It wasn’t like Amanda Calhoun knew nothing about football when she met her future husband, future Air Force football coach, Troy Calhoun.
“I was born in Texas, so I really didn’t have a choice but to be a football fan at birth,” Amanda Calhoun said.
Still, being a football coach’s wife means a lot of games and practices, so her knowledge has increased tremendously through the years. While she isn’t going to write an instructional book on the zone-blocking scheme, Amanda Calhoun can watch a game at Falcon Stadium and often have a good idea why the play in front of her worked or failed.
She knows football better than most people, and enjoys it more as a result. She said even when she’s alone at home in the fall, she’ll often flip through the channels to find if there’s a football game on before considering other options.
And that’s one of the reasons Touchdowns and Tiaras was conceived. Amanda Calhoun had seen educational events geared toward teaching women about football when Troy was an assistant coach at Wake Forest and then the Denver Broncos, and she wanted to start one at Air Force.
This year’s event will be on Aug. 1 in the Holaday Athletic Center, with cocktails at 5:30 p.m. and dinner at 6 p.m. There’s instruction from the football coaching staff, and then an athletic wear fashion show. The cost is $40 per person, with registration through goairforcefalcons.com or by calling 719-333-2122.
“My overall objective is that people will walk away bigger football fans overall and bigger Air Force football fans too,” Amanda Calhoun said.
Amanda Calhoun said she had the event in mind from the time Troy became Air Force’s football coach in 2007, but they wanted to wait to make sure the timing and planning of the event was perfect. The fashion show and dinner were included to make sure that there was something for everyone to enjoy.
"They've done a phenomenal job - Amanda, (associate athletic director of development) Nancy Hixson, all the coaches wives - they've put a lot of work into it," Troy Calhoun said. "It's a neat way for the academy to extend a bit to women, to be more accessible."
The Calhouns hosted the event for the first time last year, hoping for about 150 attendees. About 300 showed up. This year’s event is capped at 500. Last year’s event was in the Falcon Stadium press box, but they needed more room this time around. It was moved to the spacious Holaday Athletic Center.
“I can’t believe how many people I saw either at a game or just around town who told me, ‘I can’t wait for next year,’” Amanda Calhoun said.
Because the event is geared toward women, Amanda Calhoun said she thinks that makes women more comfortable about asking sometimes basic football questions. The Air Force coaches are happy to answer them all.
“Women tend to not ask some football questions with men around,” Amanda Calhoun said. “When women are around in a casual setting, they’re more confident about asking questions and learning more.”
Contact Frank Schwab: 476-4891
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