Dec. 16, 2011
WACO, Texas - Baylor has hired LaPrise Harris-Williams as its head coach of the acrobatics and tumbling team, director of athletics Ian McCaw announced Thursday.
"We are very excited about LaPrise leading our Acrobatics and Tumbling program," McCaw said. "She has considerable experience working with elite level athletes and a strong technical understanding of the sport. We look forward to her building a highly successful program at Baylor."
Harris-Williams takes over Baylor's newest intercollegiate athletics program that completed its first season of competition with a third-place finish in the National Collegiate Acrobatics and Tumbling Association (NCATA) National Championships in April.
"What a privilege to be a part of the Baylor family," Harris-Williams said. "I am deeply honored and excited about the future of acrobatics and tumbling. I take comfort in the words of Jeremiah, `for I know the plans I have for you ... plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'"
Harris-Williams has spent the last 17 years in San Antonio, Texas, as a tumbling clinician and choreographer. She has experience coaching all aspects of gymnastics, including acrobatics and tumbling and cheer. Her choreography has earned numerous championship titles on balance beam, floor exercise, cheer and tumbling at the state, regional and national levels. Harris-Williams has also served as a USA Gymnastics National level Rated Judge for 12 years.
As co-owner of Harris Gymnastics from 1995-2008, Harris-Williams helped place two athletes on the 2001 USA World Team for USA Gymnastics - the governing body that sanctions NCATA events. She has coached state, regional and national team members since 1997.
Harris-Williams is a 2003 graduate of University of Texas at San Antonio, where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology, and she became a registered nurse in 2010. Harris-Williams and her husband Kerry have five children, Maia, Bria, Mickaela, McKenna and Brayton.
Baylor opens the 2012 season Feb. 4 when it travels to Azusa, Calif. to face Azusa Pacific. The Bears' first home competition of the season is March 24, when Baylor hosts Maryland at the Ferrell Center.