By Dennis J. Freeman
Los Angeles-Fantasy football is alive and well. This is not the atypical fantasy league team where you can plop down a marquee NFL player on your roster sheet. This fantasy football league have less clothes and exudes the glamour of promoting beautiful women running around smacking each other in shoulder pads and helmets.
In short, sex sells. And the fledging Lingerie Football League (LFL) has done a pretty job of marketing that mantra, lining up sexy women across the country to battle each other in an otherwise male sport.
“There are other women leagues, but there are no fans,” said Los Angeles Temptation coach David Bizub at the team’s media day. “Obviously, we’re trying to get it so that fans are in the stands to be successful. The WNBA has been trying to be successful…they’ve had some trouble in keeping that league going. It’s very difficult to get fans in the stands. It’s real football. It’s exciting. Just because they don’t have the greatest form tacking, it’s exciting. Eventually people are going to watch and say this is entertaining, this fun. All of these girls are good athletes.”
The popularity of the LFL has grown in leaps and bounds since the Lingerie Bowl made its debut into the public eye during the halftime of Super Bowl XXXVIII in 2004.That imagery stuck with viewers. That commercial turned into a 10-city, football league featuring plenty of good-looking women vying for the opportunity to catch, tackle and pass all the while showcasing their eye-candy physiques.
Miami, Dallas, San Diego and Chicago are some of the major hubs that have stocked an LFL team besides Los Angeles. The league is looking forward to expanding even more with Las Vegas and Columbus, Ohio. In the next five years the league hopes to add another 15 cities to its expansion.
League officials are also looking to expand to Europe, Latin America and Asia in the next couple of years. The popularity of the LFL has drawn so much attention that MTV has gotten in on the act. MTV2 has partnered with the league to showcase LFL games on Friday nights, generating more exposure.
Members of the Los Angeles Temptation like the vibe of playing football.
Twenty-nine-year old personal trainer Nikki Key told news4usonline.com that she just likes the competitiveness of playing the sport. A former track star at Arizona State before a torn ACL ended her career, Key said she enjoys the bonding with other women the sport offers.
“I just like to be around a lot of strong women,” said Key. “A lot of us are out of college, so you get to an age where if you’ve been an athlete your whole life and you just don’t want it to be over, going to the gym just doesn’t do it for you. It’s fun to get out here and be with other competitive women and play a man’s sport.”
Interior decorator Zipphora Chase went to tryout for the Los Angeles Temptation football team because she likes to hit. A former basketball star at Cal State Dominguez Hills, Chase said she embraces the physicality of the sport.
“A lot of my friends said I should come out for this,” said Chase. I came out and made the team. I played basketball all my life and overseas in Japan. I like hitting.”
Ogom Chijindu said playing football is merely an extension of the sports she played growing up.
“I’ve always been an athlete growing up, so it was pretty much a natural transition for me to go from soccer, track and volleyball,” said Chijindu. “I’m a star athlete at heart.”