NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee Titans Women's Association enjoyed hosting the organization's first Football 101 for Ladies, which raised $7,500 for the Tennessee Breast Cancer Coalition on Saturday.
More than 125 ladies attended the inaugural event that was presented by Baptist Sports Medicine and Ashton Realty Group.
The ladies were able to watch the Titans practice and get autographs from and take pictures with players and coaches, attend football study sessions, take a tour of the facility and participate in football drills and scrimmages inside the practice bubble.
"The Tennessee Titans Women's Association wanted to do something in the community to be an active participant and give back to the Nashville community," Titans Director of Player Development Tina Tuggle said. "The ladies chose breast cancer awareness because all of us have been touched by that.
"We had great participation from players and coaches and our staff," Tuggle added. "Everyone was well-vested in being a part of this because it went for such a great cause."
Tight end Jared Cook, whose mother is a breast cancer survivor, shared with the ladies how important the cause is to his family, and head coach Mike Munchak delivered a warm welcome to the ladies before offensive coordinator Chris Palmer, defensive coordinator Jerry Gray and assistant special teams coach Chet Parlavecchio all held sessions in the auditorium.
Palmer detailed the complexity of play calling as volunteers emulated quarterbacks by wearing a helmet with a speaker, found the right play on a wristband chart and announced it to the room as if they were in the huddle. Gray explained terminology and classification of defending run plays, and Parlevecchio broke down on film the successful punt return for a touchdown against Detroit earlier this season.
Linda Mays, of Memphis, has followed the Titans/Oilers since the 1997 season when the franchise moved from Houston to Tennessee. Mays said Football 101 was an "awesome" way to learn more about the team and the game.
"I loved the interaction with the coaches and the players, and I just didn't know it took so much to put a football game together," Mays said. "It's just so easy to watch the game on TV, but in this experience, the coaches did an excellent job of breaking everything down for us, and the players were so friendly on the field, signing autographs. It's been a wonderful experience."
Michael Griffin, Scott Solomon, Lavelle Hawkins, Eugene Amano, Gerald McRath, Javon Ringer, Collin Mooney, Chris DeGeare and former Titans punter Craig Hentrich and former Titans receiver Roydell Williams helped guide the ladies through football drills and a scrimmage as Titans Cheerleaders supported the ladies.
Griffin said he was glad to have an opportunity to help give back to the community. Amano, who is on injured reserve with a triceps injury he suffered in training camp, said he was also glad to help.
"It was a good way to open up the game to the women here in Middle Tennessee," Amano said. "It seemed like everyone had a good time that participated, going out and doing some football drills. It was a fun time for all."
Linda Borum, a Titans season-ticket holder, said she was enticed by the tour of the facility but enjoyed the whole day of activities.
"It was just so much fun," Borum said. "I'm too old to get out and scrimmage, but by golly, I had a ball out there. It was fabulous. I'll be back next year."
Tuggle said she was pleased with how enthusiastic the attendees were about learning about football and helping out the great cause.
"We had a great turnout," Tuggle said. "We received some positive feedback from ladies in the community, and they're already inquiring about what we're going to do for next year."
About Tennessee Breast Cancer Coalition:
The Tennessee Breast Cancer Coalition (TBCC) is a statewide, grassroots non-profit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for individuals undergoing treatment for breast cancer. Funds raised for TBCC will enable the organization to continue implementing its primary community outreach projects: awarding grants for innovative breast cancer projects targeted to the underserved throughout Tennessee and managing the Emergency Access Fund (EAF) that provides financial assistance to individuals who are undergoing breast cancer treatment. For more information, please contact the TBCC office at 615-377-8777.
About Tennessee Titans Women's Association:
The Tennessee Titans Women's Association (TTWA) is comprised of wives and fiancés of coaches, players and staff, as well as female staff members. The purpose of TTWA is to acclimate the women of the organization to the Titans family, educate them about existing programs and provide opportunities to share resources and serve the Nashville community.