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Former cheerleader shares more insights on allegations, reaction, accepting responsibility and more

Vicky Graff Photo

By LARRY VAUGHT

It has been about 48 hours now since the allegations about drinking, hazing and nudity during University of Kentucky cheerleading team functions last summer surfaced along with the announcement that all four coaches had been fired and the cheerleading advisor had resigned.

A former cheerleader I know share some of her thoughts about what the three-month investigation found and her respect for what coach Jomo Thompson had done for her.

Not everyone agreed with what she said just like not everyone agreed with UK’s actions to fire the coaches.

I asked her last night how she felt about the reaction to her comments and the whole cheerleading scenario.

“Today I was more upset and proud at the same time. Upset when there are masses of us coming forward with the same normal information and anyone not involved is like, ‘Hmmm they are too perfect, don’t believe it!’” she said. “Then search through our posts and videos to twist anything they can.

“I get the other side of it, though, when someone makes such a bold and intense accusation within a program that does so well. It seems like there are all of these secrets! When really we’ve just told you all of our traditions that no longer only belongs to us.”

Vicky Graff Photo

She believes having no other sports increased the attention on this incident but UK’s national championship success probably would have assured that no matter when this came to light.

However, pay attention to this.

“The biggest thing about this is just accepting responsibility. If someone felt a certain way, they should have held a meeting with the coaches or school at that time,” the former cheerleader said. “We sign contracts, we have meetings, we have to stay on track 24/7. If something was truly off, someone would have come forward sooner.

“Jomo contacted my mom once just because I wasn’t acting myself on the bus. I just don’t believe someone would or could hold something that serious (hazing) with them for a whole year with school and sports. It’s very convenient to happen when squads were being considered. It’s just not how to respond to anything. If you want a different spot, work harder. That’s why all of the alumni are upset.”

The complaint to UK came in February, months after the summer outings, and just before cheerleaders were apparently being assigned to different squads.

But for the former cheerleader, the most difficult part has been posts on social media from UK fans saying they “don’t want their little girls to cheer” for Kentucky now.

“We’re not all perfect little angels as soon as we walk in the door. I don’t think anyone is when they get to college but the coaching did exactly what they were required —coach and make you a better person,” the former cheerleader said. “ There are lots of things I would never do now, but I learned how to act and how I was representing something larger than myself.”

8 comments

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  1. Did those things happen or didn’t they? Was it a disgruntled member of the cheer squad?
    I hated to hear about these allegations. But if it is true, I stand behind what was done.

  2. Well said.

  3. Pretty sure they must have found evidence or they wouldn’t fire everyone.
    We will never know exactly who knew what, but the University would not fire everyone without good reason. Good way to get sued for lots and lots of money.

    1. The mother has already sued a previous university and now is suing UK ($28M, is what I read on Twitter, take it for what that’s worth).

      Apparently “little Suzie” throws a temper tantrum if she doesn’t get her way and goes and tells mommy. Well, mommy goes and screams at the university.

  4. Well, I don’t know who is suing who here, but one can go on the internet and pull up a 20 min. video of President Eli Capilouto, Monday, Blackwell, and Bell who lay out the entire saga of what went down here in this Cheerleader investigation and the action taken by UK. Some of this stuff just didn’t happen last summer, but according to the investigation, it has been going on for years. It is a pretty compelling video on the scope of this investigation. Even if the Mom is a “gold digger” UK can’t allow this sort of behavior to happen in the future.

    1. I agree, LP.
      These people on here are trying to blame 1 student, but are refusing to look at what was found.
      They like the coaches, so everyone else to blame.
      Sounds like they are as spoiled as the student they are blaming.

      1. Thanks OF, I believe the UK Administration means business now.

        1. The brass did what had to be done. The real crime here is that the most dominant team in a competitive sport couldn’t handle the success. There is nothing wrong in celebrating success, but this bunch took it to excess in too many ways. For a long time, everyone looked the other way because of that success until someone didn’t. Its hard to make a case for murder here when the fatal wound was self inflicted.

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