High school sports: Utah Girls Tackle Football in Northern Utah

High school sports: Utah Girls Tackle Football in Northern Utah

by James Tate

Many have seen the fantastic commercial from this past year’s Super Bowl highlighting girls tackle football featuring Samantha Gordon. Fun, friends, and football is the motto of the Utah Girls Tackle Football League. The league is up and moving fast with Under Armour as a sponsor. They were started in Herriman, Utah, in 2015 by Gordon and her father, Brent Gordon. The league is growing fast and is now in Northern Utah. Coaches Terrance Pohl and Uppsen Downes are in their first year of assembling a team for high school girls to participate in the northern area of Utah. Coach Pohl and Downes are the current Clearfield High School varsity football team coordinators.

Both coaches have years of experience coaching all levels and are great teachers of fundamentals and proper techniques. Safety is the utmost priority when teaching proper technique, and both coaches have a unique way of presenting this to the girls to keep them safe, engaged, and learning. “I just want folks to know that we are qualified to coach the girls,” said Pohl. “We’re motivated to bring this game we love to the northern Utah girls.” “Girls shouldn’t have to compete with boys to participate,” said Pohl.

“And above all, we want to have fun!” said Pohl. “We hope to instill an overall love of the game.”

What the girls say

When asked what she loves about football, Kyaria Pohl of Clearfield High School shared her thoughts.

“I just enjoy the team effort aspect and a group coming together as one,” Pohl said. “And, of course, tackling! Girls supporting each other in football is a big deal. I think it is good to be pushed to do the hard stuff.”

Emili Baker of Clearfield High School showed her parents, Jeff and Tonya, the Samantha Gordon commercial and immediately became interested.

“We looked into it and got her signed up,” Jeff Baker said. “Emili loves to be competitive and rises to meet challenges. Tackle football looks to be a great fit for her, and she is making new friends, too! We are pretty proud of her!”


The deadline for participating this season will close on March 24, 2023. If girls want to play in the Northern Utah area, they can contact Coach Pohl at 385-224-6847 or Coach Downes at 801-577-6459 for grades 9-12. For grades 7-8, contact Clayton Larkin at 801-513-9059. Utah Girls Tackle Football – Football is what we do.

Boundaries for teams

Clearfield, Davis, Farmington, Bountiful, Woods Cross, Viewmont, Northridge, Bonneville, Roy, Weber, Ogden, Fremont

photos courtesy of Kim McFadden

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