So I'm sitting at home watching the Wimbledon championships when I hear Mary Carillo and Mary Joe Fernandez talking about Ashley Harkleroad’s decision to pose for PLAYBOY.
I don’t necessarily have a problem with that; she's a grown woman and she can do what she wants, but Harkleroad now represents an upsetting trend in women’s sports. Harkleroad joins the ranks of women who will become better known for her body then her game.
Harkleroad joins the ranks of glamorized athletes with no track record, the ranks of Natalie Gulbis and Anna Kournikova. Gulbis, who turned professional in 2003, has one LPGA tour win yet has her own Golf Channel show which portrays her doing everything but golf. Kournikova never won a singles title in her professional career yet she would make calendars and pose for cameras.
Yet men get blamed for not respecting their games and the tours in which they play and embrace them for marketing.
You want a true female sports star? Look at 21-year-old Paula Creamer in her 4th LPGA season—she has won six times and one would think that the best is yet to come.
Oh yeah and Creamer has one thing in common with the aforementioned athletes—she’s not ugly. Creamer is a true example of someone young girls can look up to. She's got game- she'll soon win a major and she has my respect.