While the amount of sports websites and blogs can result in a tangled web of failed searches and information overload, a remarkable site for sports coverage is helping to give women a long overdue voice. Mixing sports, popular culture and style, Babes Dig Balls is clean and concise, while looking to capture the zeitgeist of women in sports.
Starting on Tumblr, BDB’s humble beginnings have evolved into a full-blown website. Quickly becoming a popular refuge for female sports fans, it is a unique package of current sports news, featured blogs, style and a roster of over 30 female writers. Complemented by a program on Sirius/XM Radio (Channel 167), it is the first sign that BDB is not only becoming a brand, but progressing into a pop culture phenomenon.
Created by women for women, the heartbeat of the site is Miranda Furtado. Currently a Sports and Entertainment Editor at Canada.com, her sporting roots feature soccer, dirt biking and wakeboarding, while working as an instructor for snowboarding. Her first brush with fame occurred in 2009 while studying as a fashion student. The 23 year-old would be selected as the Face of the Telus World Ski and Snowboard Festival.
Eventually, Furtado would join forces with Missy Deyo from Sports Babe of the Day. The bustling brunettes may be familiar to many as they also appeared on episodes of MTV Canada’s sports-themed program Play with AJ in the 30 Seconds of Fame segment.
Having faced numerous health issues with her kidneys, Deyo persevered and gained an army of admirers in the process. During her recovery, she contributed to the Kingston Frontenacs hockey club with social media coverage and covered baseball for the Kingston Whig-Standard.
Deyo’s lively and entertaining Sports Babe of the Day lives on as one of the features on BDB. Featuring both male and female athletes, the SBOTD has featured athletes such as Tessa Bonhomme and Kaylyn Kyle. Providing an in-depth, sometimes humorous, though always informative view on what drives these world-class athletes, the feature makes for a fun read.
Another lady that deserves recognition in helping to grow the BDB brand is Tia Preece, the Babely Vice-President. A co-owner of the site, Preece is a snowbird making her residence in Florida. With aspirations of one day covering NHL hockey (her favourite team is the Tampa Bay Lightning) or the PGA Tour, the university-educated VP also pulls double duty as the BDB Radio Show co-host.
A series of blogs composed by the Babely Army comprise the Featured Blogs section. Six Packs on Ice covers ice hockey, while giving exposure to minor leagues such as the AHL and ECHL. Writer Hope Laws is part of the aptly titled basketball blog Laws on the Court.
Third and 10 is the blog on NFL football, featuring recent stories such as Johnny Manziel and the debate over the use of the name Redskins. Extreme Sports, All Things Aussie and The Bro Blog, featuring male writers such as Terry Michael Maughan and Marc van Herk are among the other Featured Blogs on BDB.
Although Furtado, Deyo and the rest of the Babely Family look more like models than sports fans, there is no denying their expertise. Starting with the coverage of all four major sports, every member of the Babely Family brings their own passion for the game. Some of the highlights include the following:
Hailing from St. Louis, Marjorie Notter aspires to become the Erin Andrews of Hockey and Baseball. A lifelong fan of the Blues and Cardinals, her childhood involved playing softball along with boy’s hockey, respectively. One of her greatest moments was being featured in David Freese’s ESPN article after his MVP performance in the classic 2012 World Series.
Hayley Campbell, also known as the Model Sports Fan is BDB’s blogger for NFL football. Like her colleagues, she is more than a pretty face. With a Masters Degree from the prestigious University of Toronto, she has pulled double duty as a librarian and a fashion model.
A pair of students and aspiring sports reporters, Lindsay Beaver and Mandy Kovacs is gaining valuable experience with their first-rate coverage. Having grown up as a Detroit Tigers fan, Beaver had the opportunity to interview Prince Fielder. One of Kovacs’ finest hockey stories incorporated the funny side of sport as she remarked on the Ten Worst Playoff Beards.
The group even features a former collegiate athlete, Ashley Docking. Having competed in soccer and basketball, her number 10 was retired by her college. Currently serving as a varsity college basketball coach, she is also an employee of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, the parent company of the Toronto Raptors and Toronto Maple Leafs.
Traditionally, any publication or website geared towards women customarily features the obligatory review of style. Focusing on topics such as Beauty, Fitness, Health, Talk That Talk and Travel, there is no powder puff to be found here. Geared towards the active woman, no topic is off-base.
Acting as coaches of style, the writers cover topics ranging from accessories such as the Ipsy Bag to segments including the Workout of Week, plus suggestions for Coolest Excursions and Vacation Spots.
While all of the energetic and vivacious women from the Babely Army have various goals in sports, it is remarkable to see them collaborate together. With the support of Furtado and Preece, the ambitious effort to branch out with a wide range of coverage has yielded remarkable results. The key is that BDB still stays true to its roots; knowledgeable, intelligent and ambitious women providing thought-provoking sports coverage with a twist of pop culture and wit.
With women’s sports continuing to grow in terms of competition and participation, there is no question that the role of women in sports media is running parallel. Although Erin Andrews, Andi Petrillo, Nicole Zaloumis are living the dream, their accomplishments are the source of dreams upon which BDB is helping to extend and further shape the growing role of women in sport.
The rest of the Babely Family includes:
*Sabrina Bridges *Desiree Christine *Toiya Crawford
*Melissa Fiore *Kelly Gresser *Sammy Hill
*Mandy Kovacs *Gabby Lucivero *Mika Marquart
*Hayley Meyer *Miranda Murphy *Brittany Pfeiffer
*Diana Pulupa *Kayla Ramiscal *Michela Ricci
*Amanda Santos *Paulina Strzelec *Makenzi Wassenaar
All images obtained from Babes Dig Balls