By the end of the season, Hankins said the team was becoming such good friends that he enjoyed having to get his team to refocus during practices, as opposed to the shy, timid team he had at the beginning of the season.
Though his team did not win any games, Hankins said there is so much value in what the team is doing.
“Not only did I see the girls’ confidence grow, but honestly, their execution got better every game,” Hankins said. “You could see it in the final scores. We had a couple chances to even win some games. There’s a lot of siblings or relatives playing tackle football. A lot of people didn’t even know flag football was a thing you could sign up for in Dawson County. We need to get the word out so we can expand the popularity and get this off the ground.”
One moment Hankins took special pride in was at the Dawson County High School football team’s youth night, his team walked onto the field and was recognized as the first all-female football team ever in Dawson County sports history.
“Society is slowly but surely catching up to the fact that everyone is equal and anybody that wants to work hard can find success,” Hankins said. “We no longer live in a time where society wants a woman to stay at home. It always should’ve been that way but we’re here now.”
“At the end of every practice, we talk about our idols. I don’t want these girls to desire to be social media darlings, but I want them to look up to those female world leaders and innovators.”
There is no doubt in Hankins mind that he will be back next season to coach the team again. His main goal of the team is continuing to raise awareness throughout the community, but the experience has also gotten a hold of him emotionally.
“This is the single most rewarding thing I’ve ever done in my life,” Hankins said. “To be able to see the growth as football players…it’s cool. But to see the future leaders of our country and to watch their confidence grow, it’s a struggle to put into words. I’m proud to be their coach.”