The Nashville Knights are a women’s American football team of the Legends Football League (LFL) based in Nashville, Tennessee. The Knights are the 22nd team in the history of the LFL US league, and the team plays its home games at Nashville Municipal Auditorium this season.
As I have said before in this column, I have long been a fan of the league and have watched many games, mostly on MTV2 back in the day. These women are serious athletes, many former track stars and college scholarship players in various sports. When they lace it up and the whistle blows, it is real football.
In 2010, the then-Lingerie Football League almost established a franchise for the Nashville area, but the plans for that were canceled due to a petition by some locals to keep it out of the area. This was due to the controversy of the uniforms worn by LFL players when the league started. The league was renamed to reflect the fact that the uniforms became less revealing after the 2011-12 season.
Seven years later, the now-Legends Football League has expanded to include the Nashville Knights. History has also been made by naming former Seattle Mist tight end and middle linebacker Danika Brace the head coach of the team, making Brace the first female coach in the history of the LFL. Brace also serves as the franchise’s general manager. The Knights are also unique in LFL history in that the team name is plural; all other LFL teams in the US to date have had singular team names.
I attended the open tryouts held at D1 Sports in Franklin on December 9, 2017, and was very impressed by the sheer athleticism and fierce competitive spirit of the women who sought roster spots with the team. I also met Coach Brace and the ownership (financial backers) of the franchise that day, and welcomed them to middle Tennessee.
I am eagerly anticipating the inaugural game of the franchise, as their four-game regular season — only two home and two away — begins with the Knights hosting the Austin Acoustic on Saturday, April 21 at 7:00 pm. The home finale will be against the Denver Dream on June 23. The Knights road games are at the LFL US defending champion Seattle Mist on May 19 and the Omaha Heart on July 7. The 2018 LFL US Season, the tenth season of the LFL in the United States, begins April 14 and ends August 4.
Among the players on the roster are two accomplished veteran players, MLB Danielle Hawkins, who wears #10 and RB/C Dominique Maloy, who wears #3. They join #1 Molly Richardson WR/S; #2 Stevi Schnoor FB/LB; #4 Kandy Cooke DE/; #5 Austina Mellberg C/; #6 Heidi Ann TE/DE; #7 Whitney Palmer LB/TE; #8 Bobbi Wolf TE/DE; #9 Netta Carter WR/CB; #11 Rachel Bauman CB/; #12 Jordan Green WR/CB; #14 Nicole Phillips OL/DL; #15 KK Matheny QB; #16 Chelsea Nicole WR/CB; #17 Nene Gleaves WR/RB/S; #18 Jade Randle WR/S; #19 Amanda Bargery DE/; and #20 Steph Miller S/.
Come join us on Saturday, April 21 and learn a whole new meaning for “hits like a girl.” Check out their You Tube channel for highlights and be “Amazed.” (root word = Amazon; these women are warriors)!