Former Lassiter goalkeeper wants to kick for LSU

Mo Isom is trying to become the fourth female to score in a college football game.

Mo Isom is trying to become the fourth female to score in a college football game.

Mo Isom knows the odds are long, but with what she’s overcome in life, becoming LSU’s first female placekicker might not seem such a tall order.

Isom, who starred at Cobb County’s Lassiter High and has been the goalkeeper for the LSU women’s soccer team for the past four seasons, will continue a two-day tryout Wednesday. She tweeted about her first day’s performance Tuesday:

“Good 1st day of tryouts. Great initial height & good accuracy, just need a little more power from distance. Time to rest up & prep for tomorrow!”

And later:

“It’s hard to sleep when you’re living your dreams.”

LSU Coach Les Miles told the NOLA.com website that he didn’t see Isom kick Tuesday, but will be briefed by assistant athletic director Sam Nader.

Miles is expected to announce a decision on Thursday.

Isom tried out during spring practice and failed to make the team, but Miles promised her she could try again in the fall.

Isom, 22, has a tough task in front of her, trying to beat out Drew Alleman, a second-team All-SEC kicker last year. But her goal is to get a roster spot and become only the fourth female to score in a college football game.

Isom says she regularly makes field goals from 50 yards, but realizes the odds are long. It would be “naïve of me not to realize the odds are stacked against me”, Isom told NOLA.com.

“What I can control is going out there and performing the best I can perform and leaving the decision up to the coaches, if there is a strength they see (in me) that would contribute to the team,” Isom told the Times-Picayune website. “That’s how I would want it to be. I don’t want to be handed anything because I’m a girl trying to play a man’s sport.”

Still, the prospect of making the team pales in comparison to the other challenges she’s faced in life. Isom credits her Christian faith for helping her overcome an eating disorder, her father’s suicide and a 2010 wreck that left her with cracked vertebrae and broken ribs.

As a goalkeeper, she holds LSU’s all-time record with 43 wins, including 30 shutouts. At Lassiter, she was 40-9-1 and was named the AJC Player of the Year her senior season.

She’s also LSU’s homecoming queen.

You can follow Isom on Twitter at @MoIsom.

60 comments Add your comment

SimpleDawg

August 22nd, 2012
9:15 am

Kick it, Girl !

KB

August 22nd, 2012
9:25 am

Young lady go for it….. What’s the worst thing that can happen, LSU says no?

JRHD

August 22nd, 2012
9:25 am

Even though I can’t stand LSU as a Dawg fan, I truly hope she succeeds. I wish her the best of luck.

just sayin'

August 22nd, 2012
9:35 am

So can my son try out for the softball team? Or the volleyball team?

Just Asking?

August 22nd, 2012
9:36 am

Is her opponent “regularly” kicking 50 yard field goals? Wow! Good Luck.

PMC

August 22nd, 2012
9:39 am

As genuine and impressive a human as they get.

gimmick

August 22nd, 2012
9:46 am

She may be a good kicker, but there are lots of 18+ year old boys that can probably kick better and therefore are more deserving of a spot on the roster. Leg strength is leg strength and sorry, but a girl just isn’t going to have the strength a guy would have.

concerned

August 22nd, 2012
9:47 am

Watch out for Mettenberger. He can get a little handsy.

Rick

August 22nd, 2012
9:47 am

Best of luck young lady. If you can dream it, you can do it (Walt Disney).

KB

August 22nd, 2012
9:59 am

gimmick, you need to get with the program. We are talking about a young lady trying to participate in a great sport and you have to be a debbie downer. There maybe so young man who can outkick her, but for now he hasn’t shown up. Last I checked, LSU has already a great kicker Drew Allemann. She is not going to take his job. But she might change Les Miles’ mind in carrying two kickers. So let LSU determine that, not you.

B

August 22nd, 2012
10:00 am

Good Luck! And GO DAWGS!

georgianabulltiger

August 22nd, 2012
10:21 am

WTH

August 22nd, 2012
10:27 am

Just watch out for the quarter back.

Spanky

August 22nd, 2012
10:34 am

KB, gimmick is absolutely right on the money! I am no “dream stomper”, but she shouldn’t be able to hang with seasoned kickers who can boot it from the 50…not in the SEC!! There’s also a risk of safety, and that should come first, always. I know,I know..Kathy Ireland did it in “Necessary Roughness”(80’s movie), but this ain’t a movie..this is a gimmick!..sorry!

RiverDawg

August 22nd, 2012
10:43 am

If she can kick as far and accurate as a fella then she should be given a fair chance. And if a guy can serve, set and spike a volleyball just as well as a girl he should be given a fair shot at making the volleyball team.

The Man

August 22nd, 2012
10:50 am

She’s a tremendous athlete who has played at a very high level. I’m sure she can handle the pressure. Good luck. Spanky, I’m sure you were a great collegiate athlete and know all about the pressures involved…

The Bear

August 22nd, 2012
10:56 am

Right on! Good for her! Hope she gets a spot on the team.

MJ

August 22nd, 2012
11:01 am

Good luck. LSU is a great team and I hope they will pick you.

dawgfan

August 22nd, 2012
11:01 am

“So can my son try out for the softball team? Or the volleyball team?”

If he wants everyone to think he’s a big fat sissy boy then sure, go ahead. I’ve never understood this argument. “If a woman can play a man’s sport then why can’t a man play a woman’s sport?” Because everyone knows that men are bigger, stronger and faster than women. This is not news. I doubt anyone in their right mind would dispute that. So a man playing a woman’s sport proves absolutely nothing, while a woman playing a man’s sport is a very challenging endeavor that deserves respect. Its just a dumb illogical argument.

Thanks.

Spanky

August 22nd, 2012
11:02 am

The Man, yes- I was on the Georgia Southern Tennis Team…what’s your point?

Do it Mo

August 22nd, 2012
11:12 am

Mo is a fantastic girl that’s been through a lot. I encourage everyone to check this out. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ptcSmKIihA&playnext=1&list=PL1B0715C057A57AB9&feature=results_main

Archie

August 22nd, 2012
11:22 am

Everybody rolls their eyes at the kicker position like it doesn’t really matter, but let me ask an important question. Does she add any value to the team beyond leg strength? There’s more to being a kicker than a strong right foot! It’s not a gender thing, it’s a plain old straight up logistics, how can the team use her skills? Can she make a tackle or not? Can she handle a block from a 300lb+ lineman or not? If she can’t, then she’s putting her team at a physical disadvantage, they’re playing 10 on 11. If she can do all those things without being a liability or being injury prone, then all the power to her.

Whiskey Breath

August 22nd, 2012
11:33 am

She is from my area. We love you and pulling for you. You inspire all of us to go the extra mile. Lucky for us you are from our area! Expect you to make the team! Just don’t kick the winning
field goal against my crimson tide.
.

Dawgnlex is a complete tool

August 22nd, 2012
11:46 am

Stay away from the honey badger. He likes to “smoke” and has a large “badger”.

Billy Peeler

August 22nd, 2012
11:47 am

I wish her luck…Ms. Isom is a hard worker and a good athlete.
I do hope that…if she makes the team…she actually EARNS it. And frankly, the LSU kicking squad this year is probably one of the hardest ones in the country to try and earn a spot on. LSU has Drew Alleman, a Lou Groza award finalist, as its primary kicker, and James Hairston (SEC All-Freshman team last year) who has been used only to kick-off, but only because the Tigers already had Alleman. They also have Colby Delahoussaye, a freshman, who won the Kohl’s kicking camp award and was a five-star kicker recruit coming out of high school. And they even have last year’s Louisiana all-state kicker on the team in Trent Dominque. Most teams only carry two kickers, and then usually have extra one who kicks in practice and might get a chance to travel to one road game, or to kick an extra point or two in some meaningless game. Yet LSU already has four STRONG kickers, and the only way there’s a spot open for her is to out-kick one of the current ones. I don’t know…
I admire her determination to want to legitimately earn a spot…she has stated several times that she doesn’t want to be “given” a spot just as an attention-getter. And I do hope she means that, and won’t let them just stick her on the team as a publicity stunt.
I remember several years ago when Katie Hinda was on the football team at Colorado, Coach Barnett said that she was no good. Which, of course, begged the question: If you felt like THAT, Coach, then why in the hell was she on the team? She ended up kicking a couple of extra points for New Mexico (where she had transferred), but she still did not have Division I leg strength, and it was only a stunt to get a headline or two. (To her credit, Hinda never pretended otherwise.)
And I sure hope that Ms. Isom has enough self-respect that she won’t let them just stick her on the team as a novelty. If she legitimately earns a spot on this kicking team, she’ll have done something to be proud of. You could actually be a very good kicker, and not make the LSU team this year…they don’t have room for someone who’s just “good enough” to kick a PAT or two.
Good luck, Mo!

KR

August 22nd, 2012
11:49 am

Deb

August 22nd, 2012
11:50 am

Please note, she is trying out for a fieldgoal kicker, not a kickoff kicker. She won’t have to tackle and the risk of her taking a full on tackle is small. But she is fully ware of the risk and if she is willing to accept them, then shouldn’t that be enough? She is only asking for a chance. If she is good enough, great. If not, then she is fine with that.

Boston Dawg

August 22nd, 2012
11:50 am

Hah, so the head coach isn’t even attending the tryout? It sounds like his mind is already made up.

gadawgs

August 22nd, 2012
12:09 pm

Mo, you are truly an inspiration and your testimony is amazing. I truly hope you make the team but if not don’t worry because you have ALREADY won. Anyone that does not know her history should check it out. She is a pretty amazing woman.

New World Man

August 22nd, 2012
12:18 pm

@concerned
“Watch out for Mettenberger. He can get a little handsy.”

Like this!

gt4ever

August 22nd, 2012
12:43 pm

@Doitmo….

Excellent Testament! Thanks for the link.

Joe Bob Thibodaux

August 22nd, 2012
12:45 pm

Wow!

She would be the best looker on the team too.

I think the fact that kicks get blocked, snaps get away from holders, and occasionally the
kicker needs to tackle, etc. will make her quest difficult. But who knows?

LSU FOREVER,

JBT

Slaw Dawg

August 22nd, 2012
12:49 pm

I hope she wins the job. That way, we know Miles won’t run his “over the shoulder – flip it to the kicker” trick play in the SECC. Or would he?

Arby

August 22nd, 2012
12:52 pm

Title 9 really screwed over alot of men’s teams ! Now they have to give her an oppotunity to try out ?!! UGA has no men’s gymnastics teams ! Can men try out for women’s teams ? Of course not !

Arby

August 22nd, 2012
12:56 pm

So another guy doesn’t get his spot, but this girl get’s a spot…why ?

gt4ever

August 22nd, 2012
1:03 pm

@Arby

Just watch the video, Stupid…. Your missing the whole Point.

Dogs Smell

August 22nd, 2012
1:20 pm

She is an awesome person and I wish her the best . As for the fool who says can his son try out for the softball team- Im sure he can just keep putting lipstick on him !

Dogs Smell

August 22nd, 2012
1:20 pm

Arby. Did your parents produce any children that lived?

Augustabred

August 22nd, 2012
1:24 pm

That just might be the best name in all of sports!!!! “Mo Isom” Luv it!

Jim S.

August 22nd, 2012
1:25 pm

Best of luck to this impressive young woman!

Red Stick

August 22nd, 2012
1:32 pm

You have to give her alot of credit for her courage and determination even if her chances are slim.

Geaux Tigers
Go SEC

KR

August 22nd, 2012
1:39 pm

I’m showing my age here. but does anybody remember Riverdale’s Tanya Butler?

war eagle

August 22nd, 2012
1:46 pm

I think TITLE IX was designed for giving girls athletic scholarships. Nice idea, but if the sport cannot sustain itself, why borrow from other programs?

good job ajc...

August 22nd, 2012
2:13 pm

glad the article reads ” Mo Isom is trying to become the fourth female to score in a college football game” rather than “Mo Isom is trying to become the fourth female to score AT a college football game”.

roswellrichie

August 22nd, 2012
2:33 pm

wow. look how the state of louisiana has come.

lassiter brats

August 22nd, 2012
2:33 pm

She’s probably scored for the football team already

RaleighDawg

August 22nd, 2012
3:00 pm

You goal girl !

Jamal

August 22nd, 2012
3:10 pm

I’m against it! If you let Mo play, you eventually will have to let Larry and Curley, also. Nyuk Nyuk!

atltiger

August 22nd, 2012
3:20 pm

Bama could have used a decent field goal kicker in 2011….truth. She is better than what they had.

American Dream

August 22nd, 2012
4:30 pm

Wow! I never realized how many sexist dinosaurs still roamed the Earth. This woman deserves a shot. If she earns a spot, I am sure she will do well. Nothing like a bunch of potato chip eating knuckle dragging lard asses criticizing a young woman for trying to fulfill a dream. You all make me sick.

Tanisha Green

August 22nd, 2012
4:58 pm

She is a good athlete, but as pointed out…our kicking staff is loaded this season. Mo tried out in spring training, and was fairly consistent with PAT’s and short field goals. To kick a FG past the 25 yard line, she had to kick the ball awfully low. I don’t see her beating out any of the four kickers we already have, because all four of them could be the number one place kicker on most Div I teams. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Coach Myles let her kick a PAT or two in a blowout game, but she insists that she doesn’t want that. It would be a bit patronizing, and I admire her for having that much character.

Alphare

August 22nd, 2012
5:06 pm

This Mo is no regular Joe. She is a 6′1″ 170 pounder.

Geaux Tigers!

August 22nd, 2012
6:19 pm

Drew Alleman was a walk-on a few years back but he has a booming leg. LSU also has a young guy behind Alleman who is pretty good. No chance Mo makes it but I’m glad Les gave her a couple of shots.

VOLcano

August 22nd, 2012
6:33 pm

Give her a shot–great. She makes the team–great. What happens in the locker room afterwards? Does she get her own private area not only at home games but at the visiting stadiums of opponents? Where about locker room comraderie and team building? What other concessions would be necessary? I’m not against the girl or anything, but what do the other LSU players think about this and what exactly does this prove? She knows that she’s not the best player for the position, will never be the starter, has no professional aspirations athletically, but wants to score in a game? So she is hoping to make the team, that the starting kicker gets injured somehow, and she gets a chance to fulfill a dream? I just don’t get the motivation here.

Know It All

August 22nd, 2012
9:44 pm

Enter your comments here

If Miles is smart he will cut her as soon as possible. Remember Colorado. But Les has never been accused of being smart. Just lucky.

ATL4LSU

August 23rd, 2012
9:38 am

I am a DIE HARD LSU FAN and we all want to see Mo succeed.
What a great story here.
What if she does make the team, rides the bench all year, LSU is in BCS Championship Game, first string kicker gets hurt, Mo is called on to field to kick game winner with 10 seconds left from 40 yards out, IT’S GOOD! Tigers WIN! Tigers WIN! Tigers WIN!

Tanisha Green

August 23rd, 2012
2:04 pm

@ ATL4LSU
re: 9:38 a.m.

That would be nice, ATL…but the trouble is, LSU has four kickers on the team who are legitimately better than Mo. So before she gets the call, the first, second, third, and fourth string kickers would all have to get hurt.
I admire Mo greatly, and am real proud of her for trying out. She’s a serious athlete, and a very fine young woman. But unforunately she has little chance to really earn a spot on the team…in part, because we (LSU) has such a strong group of kickers this season. And if Coach Miles does carry her on the team, it will be because she was a female who worked hard…and it’s good publicity. But Mo has already stated that she doesn’t want to make the team as an attention-getting stunt, because it would be patronizing. And that…to me…says about as much about her character as anything.

J

August 24th, 2012
9:19 pm

It’s sexist when women can’t try out for a man’s team. If a man tries for a female then there’s a problem. Sounds like a double standard.

Lakeisha Jackson

August 25th, 2012
11:06 am

Just saw a story that Mo Isom had been cut from the LSU team. Apparently the other kickers outperformed her in a “kick-off”, and she also had some trouble making some tackles in “corner kick” situations. She handled it well, considering the disappointment, even giving a shoutout to the other kickers on Twitter to thank them for their help and cheering them on for the coming season.

You have to be proud of both Mo Isom and LSU for the way this went. She got a tryout and an honest chance to make the team, but fell just short. And so she was cut, like any OTHER player who tried out and didn’t make it. LSU treated her like an ATHLETE, in other words, and not like a PR stunt. If they had kept her on the team as a novelty, patting her hand and saying “Look, everybody…we got a GIRL on the team!” it would have been the most patronizing thing they could have done.

Good job Mo for giving it everything you had, and good job Coach Miles for respecting her enough to treat her like any other player.

Joe Bob Thibodaux

August 25th, 2012
4:19 pm

Mo made an 80 yard goal as a freshman.

Geaux Mo!

LSU FOREVER

JBT