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News Release – Discover the untold story of the NFL’s first female scout


For immediate release  / Contact: / August 6, 2017

As NFL preseason kicks off …

Discover the untold story of the NFL’s first female scout

(New York, NY) In 1984, a thud literally made history when a Jets defensive end sent Buccaneers quarterback Steve DeBerg reeling to the ground. The tackler was wild, exuberant Mark Gastineau, and the only thing bigger than his mullet that year was his impact on NFL history—and on opponents’ quarterbacks.  His hit on DeBerg set a league record: 22 sacks by one player in a single season.

But it was shocking that Gastineau ever made it to a professional football field. The big defensive end from a small school in Oklahoma owed his shot in the league to another unheralded, and even more improbable, figure: a young woman named Connie Nicholas, who in the mid-1970s had broken through one of the most secretive, male-dominated cliques in American sports to become the NFL’s first female scout. Even now, almost four decades later, Connie’s own groundbreaking career remains a lost history. X’s and O’s Don’t Mean I Love You: The Untold Story of the NFL’s First Female Scout is the first book to treat her story in depth.

In this new biography, discover

  • How Connie rose from Jets secretary to become the league’s first female scout at only 24 years old
  • How her recommendation helped put Gastineau in front of Jets coaches before the 1979 draft, which launched his record-setting NFL career
  • How she overcame the odds of era and gender to impress some of the greatest football minds in the game, including a legendary college coach and former NFL personnel
  • How her unique upbringing as daughter of a Jets team doctor, which included Saturday afternoons watching football with legendary Jets coach Walt Michaels and spending team Thanksgiving dinners with Joe Namath, shaped her lifelong passion for the sport

Along with Connie’s unique reflections, the book draws on interviews with current NFL scouts, former NFL players, former college and NFL coaches, and other NFL personnel, including Hall of Fame quarterback Joe Namath, All-Pro defensive end Mark Gastineau, NFL director of football operations Mike Kensil, former MVP wide receiver Wesley Walker, and members of the Jets Super Bowl III championship squad.

For more information, see:

Book Trailer:

Official Website

To interview Connie Nicholas Carberg, contact


Connie Nicholas Carberg joined the New York Jets as a secretary in 1974 before making history as the league’s first female scout. She is a veteran public speaker and has made multiple media appearances on her remarkable career and to offer insight and analysis on current NFL topics. She was recently the M. Dianne Murphy Distinguished Lecturer at Florida State University.

Author Elisabeth Meinecke worked as the Fox Sports Midwest beat writer for the St. Louis Blues and St. Louis Rams. Prior to that, she spent five years working in D.C. media. She has been published by several outlets, including espnW and The Washington Post.

On Sale Now:


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