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Behind The Scenes With 'America's Sweethearts'

OK, lets face it, for most of the readers here at Blogging The Boys, the cheerleaders are at least one of the "side benefits" of fandom. Now BTB gives you an inside look at what it takes to be part of the most beloved organization in professional sports.

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Even the Dallas Cowboys haters begrudgingly concede to having a special affinity for one part of the organization, the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders. Let's face it,  this group of young ladies truly are what they are billed to be: America's Sweethearts. The prospects come from, not only all over America, but from around the world to be a part of something that is as iconic as the blue star itself. Sure they are beautiful, but the women who comprise the DCC are much more than that, after all they are a key piece of the brand that the Jones family seeks to promote.

The Cowboys Chief Brand Officer, Charlotte Jones-Anderson, maintains a close reign on one of the most visible symbols of that brand. Speaking in reference to the reality show Making The Team, which gives viewers a look at what it takes to become a part of the DCC, she admitted that the team demanded and received complete editorial control of what was presented to the public.

"We wanted it to be very true. Like our game, it is unscripted, it is real, you can’t fake it and you can’t predict it, and we wanted the show to be much like that. We wanted it to be very real and represent who we are as an organization, what these women do to earn a spot on the team, and the pride they have within. We didn’t want anything concocted that wasn’t accurate." - Charlotte Jones-Anderson

So, just what image does the team want to project? A key part of that is that the typical Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader is not just another pretty face in a star-spangled outfit. She represents the best of all qualities much the same way that Roger Staubach did, and still does, as a Dallas Cowboy.

Team choreographer Judy Trammell, herself a member of the squad from the 1980's, gives us an idea of what she looks for in a potential member of the team. They look for the total package during auditions; searching for that special girl that just has "IT".

"A Dallas Cowboys cheerleader just has something special, something extra, and it’s hard to put your finger on what that is, but it’s the girl that got up on the dance floor and completely took over and made you only want to watch her. Whoever had that spark. Sometimes you realize maybe they’re not the best dancer in the room, but some of them are teachable and we can take it away and teach them later." - Judy Trammell

Not only does the woman have to "jump off of the page" during her tryout, she has to be more. Among other things, a cheerleader candidate must have some real football knowledge, and know the history of teams, both the DCC and the Cowboys as well. As a part of the initial tryouts, wannabe cheerleaders take a challenging test that covers these topics, and to proceed she must score well.

Beyond her football knowledge, the team is also looking for a woman that will reflect well on the team. There are no "bimbos" on the DCC. In fact, the squad as a whole is well-educated. They have to be to represent a team that sees itself as being a first class organization. In charge of ensuring that the team members live up to what the Jones family demands is another former DCC, Kelli McGonagill Finglass, who is currently the Director of Cheerleaders for the Dallas Cowboys. Well-educated herself, Kelli counts that as one quality that she is looking for.

"People might think dingy blonde or just a dancer. Last year we had probably four master’s degrees, almost all bachelor’s degrees, one doctorate. We’ve got some smart women."

There you have it folks. The bevy of beauties who grace the top of the news link articles that you read here on Blogging The Boys truly are symbolic of everything we would like for them to be. While they are a treat to look at, each of these young ladies is much more. They represent the class of the organization they work for in many ways, live up to the high standard that is set for them, and they certainly are America's Sweethearts. They are much more than a collection of pretty faces that dance around during games.

They are the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders.