Coastal Carolina University has named David Almeida, a former NCA national and Grand Collegiate champion, the new head cheerleading coach. Almeida comes to Coastal Carolina from Jacksonville State University, where he has been the head cheerleading coach since 2013.
The school is hoping Almeida will help it quickly put a scandal behind it that resulted in the suspension of the entire cheerleading squad in March prior to the NCAA cheerleading national championships.
According to a criminal investigation report from Coastal Carolina police that was obtained by The Sun News, cheerleaders were involved in an escort service and were paid between $100 and $1,500 per date. The CCU investigation concluded in May.
At Jacksonville State, Almeida oversaw all game day and competition activities of the spirit program and earned $50,000 per year according to his job application.
With the Gamecocks, the cheer program saw improved GPA and graduation rates, along with the development of numerous university and community stewardship initiatives.
Prior to his stint at JSU, Almeida led cheer programs at George Washington University (2012-2013) and Kansas Wesleyan University (2011-2012).
“I am excited to build a successful program at CCU,” Almeida said in a CCU release. “Coastal has great resources and many exciting things happening on campus, and I am thrilled to be a part of that. My primary goal for this cheerleading team is to make them excellent students and to help them become the best game-day cheerleaders they can be. I know there have been challenges with the program, but I am focused on the team’s future, and I am confident we will be prepared for our many important game day and competitive opportunities.”
Almeida takes a paid position and replaces a pair of volunteer coaches. According to CCU, Maureen Sullivan was the volunteer head coach from Oct. 1, 2015, through Dec. 1, 2016, and volunteer dance team coach Marla Sage has led the team since December.
Cheerleading tryouts for the 2017-18 season are scheduled for July 23 and 24.
Concurrent to his collegiate coaching career, Almeida has also helped lead several All-Star cheer gyms and captured All-Star national championships.
Almeida’s personal experience and accolades also include: National Cheerleaders Association (NCA) National and Grand Collegiate Championship team member, NCA National Collegiate Champion affiliate coach, and judge of local, state, national and world championships. He is certified by the American Association of Cheerleading Coaches and Administrators and the United States All Star Federation. Almeida earned a bachelor’s degree from George Mason University.
“We are fortunate to have such an accomplished coach lead the next chapter of our program, especially as we move to the FBS and compete on a much higher level,” said Matt Hogue, director of athletics at CCU.