An Open Letter to the FEU Cheering Squad

Don’t lose the will to come back—no matter how many times we need to.

I originally planned to write a full-blown rant: an entry that contains how much I didn’t agree with the sudden change in the judging system, or NU’s surprise entrance in the Top 3, or Ateneo’s theme confusion. But instead, I sit here, writing about something that may or may not matter but this comes from the heart of someone who firmly believes that we did enough to win; and although the stars didn’t align for us, I still believe that you, FEU Cheering Squad, gave it your all and that’s about enough for me to stand by my Alma mater and watch them come back next year and the years after that.

I witnessed a flawless routine, a carefully thought-of theme, and a bunch of energetic individuals all coming together to prove, in front of 19,000 plus spectators, that FEU is a true elite in the UAAP Cheerdance Competition.

I personally feel robbed.

I feel robbed for having witnessed such amazing performance and not win a championship—but I know it must be harder for those who have performed; for those who were part of the team that created a masterpiece.

Years of watching the UAAP CDC, this is the one runner-up finish that cut the deepest. We’ve finished as bridesmaids a dozen times already but this is the one that had me seriously scarred because let’s all admit it—we could’ve won the whole thing.

But as I sit here, I can’t help but remember how proud I felt after you guys successfully performed the jungle-inspired routine. I can’t help but remember how I held my breath in every pyramid and how I cheered during the high moments.

So yeah, recounting the moments, I figured it wasn’t so bad after all.

And as I sit here, almost filing up a page of a once-blank Microsoft Word document, I can’t help but remember how resilient our squad had been over the years. Every now and then, we get our hearts broken by falling short but we have always managed to come back stronger each year—proving just how resilient Tamaraws are (just like the creature it was named after).

To every member of the squad, to every person who spent nights and days perfecting the routine you performed in front of the world: kudos! I raise my glass and I take my hats off in respect to every effort you gave for the performance that, I’m sure, made every FEU student proud.

To Coach Jacqueline Alolor, I don’t know if you still remember me, but I am one of those two people who wrote about your 2009 championship for the official student publication. I was there in the dugout as the squad celebrated and you knew me as the sports writer from FEU Advocate. You probably don’t know me and I may not know a lot about how you handle the squad but I think I have an idea about how dedicated you are to winning that championship for the squad and for the school. I salute your ideas and I admire your sheer brilliance in pulling off a good show every damn year.

Perhaps, I am this affected because I consider myself as part of that title the squad won in 2009—every Tamaraw is a part of that championship. We all know how good it feels to win and I hope that this setback will only push the squad forward; and I most certainly hope that the squad never loses the shine and the brilliance, and the resiliency to come back and fight again.

To each member of the squad, to the coach/es, to every person who is part of the performance that WOWed every person who watched it: in behalf of the entire green-and-gold community, you may not have won the championship but you guys didn’t fail to make us proud.

We’d still be watching next year. We’d still be holding our breath to every stunt and pyramid; and we’d still be crossing our fingers, wishing for fair-play and honesty. And we’ll serve as your own cheering squad—win or lose.

A former FEU student who still believes we’d get there, again—soon


32 thoughts on “An Open Letter to the FEU Cheering Squad

  1. Sigekayonamagaling! says:

    Basketball na lang pagusapan wag na yang cheering tapos na yan hehehe. . .hindi ako updated kasama ba sa finals ang UP? hehehe

  2. Nagpapaliwanag lang says:

    Para sa nagtataka at nagtatanong kung bakit nanalo ang nanalo:

    “Surprisingly, if there’s a school that should be complaining about the ranking system, that should be UST and not FEU! The UST Salinggawi Dance Troupe actually got a better score (85.56) than the NU Cheer Squadron (85.16) but Gawi fell to 4th because of NU getting more 3rd place votes (3-2). The FEU Cheering Squad (91.36) would still finish 2nd to the UP Pep Squad (92.26) even if the ranking system was disregarded and the championship was based on the scores tabulated by the judges. ”

  3. ivansaldajeno says:

    I’m from UP. Well, I’m happy that UP won, but I admit. FEUCS’s cheerleading stunt was awesome. The UP Pep Squad’s performance would have been so brilliant too if not for the fall. I was really anxious. I already conceded until the formal announcement. To those who continue to rant FEU, stop it. The decision has been made. Let’s pay respect to one another. #Respect

  4. Frida says:

    in my opinion FEU performance was really excellent. But one thing I really noticed about UP’s performance’s is that they really make the last “Tableau”(despite the fall) really exceptional. The last part is the MOST important part of the routine, though FEU did not make a mistake (through an amateurs eyes) the last “Tablue” did not make that much of an impact. No lifts, pyramids, or any thing that would be jaw-dropping. Thats one thing FEU would want to do if they to be champions once again.

  5. Iskolar ng Bayan says:

    FREEEEDOM! – Martial Law’s 40th Anniversary yesterday, as well as highlighting the current and continuous struggle for true democracy.

    ‘UNITY!’ – After shouting all the other teams’ names – a call for collective action in building the nation.

    SHAVED HEADS – Gender equality; courage to stand out.

    MINIMALIST COSTUME AND ROUTINE – To show that true beauty should not be covered in layers and layers of superficiality.

    Don’t feel robbed 🙂 Congrats to all the teams who participated!

  6. abc says:

    You all have a right to your opinion and be saddened by being 2nd when you feel like you should have been the 1st place…but think about it…a flawless routine is NOT enough to wow these international judges. And a major mistake is only minus 5 points. Which meant that UP still won DESPITE the mistake. Wouldn’t you rather be the champions not because the other team fell? Again, think about it.

  7. nad says:

    For me FEUCS will only lose if we stop supporting them, whatever happens let’s keep our faith and appreciate each of their performance

    1. ivansaldajeno says:

      Yes, talagang may pagka-mysterious ang jungle theme ng FEUCS, but hindi naman nadadaan sa pagiging complex ng galawan ang pagkapanalo ng CDC ah. UP nga hindi rin as complex as last year yung kanila eh.

  8. Lord Pao says:

    Great article nice read. Yeah, just a bit confused about the change in the judging system. CDC has been scored using point system all the time but this year. Anyway, win or lose we are still proud of them.

    1. goneinwanderland says:

      That’s the same thing I ranted about when Boom said it. I was like, why did they have to change it after wasting time explaining the criteria? It just didn’t make sense but yeah, still very proud of them 🙂

      1. Lord Pao says:

        Yeah, when they announced that it’d be scored in that way, you know something fishy is going on. Arguably, it’d be a different scenario/rankings if they totaled all the scores instead of just counting who amongst the participating teams got the most number of 1st place tally. If they did discuss it prior to the performance it’d be understandable, but before the announcement of winners? Nah, that’s just plain wrong.

  9. Shuffle says:

    I am a former Thomasian but I felt sad when I heard that FEU only landed in 1st runner up. I’ve watched the whole thing twice, live and at youtube, yet still I see FEU as the true champions. Clean routines and formations, sharp movements and very difficult stunts. Take note, walang laglag sa lifts. UAAP may have lost its credibility but eyes don’t lie. We know kung sino talaga ang deserving. Still, keep the fire burning. 🙂

    1. Iskolar ng Bayan says:

      FREEEEDOM! – Martial Law’s 40th Anniversary yesterday, as well as highlighting the current and continuous struggle for true democracy.

      ‘UNITY!’ – After shouting all the other teams’ names – a call for collective action in building the nation.

      SHAVED HEADS – Gender equality; courage to stand out.

      MINIMALIST COSTUME AND ROUTINE – To show that true beauty should not be covered in layers and layers of superficiality.

      Don’t feel robbed 🙂 Congrats to all the teams who participated!

    1. LIAN RICAFORT says:

      LOL! C’mon! Not really. There’s a difference between “bitterness” & “truth/fairness”. Truth is a term that in all of its nuances implies ACCURACY and HONESTY. On the other hand, fairness is exhibiting a disposition that is free of FAVORITISM or BIAS; impartial. :))

  10. Louie says:

    I also felt the same …… i’m one not subjective person but an objective one ……I may be an alumnus of FEU but that’s beside the point ………….. after years and years of watching the CDC …… I’ve witnessed how FEU was robbed of the crown and prestige …. much more , it caused them too much pain again and again …… but fret not Tamaraws ….. you must not lose hope …… use all these experiences to the betterment of your craft …. time will come that you will be vindicated and that all your hard works will paid off ……

    exthese exp

  11. Leo Miguel Rivera says:

    They will win it next season. Let’s just be positive. Kudos to the FEUCS and to the coaches. They all made us rawr! Looking forward to their future concepts and performances. Indeed, they left me go wild. :))

  12. Mark Iniego says:

    I am with you; how can something so obvious, cannot be seen… Enough with the rant, I know, we will ge there, we will get it and next time, no enough magic tricks can sheen us from being in the top…

    1. Bam Dinga says:

      Its interesting to note that in sports, whenever the team you are supporting wins, you consciously attribute that win to your own. I quote from Big Bang Theory “When we watch Star Wars we don’t say: “We defeated the empire”” harhar just kidding:) And just a side note, UP pep squad showed that cheer dance is more than just a “routine”. k?


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