Historic moments in women’s sports have been celebrated at every turn, and it was no different for Simon Fraser University football kicker Kristie Elliott.
Elliott became the first Canadian woman to play and score in a college game on Saturday when she converted an extra-point attempt against Linfield University in Oregon.
For as much as it’s worth celebrating, moments like these cannot be used to ignore the longstanding issues that still exist for women in sports.
On the latest episode of Bring It In, Morgan Campbell is joined by Meghan McPeak and Dave Zirin to discuss how the happier moments in women’s sports and the subsequent attention have not altered the landscape with issues that women still face.
WATCH | Elliott’s moment a reminder of progress still needed:
Elliott’s moment is somewhat muted by what happened within the New York Mets organization, the Washington Football Team and the court process American gymnasts have had to go through recently — all cases dealing with the mistreatment of women in sports.
“While this Simon Fraser news is fantastic and don’t get me wrong, as a former female athlete, I think it’s amazing to see more and more women in sports doing things that have not been done before. At the same time, sports needs to realize that they still have many problems within the sports landscape,” McPeak said.
Recently, the need for better marketing and access to merchandise for fans of the recent Olympic gold medal-winning Canadian women’s soccer team came to light.
“This is such a missed opportunity for [Canada Soccer] because your women’s team has just won a gold medal at the Olympics — their profile is never going to be higher than it was last month,” Campbell said. “You’re never going to have an opportunity to extend that profile like the one that has just fallen in your lap, if you can take advantage of that, via merchandising, via licensing deals.
Zirin said the recent news is a reminder for how progress isn’t always linear.
“When you have these stories that make you feel good and then you think to yourself, ‘Wow, Major League Baseball is thinking of partnering with Barstool Sports? An empire that was founded on the very foundation of sexist garbage.'”
The panel also discussed American 100-metre sprinter, Trayvon Bromell, who outdid his world-lead time with a 9.76-second performance at the Kip Keino Classic in Nairobi, Kenya this past weekend.
Bromell, 26, who failed to make the Olympic final, had to fend off Kenyan Ferdinand Omanyala, who finished second in an African record 9.77 seconds, busting the myth of East Africans only being able to run long distances.
WATCH | Bromell saves best race for last: