Athlete of the week: Maddie Staats


Deb Staats

Senior Maddie Staats at her last tryout, becoming a new member of the Iowa State Cheerleading team, and will officially become a Cyclone in the fall.

Grace Sherman, Student Life Editor

On Sunday, April 30, senior varsity cheerleader Maddie Staats announced her accomplishment of making the Division 1 Iowa State Cheer Team. This is a dream come true, and a passion she is excited to pursue at the next level. 

Staats found success in cheerleading , but cheer was not her first sport. For a majority of her childhood, Staats was involved in dance; she decided to make the switch to cheer in junior high and continue with it throughout high school. “I never thought I would be in the position to cheer in college, but it was definitely a dream of mine,” Staats said. 

Her drive for continuing on with cheer all started because of the time she spent on the Pleasant Valley cheerleading team. As a four year varsity cheerleader and a leader to look up to, Staats was not ready to let it go. “PV cheer will always have a place in my heart. I’ve never felt so supported and had so many opportunities as I have here,” she said. Although these four years are irreplaceable, her career is not ending in high school. 

For athletes, choosing a school can be a very hard decision, with location, teammates and opportunities all being considered on top of academics and cost. Once Staats decided that Iowa State was the place for her, making the cheer team was the next big dream of hers. After tours and meeting new people on the campus, including other prospective students, Staats knew “It felt like the best fit for me.” 

As a supportive leader and teammate on the PV cheerleading team, Staats would have been a privilege to have on any team she chose. PV head coach Megan Ramirez coached Staats for all four years and admires her dedication to her sport. “Maddie has the heart and dedication every coach desires of their athletes. She worked hard every practice and was always hungry to learn new and more difficult skills,” Ramirez said. 

Staats is very excited for her future as a Cyclone and is proud of how far she has come, from starting out as a dancer to finishing high school as a future Division 1 athlete. To her younger self, Staats would say,  “Keep believing in yourself and not worry about what other people might think. I would say that she is going to do amazing things that she never thought she could and to stay humble and keep going.” 

As Staats begins her journey as a freshman on the team, she hopes to still be the leader she is in a bigger crowd. Cheering on the sidelines under the Saturday night lights is where Staats is meant to be.