Wonder Woman And The NFL Punt, Pass & Kick Competition

Yesterday, after the third quarter of the Baltimore Raven/Houston Texans divisional playoff game (too many turnovers, Texans!!), the NFL announced the winners for their 50th annual Punt, Pass & Kick competition.  I’m always glad to see that the NFL includes boys and girls in the competition.  There are five age groups, with a boy and a girl winner for each.  Seeing all those girls on the field reminded me of this ad from Wonder Woman #197 in 1971:

The inclusion of girls in the competition is a relatively new thing.  In 1995, ten year old Kendra Wecker made headlines when she reached the finals of the Punt, Pass & Kick competition playing alongside boys.  The next year, the NFL launched categories at every age level for girls as well.

In general, the NFL’s done a remarkable job of reaching out to female fans, and they’ve been growing their fanbase and profits at ridiculous rates lately.  It was really interesting to lots of the women I follow on Twitter commenting on the NFL playoffs the past couple weeks, and none of them in a “Grrr, my boyfriend is watching football” way… there are some hardcore lady fans out there!!  Though not enough of them are cheering for the Patriots.  A certain industry we all love (coffcoffcomicscoffcoff) would do well to learn from the NFL, which has expanded what was a traditionally male fanbase into a far more mixed audience.

Anyway, things have come a long way from Wonder Woman #197!!  For one thing, the mod era is over… that’s a huge plus.  But, and probably more importantly, sports aren’t just for boys anymore!!  I say “probably” because the mod era was ROUGH.  But yeah, girls playing sports sounds like the bigger deal.


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