The Helmet Bowl National Championship top bracket Bowie State Equipment Manager Rasheda Spratley filled out leads all others through the first two rounds.
Will she hold on to the lead through Round 3? We will find out at noon today!
Rasheda, a 3-time New Jersey State Champion Track Team member in high school (she was a sprinter and long-jumper) marks her 10th year in the Bulldog’s equipment room. She also serves as the Operations Coordinator for the women’s basketball team.
“I love football! My grandfather turned me into a football crazy little girl,” Rasheda told us recently.
She’s an Eagles fan while her grandfather was a life-long Giants fan. It made for some fun Sunday afternoons!
Rasheda ran track for the Bulldogs as an undergrad, earning a team Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association championship in 2006. When Head Coach Damon Wilson approached her about helping out in the equipment room, her love of football helped her to give it a shot.
“I loved it!” She started her senior year. “It was a little overwhelming at first—there was so much to learn. I was told to get a helmet, take it completely apart, an put it back together.”
Now she leads a football staff of three student equipment managers—all girls—and earned her Athletic Equipment Managers Association certification last year.
“At first, I had to sit down and tell the team that I can laugh, joke around with them, but we had to be respectful. My job is my job. For some people, I have to prove I can do it and I do—with my actions,” Rasheda said.
“Actions speak louder than anything I can say.”
When she is not caring for the equipment, the players, the travel, the arrangements, the budget, and the rest, Rasheda dances liturgical dance at her church—praising God through movement. She works out, reads urban fiction and autobiographies, and pushes the Bulldogs in Helmet Bowl.
“I made my predictions on what I like—the helmets I like I picked!” Her favorite, other than the Bowie State helmet? San Diego State Aztecs.
Though the Bulldogs have a fighting chance of advancing past Army to the Great8, Rasheda is already looking forward to Helmet Bowl II.
“We are looking a few helmets, some designs for 2018. We may have something very different next year,” she told Helmet Tracker.
As for her future, it will involve sports, equipment, and operations. “I would definitely want to break into DI football and bring my creative ideas to their department—and maybe someday the NFL on the operations side.
“I’ll go as far as God will allow me!”