"This is outrageous. The real Valks are the Valkyries women's rugby team," commented "Real women play rugby."
So we asked the president of the Minnesota Valkyries--a rugby team with a 30-year legacy--for her thoughts on the matter.[jump] The Lingerie Football League announced its Minneapolis franchise in late March. The team will play 7-on-7 full-contact football clad in lacy bras and undies and glass-front helmets. The LFL recently held open tryouts at Vadnais Sports Center, where 90 hopefuls vied for 14 spots.
The name was chosen by an open vote--28,451 people weighed in and "Valkyrie" won the day.
If the voting public was thinking the name sounded familiar, it's because the Minnesota Valkyries rugby team, who is ranked fourth in the country and whose players have ambitions for the 2016 Olympics, have been around for decades.Team president Jen "Trie" Triemstra is a tight-five forward--one of the players in the scrum--and has been with the team for five years. We asked her what she thought of a team of lingerie models hijacking her team's name. She responded by email.
CP: Had you heard of the Lingerie Football League before they came to town?
JT: Not really. Only as a Super Bowl commercial a few years back.
CP: What was your original reaction?
JT: To the league idea, neither here nor there. To the LFL using the "Valkyrie" name, it caught my attention as a peculiar choice given that our organization has been well-known as the Minnesota Valkyries for decades.
CP: Any thoughts on the LFL itself? Do you think it's a legitimate sports league?
JT: No comment.
CP: Will the Valkyries be pursuing any kind of action to get the LFL team's name changed? Or if not, how do you think the two teams will coexist? No big deal, or...?
JT: As a longstanding organization with deep roots in the community, we are concerned about confusion between the Minnesota Valkyries and the new LFL team. Despite its choice of the Valkyrie name for its team, the Lingerie Football League is not affiliated with us in any way. We're looking into the best course of action to maintain the integrity our organization has established using the Minnesota Valkyries name.
If readers agree that real women play rugby, there will be plenty of opportunities to support the Valkyries throughout May as they face the Minnesota Menagerie and the Midwest Thunderbirds. The team also runs open skills clinics for beginners--maybe some of the rejected Valkyrie will give it a shot?