Former TCU cheerleader joins the New England Patriots cheer squad


    TCU alum and former cheerleading captain Madelyn Wilson will be back on the field this season, but this time as a professional cheerleader with the New England Patriots.

    “I definitely enjoy cheerleading,” Wilson said. “I enjoy preforming in front of an audience. It is something I really love to do. And, I love being a part of a team. I know these girls are going to be my best friends. 

    The Patriots announced the women who would be a part of their 2014-15 squad earlier this month. Wilson was one of 11 rookies to make the team.

    “The audition process began in February with an optional workshop followed by preliminary and final auditions, interviews, and a two-week boot camp,” according to the team’s website.

    For Wilson, cheerleading has been a team-first sport with a group she can rely on.

    “That was how it was like at TCU,” Wilson said. “Those were my girls. They are the ones I leaned on for support and it was just awesome to be a part of the team. That’s what I use cheer for.” 

    Wilson said her experience auditioning for TCU cheer gave her an advantage in the professional-level process because she was used to working on a “tight ship” with TCU spirit coach Lindsay Westbrook.

    Wilson’s cheerleading career began when she transitioned from gymnastics in eighth grade by joining the Pro Spirit All Stars, which is a competitive cheer team located in McKinney, Texas.

    After five years of cheer experience, Wilson knew she wanted to continue cheering in college.

    Once TCU rewarded Wilson with an academic scholarship, she signed up to try out for the squad. There she met one of her best friends and her future co-captain, Sarah Stallard.

    “After just four short days of cheer camp, we were best friends,” Stallard said.”Once school started in August, we were inseparable.

    “Maddy has always been a very talented cheerleader. She has beautiful jumps, impressive tumbling, and is a great dancer.”

    Wilson’s time at TCU was spent split between cheer, Greek life and her honors college curriculum.

    “I had like five calendars and I just planned every part of my day,” Wilson said.

    The Patriots begin their season Aug. 7 in a preseason matchup against the Washington Redskins.