The End of an Era: Celebrating Coach Seibel’s legacy.

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Brandie Seibel (third from the left) with fellow coaches heading off to her first cheer camp as freshman coach
Brandie Seibel (third from the left) with fellow coaches heading off to her first cheer camp as freshman coach
Brandie Seibel

After an illustrious tenure at Barlow, varsity cheer Coach Brandie Seibel is gracefully stepping down as head coach. Seibel’s unwavering dedication to Barlow’s cheer team for 18 years is a testament to her commitment. She began her journey as the freshmen coach, and the following year, she co-coached varsity and JV. By her third year, she was appointed as a full-time varsity coach, a role she has passionately fulfilled ever since.

 Seibel has a son who is a sophomore at Barlow, and she wants to be able to spend as much time soaking up his last two years of high school as she can. Seibel says, “This last football season, I took time to observe and see if I was standing on the track with the cheer team, would I really be able to watch him play, and the answer was simply no. I have missed many of his games, team gatherings, tournaments, etc. over the years due to cheer.” As her son is graduating in two short years, she wants to be able to sit in the stands and cheer him on. 

Secondly, many community members expected Seibel to retire last year as her daughter, Makenna Seibel, was graduating. Unfortunately, since last season did not end on a positive note, Seibel felt as if the program had unfinished business, and if she had retired last year, she knew she would not be content with her decision. However, this year’s atmosphere was completely different from start to finish, and every day was fulfilling, Seibel states.

Seibel’s future in coaching remains uncertain. While she acknowledges the perpetual need for cheer coaches, she is unsure if she would ever return to Barlow. Having graduated from Barlow in 2000 and cheered here, Barlow holds a special place in her heart. She muses, “I always say I bleed blue and gold. However, I am unsure if it would be strange to return to a program I led for so long and then left. It might be confusing for the athletes, especially if my coaching style differed from the previous coach.” 

Seibel says her three favorite memories from coaching at Barlow were having her daughter on the team even though her first and second years were COVID and didn’t go how they had thought, yet they wouldn’t change a thing. Secondly, this year, the cheer team placed at the state level for the first time in 2011. Each year, they give out trophies to the top five teams in each category, unless there were eight or less teams. That year, there had been fewer than eight so they gave out four trophies, and Seibel was sure that this year would be the year they would get fifth when they were only giving out four trophies. To her surprise, Barlow was announced as fourth, and Seibel says it took her a moment to realize they had just placed fourth. Lastly, placing at nationals in 2015 and 2024. It’s such a special memory for Seibel because “It takes a lot of hard work, hours of practice, and so much dedication to just make it to Nationals, and then to hear your school called in front of the arena is a feeling only a few coaches get, and I was lucky enough to have had that feeling twice! “ 

As Brandie leaves, she leaves words of encouragement for past, present, and future cheerleaders here at Barlow. Seibel states, “Change is good! Change is inevitable in life. You can either resist it and potentially get run over by it, or you can choose to cooperate with it, adapt to it, and learn how to benefit from it. When you embrace change, you will begin to see it as an opportunity for growth. Barlow Cheer will always hold a special place in my heart, and the last 18 years have truly been a blessing to me. I will cherish those memories of this program forever and always. I always told my graduates ‘Once A Bruin. Always A Bruin!’ and I guess now I can take my own parting words with me!“

 

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