The last home football game of the semester is coming up this Saturday the 23rd and UNC is steadily transitioning to the basketball season. It’s been a fantastic experience being a part of a university with such great school pride, and I am sad that I have to leave it so soon. However, it has also been an eye opener as to how embedded some of the sexist practices are in sports.
As a foreigner, never having seen a male cheerleader before, I was very surprised by their appearance. I had this idea that they looked a lot more like the men in Magic Mike; with no shirts on and tight shorts that end just above the knees. That way, they could show off the big and strong muscles in their arms, torso and legs.
This made a lot of sense to me, since their female counterparts are doing just that. My impression is that they are mainly there to look sexually desirable, which their clothes help with by enhancing some of the prettiest parts of the female body.
On the contrary, the men look like they star in Bananas in Pajamas; their Carolina Blue pants loosely hanging all the way to the ground, and their T-shirts barely showing any skin.
The contrast between the male and the female cheerleaders is shocking to say the least, especially when you see them for the first time, side by side. It is even more so, now that the temperature has started to drop below freezing. At least the dance team, the Carolina Girls, wear tights when it is cold outside.