In the 1930's, when GW had a successful football team, "Yea-a-a Buff! Yea-a-a Blue! G.W. come through!" was echoing across Griffith Stadium. A thousand voices filled the autumn air with "Hail to the Buff and Blue." The rooting section, led by the cheerleading squad used colored card displays at Colonial football games.
In 1941, women became cheerleaders for the first time. In 1942, Nic Lakas led the squad performing at football and basketball games and bonfire rallies. Also in 1941, a large Great Dane named Smokey became the GW mascot at football games. "George" became the mascot in 1948. In December 1966 football was discontinued at the University and basketball became the principal event for the cheerleading squad.
In 1996 the squad made its competitive debut in the Universal Cheerleaders Association national cheerleading championships, placing ninth. John Kelley served as head coach of the GW squad until 1997.
In 2006, the GW Cheerleaders competed in the NCA National Collegiate Cheer Competition and placed 4th, gaining national ranking and recognition. The cheerleaders of GW have always been an integral part of sports and an asset to the campus. At games, at pep rallies and other special occasions the squad has boosted morale and encouraged University spirit.
As a co-ed cheerleading squad, the GW Cheer Team
cheers at all home men's and women's basketball games. They are also
given the opportunity to travel and cheer at designated tournaments
including the Atlantic 10 conference and NCAA's. The cheerleading squad
supports the achievements of all GW athletic teams, and attends various
events on campus to show their spirit.
Currently, The George Washington University Spirit Program is comprised of the co-ed cheerleading squad, the dance team, and our famous mascots "George" and "Big George."
Along with the First Ladies Dance Team and the Mascot Squad, the GW Cheer squad
attends camp during the summer to enhance individual skills and build
team unity. The program welcomes everyone to share in the Spirit of GW!
Click HERE for more history of the GW Cheer Team!
(source: GW University Archives)