Buffalo Jills

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Buffalo Jills
Buffalo Jills.gif
General Information
Team Buffalo Bills
Nickname Buffalo's Beauties
Established 1967
Defunct 2014
Director Stephanie Mateczun
Captain 4 with 4 co-captains
Members 35
History
  • Cheerleaders (1960-1965)
  • Buffalo Jills (1967–present)
Members of the Buffalo Jills during the singing of the national anthem at a pre-season game on August 28, 2008
A photo of the 2010-2011 Buffalo Jills squad at their June 1, 2010 Open Practice

The Buffalo Jills are the cheerleading squad for the Buffalo Bills professional American football team.[1]

The Bills had cheerleaders in 1960 known simply as the Buffalo Bills Cheerleaders. At the time, they were a group of eight Buffalo State College cheerleaders. They ran this squad until 1965 and went without cheerleaders in 1966. In 1967, the Buffalo Jills were founded and have progressed from a few young women in wool uniforms to a squad of 36 young ladies in more-revealing attire.

They have annually sold a swimsuit calendar since the 2000-2001 season[2] and participate in various events in the Western New York area. Troop visits are a regular occurrence as well and a group of eight girls spent February 22 - March 4, 2007, visiting troops in Iraq, the only NFL squad on that tour at the time.[3]

Unlike some squads, the Jills are not sponsored by the NFL team for which they cheer; the Bills discontinued its official ties to the team in 1986. The squad is instead sponsored by a collection of smaller sponsors and owned by the current director as an independent organization. Although the Bills' radio network was a prominent sponsor of the squad during the ownership of Citadel Broadcasting, the network has since changed hands and abandoned its sponsorship of the squad.

In 2002, the new director instituted an Ambassador Squad, a group of 8-12 Buffalo Jills who did not dance on the sidelines and field. This was not only to allow the squad to more easily meet the demands of all the public appearances they were asked to make, but allowed more young women to make the squad. The Ambassador Squad Jills became a good way to contribute for young women who either did not have the dancing ability required to make the field, or did not have the free time to attend all of the dance squad practices.

In 2006, a pair of Jills swept their first round events in the first year of the NFL Cheerleader Playoffs before falling in the second round.

In 2008, the Jills were the first NFL squad to be multi-national, performing at "home" games both in Orchard Park, New York, and in Toronto, Ontario.

The Jills manager and director, Stephanie Mateczun, suspended the 2014 season following a lawsuit filed by five former Jills that alleged the cheerleaders were not paid for hours they worked. The Bills were made aware of Mateczun's decision and declined to comment. Three defendants were named in the lawsuit - the Bills as well as the current and former managers of the Jills, Stejon Productions and Citadel Communications.[4]

Notable members[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "April 2012 - Audition & basic team information". Buffalojills.com. Retrieved 2012-07-31. 
  2. ^ "Wedg-Fm". Wedg.com. Retrieved 2012-07-31. 
  3. ^ "Jills touring Iraq in Blackhawks and C-130's". Buffalobills.com. 2010-12-09. Retrieved 2012-07-31. 
  4. ^ http://bigstory.ap.org/article/buffalo-bills-cheerleaders-halt-season-after-suit

External links[edit]