Sports

F.C. High Track Coach Moonlights In Women’s Pro Football League

KGrigsbyFalls Church High School track coach Kenyetta Grigsby pushes her sprinting, jumping and hurdling athletes to perform at their peak. But when practice is over, Grigsby finds herself on the other side of things.

KGrigsbyFalls Church High School track coach Kenyetta Grigsby pushes her sprinting, jumping and hurdling athletes to perform at their peak. But when practice is over, Grigsby finds herself on the other side of things.

Grigsby plays professional tackle football in the Women’s Football Alliance for the D.C. Divas, who won their eighth division title in nine years and are currently defending a 6-0 season as they move into postseason play this Saturday.

The Detroit native graduated from Eastern Kentucky University and moved to the Washington, D.C. area to coach at Howard University, working with such students as bronze-medal hurdler David Oliver and professional runner Landria Buckley before taking a position at Falls Church High.

“I had a good coaching career at Howard,” Grigsby said.

Grigsby was no stranger to running before her first coaching gig, as she was the DI indoor champion in the 60m hurdles at Eastern Kentucky, but she transitioned from college track to playing flag football while coaching at Howard. But flag football could only curb her competitive appetite for so long.

“I wanted more,” Grigsby said. “Flag football was fun but I knew about the (professional) teams in D.C. and Baltimore.”

Having missed the tryouts for the D.C. Divas, Grigsby tried out for the Baltimore Burn and played with them from 2004 until 2009, at which point she finally became a member of the D.C. squad. She is currently the squad’s starting running back and hopes to help them secure a championship this season.

While she enjoys the camaraderie with her teammates, Grigsby realizes it’s hard to balance professional football with her duties as a coach at Falls Church High School.

“I have practice from 4 to 6:30 sometimes at Falls Church, and then I have to leave straight from there to go to (football) practice,” Grigsby said. Sometimes she has to miss football practices due to track meets during the week.

Her students like to follow their coach’s progress with the Divas.

“My athletes love it, they’re always YouTubing and Googling me and everything and coming back with my stats from the game and stuff like that,” Grigsby said.
Her performance has even gotten the attention of the high school football team, as Grigsby said that some of the players wanted her to coach their running backs.

The Woodbridge resident, in addition to coaching and playing football, works for Loudoun County Parks and Recreation and volunteers as a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, and admits that with all of her responsibilities, finding free time is difficult.

“Football is my spare time,” Grigsby said, though added that she does find some time for relaxing and indulging in her “foodie” tendencies.

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