Melissa Rycroft Spills the Tea on What it Takes to Be a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader

The former Dallas Cowboys cheerleader opens up about mentoring the girls to help them achieve a coveted spot on the world’s most elite squad.

Melissa Rycroft/Instagram

The Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders may be America’s Sweethearts, but the process of becoming one isn’t the sweetest.

From auditions to training camp, becoming a cheerleader on the most elite squad in the NFL requires hard work and commitment, as well as strength to take constructive criticism from the coaches and judges. Not everyone has what it takes to be a DCC, but the ones who do say its the best experience of their lives.

Courtesy of CMT

Former DCC Melissa Rycroft returns to Dallas for the thirteenth season of Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team, where her roles are reversed from cheerleader to mentor, offering coaching and pep talks to the hundreds of hopefuls looking to secure a spot on the thirty-six-member squad.

“This season I got to talk to [the girls] about where they felt their weaknesses were in training camp,” Melissa tells Celeb Secrets exclusively. “I then had the opportunity to help them overcome that, so I’m going to grade [my constructive criticism] a 10.”

Courtesy of CMT

This season, the level of talent is far from exceptional — it’s unreal.  Aside from the elite vets, DCC Making the Team’s rookie contenders include seasoned cheerleaders from the worlds of NFL, NBA and NHL; Miss America 2017 first runner-up; professional hip hop dancers and a former competitive ice skater. At the end of the day, their fate rests in the hands of DCC Director Kelli Finglass, who expects the best from each athlete.

“To be a DCC, you have to be a well-rounded girl. I think there is a misconception out there that you just have to be pretty and dance with pom poms, and what I love about what this show has done is its pulled the curtain back and said these girls need to also be intelligent and articulate. It’s really important for people to see that side of what all these girls do and what they represent,” Melissa says.

Celeb Secrets had the opportunity to sit down with Rycroft to go in depth on what its like to not only work towards becoming, but to be a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader. The 35-year-old talks about her favorite memories from being a mentor as well as the best advice for both rookies and vets.

You can learn more by watching the full interview below. 

A brand new episode of DCC: Making the Team returns tomorrow evening, and Kitty comes to rehearsal to stir things up. The new candidates bond, and then are judge as they perform at a mock appearance. Still no one is safe, and anyone can be cut at any time.

You can watch new episodes of Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team every Thursday night at 10/9c on CMT.

Juliet Schroder

Written by Juliet Schroder

Juliet is the founder and executive producer/host of Celeb Secrets and Celeb Secrets Country. When not reporting on the latest news in pop culture and country music, she enjoys traveling, spending time with friends and family, and exploring the latest fashion trends.

Juliet holds a B.S. in marketing from St. John's University.