Article by Curt Brossman, One Schoolhouse
From the May/June 2020 Net Assets magazine
Growing up I was very active in sports, both recreationally and competitively. Baseball, golf, basketball, hockey, football — you name it, I was interested. I loved playing, watching and keeping up with statistics, basically everything that a sports-crazed teenager loves. Then, in January of my senior year of high school, I was thrown a curve ball — by a group of cheerleaders.
I was approached by a handful of friends on the cheerleading squad, who told me, “You’re coming to practice with us tonight.” I immediately asked why on earth they wanted me to come, and they replied, “The coach wants boys — you’re coming!” I had never imagined participating in cheerleading, but I didn’t have anything else planned for that night, so I went along. Little did I know, that was the beginning of a staple of my life for the past 22 years.
A few months of participating in high school cheerleading led to me join the cheerleading squad at the University of North Carolina in the fall of my freshman year there. At UNC, the male cheerleaders generally did not have much, if any, experience in cheerleading or gymnastics prior to joining. They were just athletes looking for a new challenge, and challenging it was! Learning new skills was addicting and exhilarating. The athletic challenges provided by this new activity, the relationships formed with teammates and coaches, the thrill of being on the sideline of basketball and football games, and the honor of representing the university made for a tremendous experience in my time as an undergraduate.
A few years after graduating from UNC, my old coach asked me to become a coach for the squad. For years I had taught cheerleading camps over the summer and thoroughly enjoyed teaching the skills of stunting, tumbling and cheerleading in general, but coaching was a whole different prospect. I had never considered it, let alone coaching the same team I was on just a few years earlier. However, if my coach thought I could do it, who was I to doubt him? Putting my trust in my coach, I joined the staff. Fast forward 14 years, and you will still find me on the same sidelines that played such a big role in my time in college.
Balancing my position as controller at One Schoolhouse with the demands of coaching and family life is certainly not easy, but being able to work with a group of young men and women who are so talented on and off the field makes it worth the effort. I want to play a part in extending to them the same opportunity I had — one I thoroughly enjoyed and cherish to this day.
The best part of all of this — besides being courtside for UNC’s 2017 men’s basketball championship — is that I get to do it alongside my wife, Taylor. She too is on the coaching staff and is right by my side at practices and games. Our 1 ½ year-old son accompanies us to many practices and sometimes provides a much-needed laugh or smile to his 50 “brothers” and “sisters” in the program while having a blast the whole time. You can imagine how much he loves climbing on the mats and jumping on trampolines in the gym.
I often get asked why I still coach. To tell you the truth, giving it up has rarely crossed my mind. My passion for UNC and our cheerleading program runs deep. I love teaching the skills, especially to the young men that are in the same boat I was in 20 years ago — athletes who are looking for a new challenge and who thrive on learning new skills. I love playing a part in their development. Taylor and I have fully embraced our roles of “mom and dad” of the team, and we hope some of the admirable attributes of our cheer “children” will be passed along to our little guy along the way.
After School: Fair Play (Mar/Apr 2020)
After School: Hitting the High Note (Jan/Feb 2020)
After School: Dog Days (Nov/Dec 2019)
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