Inspired by seeing more opportunities for women in football, we reached out to interview Katie Ott, co-owner of the women’s professional tackle football team the San Diego Rebellion.
This interview was brought to you in partnership with Future For Football, an initiative of the National Football Foundation to promote and celebrate the game at all levels.
It was incredibly inspiring to hear Katie’s experiences and insights as a woman in football today.
On & Off the field, who is Katie Ott?!
Katie is a Wife, Mom to a 16 year old and a Director at a large tech company by day. Katie grew up around football, with a football-loving father, and a brother who played the sport throughout his childhood. Though Ott was passionate about the sport, she was a competitive soccer player so she never considered playing football at the time. It wasn’t until watching a friend tryout for a football team in college that she realized she could pursue this passion, and 5 years later, she started playing football herself.
She went on to join various football teams, including the USA Women’s National Football team in 2017 and in that same year she co-founded the San Diego Rebellion with Knengi Martin.
What are the first words that come to mind when you think of football?
Katie explains how the team spends so much time together that they become a family. She recalls her teammates’ children being on the field during practice, and how players families become an extension of one another.
There are so many backgrounds in football, and nowadays there is tons of opportunity for anyone who is passionate about football. There is another kind of opportunity Ott mentions: the opportunity to showcase your talents and skills, grow as an athlete and even a professional.
We recently posted an article the Future of Football is YOU and we re-defined F-O-O-T-B-A-L-L based on a co-ed youth football teams responses to a few simple questions about what football means to them. You know what came up in 90% of their answers? Family & Opportunity.
The Rebellion mission statement is incredibly inspiring. Can you tell us more about the meaning behind “rebelling against expectations”?
Here is an exert from the San Diego Rebellion Values Statement:
“The belief that greatness happens when you rebel against expectations and consistently work together to work towards a shared goal.”
Sometimes females may feel isolated being the only female on a team, or they may be told that football is not a “girl sport”. The meaning behind the statement “rebelling against expectations” is being able to be strong and show that self confidence to get you through. Katie goes on to share that as she watches young girls participate in football, she witnesses their confidence grow exponentially as they learn to ignore expectations and focus on their passions.
Can you highlight some of the benefits of football?
It’s all about Teamwork!
“Football is the one sport I’ve played where you need the entire team to be successful.” Katie says. Ott suggests, it’s not a sport where you can have a couple of superstars carrying the team, the team needs to work together to achieve it’s shared goals. You learn great lessons in teamwork and camaraderie on the field, and you use them off the field, whether it’s in your professional life, family life, etc.
Any final words of wisdom for parents?
Ott says: “If your kid has a passion, do everything you can do to help them pursue it.”
Future for Football promotes football of all types and for all people – regardless of your age, gender, or background. Whether you watch it, play it, or have a love one who plays, this a sport that brings friends and families together, and teaches us lessons on and off the field.
What’s the first word that comes to your mind when you think about football?
Future for Football highlights the wins off the field, the victories that matter.
Ready to get started? Future for Football’s league finder makes it easy to get involved, simply visit Future for Football enter your city and state and see what options are available near you. Don’t forget to follow them on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.