Get up and hit them back

Bianca Garza, 5-foot-5 and 135 pounds, is a defensive linesman on the varsity football team at San Jose’s Andrew Hill High School. Last year, she was a star tackler on the frosh-soph team; this year, she’s on the second unit and the kickoff return team. Garza started playing football as an alternative to joining a street gang.

“When I go up against bigger players, I don’t fear anyone,” said Garza, who can bench press 200 pounds. “You can’t be scared. If I get hit hard, I’ve got to get back up and hit them back. You have to be ready for whatever when it comes to football. “

There were 1,225 girls playing tackle football in the U.S. last year, according to a survey by the National Federation of High School Athletics.

Update: I just learned that my petite niece is playing rugby at college.

About Joanne


  1. There is a part-Samoan, part-Mexican, part-white girl in my 6th period sophomore class who can kick anyone’s butt in the school. I saw her pound on a male classmate that righteously deserved it, and he hasn’t harassed her since. She was on the varsity softball team as a freshman last year, and I’ve encouraged her to go out for football. In the meantime, I’m staying on her good side:-)