KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A man who dreamed about one day cheering from the sidelines of Neyland Stadium was finally able to fulfill that dream during UT’s game against Kentucky, and his time in the spotlight is becoming a viral moment.
Michael Galyean told News Channel 11’s sister station, WATE 6, that the Spirit leader at UT asked for his help with a planned skit that involved dance and improv. He agreed and was sent a video of the dance. On Saturday, he performed, having only practiced with the team twice. They nailed it.
Galyean described what went down in a post on his personal social media account.
“At halftime, I changed into an Axis Security shirt. I ‘worked’ the whole third quarter as sideline security, patrolling the area in front of the student section and in front of the dance team. During commercial breaks, they have an in-house DJ creating what we call ‘Club Sterl’ where the dancers crowd around and party. Now the Axis staff are known for being a bit oblivious to what’s going on behind them since they are more worried about the crowds in front of them. This is where I came in. They danced, I ruined, we argued, I won,” Galyean wrote in the post.
He wrote how “amazing” it was to see the crowd go from being upset at him for blocking the Spirit team, to being excited as they realized he was part of the skit.
It was a dream come true for the man who once planned to try out for the squad but didn’t. He explained what happened. He added that he always regretted not fulfilling that childhood dream.
Following high school, Galyeon applied and was accepted to Tennessee and Kentucky. He shared that he chose those schools based solely on their cheer programs. He said when he saw Neyland Stadium while visiting UT, he thought, “I’m choosing UT because I’m gonna cheer on those sidelines one day.”
On Oct. 29, he checked that off of his bucket list.
“I performed with the 7-time national champion UT dance team, in front of 105,000 people, in the nation’s 6th largest stadium, while we played Kentucky. I got to stand in the cheer locker room, the Kentucky cheer team high-fived me, and everything just felt right. To say that this was a dream come true is an understatement,” wrote Galyean.
Galyean finished off the post with a message to his high school self, “Keep pushing, keep trying and keep being you. You’re gonna be ok kid.”
Galyean told WATE 6 that his goal — when doing anything — is to bring people together.