Sarah Fuller Makes Football History

Recently, women have been making history in football. In 2015, Sarah Thomas became the first female NFL referee. Earlier this season, Callie Brownson became the first NFL positional coach as the Cleveland Browns interim tight ends coach.

Last weekend, more history was made for women in football. Vanderbilt University needed a kicker in their match-up against the University of Missouri. Vanderbilt called upon Vanderbilt soccer player and goalkeeper, Sarah Fuller, to kickoff for them. She became the first female to play in a Power 5 college football game.

Power 5 consists of five of the biggest conferences in college football. The SEC, Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), Big Ten Conference, Big 12 Conference and Pac-12 Conference. These conferences include some of the largest schools and best teams in college football, such as Clemson, Ohio State, Alabama, Oregon and Oklahoma. So, Fuller kicking for an SEC team in Vanderbilt is a big deal.

Fuller kicked off in the second half for the Vanderbilt Commodores. She kicked a squib kick that was low to the ground and placed exactly where the coaches wanted the ball to be placed. Fuller kicked a soccer ball during her soccer practice through the field goal post from 45 yards away. Her teammates made jokes about how she could kick for the football team. Little did they all know, that would become a reality. Unfortunately, we did not get to see a 45-yard field goal, or any field goal at all from Fuller as Vanderbilt lost to Missouri 41-0. But Fuller was recognized for making history.

Vanderbilt head coach, Derek Mason, talked about if he would like Fuller to kick in their upcoming matchup against Georgia. He said, “That’s really of her choosing. If she wants to kick and she’s available we’d love to have her.”

Fuller was even the SEC Special Teams Player of the Week.

Fuller said, “Honestly, I was just really calm. The SEC championship was more stressful if I’m going to be honest.” While this quote seems silly because a championship should be more stressful, Fuller took on a challenge that has never been done by a woman in the Power 5 and she did it with ease according to her. Hopefully, Coach Mason’s invitation will be enough motivation for Fuller to travel to Atlanta with the team to take on the Georgia Bulldogs. Everyone should be excited to potentially see her kick again and possibly even score for Vanderbilt. More history could be made should Fuller suit up once again.