This week, Her Campus had the pleasure of interviewing Josh Sullivan, a freshman on the Varsity Cheerleading Team! Josh currently plans on studying Movement Science in the School of Kinesiology… though that could always change at any second! Pictured on the far right, Josh joined the cheer team halfway through the season, essentially walking on. We sat down with him to learn more about his experience as a U of M Athlete.
Her Campus: How did you hear about open cheer try-outs?
Josh Sullivan: A friend from my orientation encouraged me to join!
HC: Did you have any previous cheer experience?
JS: No, not really. I did gymnastics when I was younger, though.
HC: So, what exactly do you do on the team?
JS: I mainly tumble and backspot the pyramids. We also do all of the game stunts and band chants.
HC: You athletes are pretty easy to spot with all your Nike gear, what’s your favorite piece?
JS: Still waiting on my backpack… but definitely the parks. It’s hella warm.
HC: How the heck do you do a back flip when you’re 6’5”?
JS: Honestly, I don’t know. I just jump and hope for the best. I always seem to land it, though.
HC: What’s it like being on the field in THE Big House, especially as a freshman?
JS: It’s really special. The first time is nerve racking, but you eventually become comfortable, especially when your team is right there with you. I like the Chrysler Center too, because we’re much closer to the student section – Maize Rage.
HC: How were those snow angels after last week’s blizzard of a game?!
JS: The last game was definitely my favorite. Making the snow angels at the end and sliding on the field was a perfect way to end my first season on the team. You really can’t beat the experience of cheering on your team in such close quarters- especially when you can make snow angels with them.
HC: After football and basketball season, what does the team focus on?
JS: After the basketball season we have Nationals. This is the competitive part of the season where we plan a routine and perform. In the Spring, we go down to Daytona Beach, Florida and compete against other colleges in our division. Currently, we’re the four time reigning National Champions.
HC: Wow, that’s impressive! It seems like you all spend a lot of time together. How would you explain the team dynamic?
JS: We have an extremely close bond. We’re the only co-ed sport team on campus, so there’s definitely a different familiarity overall. Cliché, but we’re like a family. The girls are like our annoying sisters (yeah, they have cooties) and the guys are “gross brothers,” but we love each other and would do anything for one another. We catch each other when we fall, both on and off the field.
HC: Aw, that sounds so nice! How have you bonded as a team?
JS: Through intense practices and work-outs initially, but we always bond by hanging out and grabbing food after games. You can always find us in the Foundry Lofts hot tubs too.
HC: Oh, good to know where the hot male cheerleaders hang out. What are the teams plans over the summer, do you have training?
JS: After the year is over, we have the option to stay for the summer and practice for the upcoming year, or we can always go home. I’m not sure what I’ll be doing, but I know that everyone will be doing all they can to help the team continue to be the best!
Images courtesy of Russell Photography