The journey to be a member of the Dallas Cowboys Rhythm & Blue Dancers presented by Miller Lite, the NFL's first and only co-ed hip hop professional dance team in the NFL, began in April with the preliminary and semi-final auditions inside the dance studio at Valley Ranch.
For the dancers who advanced beyond the opening weekend at Valley Ranch, the finals took place at the Ford Center at The Star inside the Dallas Cowboys World Headquarters.
The DCRB finals were not only open to the public, they were the featured entertainment at the Dallas Cowboys Draft Day Party and thousands of fans were on hand to see the talented dancers put on a show prior to the Cowboys selecting Taco Charlton in the first round of the NFL Draft.
"It's been a dream of mine since I was a little girl to be on a professional sports dance team," said DCRB rookie West. "I had two friends from the dance world suggest the Dallas Cowboys Rhythm & Blue Dancers, so I looked them up, saw what they were doing and what Jenny (DCRB Director Jenny Durbin Smith) was all about and I knew 100 percent that this was the style and the team for me."
"I came to every DCRB prep class," West continued. "The more I was around the vets, the more I wanted it and the harder I worked in and out of the studio to make this dream become a reality."
Following the cut during the Cowboys Draft party, the dancers were given a month off before starting the team's training camp.
"I actually thought this year's audition process was more difficult than last year," said returning veteran Deanna. "There's more pressure and you are held to a higher standard. It was more intense and much more nerve-racking for me because training camp is a unique environment in itself in that you're competing with one another but cheering each other on at the same time."
The reveal of this year's team occurred on when the dancers arrived at The Star in Frisco for what they thought would be their "media challenge" to see how they looked and talked on camera for the team's appearances on shows such as Good Day Dallas and Good Morning Texas. When they were taken to The Star's media set, they were miked up and told to read the teleprompter, which read: "Hi my name is --- I am from --- and I made the 2017-18 Dallas Cowboys Rhythm & Blue Dance team."
"As for the media challenge at The Star," third year veteran Carlos said. "I was really excited because Jenny had told us that we were going to do it in Spanish and since Spanish is my first language, I was looking forward to being in my comfort zone.
"When I went in there and I was ready for the questions, they told me to read the prompter telling us we had made the team," Carlos continued. "But then Amber pulled a prank on me and said I had read the wrong thing and had to redo it. My heart stopped and then she laughed and said she was just kidding."
The 2017-18 Dallas Cowboys Rhythm & Blue Dancers are Mirezha Guevara, Carlos Hernandez, Jessica Stewart, Marcus Sophus, Cassidy Hale, Donald Love, Paulina Nieto, Kasey Phillips, Deanna Wood, Michael Berg, Cherlyn Del Pilar, Marley Friesenhahn, Candace Galbreath, Taylor Greer, West Hardin, Mariah Martin, Clarissa Moore, and Mercedes Tobias.