Last weekend I judged cheerleading tryouts for my alma mater, the University of Kentucky. My main observation from the weekend is how competitive it currently is to be a girl trying out for one of the top competitive collegiate programs. Don’t get me wrong, I thought the guys trying out were great and will keep Kentucky in a position to win another national championship, but the depth of girls that I felt could have been on Blue was at least twice that of the males. On average the girls have been tumbling, stunting, and cheering longer than the guys. In addition, the incoming freshmen girls tend to be more mature than the incoming freshmen guys, giving them an advantage in areas such as the interview, overall presence, and appearance.
The advice I woud give to people wanting to tryout in college is to start looking into the schools you want to attend early, early being spring of your sophomore year to fall of you junior year. Many of the competitive programs will have clinics that will help you get a feel for the school. Another option is to attend a practice of the squad. Most coaches will allow this with a little advance notice. Either of these will give you time to see what the program requires as well as time to work on the areas you are weaker. For many kids raised in All*Star gyms the weaker areas tend to be game day skills. The only real way to practice those it to cheer for your school. I suggest doing this at least 1 year in high school so this skills become natural, not just learned.
Also, be sure to look the part. I didn’t see many big bows or Nike Pros while I was in Lexington, and don’t think I saw any Soffe shorts while I was in Louisville the following couple days. Different programs operate their own way and you need to get a feel for their way prior to showing up for tryouts.
The USASF released the Age Grid and Rules for 2014-15. Both can be found on USASFRules.com. In addition the deadline for submitting suggestions for the 2015-17 cycle has been extended through May.
Jammy and Varsity announced they’ll be using a Unified Score Sheet beginning next season. This is not the same as the Universal Score Sheet the NACCC is working on for the 2015-16 season.
Varsity announced the Summit bid events for the 2014-15 season. The list can be found on Varsity All Star.
OverStretch – May 14, 2014