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Cheerleader Working Towards Playing Defensive Back For College Football Team

Illinois cheerleaders performing during a basketball game.

INDIANAPOLIS - MARCH 15: Cheerleaders from the Illinois Fighting Illini perform against the Minnesota Golden Gophers during their semifinal game on Day 3 of the Big Ten Men's Basketball Tournament at Conseco Fieldhouse on March 15, 2008 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Few sports have featured less women than football - professional, amateur, or otherwise.

But one young woman in Indiana is trying to make the tough transition from high school cheerleader to high school football player to college football player.

Recently featured in Indy Star, Hope Nelson shared her story of being an student-assistant for Franklin College's football team, overcoming a serious eye injury, twice tearing her ACL while cheerleading, and playing football at Indian Creek High School her senior year.

Indian Creek football coach John Cooper was willing to give Nelson a chance to play provided she didn't ask for special treatment.

"When I met with coach Cooper, I said, 'Here’s the deal. She gets no different treatment than a man if she is going to play football," Hope's father John Nelson said. "If she wants to play this sport, she needs to really play the sport."

Nelson learned to tackle and how to take a hit.

At the end of her senior year of high school, she got an internship as an assistant at Franklin College and has been trying to pursue a spot on the team this year.

Per the report, Nelson is already in the weight room squatting 245 pounds, running sprints, and observing defensive backs in hopes of making the team as one.

Nelson hopes to make the squad as a sophomore next season. Should that happen, Nelson would be the first woman on the football team in the school's 184-year history.