View Full Version : Chiefs Scott Pioli loves women's sports!

Hammock Parties
06-15-2012, 07:58 AM
This explains why he liked Cassel so much.

Pioli shows commitment to gender equality


Scott Pioli didn’t want to let you in. Not at first, anyway. He is a private man, unrelentingly so, and especially with anything involving his family. He declined other requests to talk about this, but a fellow Chiefs executive convinced the general manager to make an exception for this column.

Pioli figures that talking might do some good for the first organization he joined in Kansas City four years ago. Maybe he can shine some attention on an issue that’s grabbed his heart and is part of his DNA as much as anything in the world — even football.

Maybe talking can help children who aren’t born into money but are otherwise an awful lot like 8-year-old Mia Pioli.

“She’s my daughter and my son,” Scott says.

As sports fans, so much of what we tend to think of around Father’s Day is about dads and sons. Pioli’s view is much different, and this is an enormous part of who he is outside of football.

He has been reluctant to talk publicly about his personal life. But Pioli is a different man now, or at least an evolving one. He’s lost around 30 pounds since the end of last season and looks more energetic. The Chiefs are making a concerted effort to be more open to fans through the media, too, and maybe his opening up is a part of that.

Whatever the rationale, it has given us a chance to see Pioli outside of the suit and tie on game day or meticulously chosen words in news conferences. He invites you into his office, mesh shorts and a T-shirt, feet propped up on his desk, to talk about why a powerful man in a super macho sport is so drawn to gender equality.

This is why he has been involved with the Women’s Intersport Network, or WIN for KC, since his first month in town, and it’s why he’s funding an annual scholarship for a graduating high school senior who is, too.

Actually, Pioli’s motivation goes way beyond his arrival in Kansas City four winters ago. It goes back to when he was a boy, with two older sisters in a working-class family that couldn’t afford college tuition.

Scott’s older sisters were standout athletes. Their hometown was a soccer hotbed, and Lisa played four years of varsity, Laura five. Both were captains. But neither could earn a college scholarship because this was the 1970s and Title IX was in its infancy.

Scott, meanwhile, played linebacker well enough to attend college for free. His sisters were at least as good in soccer as he was in football, but neither went to college.

“Unfair,” he says. “It seemed unfair then, and it seems unfair now.”

Scott grew up around strong women. He has pictures of his grandmother, Rosa Anna Costa Pioli, holding a rifle and showing off a line of dead rabbits.

So it never seemed right to him that in high school, the boys started talking about scholarships and the girls didn’t. Or couldn’t.

This stuck with Scott. It’s still with him. It’s not a coincidence that the Chiefs are the only team in the NFL with a female director of player development, for instance. Or that when Pioli talks of his sports heroes, he puts Billie Jean King in the same breath as Tom Seaver, Bob Gibson and Jim Brown.

“Tom Seaver changed my world,” he says. “But Billie Jean King changed the world.”

You just don’t hear this too often from powerful football men. The Chiefs never did much with WIN for KC before Pioli arrived, and it makes perfect sense.

The Chiefs are a professional football team stuffed with testosterone, where careers and millions are made and lost on wins and losses. WIN is a local nonprofit organization for girls and young women that de-emphasizes results in favor of fun. You couldn’t find two more dissimilar sports entities.

Pioli has taken Chiefs players like quarterback Matt Cassel to WIN events and donated tickets to the Big 12 women’s basketball tournament. He says he watches more women’s sports than men’s, particularly with Mia — tennis, softball, lacrosse and basketball. She even convinced Dad to let her stay up late to watch Baylor win its national championship in basketball this spring.

Pioli has been surrounded by sports and strong women throughout his life, so if it makes sense that the Chiefs weren’t particularly strong proponents of women’s sports before he got here, it’s also apparent why such support means so much to him.

Everyone has a cause. This is his.

“I’d love to be able to say to Mia, ‘You can be anything you want to be,’ ” Pioli says. “And I do tell her that. I also know there’s an ugly underbelly, and that may not be the truth.”

06-15-2012, 08:15 AM
Too much information coming out again from the Chiefs trying to glorify Pioli. Wonder what he's getting ready to pull

06-15-2012, 09:31 AM
I knew the stupid "Matt Cassel is teh womenz" quip would be in this thread with a quickness, but I didn't think it'd be in the OP.

06-15-2012, 11:03 AM
I was expecting a story of his desire to wear women's clothing...

06-15-2012, 11:23 AM
I knew the stupid "Matt Cassel is teh womenz" quip would be in this thread with a quickness, but I didn't think it'd be in the OP.

Calling Cassel a woman is insulting to women.

06-15-2012, 11:28 AM
Calling Cassel a woman is insulting to women.


yeah, lets not get carried away here.

Hammock Parties
06-15-2012, 11:35 AM
Calling Cassel a woman is insulting to women.

Venus and Serena Williams could beat Cassel's ass.

06-15-2012, 11:38 AM
Venus and Serena Williams could beat Cassel's ass.These two could beat the ass of most posters on this board.

06-15-2012, 12:12 PM
Venus and Serena Williams could beat Cassel's ass.
I think we all know why.

They have tennis rackets.

06-15-2012, 12:23 PM
Looks like Pioli has lost some weight