I did not need another reason to dislike the Lingerie Football League (LFL).. I got the announcement today, that tryouts for the new Minneapolis expansion team of the LFL will held Saturday, April 9. It wasn’t that tryouts will actually occur and a team will form, but that the LFL held a contest for fans to submit and then vote for a name for the Minneapolis team.
Evidently “Valkyrie” was submitted most frequently, received a “record 31,451 votes” and was subsequently chosen as the new name. The LFL already has a logo for the NEW Minnesota Valkyrie (notice in their tryout bulletin they stress “NEW”).
Why does this have me upset?
Minnesota ALREADY HAS a Valkyrie team of female athletes!! The Minnesota Valkyries Rugby Club has a long standing tradition of excellence as one of the elite organizations within USA Rugby, and has been around for as long as I can remember. The REAL Minnesota Valkyries have a mission statement and core values that include integrity, unity, respect, development and strength! The mission statement reads “The Minnesota Valkyries Rugby Club is an organization of former and present rugby players dedicated to the development of rugby, our team, and our community. We strive to maintain our position as one of the elite organizations within USA Rugby by creating a positive and enduring impact in all that we do. We bring honor to the sport of rugby by upholding our traditions, competing with pride, and understanding that every time we step onto the pitch we play for the legacy and future of The Minnesota Valkyries Rugby Club.
The LFL MISSION STATEMENT “The Lingerie Football League has become the Ultimate Fan-Driven Live Sports Phenomenon – Blending Action, Impact and Beauty.” No core values exist that I could find. Enough Said.
Can the LFL just hijack a team name? I don’t think so, if not legally, certainly by principle.
If you are reading this and are outraged, then please do something, anything….blog, call, tweet support (@valksrugby), tweet outrage (@MyLFL), “Like” the rugby team on Facebook, and pass the word.
If this is allowed, it is another way that real female athletes can be marginalized, co-opted and erased. What I find interesting is that I am guessing that the individuals who sumibtted and voted for the Valkyrie name are mostly 18-35 year old me who have NO CLUE that Minnesota has a tradition of high performance women’s rugby, let alone know what the team names are (yes, there is more than one women’s rugby team in MN)
Support the Valkyries Rubgy Club and help them make the LFL change their name.
p.s.-please don’t comment and tell me the names are different because the rugby team has an “s” on the end, and the LFL team name does not.
p.s.s.-I’d like to invite the Valkyries (the REAL athletes) to attend the LFL tryouts and help educate those in charge