Department of Athletics Announces Addition of STUNT

Jillian Humphrey named as head coach

The Saint Mary's College Department of Athletics announced the addition of STUNT as the newest varsity program along with the hiring of Jillian Humphrey as the head coach selected to buildJillianHumphrey the program. Saint Mary's is the first NCAA Division III college or university in the state of Indiana to add STUNT as a varsity sport.

Humphrey comes to the College from Central Michigan University in Mount Pleasant, Michigan, where she most recently served as the assistant cheerleading coach. Additionally, Humphrey competed on and helped influence the first STUNT team and was a member of the CMU cheerleading team. The Chippewas cheer team attended the National Cheerleaders Association nationals in 2023 during her time as an assistant coach.  

Humphrey also gained valuable coaching experience through Champion Cheerleading as a camp staff member during the summers from 2018 through 2022. She was promoted to director of the camp in 2023. In these roles, Humphrey managed middle school and high school teams during several weeks of camp each summer as athletes developed skills and knowledge of cheerleading.

Humphrey completed her bachelor of science degree in psychology from Central Michigan University in May 2023.

"I'd first like to say thank you to Julie Schroeder-Biek for entrusting me with the job of building the STUNT program at Saint Mary's College," said Humphrey. "It's an honor to start my career at an all-women's college. It's empowering to be surrounded by so many great mentors and leaders such as Julie, other coaches, and the Sisters of the Holy Cross. I am grateful for the opportunity to build the STUNT program at the College and excited to compete in our inaugural season in the 2024-25 school year. I am looking forward to starting this journey with purpose and passion and calling Notre Dame, Indiana home."

In February 2023, STUNT was unanimously voted by the Committee on Women's Athletics­—an NCAA-wide committee which oversees the Emerging Sports for Women program—to move forward as an emerging sport in Divisions I and III. The sport has already been approved as an emerging sport at the NCAA Division II level.

STUNT is currently governed by the USA Federation for Sport Cheering. According to USA Cheer, the sport focuses on the technical and athletic components of cheer with specific focus on partner stunts, pyramids, basket tosses, group jumps, and tumbling. Each of those elements are combined into short routines which two teams perform head-to-head in a four-quarter format.

Humphrey will begin building the team as the Belles are slated for their first competitive season in the 2024-25 academic year.

October 10, 2023

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