September 20, 1974 · Cavalier Daily

Cheerleaders Exclude Males

For the first time, the University cheerleading squad consists exclusively of women, on the basis that "there weren't any qualified males," sparking controversy about gender discrimination.


Cavalier Daily Sept 20, 1974 - Cheerleaders Exclude Males.pdf
Allen Irish
Cavalier Daily
Cavalier Daily
Cavalier Daily
Cheerleaders Exclude Males
For the first time in University sports history, there will be no men on the cheerleading squad, Advisor George Edwards said yesterday.
“We tried to selects as many qualified cheerleaders as we could,” Mr. Edwards added. “There just weren’t any qualified males.”
This year, the squad will be funded totally by the University’s athletic department, rather than receiving partial funding.
Committee Selection
Mr. Edwards said that he was appointed by Athletic Director Eugene Corrigan to “advise” the squad after about the third or fourth football squad last season.
This season’s cheerleaders were chosen by a committee selected by Mr. Edwards consisting of five townswomen and two students, third-year women Ruth Haseman and third-year man Wally Walker.
“I was not impressed with the thing at all,” Miss Haseman said.
She also expressed her displeasure with Mr. Edwards’ plans for the cheerleading squad. “He wants a UNC-type of cheerleading squad, doing flips, gymnastics and dance-type things.”
“He told us he only wanted the best, only the girls and guys that everybody thought were great. Only six girls made it last spring and one quite over the summer,” she added.
Mise Haseman also said she disapproves of the way cheerleading tryouts were conducted.
“A lot of unnecessary comments were made among the judges about the physical appearance of the people trying out.”
One former cheerleader expressed her doubts about Mr. Edwards’ planned changes in the cheerleading routines.
“There are a lot of people who don’t understand cheerleading the way it used to be – they’re letting a lot go down the drain,” she said.
Mr. Edwards defended the changes, and said, “One of the things we did was to sent [sic] to schools in the conference and asked them for their criteria – alst [sic] year’s cheerleaders just weren’t what we wanted. They were just too disorganized.”
‘Psychological Set’
He said he thought “The Good Old Song” should be abolished, and a “peppy” fight song should be instituted in its place.
“When you hear 20 or 30,000 people singing a peppy song, it gives the team a psychological set. It keeps your adrenalin flowing,” he commented.
“I suggested to Steve (Mershan, Pep Band President) that they should change it, but he said that the band people didn’t want to,” Mr. Edwards added.
‘Good Fight Song’
“A good fight song is an important part of a winning tradition. I like the song personally, but not after a touchdown.”
Pep Band Managing Board Chairman Hugh Riley said that “there are no plans to change the song, as of yet.”
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Date Added July 14, 2015
Date Modifed January 25, 2018
Collection Cavalier Daily: articles about gender discrimination

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