Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History

Interview with Tom Creasey, July 31, 2018

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries

 

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00:00:00 - Becoming a University of Kentucky cheerleader

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Partial Transcript: Welcome to our interview with Tom Creasey for the UK Cheerleading History--Oral History Project at the Nunn Center.

Segment Synopsis: Creasey discusses how he chose to become a member of the University of Kentucky cheerleading team, as well as how he first came to know T. Lynn Williamson, the advisor of the University of Kentucky's cheerleading team at the time.

Keywords: Basketball teams; Civil engineers; Florida; Football; Graduate students; Leslie Davis; Mark Windgate; NCAA tournament; National championships; Paris High School; Seaton Center; T. Lynn Williamson; Tickets; Tryouts; Undergraduate years

Subjects: Cheerleaders.; Cheerleading.; College athletes; Male cheerleaders; University of Kentucky

00:06:48 - His background from childhood to high school

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Partial Transcript: First, start off by telling me, where was your place of birth?

Segment Synopsis: Creasey talks about his childhood up to high school in terms of his parents and the schools that he attended throughout his life. He discusses how he came to choose to attend the University of Kentucky, as well as talks about his awareness of male cheerleaders in high school.

Keywords: 7th Street Elementary School; Baseball; Basketball coaches; Beta Club; Bourbon County High School; Civil engineering; Clintonville Elementary School; Colleges; Dell Creasey; Fathers; Football; Fred Creasey; Guidance counselors; High schools; Highway Scholarship Program; Male cheerleaders; Marshall University; Old Middletown High School; Paris High School; Terry Creasey; University of Kentucky

Subjects: Athletes--United States; Childhood; Education; Paris (Ky.)

00:11:06 - The 'C.A.T.S.' cheer

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Partial Transcript: And you said you experienced a lot of athletics while you were here at UK--

Segment Synopsis: Creasey discusses how he and his fellow cheerleaders came up with the 'C.A.T.S.' cheer in order to provoke more student involvement.

Keywords: C.A.T.S. cheer; Dean Paris; Football; Haggin Hall; Jerry Claiborne; Jimmy Mortimer; Kroger Field; Mark Windgate; Mascots; Push ups; Student section; T. Lynn Williamson

Subjects: Athletics; Cheerleaders.; Cheerleading.; Cheers.; College athletes; Male cheerleaders; University of Kentucky

00:15:42 - National competitions

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Partial Transcript: So, my next question.

Segment Synopsis: Creasey discusses when the University of Kentucky cheerleading team began competing in national competitions, as well as the national competitions that he was a part of as a member of the team.

Keywords: Competitive sports; National competitions; Routines; Shifts; Videos

Subjects: Cheerleaders.; Cheerleading.; College athletes; Male cheerleaders; University of Kentucky

00:18:09 - His University of Kentucky cheerleading tryouts

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Partial Transcript: We're going to go now to try outs.

Segment Synopsis: Creasey discusses his experiences trying out for the University of Kentucky cheerleading team. He talks about the interview process and how he learned to do gymnastics.

Keywords: Ambassadors; Athletics program; Backhand springs; Challenging; Darlene Silvestri; Fear; Gymnastics; Interviews; Judges; Mascots; Partner stunts; Perspectives; T. Lynn Williamson; Training; Tryouts; Tumbling; University of Kentucky Alumni Association

Subjects: Cheerleaders.; Cheerleading; College athletes; Male cheerleaders; University of Kentucky; Wounds and injuries.

00:26:45 - Memorable games, situations, etc.

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Partial Transcript: So, you mentioned, um, a few moments, like when you were going to out of town trips, um, to see football games, uh, you said you sat--you actually cheered through one of the most dismal football seasons in, probably, UK history.

Segment Synopsis: Creasey discusses some of the most memorable moments of his time spent at the University of Kentucky as a member of the cheerleading team. He talks about the Dream Game between the University of Kentucky and the University of Louisville, as well as his time spent as a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

Keywords: Baseball; Basketball; Dream Game; Eddie Sutton; Electricity; Fellowship of Christian Athletes; Football; Glory; I-75; Jim Master; Membership; NCAA tournament; Rick Massie; Rupp Arena; Stokely Athletic Center; University of Arkansas; University of Houston; University of Louisville; University of Tennessee

Subjects: Cheerleaders.; Cheerleading.; College athletes; Male cheerleaders; University of Kentucky

00:33:00 - University of Kentucky's first national championship cheerleading team

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Partial Transcript: So, you said--let's see, you had--you cheered with some members of the first national championship team, right?

Segment Synopsis: Creasey discusses the University of Kentucky's first national championship team and T. Lynn Williamson's demand for excellence.

Keywords: Dale Baldwin; Excellence; Holly Bankemper; Lady Cat squad; Lori Duley; National championships; Routines; T. Lynn Williamson; Universal Cheerleader Association; Wildcat squad

Subjects: Cheerleaders.; Cheerleading.; Leadership; University of Kentucky

00:36:13 - How cheerleading influences his career as a civil engineer

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Partial Transcript: Talk to me about the trust between two cheerleaders and the interdependency that has to occur for someone to get on top of each other, either in a pyramid or in, I guess, a two person formation.

Segment Synopsis: Creasey discusses the trust and interdependence between cheerleaders when performing stunts, as well as how the skills he learned as a cheerleader for the University of Kentucky cheerleading team helped him once he was out of college.

Keywords: Civil engineers; Comfort zone; Consultants; Fellowship of Christian Athletes; Kim Calvert; Lisa Perkins; Meetings; Partners; Santec; Struggles; Triumphs; Trust; University of Kentucky Alumni Association

Subjects: Careers; Cheerleaders.; Cheerleading.; Male cheerleaders

00:38:51 - Dale Baldwin's accident

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Partial Transcript: Do you recall, um, hearing about--maybe where you were when you heard about Dale Baldwin's accident?

Segment Synopsis: Creasey discusses the accident that occurred on the University of Kentucky cheerleading team that left cheerleader Dale Baldwin unable to walk. He talks about the importance of safety precautions in cheerleading and reflects on the support that Baldwin received after the accident.

Keywords: "My Old Kentucky Home"; Dale Baldwin; Dream Game; Gymnasts; Pyramids; Safety; Stunts; Support; Trampolines; Tumblers; University of Louisville

Subjects: Cheerleaders.; Cheerleading.; Male cheerleaders; University of Kentucky; Wounds and injuries.

00:42:57 - Post-University of Kentucky career

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Partial Transcript: So, you ended up graduating with a master's degree in?

Segment Synopsis: Creasey discusses his career after finishing his education in civil engineering at the University of Kentucky, as well as discusses the relationship that is maintained with the cheerleading team at the University of Kentucky, as well as his former teammates, through Dale Baldwin.

Keywords: Barbara Betts; Dale Baldwin; Doctor of Philosophy (PhD); Graduate schools; Lisa Perkins; Lori Duley; Master's degrees; Mona Wilson Bond; Reunions; Sandra Burton; Steve Gibson; Texas A&M University

Subjects: Careers; Cheerleading.; Civil engineering.; Families.; University of Kentucky

00:46:52 - The current University of Kentucky cheerleading leadership

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Partial Transcript: So, what are your thoughts on what Jomo Thompson has done for the cheerleading program?

Segment Synopsis: Creasey gives his opinion on the current leadership of the University of Kentucky cheerleading team.

Keywords: Credit; Dance Cats; Dawn Duncan Walters; Excellence; Jomo Thompson

Subjects: Cheerleading.; Coaches (Athletics); University of Kentucky

00:47:47 - The legacy of the University of Kentucky's cheerleading team

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Partial Transcript: So, what are your theories on why the University of Kentucky has gathered all of these national championships over the years?

Segment Synopsis: Creasey discusses the reasons for the University of Kentucky cheerleading team's success in national championships, T. Lynn Williamson's legacy at the university, and a future event that is on his bucket list.

Keywords: Attorneys; Bucket lists; Excellence; Legacy; National championships; SEC tournament; Students; Success; T. Lynn Williamson; Texas A&M University; Traditions; Undergraduate years

Subjects: Cheerleaders.; Cheerleading.; Coaches (Athletics); College athletes; University of Kentucky