In the Spring 2021, The Northeast Ohio Flag Football League (NEO) offered the first ever all girls high school flag football league consisting of six teams. A group of predominantly girls from the Class of 2023 formed a team in the recreational league. Each team represented the Cleveland Browns in the inaugural season. The team coined the phrase "The Mutts" as they represented Lake Catholic, NDCL, Riverside and Hawken. The Mutts finished the regular season undefeated and finished second place in the league championship.
The NEO partnered with the Cleveland Browns in 2022 to expand the all-girls division with the hopes of making the sport a high school club sport and eventually being recognized by the OHSAA as a sanctioned sport. Teams competing increased to 10 and represented local high schools. The Lady Cougars finished the 2022 regular season undefeated and competed in the Championship game at FirstEnergy Stadium finishing second place.
Where is Girls High School Flag Football heading? The Cleveland Browns continue to support the growth of the league and has a goal for 2023 to have 35-70 teams between the east and west side of Cleveland. The plan is to play 8 regular season games followed by a regional tournament with the top 4 teams from each region competing in a "State Championship Tournament" at FirstEnergy Stadium.
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