As the calendar turns to a new year, now is as good a time as any to look back at some of Just Women’s Sports’ best conversations of 2021.
Snacks, the Just Women’s Sports Podcast and Tea with A & Phee all welcomed some of the best athletes in sports to spill some secrets, relive their most iconic moments and share never-before-heard stories with the JWS fam.
Feed your ears during some holiday downtime with our 10 favorite podcast episodes from 2021:
When Dawn Staley stopped by the Tea with A & Phee podcast in August, the Team USA and South Carolina coach did not disappoint. Getting honest with Napheesa Collier and A’ja Wilson about NIL, interviewing for the Portland Trail Blazers job and her favorite Olympic memories, Staley spilled the tea with incredible candor and humor.
Snacks kicked off their second season with guest Megan Rapinoe in an episode to remember. The USWNT star reminisced about the first time she met teammates Mewis and Williams, handed out some sage fashion advice and revealed Sue Bird’s famous breakfast sandwich recipe. The veteran forward also talked about how she learned to harness her voice as an activist and stand up for what she believes in.
At 29 years old, Sasha Banks is one of the most accomplished and decorated athletes in the WWE. She stopped by the JWS podcast in June, telling Kelley O’Hara what it was like coming up in a male-dominated field. “I just wanted to prove to the guys every single night that women can wrestle,” said Banks.
Power couple Jrue and Lauren Holiday swapped stories from their respective careers, with Jrue recounting his NBA championship and Olympic run, and Lauren sharing memories from her days with the USWNT. The duo also told Collier and Wilson what it’s like living in a household of elite athletes, including just how competitive things can get on and off the court.
Tina Charles is a basketball legend, with three gold medals to her name and 11 seasons in the WNBA under her belt. The 33-year-old relives some of her favorite memories from her renowned career with O’Hara, telling the JWS host about winning her first gold in London, playing abroad and building a legacy that transcends sports.
Gotham FC and USWNT star Margaret Purce stopped by the Snacks podcast in October, giving listeners a behind-the-scenes look into the founding of the Black Women’s Player Collective. Purce explains that the group was born out of conversations between players during the 2020 NWSL Challenge Cup around the issue of kneeling during the anthem.
“I think all the conversations and the responsibility that the Black players on all the teams were being given and delegated to explain the dynamic of race in America, and then their experiences, their challenges, and their privileges — it became a lot,” says Purce.
In an epic Just Women’s Sports crossover event, Snacks co-host Lynn Williams sat down with USWNT teammate Kelley O’Hara to discuss her unique and illustrious career for both club and country. Williams gives listeners an inside look into her rollercoaster ride with the national team: after falling off the 2019 World Cup roster, Williams returned to the team first as an alternate, then as a full member of the 2020 Olympic squad. The star forward certainly left her mark in Tokyo, scoring a game-saving goal in the quarterfinals.
Alyssa Naeher joined USWNT teammate Kelley O’Hara on the Just Women’s Sports podcast in September, chronicling her struggle to break into the national team. Training in Hope Solo’s shadow, Naeher spent years working toward the U.S. starting goalkeeper position. Finally, in 2019 Naeher was awarded the role, proving herself in the 2019 World Cup and the Tokyo Olympics with a number of iconic PK saves.
Kelsey Plum, Stefanie Dolson, Allisha Gray and Jackie Young joined Wilson and Collier fresh off clinching an Olympic gold medal in 3×3 Basketball. The squad gives listeners a behind-the-scenes look into their Tokyo journey, shares the real story behind the team’s epic champagne celebration and talks about what’s next for the golden crew.
“Are you having an okay time?” The expression first uttered on the Snacks podcast started as a humorous moment between sisters Kristie and Sam Mewis and has since taken on a life of its own. With hilarious sibling stories and candid Olympic insights, Kristie’s appearance on Snacks was an instant classic.