have played it. That being said, I’m not sure all our officials now have played the game, but if they didn’t, they should have

    There are 3 women’s full contact football leagues. I use to own, play for and coach for a team in one of them. I’ll be happy to put my knowledge of Xs and Os with anyone on this thread. And I’m betting half the officials in the NFL haven’t played past high school football.

    kevpft says: Aug 14, 2011 11:02 PM

    What I love most about all the complaining here is that 99.9% of it is from guys whose experience calling games comes entirely from sitting on their butts at home watching TV and thinking they know what the hell they’re talking about.
    …while the women being considered for these roles have actual professional experience calling ACTUAL football games. They’ve already done it, for real, many times.

    And you lunkheads think you know more than they do, just because you’re guys? Let’s just say you’re undermining your argument that guys are inherently smart about this kind of thing. Ha!

    Deb & kevpft – AMEN!

  169. thermalito says: Aug 18, 2011 4:53 AM

    yea, females can’t be allowed to officiate a game but a 65 year old turd who can’t even run anymore is perfectly welcome. hilarious.

  170. bigdawgy54 says: Aug 18, 2011 1:10 PM

    I wanna play quarterback and Jennifer Anniston can play center!
    Where’s this gal gonna shower? Sounds like the refs are setting up a Tiger Woods party!!!

  171. test2402 says: Aug 18, 2011 1:30 PM

    Nipples.

  172. southbeachtalent says: Aug 18, 2011 1:51 PM

    C’mon man!!!

  173. southbeachtalent says: Aug 18, 2011 1:53 PM

    Well if it rains we could have another type of contest…..

    If there’s mud even better..

  174. skinsfantom says: Aug 19, 2011 7:50 PM

    don’t be so chauvanistic, as long as they’re HOT!

  175. jetfanfolife says: Aug 20, 2011 6:37 AM

    AM I too late??? 174 responses so this may go unoticed but…

    Instead of players getting fined for having their shirts untucked, now they’ll get flagged for it by a woman official…

    “5 yrd penalty, number 52 of the defense for being improperly dressed”

  176. blakeshake3jw55 says: Mar 4, 2012 12:06 AM

    Hey Ravenschick: Anybody who says something like “I know lots of Xs and Ox in football. doesnt know SH*T.”…Lol

    You, and every other woman in America knows JACK SH1T about football. you know NOTHING. absolutely NOTHING.

    And that stat of %42 of all NFL fans being woman is a made up lie to try and keep expanding the league. Its maybe %10 women and none of you know anything about Football. Or basketball for that matter.

    Ive played Minor League and Arena football for 5 years and if i ever had some 5’3 105 pound WOMAN call pass interference on me Knowing dam well she never played a SINGLE down of football in here entire life; I’d have a hard time not choke slamming the living sh*t out of her dumb a$$

    All you dipsh*t feminst morons please stay the he11 out of football.

    All You chickenhead morons do is ruin a great thing and try to turn it into a dam soap opera. Its bad enough we have women calling games, commenating games, doing interviews, reporting from the sideline, and voicing higlights on ESPN.

    Everything in the history of mankind that has been started by a man but women manage to snake their way in ALWAYS gets RUINED, watered down, and weak. And eventually men leave..branch off to something else and you women follow us again. For once Id like to see a woman innovate SOMETHING. All you do is try to demasculane us and ruin our lives slowely.

    ur good for TWO things. Bending over for 20 minutes and having our baby 9 months later. Thats it. know ur fcking roll.

    if I come across a college game on TV (football or basketball) where a woman is calling the game I immedietely change the channel. Doesnt matter whos playing or how important the game is. I cant stand the sound of ur voices. You morons SUCK. get it through your head.. YOUR JOKES.

    American women are the worst people that have ever lived.

    Ravenschick- u know nothing. kill urself. ur probably fat and ugly anyways. know ur fcking roll u ugly a$$ trick.

    And please…test my knowlege of football. I will bury ur ugly a$$. dumb a$$ trick. Now go cry in a corner u fkin Moron.

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