Tag Archives: Bill Seely

USA Cheer: Stunt Wraps Up Season with Championship, Awards

University of Central Oklahoma and Oklahoma State University take home titles.

USA CheerMemphis, Tenn., March 27, 2014 – STUNT, the new title IX sport derived from cheer and launched by USA Cheer, held its fourth annual National STUNT Championship this weekend in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma with three teams in Division I and four in Division II.

The Division I National Champions are from Oklahoma State University, who beat the University of Oklahoma in the finals. The University of Delaware also competed in Division I.

The Division II National Champions are from the University of Central Oklahoma, who beat out Davenport University. Other competing teams included Oklahoma City University and Alma College.

At the Championship, awards were also bestowed on standout coaches and an administrator, whose support helped move the sport forward. From Oklahoma State University, Dave Martin was named Administrator of the Year. The Division I Coach of the Year was awarded to Ben Schreiber from the University of Delaware, and the Division II Coach of the Year was awarded to Michelle Sabourin from Alma College.

Final games wrapped up on the West Coast as well, with six teams competing in two days of games.

“This year, STUNT continued to grow and evolve and we couldn’t be more proud of the teams that competed throughout the season,” says Bill Seely, Executive Director of USA Cheer, which worked with experts from both the cheer, sport and Title IX communities to launch the new format in 2010. “We owe the success of STUNT to the enthusiasm of the coaches and administrators who participated and to the athletes, who spread the word about competing in this new sport for female athletes.”

STUNT has successfully met the minimum requirements set by NCAA for the Emerging Sport application process for the last four years, which is unparalleled in the world of sport.

For more information, visit www.usacheer.net or www.collegestunt.org or contact Sheila Noone at 901-251-5959 or media@usacheer.net.

Stunt Wraps Up Season with Championship, Awards

Varsity Joins Partnership for a Healthier America

New initiative to recruit 400,000 cheerleaders and dancers to lead health and wellness programs in schools across the United States.

VarsityMemphis, Tenn., March 7, 2013 – Varsity, the leader in cheerleading and dance team education, events and apparel, has joined the Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA) with a new initiative that encourages cheerleaders and dancers to cheer for a healthier America.

The new program will be implemented at more than 1,000 camps across America, taught by 4,000 instructors. The program, designed to get kids involved in aerobic activities, will be taught to the 400,000 enrolled campers that attend Varsity camps. After participating in the program during camp, these campers will be instructed on how to use the program in their schools and communities to get other kids moving.

The program will be highlighted in all camp brochures and DVD training manuals, which are distributed to more than 26,000 coaches and administrators, and will be part of the official curriculum of each camp.

“We know that cheerleaders can use their prominent positions as school leaders to help us spread the word about the importance of physical fitness at every stage of life, especially the crucial elementary school years,” says Bill Seely, Senior Vice President, Training and Education for Universal Cheerleaders Association, the largest of the Varsity brands. “We look forward to teaming up with the Partnership for a Healthier America and working together towards a healthier future for our youth.”

“Some of the most powerful communications and programmatic efforts in which we can engage are the ones where kids speak directly to kids,” said Lawrence A. Soler, CEO of PHA. “Varsity brands is doing just that, by engaging high school and college-aged leaders and enabling them to work in their communities – specifically elementary schools – to get kids moving more. We’re pleased to have them on board.”

The program will be working on physical activity and nutrition lessons that will be performed at camp and then re-taught at elementary schools by those camp attendees. Participants will be asked to make a pledge to take the activities back to their schools and communities before they leave camp on the final day. They will be provided with physical activity challenges and school challenges to implement when they are back at school and in their communities.

For more information, please contact Sheila Noone, snoone@varsityspirit.com, 901-251-5959.

About Varsity

Varsity is the source for all things related to cheerleading and dance team. With a rich heritage and traditions dating back to 1974, Varsity is an innovative global leader comprised of the leading spirit brands and organizations including its educational camps, clinics, competitions and uniforms to teams around the world. Varsity’s National Championships, many of which are held at the Walt Disney World® Resorts, have been televised on ESPN Networks for more than 25 years. Sponsors for Varsity events include Gatorade, Playtex Sport, Softlips, Oxy, PBTeen, and Herff Jones. Web-based Varsity TV features thousands of cheerleading and dance team videos and has become a favorite cheer destination for cheerleaders and coaches alike. Varsity has led the way in cheerleading safety as a supporter of the American Association of Cheerleading Coaches and Administrators since 1987 and as a camp leader training more than 400,000 cheerleaders per year in cheerleading fundamentals with an emphasis on safety. In 2012, Varsity purchased American Cheerleader Magazine, which has showcased the cheerleading community since 1995. Based in Memphis, Tennessee, Varsity employs 5,000 employees nationwide. For more information about Varsity, please visit http://www.varsity.com.

Varsity Joins Partnership for a Healthier America

USA Cheer and AACCA Launch CheerSafe Campaign

Website offers comprehensive library of cheerleading safety information and resources.

Cheer Sage LogoMemphis, Tenn., March 1, 2013 – USA Cheer, the governing body of cheer for the United States, has teamed up with the American Association of Cheerleading Coaches and Administrators (AACCA) to launch CheerSafe.org, the most comprehensive website to date for cheerleading regulation and safety information.

The launch of Cheer Safe.org coincides with National Cheer Safety Month (March), and will include 31 days of safety messaging on Twitter (@cheersafe).

CheerSafe.org is the one source for all cheerleading safety information, from the latest regulations and research to the rules that every team should follow. CheerSafe’s mission is to educate parents, coaches, cheerleaders and administrators on the facts of cheerleading safety at every level – school, college and all star—and to promote and improve cheerleading safety through the involvement of a wide spectrum of organizations in the cheerleading community.

The CheerSafe coalition includes the National Federation of State High School Associations, the National Collegiate Athletic Association, the International Cheer Union, the National Athletic Trainers’ Association and the University Risk Managers and Insurers Association. It is also supported by youth sports organizations, cheer publications and several state athletic associations. “CheerSafe.org will be the perfect online source for educating the entire cheerleading community,” says Bill Seely, the Executive Director of USA Cheer. “In many ways, cheerleading safety can be seen as the model for all athletic activities. The American Association of Cheerleading Coaches and Administrators has been leading the way in cheerleading safety since 1987, with risk management courses and safety guidelines, as well as building relationships with other youth sport organizations.”

Jim Lord, Executive Director of AACCA, has been a tireless safety ambassador for the cheerleading community, and is excited to be working with USA Cheer and other youth sports organizations to continue improving safety conditions for cheerleaders. “I know that CheerSafe will resonate throughout the cheerleading community,” says Lord. “CheerSafe members are united in a three-prong approach to safety: that every cheerleading team be trained under the direction of a knowledgeable coach; that the cheerleading team follows established safety rules; and that they have an emergency plan in place.”

The website provides information on where cheerleading coaches can receive training in person and online, safety guidelines for all states and sample emergency plans. It also invites cheerleaders and coaches to participate in the iCheerSafe pledge.

For more information, visit cheersafe.org, or contact Sheila Noone, media@usacheer.net.

USA CheerAbout USA Cheer

The USA Federation for Sport Cheering is a not-for profit organization and is the national governing body for all disciplines of cheerleading. USA Cheer exists to serve the entire cheer community, including club cheering (All Star), traditional school based cheer programs and the new sport of STUNT. USA Cheer has three primary objectives: help grow and develop interest and participation in Cheer throughout the United States; promote safety and safety education for cheer in the United States; and represent the United States of America in international cheer competitions.

AACCA LogoAbout AACCA

The American Association of Cheerleading Coaches and Administrators represents more than 20,000 cheerleading coaches and is the leading advocates of cheerleading safety in the U.S. AACCA is the most recognized source for cheerleading safety education. The AACCA manual, composed by a team of doctors, lawyers, cheerleading industry professionals and Gerald S. George, PhD, has been endorsed by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the University Risk Management and Insurance Association, the Women’s Sports Foundation and the National Athletic Trainers’ Association, as well as the NCAA and NFHS.

The Business of Cheer

Varsity LogoFortune published The Business of Cheer.

Last year Varsity hit $300 million in revenue, an 8% increase over 2010. The company now boasts over 20 brands — from apparel lines to national competitions at Disney’s Magic Kingdom to American Cheerleader magazine — and merged with class ring manufacturer Herff Jones in June 2011. Nearly every uniform sold or camp attended by high school or college cheerleaders is part of Varsity’s vast empire of pep. So where does it go from here?

On the Eve of Title IX’s 40th Anniversary, the Age Old Question Might Finally be Answered

As Title IX celebrates its 40th Anniversary and counts its wins for women’s sports, a new sport is ready to join the ranks.

Memphis, Tenn., June 19, 2012 – Cheerleading, which predates Title IX by roughly 60 years, has long been an athletic outlet for women. Once primarily a men’s activity, female cheerleaders quickly took over the sidelines during World War II, and never left.

USA CheerIt’s a question as old as Title IX itself – Is Cheerleading A Sport? Every year, the physical abilities of cheerleaders are showcased on ESPN and CBS Sports, and now a new sport, STUNT, is vying for Emerging Sport Status from the NCAA. STUNT is about to launch its third season, with a roster that has averaged 22 teams in the last two years.

As a more athletic and challenging style of cheerleading developed, the need for a new form emerged, one that would allow the talented athletes of cheerleading to take their place among the top athletes in the country.

“STUNT has evolved out of a need to develop a format derived from traditional cheerleading that fulfills all requirements of Title IX,” says Bill Seely, Executive Director of USA Cheer, the governing body for cheerleading and the creator of STUNT. “It’s important to ensure a clear distinction between the various athletic disciplines of cheerleading and the roles they play. Traditional cheerleading provides such great value for the institutions they serve and we want to protect that, while at the same time continue to grow cheer’s newest sport, STUNT, which will provide more opportunities for young women and help institutions meet the criteria of Title IX.”

STUNT has been well received by pioneers of women’s sports, who applaud the efforts of USA Cheer to create more opportunities for female athletes to compete. “The Women’s Sports Foundation welcomes the new sport of STUNT into the women’s sports tent, along with other aesthetic sports like gymnastics, diving and some skiing and snowboarding events,” says Nancy Hogshead-Makar, Senior Director of Advocacy for the Women’s Sports Foundation.”STUNT is developing to ensure girls and women are being provided the same educational experience that boys receive, with comparable numbers of competitions, squad sizes, scholarships, and a standard competitive format.”

More information about USA Cheer and STUNT can be found at http://usacheer.net. If you have further questions, please contact Sheila Noone at 901-251-5959.

About the STUNT format

Each STUNT game will comprise four quarters in the following categories: Partner Stunts, Pyramids and Tosses, Group Jumps and Tumbling, and Team Performance. Within each quarter, teams will perform skill sequences of varying levels of difficulty, technical execution and synchronization. Anyone who follows sports will be able to follow STUNT. Teams compete simultaneously, and the head-to-head format simplifies the scoring process, allowing fans to track the results of the competition as each round is completed. Because of the new format, teams will have records and national rankings, which will determine their post season play, much like other sports. In addition, post season play can be tracked by the fans, much like “March Madness.” For more information on STUNT, visit http://usacheer.net.

About USA Cheer

The USA Federation for Sport Cheering is a not-for profit organization and is the national governing body for all disciplines of cheerleading. USA Cheer exists to serve the entire cheer community, including club cheering (All Star), traditional school based cheer programs and the new sport of STUNT. USA Cheer has three primary objectives: help grow and develop interest and participation in Cheer throughout the United States; promote safety and safety education for cheer in the United States; and represent the United States of America in international cheer competitions.

The College Stunt Association Announces Season Two All Americans

Memphis, Tenn., (May 31, 2012) – The College STUNT Association, under the leadership of USA Cheer, has announced this seasons All Americans.

USA CheerThis year’s 2012 STUNT All Americans were selected by a committee of coaches from various regions along with two STUNT officials. Nominees for All American need to exhibit superior skills and techniques as well as good game sense and knowledge of STUNT, and be in good academic standing. They also needed to have participated in at least half of the games or tournaments for at least 50 percent of the routines.

“We were extremely impressed with the athleticism of our STUNT All Americans,” says Bill Seely, Executive Director of USA Cheer. “They played a major role in the success of their teams and presented our sport with dignity and grace. As STUNT progresses we are proud to salute the talented athletes who make up our sport.”

Twenty, First Team All Americans were chosen for the 2012 season of STUNT, along with ten Second Team All Americans. More information can be found on http://collegestunt.org.

2011-12 STUNT All American First Team

Name Position Year City, ST University
Michelle Bowles Top Sophomore Toledo, OH Bowling Green State University
Aisha Brandon Top Senior Columbus, OH University of Louisville
Chelsea Campbell Top Junior Tampa, FL Florida State
Kylie Groves Base Sophomore City Heights, CA Sierra College
Danielle Keathley Top Junior The Woodlands, TX Sam Houston State University
Molly Kirkpatrick Top Sophomore Winterville, NC South Carolina
Erica Levy Top Sophomore Marietta, GA South Carolina
Conice Leverett Base Junior College Park, GA Georgia Southern
Sydney Lewis Backspot Junior Artesia, NM Texas A&M
Katie Loos Base Senior Ashburn, VA University of Louisville
Kelsey Morris Top Freshman Elverta, CA Sierra College
Ashlee Newsome Top Freshman McDonough, GA Georgia Southern
Savannah Owen Base Senior Edmond, OK Oklahoma City University
Abbey Pilgrim Top/
Backspot
Freshman Englewood, OH Bowling Green State University
Lisa Reichardt Top Senior Norman, OK Oklahoma City University
Michelle Smith Top Sophomore Edmond, OK Oklahoma State University
Myranda Stout Base Sophomore Edmond, OK Oklahoma State University
Kaylor Strayhorn Base Senior Friendswood, TX Texas A&M
Sara Treser Base Junior Roscoe, PA West Virginia University
Autumn Veuleman Base Senior Foyil, OK Central Oklahoma 

2011-12 STUNT All American Second Team

Name Position Year City, ST University
Taylor Arlis Top Senior Batavia, IL University of Illinois
Christina Armstrong Backspot Freshman Burbank, CA Glendale College
Ciara Avringer Backspot Senior Canton, GA University of Georgia
Melanie Bartamian Base Freshman Burbank, CA Glendale College
Rayven Bridges Base Junior Hallsville, TX Sam Houston State University
Libby Cervantes Top Senior Oswego, IL University of Illinois
Jennifer Groff Base Sophomore Baltimore, MD West Virginia University
Taylor Hodges Base/ Top Freshman Tampa, FL Florida State
Desiree Maw Backspot Senior Del City, OK Central Oklahoma
Katie Mercer Base Senior Warner Robins, GA University of Georgia

About the Format

STUNT follows a game format with four quarters, including a short half time. These quarters include Partner Stunts, Group Jumps & Tumbling, Pyramids & Tosses, and Team Performance. Players wear uniforms that identify them by number. Within each quarter, teams perform skill sequences of varying levels of difficulty, technical execution and synchronization. The fourth quarter is the “Team Performance” which allows teams to incorporate their entire team’s arsenal into a choreographed routine. Two to six teams compete simultaneously in head-to-head competition.

Cheerleaders, coaches, and parents can visit http://collegestunt.org to learn more about STUNT, the College STUNT Association and its initiatives.

About USA Cheer

The USA Federation for Sport Cheering is a not-for profit organization and is the national governing body for all disciplines of cheerleading. USA Cheer exists to serve the entire cheer community, including club cheering (All Star), traditional school based cheer programs and the new sport of “STUNT.” USA Cheer has three primary objectives: help grow and develop interest and participation in Cheer throughout the United States; promote safety and safety education for cheer in the United States; and represent the United States of America in international cheer competitions.

For more information, contact Sheila Noone at 901-251-5959.

The College Stunt Association Announces Season Two All Americans

National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics Exploring Stunt

New Sport format recognized as a benefit for female collegiate athletes.

Memphis, Tenn. (January 10, 2011) – The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) is exploring STUNT, the new sport format developed from cheerleading, as an emerging varsity women’s sport.

USA CheerUSA Cheer, the governing body for cheerleading in the United States, created STUNT as a way to heighten the cheerleading experience for female athletes. In its first season, 22 college cheerleading teams participated in STUNT. The University of Louisville nabbed the title of first-ever STUNT Champions.

A new competitive team sport that was derived from traditional cheerleading, STUNT removes the crowd-leading and focuses on the technical and athletic components, which include partner stunts, pyramids, basket tosses, jumps and tumbling skills. Originally designed to be considered for NCAA Emerging Sport status, STUNT has resonated with college level athletes.

“We applaud USA Cheer’s efforts to create an exciting and challenging athletic option for female athletes,” says Jamie Adams, NAIA Sport Manager. “The NAIA has been exploring the STUNT format, and presenting it to our institutions as another viable option for them to consider when declaring varsity sports.. We know that with cheer’s popularity, STUNT will be a popular option for athletes.” Oklahoma City University of the NAIA will be competing in STUNT this spring to help introduce the new sport to other member institutions.

Bill Seely, Executive Director for USA Cheer agrees. “We recognize that that there are hundreds of thousands of female athletes considering their athletic options at the college level, and are confident that this format will be embraced. We are excited to work with the NAIA to ensure that STUNT is a successful option for their organization and, most importantly, with their athletes.”

For more information, contact Sheila Noone at 901-251-5959.

About the STUNT format

Each STUNT game will comprise four quarters in the following categories: Partner Stunts, Pyramids and Tosses, Group Jumps and Tumbling, and Team Performance. Within each quarter, teams will perform skill sequences of varying levels of difficulty, technical execution and synchronization. Anyone who follows sports will be able to follow STUNT. Teams compete simultaneously, and the head-to-head format simplifies the scoring process, allowing fans to track the results of the competition as each round is completed. Because of the new format, teams will have records and national rankings, which will determine their post season play, much like other sports. In addition, post season play can be tracked by the fans, much like “March Madness.” For more information on STUNT, visit http://usacheer.net.

About USA Cheer

The USA Federation for Sport Cheering is a not-for profit organization and is the national governing body for all disciplines of cheerleading. USA Cheer exists to serve the entire cheer community, including club cheering (All Star), traditional school based cheer programs and the new sport of STUNT. USA Cheer has three primary objectives: help grow and develop interest and participation in Cheer throughout the United States; promote safety and safety education for cheer in the United States; and represent the United States of America in international cheer competitions.

About the NAIA

The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) is the governing body for athletics programs at colleges and universities throughout the United States and Canada. The long-held mission is to advance character-driven intercollegiate athletics while promoting the education and development of well-rounded students and productive citizens through sport participation. The association offers equitable access and opportunities to more than 60,000 student-athletes for the chance to compete in its 23 national championship events held annually throughout the country.

Today, the NAIA strengthens its commitment to student-athletes and strives to enrich their college experience by supporting academic achievement and character development. NAIA Champions of Character is the association’s innovative flagship program designed to instill character values in student-athletes, coaches and youth in the communities it serves. To learn more visit www.NAIA.org.

National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics Exploring Stunt