When Felecia Mulkey was hired as the coach of the new competitive cheer team at the University of Oregon in 2008, one of the first things the university did was not call it that.
The name conjured outdated images of pompoms and miniskirts. Calling it the team stunts and gymnastics program better described her squad of talented athletes. The message was clear: Mulkey’s team would be cheering for itself alone. And the activity deserved to be considered a sport.
“If we can get the world to understand,” she said, “we’re not taking the place of cheerleading, but we are opening up opportunities for women.”
Read More: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/23/sports/23cheerleading.html?_r=1&hp