Where Competitive Cheer Stands According to Title IX expert & Attorney

Discussion in 'Discussing the Cheerleading Industry' started by cheersafety, Jun 25, 2010.

  1. ztaprincess

    ztaprincess There are Cheeropedia articles about me!

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    I might be a little late for this since the talks has went to renaming cheerleading, but i just now got to read the entire thread. There is a chance that some people might want to stone me to death after this, but after reading this article I have to agree with what Jeff Webb did. Now trust me I love cheer and think it should be considered a sport, but with this court case what i do not agree with is cutting a sport such a Volleyball for a cheerleading team. Those cheerleaders are athletes yes, but with what is currently in place those cheerleaders competition schedule does not even compare to that of what a volleyball team would have. So that school cut a team that competes in a college conference to give scholarships to a team that competes a handful of times with the same seven teams with no chance of winning a true NCAA championship for that school. That volleyball team competes way more with more teams with a chance of bringing home a title that actually means something to most all colleges.


    With that said i do not think that the NCAA will not become involved with cheer eventually, but it isn't like that yet. When there are more then just 7 teams and more then just a handful of these "meet style" competitions with actual college conferences then the cheer side of this court case would have a better valid point. Like i said i love cheer and cheererd all my childhood but with the way college cheer currently is I have to side with the Volleyball team. It is just like at my high school when they cut our wrestling team in order to have a dance team because they did not have an equal amount of womens and mens sports. Parents and the community were outraged because that wrestling team was a truly competitive team when the dance team would only compete 4 times the entire year.

    Jeff Webb is not saying cheerleading is down right not a sport, he is saying in the volleyball teams support that it is no more of a sport then that volleyball team so why cut their team for the other. I think if you had a child who played volleyball for a school you would be upset of the child who played volleyball and had a scholarship had their sport cut so that the cheerleaders who rarely compete can have their scholarships. Put yourself in the other sides shoes and you might see their side of things a little better.
     
  2. King

    King Is all about that bass Staff Member

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    First, I hate to be mean, but the volley ball players are not in my interest at all. They don't care about Sport Cheer or Cheerleading, they care about volley ball. The only reason they care that Cheerleading isn't a sport is because it affects them. So while I wish them no harm or ill will, I certainly am not looking out for them.

    Second, and this just dawned on me, what about mountain climbing? Is mountain climbing a sport? It led me to this website: http://www.britannica.com/blogs/2006/11/is-mountain-climbing-a-sport/

    Sport Cheer is autotelic (played for its own sake). If the 'play' is autotelic you follow down the tree
    [​IMG]

    We play an autotelic activity. Check.
    We are organized (so it is at least a game)
    We are competitive (so we have contests)
    It is a physical contest (so Sport Cheer is a sport!)

    Cheerleading is NOT a sport. It is not played for its own sake, so you can't start down that little tree.

    However, plenty of Cheerleading teams do compete at Sport Cheer like events.


    PS - Mountain Climbing is not a sport of itself. It is a physical activity. SPORT Climbing, however, IS a sport. Even has an organized body.
     
  3. ztaprincess

    ztaprincess There are Cheeropedia articles about me!

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    I understand that people are not looking out for the volleyball players interest, but I personally can see where they are coming from. I think they would be in this case whether it was cut for cheerleading or some other sport. I also don't think it has been said that those volleyball players are against the cheerleading team being a varsity sport, but they want their sport back at the school. Some might think cheer is a sport and some might not, but I think the main purpose of the court case is to prove whether their cheerleading team is more of a sport then that volleyball team is. The school already clearly thinks that cheer is a sport or they wouldn't have the team a sponsored varsity sport, but with what they have done they are putting those cheerleaders above the volleyball players. Some might be ok with that but for myself personally I am not. Just like I hate that basketball and football players are put above other students, no student athlete should be put above another. If they want to make cheerleading a varsity sport then fine do it, but don't cut a program for it. Rework the budget and have both. I know that the big topic is whether cheerleading is a sport, but people are upset with Jeff web and overlooking the reason he was a witness for the volleyball team. If I were in his shoes I would have done the exact same thing.
     
  4. King

    King Is all about that bass Staff Member

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    Sports grow in popularity and wane in popularity. If suddenly Sport Cheer is the hottest new thing out there and every college wants it at their institution... but they have to cut other sports to do it, so be it. Do not think for a minute that if QU had had a Sport Cheer team forever and the volley ball players wanted to bring volley ball to QU they wouldnt do the exact same court case. I get they are upset. I would be too. And I don't blame them for suing and trying to win. Being mad because someone else is trying to win something is like getting mad at Top Gun because they are so good and always beat you. It is a competition for a limited amount of funds at the university. Someone is going to get them and someone is not going to get them. And, in the end, I prefer Sport Cheer teams get them.

    And one day if my daughter wants to be a soccer player at QU and there are limited amount of funds for either soccer OR volleyball... guess which sport I would pick?
     
  5. ztaprincess

    ztaprincess There are Cheeropedia articles about me!

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    oh I completely agree with you which is why in my first post i used the what if your child was a volleyball player. There are two sides and people are going to pick their sides. My point was really that people are attacking Jeff Webb when he was just doing what he thought was fair to those volleyball players. I think both sides have a case but IMO I think the volleyball team has a bigger case at this time but that could change in a year or 10 years. I am all for cheerleading being recognized as a sport but right now that isn't the case but in a handful of schools give them time and it could grow in numbers but the volleyball team already has those numbers. I don't think this case is set for the long run but more so for what is currently in their hands.

    Does anyone know if at Maryland they cut and teams in order to make them a sport at the school? Or how about any of the other schools that are recognized?
     
  6. Buzz86

    Buzz86 Cheer Stalker

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    I just thought some people might like to put a "face" to a name in terms of Quinnipiac:





    I think it's important to realize, how much these women have truly love operating as a sport and being treated as student-athletes. It's sort of sad that Mr. Webb CHOSE (let's remember that one fact - no one told him he had to be a part of the case) to testify against this team as an expert witness. I understand he didn't want to see cheer take away from opportunities for other female athletes, but his testimony could now potentially hurt not only QU, but all females that want to pursue this as a sport at the collegiate level. Who is not being fair to who?
     
  7. ztaprincess

    ztaprincess There are Cheeropedia articles about me!

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    I do not think that this will hurt the future at all. There are 6 other schools that have these teams as varsity sports, did they cut other teams in order to become a recognized varsity sport at their university? If they did then the other teams did not file law suits. All would have been fine if the university itself would not have cut one sport for the other. If in order to become a sport at your university you have to cut another sport then it will never be fair for those that get cut. There will always be an upset athlete if they can no longer do what they love to do for their school.
     
  8. King

    King Is all about that bass Staff Member

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    Well, is anyone being exactly fair to us? It is like talking to Democrats or Republicans. Either side will say they are the best and looking out for your (an individual's) best interest. Each side will paint the other as wrong and how it will harm you. They will use conjecture. They will cloud things. And they will give you facts and reasons why their side is right and the other side is pure evil.

    Is one side pure evil? Heck no. Everyone has good and bad things about them (we are human after all). And, in the end, either side is going to have some pretty girl with some story about her amazing athletic talent and how it was denied by the big evil other side (wether it be volley ball or sport cheer).

    So never look at individuals in these examples. It will give an emotional response, not a reasonable practical response.

    I would like Sport Cheer to be an NCAA sport but I am still not sure I like the NCSTA way of doing it. There are things about it I do not enjoy (and there are some things I do). But my biggest issue with it is I don't like the implication that is THE solution to all this and if it doesn't pan out were all screwed. Maybe it is close, maybe it is way off. But because that particular solution may or may not take off I think it is unfair to say it has killed all the Sport Cheer athletes out theres chance at maybe competing for a national competition.

    As far as pursuing Cheerleading at a sport on the college level I think we have discussed many times that Cheerleading is just a sideline activity. What we do is Sport Cheer. Get the name changed and defined and then you can push just the competitive Sport Cheer part. Isn't that half the problem is the name game we all play?

    Then Sport Cheer and Cheerleading can coexist instead of battle it out.
     
  9. cheersafety

    cheersafety They call me Susie

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    Cheer safety. I was a cheerleader, cheer coach, cheer parent, certified trainer for CPR, first aid, and AEDs, founder NCSF, and cheer safety author. I work with insurance companies and do risk assessments for cheer programs.
     
  10. King

    King Is all about that bass Staff Member

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    And I am definitely gonna add on that in no way shape or form is Varsity 'pure evil' or Jeff Webb 'pure evil'. To paint that picture of anyone is ignorant.

    Outside of this court case which we all have a lot of emotion about and a lot of questions (and to say myself I am not personally still upset about it would be a lie.. I am still mad. and I hope to God that after its over there is real clarification NOT just press statements) Varsity and Jeff Webb has done a lot of good.

    Varsity helped me find wife. Has given me ton of enjoyment and opened opportunities I had never imagined I would get. So in ways I am highly thankful for them. Justin Carrier, the NCA guy at Varsity, is one of the smarter (I would not say smartest... too big a compliment for him, he might get a big head haha) guys in the industry and truly does care. There are great things about that company.

    ARE there bad things? Yes. I am sure there are (and before you go listing them to prove a point). Do we truly believe they are all bad and not a single positive thing has ever come from them?

    This whole situation needs to be kept in perspective because it is not as simple as he said she said. There are layers (perhaps like an onion.. or a parfait) to it all.
     
  11. cheersafety

    cheersafety They call me Susie

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    Varsity is the industry leader. While there are things that no one can deny they have done well such as: growth, marketing, relationships with large companies, International expansion, ect My concern with Varsity is the lack of respect for injured cheerleaders and their families, the low safety standards of the industry, lack of transparency and monopolistic practices.

    There is not some "thing" or vendetta as one might like to believe. It is simply after reading 1000's of injury reports, working with 100's of catastrophically injured cheerleaders and spending 1000's of hours working for a solution where is Varsity?

    On many occasion sincere efforts have been made to work with groups owned/controlled by Varsity. Example: at one time the USASF wanted to adopt the emergency plan, Tegan and I were doing all we could to bridge the gap. Varsity had a problem with the lawsuit with Ruth Burns. I went to bat for USASF to get Ruth to let USASF out of the lawsuit if they made a few simple safety changes with NO monetary compensation. The offer was rejected and the changes were never made.

    While I know some could argue who are you, they don't have to work with you or NCSF, but we do represent former cheerleaders who have been paralyzed, killed and disabled doing cheer. IMO it is bad business to ignore them and their families.

    I love cheer(leading), my daughter loves cheer(leading). I work over 100 hours a week on cheer safety. I am passionate about what I do. In no way do I want cheer to go away, or be less of a sport than it is today. I would work with Varsity today if they called and were sincere in re-mediating safety issues.

    The NCSF is the only independent safety organization. We have over thirty sports medicine, safety and cheer experts who volunteer their time because they care about what you love to do. We are the conscience of the industry, like the MADD of cheer safety.

    I know it is hard to understand in ways especially when most only see media articles or shows that I say one sentence here or there and they are normally about injuries or safety in which I believe is a weakness/issue the industry has yet to solve.

    Try to walk a day in my shoes. I am advocating for change. That is not always a popular position and I am ok with that. When I get down because I'm getting beat up I go and visit one of my cheer heroes like Patty Phommanyvong or Krista Parks and then I am reminded of how lucky I am to be their advocate, to stand in the gap, to build a bridge from them to the industry. Some days it does feel like a burden but 90% of the time I work from early morning until wee hours of the night and I wouldn't change it for the world.

    Those in the industry that take the time to get to know me often say, "Wow, you are nothing like what I thought you were. You know so much about cheer safety it's scary. You don't want to stop stunts?"

    So yes, my stance is not the most popular (and as a cheerleader that is tough sometimes) but in the end when safety for cheer as a sport is in place I will rest knowing I made a difference.

    Thanks for taking the time to ask and to read my message.
     
  12. cheersafety

    cheersafety They call me Susie

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    No other universities have made cuts and counted competitive cheer in it's place.
     
  13. BlueCat

    BlueCat Roses are red, cats are blue National Champion

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    I have to admit that my initial reaction is pretty negative. In fairness, however, I probably have an initial bias against those who immediately go the emotional heart-strings route, (champion for the catastrophically injured, "conscience of the industry", etc.) to make their point rather than a more logical one. I have no reason to doubt that you work hard and mean well, although it is a bit difficult to tell when you are promoting "cheer safety" or promoting "cheersafety." (It wouldn't surprise me if some have said the same - or much worse - about me.)

    Many of us here have spent their entire professional careers in cheerleading. There are probably dozens of actual experts in every conceivable facet of cheerleading who either post or read these boards. Nearly every single one of them wants nothing but the best for the cheer athletes under their care. I can virtually guarantee that if you listed actual, well-thought-out, realistic ideas that would improve our industry and the safety of the children in our sport, the "powers that be" would be happy to consider them, regardless of their source.

    Rather than get into a who-cares-more or who-knows-more argument, I would rather focus on potential improvements to our industry. What, specifically, would you like to see change in cheerleading?
     
  14. CheerKatie08

    CheerKatie08 ESPN Star

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    I'm kind of confused by this. I'm not agreeing or disagreeing just yet because I have a question-- is this "Cheer Sport" name being used to distinguish competitive cheerleading from sideline cheerleading, or AllStar from High School & College? To say what "we" do isn't cheerleading isn't fair to the school cheerleaders, who are judged by "crowd leading ability" (and it's a pretty big chunk at the high school level), but I understand if you're speaking on behalf of AllStar only
     
  15. ufomom

    ufomom I have my own cheer message board

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    Who is cheersafety?