four-year scholarships for athletes.
In recent years, the college ha fashioned a reputation for sending
forth athletes of a slightly different sort to universities: members of
its nationally-acclaimed cheerleading and dance squads.
On OCC's campus, cheer and dance are considered an intercollegiate
In the five years that Mike Reynolds and Dan Sapp have coached the
teams, the Pirates have won seven national titles.
OCC has finished first in dance four times and first in cheerleading
The Pirates have also logged two second-place dance finishes and a
second place in cheer.
The University of Kentucky annually has the top cheer and dance teams
in America at the Division I level. Other top universities include the
University of Alabama, the University of Tennessee, the University of
Central Florida and the University of Hawaii.
Top schools on the West Coast include the University of Washington
and...Orange Coast College. It's a short list and, yes, OCC is right up
there with the big boys...and girls.
"We've established a national reputation," said Reynolds who, with his
business partner, co-coach and friend Dan Sapp, has been involved in
collegiate cheer and dance for nearly two decades. "We compete in the
Universal Cheerleaders Association (UCA) Cheerleading and Dance Team
National Championships each January at Walt Disney World/MGM Resorts in
Orlando, Florida We've won our share of titles in the competition and all
the big four-year schools know who we are. They watch us perform and they
recruit our athletes."
This year, three former OCC cheer squad members are performing at the
University of Hawaii. Three others are at Hawaii Pacific University.
Other former OCC students are at Delta State University, in Cleveland,
Mass., and at the University of Kentucky. Orange Coast alums have also
been Laker Girls, Charger Girls and Clipper Girls.
"Our grads are out there...everywhere," Reynolds said.
Reynolds and Sapp grew up in Texas, a state where football and
cheerleading are a way of life; more accurately, an obsession.