But that is exactly what is happening to gridiron in Australia.
The National Legends Football League (LFL) was launched in Perth last week, with confirmation that two local women’s matches will be played at Perth Oval in December and February. The December game will be the first league match in Australia.
WA Angels coach Justin Rogers said increased interest in the women’s league was helping the sport grow.
‘It is amazing to see that in a sport for once, the women’s brand can give as much back to the men’s game,’ he said. ‘The guys are embracing that, with local clubs supportive of developing a women’s minor league.’
The LFL was previously known as the lingerie football league, which may in part explain its growing popularity.
But Angels team manager and LFL representative Armando Formica said while the uniforms showed off the women’s bodies, the players were highly skilled, strong athletes.
‘These girls are high-end, elite athletes,’ he said. ‘We have national lacrosse players, baseball players, football players, an ex-Gladiator and a contestant from Gladiators.
‘Those who think it is a spectacle quickly see that the women hit as hard as the men and they get hurt more, because they have less clothing and padding.’
The national competition will feature two home games in each participating state ” Queensland, NSW and Victoria.
A national team will be chosen next year to compete internationally.
Rogers also coaches the local Broncos men’s gridiron premiers and WA Raiders, which won the national championship last year, and expects the women to be successful.
‘It is a reduced format in that only seven players are on the field but it is very similar to gridiron,’ he said. ‘It is designed to be a fast paced version of the game.’