Men At Work — Baltimore magazine
Plastering on that big, fake smile must make you kinda mad after a little while. At least that’s my explanation for why one angry former Ravens cheerleader leaked the squad’s 2009 rulebook to Deadspin, which published it yesterday. Here are some of the highlights (lowlights?) from the expose:
+Prospective cheerleaders are weighed at the beginning of tryouts, and are expected to keep to that weight. If they deviate from the “ideal body weight and physical look,” they can get benched for a game; after getting three such “physical appearance suspensions,” they’ll be kicked off the team.
With their perpetual smiles and dizzying high kicks, NFL cheerleaders are another over-the-top aspect of today’s super-charged football teams. And while the Ravens cheerleaders — all volunteers, ranging in age from 18 to 37 — may be just as toned and cheery as those on other teams, there is one way they stand apart from the crowd: some of them are men.
Okay, they don’t like being called cheerleaders — they prefer “male stunt team.” They’re the ones responsible for flinging female cheerleaders around for special aerial moves. A recent CBS spot highlighting the men seemed intent on proving their manliness, highlighting Jim Schwille, an Afghanistan vet who spends his days selling lumber.
Interested in joining the squad? Tryouts are in March; start practicing your somersaults now.