March is Women's History Month, and I've had a few blog post ideas percolating in my mind as to how I can tie that in to sports cards. I've only been touring the baseball card blogosphere for a few months, but there's only one female card collector out there that I know of (hi, Julie!)
While there are very few female card collectors, there are slightly more female card subjects. Much of this is due to Benchwarmer cards, entertainment/non-sports cards, and fighting sports like UFC and WWE... none of which I collect. Andso because I only collect sports cards - specifically baseball and hockey, with some football and a rapidly increasing amount of basketball - I only have a handful of women in my card collection (not counting anything in a complete set.)
You've probably seen some of them before; I scanned and discussed First Pitch cards of Mo'ne Davis and Victoria Justice in recent blog posts, and shared my Hillary Clinton card on President's Day. Here are a few more that I found in my binders:
The "first lady" of hockey, Manon Rheaume was a huge hobby star after playing goal in a pre-season game for the NHL's Tampa Bay Lightning. She's the sister of former New Jersey Devil Pascal Rheaume.
I really thought I had the Masterpieces card in my collection, but it's not in my commons binders or my star player box. However I did find a couple other hockey players in the "miscellaneous" section of my binder:
North American Rivals Cammi Granato and Cassie Campbell. Cammi is the sister of former NHL player and coach Tony Granato, and is married to former Hartford Whaler Ray Ferraro. Cassie appears to be wearing goalie gear, despite the fact that she was a defenseman (defenceman? defencewoman?)
I'm not sure where I got this Rebecca Lobo card, but it's the only card of a UConn Women's basketball star in my collection. If I ever got serious about collecting Huskies alums I'd have to add a Sue Bird, Nykesha Sales, Diana Taurasi... and a more recent star that I'll discuss in my next post.
This is one of the 1,000+ basketball cards Jon sent me. It's a gold parallel version, from 2000 Topps Team USA. I recognize Lisa Leslie at the top, Dawn Staley on the left, and um.. that's it. I'm guessing at least one of the others went to UConn, but I cant put names to the faces. Ten points to anyone who can correctly identify every player without using Google.
I don't have this Whitney Houston Pro Set Football card. I thought I had it, I should have it.. but I don't. Whitney is buried in the town next over from me. I've heard that there are (armed?) guards who keep watch over her final resting place so that no one does anything disrespectful.
This Willow Bay card from 1995-96 Upper Deck basketball has been in my collection since I was a teenager. I vaguely remember watching her co-host Inside Stuff once in a while, but I'm pretty sure that the only reason I held onto it was that lovely smile of hers.
Here are two of my all-time favorite U.S. Olympians. Kim Zmeskal was my first athlete crush (and possibly my first crush, period.) I remember reading about her in SI for Kids in the Summer of 1992, when she was expected to win multiple gold medals. Unfortunately she broke her ankle and didn't win any individual medals.
I hadn't heard of Noelle Pikus-Pace before the 2014 Winter Games, but after NBC profiled her during the broadcast I was intrigued. Noelle had some awful luck with injuries, and after just missing the medal stand in 2010 she retired from Skeleton. Her husband convinced her to give it one more shot in Sochi, and she won a silver medal.
What was even more awesome to me was her enthusiasm and appreciation for all the support she received. Noelle was so bubbly and thankful in every post-race interview that I was more invested in her performance than I had been for any Olympic athlete since Kim Zmeskal.
This is my only relic of a female sports star:
Like millions of men all over the world, I was a big fan of Maria Sharapova throughout the '00 decade. This dress piece comes from 2005 Ace Authentic, and apparently it's a Promo because it's numbered AA-PROMO. I don't think I noticed that before. I soured on Sharapova long before her two-year ban for the performance "enhancing" drug Meldonium - which was part of a widespread, state-sponsored doping regime by a Russian government so powerful they were able to influence an American election (allegedly.)
PEDs or not, she was like 1-62 against Serena Williams in her career.. and she was only slightly more likeable than the Williams sisters. I still like her though, just not as much as when I bought this card.
Do you have any cards of female athletes (or other famous women) in your collection?