UA applicant: Dorrell set back cause of women in football | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

UA applicant: Dorrell set back cause of women in football

Posted By on Tue, Apr 17, 2012 at 6:17 AM

  • Western Kentucky University
An article in Sports Illustrated by one of the applicants for the University of Arkansas staff job that went to Bobby Petrino's girlfriend Jessica Dorrell says the resulting scandal has set back the cause of women in football, a male-dominated profession to begin with.

Christianne Harder writes that Dorrell had no experience working in football, only in athletic fund-raising, despite a requirement for that experience in the call for applicants that drew 159.

What I suspect Jessica Dorrell failed to realize, not being a woman in football, is what a gift she was given. She never had to struggle to get her foot in the door, work for free or move away from her home to a school with which she had no connection in pursuit of her dream. Who knows if working in football even was her dream. She had no idea that her actions will have lasting implications for women across the country. Her decision to continue seeing Petrino proves she had no concept of the gravity of her indiscretions. A true football chick, as I like to call us, would have never done such a thing. Our jobs are too important to us because they are so hard to get.

There are two major unspoken rules for a woman in a football office. The first is that you watch what you wear. Left to my own devices, I wear professional, knee length dresses and heels to the football office. This worked at Stanford. But at Washington, anything dressier than jeans was not OK, as it was seen as a "distraction" in the office. I soon learned that my best bet was to always wear pants and flats.

The second unspoken rule of women in football is be careful of how — and where — you engage with the coaches. Football professionals work long hours, especially during the season, and we travel with the team. By being one of a few women in an office full of men, you do everything you can to not put yourself in a situation that could be misconstrued as inappropriate. Any football chick will tell you that we have no interest whatsoever in compromising our hard-earned titles for any man who works in coaching — we are going to be the football guru in our households thank-you-very-much — outsiders certainly look for signs of impropriety. Thanks to Dorrell's relationship with Petrino, they will be looking even harder now for things that, in the vast majority of professional situations, simply do not exist.

Dorrell remains on paid leave at the University of Arkansas while Athletic Director Jeff Long reviews her hiring.

Tags: , , , , ,


Comments (14)

Showing 1-14 of 14

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-14 of 14

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Johnny Key moves to weaken or end agreement with Little Rock teachers union

    Citing low scores on many Little Rock School Distrrict schools' standardized test, State Education Commissioner Johnny Key, who acts as district school board under state control, has rejected a new negotiating agreement with the Little Rock Education Association without a change that appears to allow an end to fair dismissal protection for. teachers at schools with D and F grades.
    • Oct 22, 2018
  • Another prison death reported

    Another prison death, this one at Tucker Max.
    • Oct 22, 2018
  • Our pal, Saudi royalty

    How do you feel about this? The Saudis seem happy to tout our treasury secretary chit-chatting with the Crown Prince.
    • Oct 22, 2018
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Payday lenders on the march at legislature

    Payday lenders are working hard to get legislative cover for the reintroduction of their usurious loan business to Arkansas. Some are fighting back.
    • Mar 10, 2017
  • LR Police Chief Buckner in running for Charleston, S.C. job

    KATV reports that Little Rock Police Chief Kenton Buckner is one of five finalists for the job of police chief in Charleston, S.C., and will be visit Charleston next week as part of the process.
    • Feb 2, 2018
  • Hospitality, restaurant groups oppose bathroom bill

    Add the restaurant and hospitality association to those opposed to Sen. Linda Collins-Smith's bill to keep transgender people out of public restrooms that match their gender identity.
    • Mar 16, 2017


  • Arkansas vs Ole Miss at War Memorial stadium in Little Rock, Saturday, Oct. 13, 2018. After leading for much of the game, Arkansas lost 37-33 when Ole Miss scored the game winning Touchdown with less that 2 minutes left. 
  • Margaret Clark Adventure Park
    New sculptures, preschoolers play area dedicated in Riverfront Park in Little Rock.

Most Recent Comments


© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation