Where have all the cheerleaders gone?

Leanne Cave

Two things are scarce at Bakersfield College this year, parking spaces and cheerleaders. Why are there only six cheerleaders when the enrollment at BC is approximately 15,000 students? And why aren’t there male cheerleaders?

At the BC-Cerritos game, Cerritos College showed up with a Falcon army. A total of 55 men and women cheerleaders wearing blue and white trimmed in gold uniforms made their presence known. They didn’t even need a band or fans. They were enough to pump up their team. I was even getting into the Falcon spirit.

Well, there may be several reasons to why the ‘Gades have only six cheerleaders.

According to Andrew Bickers, director of student activities, nobody tries out.

“It’s open to all students, male and female and very few try out,” Bickers said. “No one seems interested and not one male showed up.”

This is amazing to me. Where is school pride and spirit these days?

Cheerleader coach Marvin Ramey said that there are up to 20 spaces for male and female students if they want to try out.

Ramey added that if men would try out for the team, the squad could do more stunts where strength is needed.

Another reason nobody tries out may be because of cost since cheerleaders pay for uniforms.

However, Bickers said that fund-raising activities can help with costs.

Time may be the ultimate reason. Yes, practice is required, 14 hours a week, Ramey said.

For this year’s squad, the practice has paid off. The squad took a superior rating at the Santa Barbara United Spirit Association Camp.

It also participates in community services such as elementary school cheer clinics.

I would like to see more spirit at BC. It starts with you and a little school pride. It is fun to go to Homecoming because former cheerleaders are invited back. The pride and spirit flows because of the alumni.

Wouldn’t it be nice if sombody was interested in cheering for BC?