Behind the scenes with Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders before ‘Making the Team’ returns this week

By Meagan Clark
September 4, 2013

Ready? OK! The eighth season of Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team premieres at 8 p.m. Friday on CMT. On the night of the final rehearsal last month, we got to go behind the scenes and talk to a few veteran cheerleaders to see how they were handling the pressure of trying to be one of the 37 who make the roster.

Jenna from California, Kelsey from Minnesota, Jasmine from New Jersey and Jessica from Iowa made the cut as newcomers last year, but even returning cheerleaders have to audition every year and hope a newbie won’t outshine them. We asked them about their experiences leading up to this season:

What’s it like being on camera while you’re auditioning?

Jenna: Being on camera for the Making the Team show, it’s a little nerve-wracking, especially coming in for your first year, you’re just like, ‘OK, I’m just trying to prove myself. I’m just trying to get on the team.’ But at the same time, there’s a camera right up in your face, the whole time you’re dancing. It’s a little distracting… Coming in for my second year, it’s better because we just learn to ignore it.

Jasmine: It’s just stressful. It never really gets easy, because you know the world’s gonna see it, and if you mess up, someone’s gonna notice it.

Jessica: As hard as it is having the cameras around, with the added stress and pressure, it’s kind of nice that we have these little moments captured because then my family got to go through the process with me. It’s kind of a blessing in disguise.

What did you learn from your experiences on the team last year?

Jenna: They’re teaching me little things like how to speak, how to present myself.

Kelsey: Our first public appearance, we had to mix and mingle with all of these people we didn’t know. I had never been in a situation like that where you’re representing the whole organization, you’re wearing the uniform and so much is expected of you, you have these standards to uphold. I definitely think I’ve developed a lot more confidence and have developed how to be a role model and a leader.

Does everyone get along or is there drama the cameras don’t catch?

Kelsey: It’s kind of like a sorority because everyone has the same drive and passion for what we’re doing. Everyone just automatically clicks. It’s kind of like going through rush, you’ve gone through so much to make it together that you just bond over that. So everyone is really close, surprising as that is.

What are your plans if you don’t make the team?

Kelsey: You’re living your dream, so you really don’t want a plan B, as sad as that sounds. If I didn’t make it back on the team, I’d probably go back and get my master’s (degree).

Jessica: Some girls move back home.

Kelsey: Other girls go on to try out for other professional teams. If you love dancing and it’s your passion, you try everything to make it on a team.

Jasmine: DCC is like a platform. Girls can use being on this team to help them in their future, like being a director of another team. Making different connections has helped a lot of people to open studios, teach Pilates, yoga. … Not making it back isn’t the end of the world, it’s just something to say we did, and I loved it and I can move on and try something else.

Videos by Tommy Noel/The Dallas Morning News

Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders sing the National Anthem

Well done Jasmine, Brittney, and Jordan! How you were not completely terrified, I will never know.

Click here if video does not play

Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team is back on CMT!

Summer heats up as America’s hottest cheerleaders return for the eighth season of Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team beginning Friday, September 6 at 9/8c!

This season, the Lone Star State’s most iconic group of women take on more challenging dance routines and face incredibly talented candidates while navigating all the drama that comes with competition; with more action packed episodes, heart-tugging storylines, challenges and surprises.

[DCC Making The Team on Facebook]

[DCC Making The Team at]

Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders Receive American Legion Distinguished Service Medal

The American Legion presented its prestigious 2013 Distinguished Service Medal to the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders this morning at the 95th National Convention in Houston.

National Commander James E. Koutz praised the Cheerleaders’ dedication to community service and support for the U.S. military.

“Since 1979 the Cheerleaders have made 75 USO tours to more than 200 locations worldwide and have conducted cheerleading classes for the children of military families,” Koutz said. “When not performing at football games or traveling overseas, they spend time supporting charities and visiting hospitals, including many VA facilities. They have also given their support to the Salvation Army, the Susan G. Komen Foundation, the Association for Hearing Impaired Children, the American Heart Association, the March of Dimes, the American Cancer Society, the Make a Wish Foundation, nursing homes and children’s homes.”

During the presentation before thousands of convention delegates, Koutz said, “If the Dallas Cowboys are America’s team, our next guests can be appropriately called America’s Cheerleaders. Not because of what they do on the football field but because of how they conduct themselves away from it.”

Dallas Cowboys Executive Vice President and Chief Brand Officer Charlotte Anderson and DCC Director Kelli Finglass accepted the award on behalf of the entire organization.

“It is an honor to join such a respected group of recipients of The American Legion’s Distinguished Service Medal,” Anderson said, flanked by cheerleaders.“During their USO tours, the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders have always strived to bring a touch of home to the men and women of our Armed Forces serving abroad. It is just a small thank-you for the enormous sacrifices our service men, women and their families make to protect our freedom.”

The Distinguished Service Medal is The American Legion’s highest honor. Previous recipients include presidents George W. and George H.W. Bush, Gen. Colin Powell and former Sen. Richard Lugar.

Official 2013 DCC

The official team photo and bios have been posted on the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders website. Go there now!

Additional congrats to this years Group Leaders and Seconds (aka captains and co-capts).

Leaders Jackie, Sydney, Mia, and Lauren

Seconds Mackenzie, Emma, Amelia, and Nicole

Random thought…I always wonder why anyone does over-the-shoulder thing for their official individual photo.
Why wouldn’t you face front so people can see your whole face?…

2013 Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders

The team had their big reveal last night, which included an enormous canvas banner of this year’s team

Click to view full size

Sexy Hips

Cowboys Cheerleaders in Beverly Hills

Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders Emma, Holly, Kelsey, Mia, Alex, and Jackie made a special appearance at the Four Seasons yesterday. Click here to view the photo gallery!

Congratulations 2013-14 Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders!

This time with photos! Big ups to Karla from the DCC group on Yahoo for the scanned pics of the veterans. Rookie pics (starred) come from Twitter.

Cowboys Cheerleaders on the (title redacted) show.

I’m sure I’m about to alienate a whole bunch of you, but I refuse to give any member of that family one second more of attention by mentioning them by name. In fact, I pray nightly for their 15 minutes of fame (which, admittedly is up to about 45 minutes now) to end. When? When will it be over? And is there anything I can do to make that happen sooner rather than later?

‘Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team’: Watch the Season 8 preview before it debuts on CMT

By Molly Chance
August 15, 2013

The Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders are headed back to CMT with their trademark splits, high kicks, big hair and itty bitty cowgirl shorts. And Zap2it has your first look at the action-packed video super tease for Season 8 of “Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team.”

As Lenny Kravitz’ “American Woman” plays in the background, we see lots of dancing, smiling, beauty preparations, and CMT’s trademark body part closeups, as contenders for the world class cheerleading squad give it their all for a chance to be invited to the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders’ annual training camp.

But it’s not all happy faces, as the preview makes the point that this season, making the team is “not just about the dance.” During panel interviews, where the questions tend to be along the lines of what might be asked in the “brains” portion of a beauty pageant, one judge asks a group of DCC wannabes, “Can you tell us who the vice president is?”

Looks of confusion fall across several pretty faces before one offers, “Obiden?” The look — make that cringe — on DCC Director and extemporary drill sergeant Kelli Finglass’ face is priceless. “It’s hard to undo stupid,” she says.

We also get a glimpse of the bewilderngly brave women who show up to compete with thousands of skilled dancers at tryouts, but don’t quite make the cut — let’s just say they wouldn’t fit into the trademark DCC uniform, or couldn’t win a local dance competition — while dance coach Kitty Carter, never one to mince words, yells at a true competitor, “You’re a hot mess!” Ouch.

Glimpses of tryouts and training camp practice — where rookies compete against veterans for a spot on the world famous team — preview lots of falls, and one major injury that leaves an unidentified blonde sobbing on the dance floor. Meanwhile, Finglass tearfully informs the team, “We lost a teammate today.”

“Who will make the cut?,” Finglass asks at the end of the tease. Here’s a hint: It’s probably not going to be any of the number of women shown with mascara-laced tears streaming down their faces.

Watch the sneak peek video, then tune into CMT Sept. 6 for the premiere of “Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team” Season 8.

Former Dallas Cowboys cheerleader builds breastaurant uniform empire

Dallas Culturemap
By Jonathan Rienstra
August 14, 2013

Saunders is the founder and lead designer for Waitressville, a new site that allows restaurants (both breasty and not) across the country to design custom uniforms. And though Waitressville is new, Saunders has been designing uniforms for more than 15 years.

It started with the Dallas Cowboys. Saunders was a cheerleader from 1995 to 2000; in 1997, she began a business designing uniforms, a fusion of her two passions.

​“I had some horrible uniforms,” Terra Saunders says. “There was one that was a cummerbund with splatter paint, suspenders and a bowtie.”

“I’ve been designing my whole life,” she says. “It was a family thing, my mother and grandmother sewed, and I picked it up from them. I mean, when you know something so personally, wearing the clothes I was designing, it was a natural fit.”

After retiring from cheering, Saunders began selling her uniforms to cheerleading squads in the NFL and NBA. She’s designed outfits for the Cowboys, Atlanta Falcons, Oklahoma City Thunder and several others under the Dallaswear Uniforms brand.

In 2006, Twin Peaks approached Saunders about designing new outfits for their waitresses. She was suddenly in the breastaurant game.

Article cont’d

This one’s for the old-school Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders Fans

Remember this?

“Here it cooooomes. Sunday afternoon FEEEEVAAAAAH!”

Thanks to the vigilant fans at the DCC Yahoo Group, word is out that you can now purchase both Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders made-for-tv movies on DVD. [click here]

Insert the usual disclaimer here: I’ve never purchased anything from this website, so I cannot speak to it’s legitimacy. But it’s only $32 for both movies, so if they take your money and run, it won’t take them much farther than across town.

I haven’t seen these movies in ten years or more, but I will give you the synopses, as I remember them. Keep in mind that although I love this kind of stuff, I am a card-carrying member of the UFPS (the United Federation of Professional Snarkers) and am duty-bound to represent the membership to the best of my ability.

Movie #1 first aired in January of 1979.

This movie is about aspiring DCCs going through the audition process and making it through to the first game. This is the movie with Jane Seymour and Lauren Tewes (Julie from “The Love Boat.”) There’s a million story lines here. There’s the reporter sent to write an expose on the team (that’s Jane), the former runaway who’s trying to put the past behind her and BE SOMEBODY (that’s Lauren), the shy housewife whose husband is way more into her making the team than she is (creeper!), and the aspiring starlette who wants to use the DCC as a stepping stone to Hollywood.

Guess which one doesn’t make the team?

The story also focuses on a veteran cheerleader who is all angsty about earning her spot back. If I recall correctly, she goes so far as to show up at the director’s office like “Oh ma gawd, I would just DIE if I don’t make the team again.” (Have some pride, woman!) And on top of that, she goes skulking around the stadium during the open call, to see “how many pretty ones there are.” She reeks of desperation.

Meanwhile she is being pursued by a guy who is trying out for the Cowboys football team. His best days are probably behind him, but he could make the team. And you know what will happen if he does. No
fraternization! Somebody’s getting the axe.

Most of the actresses in this movie couldn’t dance if were getting paid to do it. I mean that literally. They were getting paid to do it, and they could. Not. Dance. (Not as bad as Tina Yothers in the Laker Girls movie, but not much better than that either.) Jane Seymour had some classical ballet trainig, so she had some rhythm at least, but the others were a completely lost cause.) This is why there’s barely two seconds of any of them dancing with the group. But that’s part of what makes it fun. (Sidebar: did you know Jane Seymour’s birth nane was Joyce Penelope Willomena Frankenburger? No really. She changed it when she was in her late teens.)

The most famous cheerleaders from that era are all in the movie, and they do the heavy lifting when it comes to the choreography. I’m sure you’re all familiar with Tammy, the girl with the long blonde ponytails on either side of her head.

If I ever met Tammy in real life, I’d want to ask her if she regretted that ponytail thing. I mean, it made her instantly recognizable, but having worn my hair like that on many occasions as a child, I know she must have had couple of real sore spots on her head after those home games.

Thinking about this movie leads to an inevitable comparison with Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team. Makes me wonder when they started the training camp thing, because they for sure were not doing that in 1979. No boot camp, no swimsuit calendar, no jump splits, either. I wonder when they picked up those jump splits? I’m pretty sure that started with the Kilgore Rangerettes. Somewhere along the way, the DCC choreographer caught wind of that and was like “ok, we’re doing that now.”

Oops. Off topic again.

Movie #2 aired in January of 1980

It doesn’t have any famous people in it. I think they tried to get actresses who could actually dance this time. In this sequel, the Cheerleaders are in the midst of preparing for a big Super Bowl performance, when some famous character acter from that period shows up in a fake army uniform and says Uncle Sam needs to take the Cheerleaders on tour. Only he can’t take all of them, so they have to audition to see who goes. And by the way, they have to leave in a week. More Angst!

Tammy-with-the-ponytails takes the spotlight again because she SO wants to go on this trip to Japan and meet up with her brother who is stationed there. “Please, Mr. Important Army man, can’t we visit my brother? Pleeeeaaase?” (Maybe it was her boyfriend, not her brother. I don’t remember.)

She also appears in one scene sans-ponytails. I wonder if she had to negotiate for that?

Besides that, there is a sub plot involving cheerleader having an intense inner struggle about whether to go to med school or marry her man, quit cheerleading, or all of the above. Somethings like that. The
details are fuzzy. Alls I remember is her moms telling her to focus on her education, and Mr. Tall Dark and Handsome being all supportive and whatnot.

In addition to that, there’s another sub plot where a DCC who is a pediatric nurse by day struggles to stay emotionally distant from her young charges. An over-involved doctor pulls her aside to tell her that she needs to soften up a little. (Condescending jackass.) What he doesn’t understand is it isn’t that she doesn‘t care, it’s that she cares too much. (snort) That’s why she wears her professionalism like a suit of armor. (Or some crap like that). Eventually she – in a moment of spontaneity – promises one of her patients (Hannah, with the big sad eyes) that she’ll bring her teammates over to the hospital for a performance. When she gets around to checking with DCC Director, she is reminded that oh yeah, they’re busy with Super Bowl. And the trip to Japan, or wherever it is they’re going. So instead of going back to the hospital and telling the kids they’re out of luck, she gives her teammates a sob story and they volunteer to do the performance on their own time. (They don’t show the sob story part, but I’m pretty sure that’s how it went down. It probably started like this “OMG, y’all. I am so, so screwed…”) The movie ends with a rousing DCC performance at the hospital. Hannah with the Big Sad Eyes learns to smile again.

Meanwhile, Tammy is chosen for the Japan tour and her boyfriend/brother is assigned to the group as an official tour liaison. (How convenient) They didn’t show the trip to Japan. I think it was one of those
“everybody gets on the bus…and fade to black” situation. I can only assume everyone lived happily ever after.

I may have to buy these movies myself, if only to see how (in)accurate I was. And to marvel at those shorts. I bet those 1979 shorts look like culottes compared to the current DCC uniform. And I distinctly
remember one of the cheerleaders dancing in socks during the hospital performance. I’d like to know if I was right about that, or if I just made that up. Because if I made that up, probably a lot of this is made up.

For what it’s worth, I definitely did not make up the theme song. I remember that song like yesterday.
“Sunday! Here comes that fee-vah. Here comes that fee-vah that’s going around.
Sunday! And you’re a belie-ee-vah. You’re a belie-ee-vah in what’s going doooooown!”

Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders 2013 Training Camp

Check out the photo gallery here!

Congratulations 2013-14 Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders

The people have spoken! Or at least a couple several quite a few people have spoken. Some quite loudly. Just some friends and relatives (who shall remain anonymous) making sure their loved ones get the appropriate props, and I can’t blame them.

Clearly I’m not the only one who thought “You think you can keep us in the dark, DCC? I think not. I’ll have the answers before the sun sets on your pretty white boots tonight. Mwahahahahahahaha….”

One of my newbies was incorrect, and the three missing DCCs have been identified. This is about as “confirmed” as it’s going to get until the show airs. The bottom part of this post has been corrected so scroooooooll down. exclusive! Eh…not really. The “official” team announcement will not be made until this season’s “Making the Team” airs. However, the team was announced last night, and the internet being what it is, the names of those who made the team won’t be secret for long. It just takes a little rudimentary detective work. Having said that….

Spoiler Alert! Avert your eyes! Scroll away from here!
(Is that enough of a warning? I really hope this is the last time I have to post that this season, because it is starting to annoy me.~ sasha)

Veteran DCC Jasmine posted this photo on her twitter account. Jasmine knows how to keep a fan in the loop, is all I’m saying. She isn’t one of “my girls,” but if I knew her, I feel certain she would be.

All but two of the newbies are on the righthand side of the photo, so it’s not much of a clue, but it’s something to work with.

39 cheerleaders were chosen for this year’s team.

If you are obsessed with the show, or like myself, someone who views secrets like “who made the team” as something of a challenge, you will know that three veterans were cut at finals this year (Colin, Kali, and Teri). Two more left during training camp. (According to my sources, Chelsea was cut and Courtney was kidnapped by aliens. Or something.) This year’s team consists of 27 veterans and 12 rookies. These 9 rookies are pretty solid. I haven’t found out who the other three are. I’ll make additions/corrections as I learn more.

Veterans (pre 2013 headshots):

Alex, Ameilia, Angela, and Ashley

Brittney, Carisa, Danielle, and Emma

Holly, Jacie, Jackie, and Jasmine

Jenna, Jennifer, Jessica, and Jordan

Katy, Kelsey, Kim, and Kinzie

Lauren, Mackenzie, Mia, and Nicole

Olivia, Sydney, and Veronica


Abby, Ashley, Courtni, and Hannah

Jennifer, Jessica, Jinelle, and Kaitlyn

Morgan, Paige, Rachel, and Samantha