Three Cheers For Leslie Goosby: North’s First Male Cheerleader

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Loud and Proud: Senior Leslie Goosby rocks and rolls as North Atlanta's first and objectively best male cheerleader.

What do Comedian Steve Martin, Actor Samuel L. Jackson, Presidents Eisenhower, Roosevelt, Bush Jr. and North Atlanta student Leslie Goosby have in common? They have all been cheerleaders.

Up until 1923, cheerleading was exclusively a male sport and men are participating more and more today as the NFL begins to welcome them to the cheering sidelines.

Goosby is blazing a trail in that he is North Atlanta’s first male cheerleader ever. He’s always had an interest in the sport, since he was young. Encouraged by friends in his junior year, Goosby tried out and made the team. This effort is all the more surprising because Goosby has never previously participated in cheerleading nor has he ever participated in gymnastics.

What he does have is natural talent and it’s what helped him successfully survive a three-day tryout process that involved learning and performing a minute-long dance routine, a chant, a cheer, and two catch-ons. The first two days were essentially workshops and the final day was the actual try-out in front of a panel of coaches. “I was feeling overwhelmed because I had to learn so much in so little time,” said Goosby.

He says, though, that tryouts were beneficial in an unexpected way. “It really prepared me because I then knew I was going to need to learn how to pick up things faster,” he said.

One drawback of being the first male cheerleader is that some feel that Goosby did not necessarily need to perform well in order to make the squad. “Sometimes I feel like girls think I only made the team because I’m a boy,” Goosby said. “But to combat that, I work hard to prove to them that I deserve to be on the team.”

Rather than just focusing on his own high school sporting career, Leslie Goosby is thinking of male students that will be at North Atlanta in the coming years. “I truly enjoy being a cheerleader and I hope that I can inspire other males to join the team after I’m gone.”