April 20, 2016
Hunter Thompson, a senior kinesiology major from Leander, was selected for the national cheerleading team to compete in the 2016 World Cheerleading Championship this weekend (April 23-25) at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida. He is the fourth Texas Tech University Cheer all-time member to be selected for the United States team.
“Having Texas Tech cheerleaders on the national squad is very beneficial for the university and the program,” said Bruce Bills, head cheer coach for Texas Tech. “It speaks highly of the talent levels our athletes have as they are selected with the best of the best to represent this country and our program. I take honor in that these athletes are so skilled and are good representatives of the program when they compete.”
Thompson began cheerleading during his senior year of high school, competing with an all-star squad after a girl invited him to practice. He fell in love with the sport and tried out for the Texas Tech Co-Ed cheer team when he came to Texas Tech.
“My parents and older sisters came here, so I’ve always been a Red Raider,” Thompson said. “Being out there representing the Double T is awesome.”
Courtesy: Texas Tech Cheerleaders
In January, he tried out for the national team in Florida. Once he received the call that he was selected, he was excited to begin working with the team.
“Hunter is very skilled in cheerleading,” Bills said. “He is very disciplined and knowledgeable in the world of cheerleading. He takes his stunts seriously, and he’s committed to improving himself as well as other team members.”
Thompson said the USA team is the pinnacle of cheerleading and has always been one of the best teams in the world. Although the tryout process was one of the most nerve-wracking tryouts he had been through, he said it is such an honor to be on the team.
“There’s a lot of talented people out there,” he said. “The USA team has won the World Cheerleading Championship every year, except for last year. Talking with the other team members, they always say how badly they want to win this year after the loss last year. I’m nervous to compete but really excited and honored.”
Thompson has been in Florida the last few weeks, competing with the Texas Tech Co-Ed cheer team at the collegiate championships, finishing third, and preparing for the world championship.
The Texas Tech Spirit Program is part of the Center for Campus Life office, a division of Undergraduate Education & Student Affairs.
The Spirit Squads lead the fans in supporting the teams at football, basketball, and volleyball games. They serve as ambassadors not only at athletic events, but also at many different school functions. In addition, the Spirit Squads gladly participate in their community by volunteering at local schools, charity events, and youth organizations.
Being a proud part of the Texas Tech Spirit Program is more than just a year-round commitment. It means dedication from each member to maintain the school spirit of the students, the alumni, and the fans.