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Varsity football and cheerleader Blake Edwards

Varsity football and cheerleader Blake Edwards

Emily Calvert

Emily Calvert

Varsity football and cheerleader Blake Edwards

Ben Stoffel, Sentry Staff Reporter

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Wild hair. Charming features. A smile that can be seen from across the hallway. All characteristics of November’s Athlete of the Month Blake Edwards. Not only does Edwards play football, but he is also Yorktown’s only male cheerleader. He is breaking gender barriers and acting as a positive role model around the community.

Q: When did you start playing football?

A: I started playing football when I was seven, playing AnkleBiters for Yorktown.

Q: What inspires you to play, is there anything that motivates you?

A: I mainly play for my family, it keeps me going.

Q: You’re also a cheerleader, how do you balance both football and cheerleading?

A: After football practice, I take all of my gear off. Then, I go straight to the Aux gym to practice cheer. Some nights will feel like it’s lasted all day, some nights will feel like it’s lasted two hours.

Q: Does one sport have an impact on the other?

A: I feel like they both affect each other. Cheer helps my football skills with my flexibility and endurance, and football helps my cheer skills with my explosive power to move girls and throw them in the air.

Q: Is there a motivating factor behind the cheerleading?

A: I have friends who graduated a couple of years ago from a different school, and they told me how cheer is great exercise. So, I said, “Why not try it?”.

Q: Do you think being a male cheerleader as well as a football player sets a precedent for the future of Yorktown cheerleading?

A: Yeah, I have actually heard of a couple guys who want to tryout for cheer, and a couple on the football team who are interested in doing it next year.

Q: What is your favorite part about being both a cheerleader and a football player?

A: Seeing people’s reactions after I tell them, “I play football and do cheer at the same time in the same season,” and they say, “How do you do that?”

Q: Do you have goals in either sport that you want to accomplish?

A: I plan on cheering in college. I think after high school I will be done with football besides just playing around with friends, but cheerleading is something I want to improve on in the future.

Q: Do you have any advice for boys who may be worried about what people think about being a male cheerleader?

A: Don’t give a crap about what they say, because you should be who you want to be. Haters are gonna hate. You are doing something most people don’t have the courage to do. I stepped up, and people are like, “Man, I wish I did it.”

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Bring It On: Friday Night Lights