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Ole Miss Cheerleading Forced to Adapt to Virtual Tryouts

Veteran Ole Miss cheerleaders leading tryout instructional. Photo via Ole Miss Spirit Squads.

Story contributed by Denver J. Haggard
Broadcast journalism student

The traditional, nerve-racking cheerleading tryout season has taken an unexpected turn.  Usually, at this time of year, athletes from all over the nation are working out, tumbling in their gyms and practicing their stunts and cheers.

This year, incoming and transfer cheerleaders who were planning to try out at Ole Miss in May will not get the same experience as in previous seasons.

Ole Miss Cheerleading has just announced that it will require a video submission audition due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

With the spring season brought to a halt, rising junior and veteran Ole Miss cheerleader Casey Giles is upset about the abrupt change.

“I’ve cried to my parents about it a lot. Normally, at the end of every season, we have an end of the year banquet with both co-ed and all-girl teams with dinner and awards. Sadly, this year we weren’t able to do that, so Coach Ryan and Coach Blair had to do an Instagram live to give everyone their awards,” said Giles.

But Giles is already looking forward to next year and encourages anyone who is interested in trying out to get out in their yard and start practicing for the new video submission process.

“It’s kind of unfair, but at the same time everyone is getting to show only their best and not have to worry with the stress of messing up at a regular tryout,” said Giles.

Athletes who are interested in trying out are asked to submit videos of themselves doing several Ole Miss cheerleading staples.  These include: Forward Rebels (Ole Miss Fight Song), Rock and Roll, standing tumbling, running tumbling, stunting and elite stunts.

All videos must be submitted by May 8 and need to be sent to babergma@olemiss.edu.  More specific information can be found online at spirit.olemissrebels.com.

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