The Conference Championships Ahead – March 22nd

We have arrived at conference championships weekend, aka the last time you’re still technically allowed to be bad. After this, quality is a requirement instead of just a recommendation.

In the final showdown for the #1 ranking before the Regionals are assigned, Florida controls its own destiny, able to secure the regular-season #1 position with a 197.300, which I certainly expect them to get. The more interesting ranking maneuvering will come lower down the table, particularly in how the Nebraska, Stanford, Oregon State, Auburn, Illinois, Minnesota, Penn State, and Arkansas group plays out in terms of Regionals pairing and hosts. The match-ups between these schools will be the most fun to follow on Regionals day because we’ll have significant upset potential in two or three of those competitions. We also have Cal trying to get a big score at home at Pac 12s to jump into a seeded position, along with a number of teams vying for the final couple spots in the top 36. Full analysis of each team’s scoring going into the weekend is here.
I won’t have a live blog for the conference championships, so if you have any pressing comments to make about the meets, especially regarding judges and their various crack-smoking tendencies, feel free to leave them here. I did previews for SECs and Pac 12s already, but in the Big Ten, expect Michigan to win the first session by well over a point. Then, we’ll have to wait and see how the scores from the first session compare to the second to see how much foul crying will ensue after the meet. Nebraska has the benefit of competing in the night group, and if they bring the vault landings and hit beam, they should win the session, but at the Big Ten quads last weekend, the difference between Nebraska and the rest was minor, so any mistake from either Michigan or Nebraska will bring in all of the next three seeds in a potential five-way mid-196 battle. That would be great to follow, but if Michigan and Nebraska hit hit, they should have enough of a margin to make it a two-team race rather than a five-team race. They’re just a step above, with more 9.9s than the teams in the teens can expect to get even on a great day. As for Michigan and Nebraska, the session scoring comparison will be fascinating.

Oh, and Oklahoma will obviously win Big 12s. The end.

The EAGL looks completely up for grabs, and will be providing a free live stream, so if you’re looking to whet your competition appetite, keep an eye on that one because it could go anywhere and everywhere. New Hampshire is probably the smart bet–top-ranked and competing at home–but the majority of those teams should be right in it because they’re fairly closely packed in the rankings and rarely show a major difference in their weekly scores. NC State is always dangerous and has a couple people who can bring in high 9.8s on multiple events in Ouellette, Watkins, and Ham. Rutgers started off the year very well but has fallen back since those early scores. Still, do we see a big Rutgers upset in the cards?

The independent schools that put together the Mountain Rim Championship this year have also had a very competitive season, with all six teams already guaranteed to make Regionals. Even the lowest-ranked team in the group, Utah State, impressed me in their recent meet with UCLA. All six of these teams can reach 196, so it should be another very competitive one with one tenth margins on events (and, as always, who can hit beam) deciding the places 1 through 6. Boise State’s asset is bars, but can they score well enough on beam to make that advantage hold up over Denver? 

Championship Schedule

Saturday – 3/22/14

12:00 ET/9:00 PT – Big Ten Championship Session 1: [8] Michigan, [24] Ohio State, [37] Iowa, [38] Michigan State

12:00 ET/9:00 PT – ECAC Championship: [55] William & Mary, [57] Brown, [61] Cornell, [62] Temple, [64] Penn, [65] Yale

1:00 ET/10:00 PT – ECAC Division II Championship: [52] Bridgeport, [63] West Chester, [68] Southern Connecticut

2:00 ET/11:00 PT – EAGL Championship: [23] New Hampshire, [27] NC State, [33] Rutgers, [35] Maryland, [40] Pittsburgh, [43] George Washington, [44] North Carolina, [59] Towson

2:00 ET/11:00 PT – MAC Championship: [18] Central Michigan, [26] Kent State, [42] Bowling Green, [45] Eastern Michigan, [46] Western Michigan, [50] Northern Illinois, [56] Ball State

3:00 ET/12:00 PT – SEC Championship Session 1: [12] Auburn, [15] Arkansas, [28] Kentucky, [38] Missouri

4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Big 12 Championship: [3] Oklahoma, [36] West Virginia, [40] Iowa State

4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Pac 12 Championship Session 1: [5] Utah, [7] UCLA, [10] Stanford, [11] Oregon State

5:00 ET/2:00 PT – Big Ten Championship Session 2: [9] Nebraska, [13] Illinois, [14] Minnesota, [15] Penn State

5:00 ET/2:00 PT – MIC Championship: [47] Texas Woman’s, [49] Illinois-Chicago, [51] SEMO, [58] Lindenwood, [60] Illinois State, [67] Centenary

7:00 ET/4:00 PT – SEC Championship Session 2: [1] Florida, [2] LSU, [4] Alabama, [6] Georgia

9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Mountain Rim Championship: [17] Boise State, [20] Denver, [25] BYU, [29] Southern Utah, [32] Utah State

9:30 ET/6:30 PT – Pac 12 Championship Session 2: [19] Cal, [21] Arizona, [22] Arizona State, [34] Washington

10:00 ET/7:00 PT – MPSF Championship: [30] San Jose State, [31] UC Davis, [48] Sacramento State, [53] Air Force, [54] Seattle Pacific, [66] Alaska

SEC Championship Preview

When Missouri joined the SEC and the conference championship switched from a one-session, seven-team behemoth to a two-session meet, there was some push back from a few coaches. (I think Jay Clark wanted it to be contested over two days with several rounds, or something wildly unnecessary.) Flash forward two years, and it has worked out splendidly. With four legitimate title contenders for the last two seasons, the second session of SECs has been equivalent to the lamely named “Four on the Floor” that several of the coaches have long advocated instead of Super Six. Florida, Alabama, LSU, and Georgia will be lobbing 9.950s at each other all meet long in what Bart Connor will inevitably call a “four-ring circus,” and it’s going to take maintaining an exceptional level across all four events to even consider winning this meet. One 49.250 rotation will be enough to bump any team out of it. Having to count a couple 9.825s on bars last year was enough to keep Alabama below Florida, and I have to think that multiple 9.825s will be similarly poisonous this year. “Fine routine” = “Enjoy 4th place.”

And believe it or not, in the SEC the top four seeds are actually competing at the end of the competition, after the bottom four seeds. You know, like at a sporting event. At the risk of turning into too much of a Sarah-Patterson-at-Nationals in my SEC praise (if there were a pull-string doll of Sarah Patterson, it would just say, “It’s great to be here with all these wonderful SEC teams” over and over again), the Pac 12 can still boast that its event is actually broadcast live on TV, which may be the trump card.

Each of the four teams in the final session can manage a couple 49.500 rotations, so it’s going to take at least a very high 197 to win the title, if not a 198. Florida, Alabama, and LSU have all reached 198 this year, and I would actually be mildly surprised if none of the three teams manage it at SECs the way the scoring has been going. If the judges maintain the same standard they have used during the regular season, they will be pushed high on every event right from the start and will have to stay there all meet.

Of the big four, Georgia has the toughest battle for the title because there are still some questions about floor and possibly beam. Questions won’t cut it in a session this competitive, and they’re probably going to need season highs on both beam and floor to stay with everyone else. Based on what we’ve seen lately, if Florida nails four events, I think they’re the best team in the country, but the margin is small enough that they’ll have to nail all four events without any kind of a landing lull. Alabama being in Birmingham may have an influence on the performance (they’ll have the crowd certainly), but I’m not expecting some kind of huge or noticeable home-scoring advantage, mostly because all the scores are going to be high for everyone. There’s no room for a home boost in this field in a 10-capped system. That said, if Alabama wins would I be surprised? Not even slightly. LSU? A little. Georgia? Yes. 

Let’s get into it. The rotation order is as follows:
Session 1: Auburn – VT; Arkansas – UB; Kentucky – BB; Missouri – FX
Session 2: Florida – VT; LSU – UB; Alabama – BB; Georgia – FX


Each of the teams in the second group has recorded several fantastic numbers on vault, and vault has probably been the most consistently high-scoring event of the four, which is traditional but also means that we could see rather even scoring here without one team taking a major advantage. I don’t anticipate the meet being decided on vault unless one team really forgets to pack its sticks. We should see several 49.5s here that basically keep everyone in sight of each other for the other events.

It’s an interesting dynamic on vault because Florida probably has the best final duo in Sloan and Hunter (I’ll allow debate on the matter, but that’s my assessment), but they have not been the best team on vault this season because they can be beat in the beginning of the lineup. LSU lays claim to being the strongest vaulting team because they can realistically get a 9.9 from every spot in the lineup, while Florida, Alabama, and Georgia are much more likely to start with a couple 9.850s, which makes the difference. For LSU, the lowest score often ends up being for Ashleigh Gnat’s gargantuan 1.5 in the fourth position, solely because it’s so much harder to stick that one. If LSU is going to win (which is certainly possible but I would still consider it an upset if they did), they’ll need to take advantage of the 1-6 depth they possess and get those big scores from Dickson and Jordan right from the start. The first three or four vault scores for each team will be a telling comparison as we go through the meet. 

If vault is essential for LSU, it’s just as essential for Georgia because if the Gym Dogs are going to pull off the unexpected rise from 4th to 1st, they’ll have to vault like monsters and stick at least four. I’m still on the Lindsey Cheek 10 watch, and if they can get controlled landings from Rogers and Jay for 9.925s instead of steps for 9.850s to support her, they’ll be competitive. But everyone will have to be on, so that also means a stick from Davis and one of Cat Hires’s non-short vaults.

Florida begins the meet on vault, which we tend to think of as advantageous (though I think the advantage of Olympic order is way overstated), but it actually might pose a challenge. Vault is Florida’s lowest-ranked event (at 5th), and last year Florida began SECs on vault as well with a somewhat regular performance that they had to recover from on the final three events in order to win. The vaults from Spicer and Bridgey Caquatto must be under control from the start – none of these bounces – so that they’re not giving away too much before the final vaulters. The other teams may also appreciate that Florida is starting on vault, because Kytra is most likely to break the 10 barrier there, which makes it more likely that the 10s will also flow for the other teams once they arrive at vault.

Alabama is the team that sticks. That’s how they make their impact on vault, and why it was so surprising last year that the sticks went away at Nationals. A lot of the accountability for Alabama not being able to defeat a fall-counting Florida has gone to the errors on beam, but they were put in that position by failing to stick vaults two rotations before. I don’t think this current Alabama vault team is as talented as the ones we have seen the last couple years without Gutierrez, Sledge, and Williams, so the sticks will be that much more important, especially from Beers who can stick for a 9.950 to support Milliner’s inevitable high score. 

The first session will be a battle between Auburn and Arkansas, and with both teams capable of 197s, we could see one pounce on a top-four team if one of the higher seeds has a trouble day. It’s not guaranteed that Florida, LSU, Alabama, and Georgia will finish in the top four, just likely. In the Auburn and Arkansas competition, Auburn has the edge on vault. Arkansas has a couple struggle vaults in that rotation that make it hard for Grable’s excellent to bring the score too high, so if Auburn is on point with the landings and gets the big scores from Rott and Atkinson at the end, they can build up a multi-tenth advantage here.


As we rotate to bars, we encounter the must-dominate event for Georgia. This is true not just in the SEC race but looking toward Nationals as well where Georgia will likely be in a fight for the final spot to advance out of one of the semifinals. They’ll have to be much better than the competition on bars to win that fight. It’s their trump card. There are several dreams in this Georgia bars rotation: Kiera Brown’s tkatchev, Brittany Rogers’s stalders, all the handstands, Chelsea Davis’s everything. But, those are just pleasant little wisps of nothing without the landings to go with them. Those landings disappeared last week against Utah, and they need to reappear immediately. At its best, this is a multi-9.950 rotation and another event where Georgia needs those 9.950s and needs to outscore the competition, not just stay with, but outscore.

Florida is great on bars as well (#2 in the country) but can still get getter, and when we think about Florida’s path to a championship repeat, wiping the floor with everyone on bars is a significant part of that path. If this competition is viewed as a Florida-Alabama showdown, which it isn’t necessarily, bars is where Florida accumulates its advantage over Alabama, with three to four legitimate 9.950 possibilities. I actually thought, especially given the scoring this season, that we would see a few more meets where Sloan, Macko, and Johnson were straight 9.950s at the end of the lineup, but the landings have taken some time to get under control and there are just a couple breaks here and there–handstands sometimes for Macko, Johnson’s DLO, Sloan’s bail–that can bring them down especially if the landings aren’t there. If the Gators are to win the SEC again, they’ll look for something like a two-tenth advantage over Alabama and LSU on bars, and that will come from the promise of the march of the 9.950s finally coming to fruition.

In Sarie Morrison and Rheagan Courville, LSU has the back end of a lineup to compete with the rest of the teams in the SEC on bars, which has so rarely been the case in this program’s history. These last two seasons have seen a bars revolution to the point where this team is not giving away all that much. They can get their 9.9s, and Randii Wyrick’s coming into form at the end of the year only helps, but I don’t see LSU matching the scores that Florida and Georgia will put up on bars in the exact opposite of the situation on vault. Here, LSU is the team that doesn’t have the possible 9.9s from the very first position the way that Georgia and Florida do. Low 49.4s would be a very good bars score for LSU and would set them up well, but it would also result in a some disadvantage in the overall title race. 

Alabama has done a respectable job at enduring bars this season. Losing Priess, Sledge, and Alexin made it seem at the beginning of the season that they would be starting from scratch on this event, and in some ways that has been the case. Bars a very different dynamic than the rotation had last season, and one of the disadvantages Alabama faces is that they don’t have those go-to 9.9 routines that the other three top teams have. A couple of the Alabama bars workers can get 9.9s, but it’s not a given that they’ll do it and it’s usually really exciting for them when it happens. I’m very interested to see what the judges do with some of those Alabama handstands and with Aja Sims’ routine, with the leg breaks that haven’t really been deducted so far this season. But, broken record alert, this team can stick some DLOs like no one’s business. It definitely brings up those scores, and could help erase a potential deficit to Florida, especially if the Gators are stepping out on us.


Discussing beam in the SEC is far less terrifying than discussing beam in the Pac 12. There are still mistakes. There are still fountains of terror just waiting to spurt, but I have a lot more confidence that we will see multiple hit beam rotations, namely from Alabama. Alabama has several strong events, but on vault and floor, I expect other teams to be able to score right with them, which mitigates some of the advantage. On beam, Alabama is capable of putting together a wobble-free rotation that provides some separation between them and other teams. Much like how landings become everything in a year of high scores, on beam, lack of wobbles and a stuck dismount can be a direct route to 9.950s, and we’ve seen that for the Tide this season. Alabama begins on beam, and I don’t expect that to be any kind of an issue. If any team should start on beam, it should be Alabama.

No team has been immune from the beam mistakes this year, but like Alabama, Florida has kept them to a minimum, the struggle against UCLA early in the season and then that mini-meltdown at Alabama come to mind, but mostly they have been able to get those essential nailed routines from Sloan and Macko at the end of the lineup for 9.925s to bring in the big scores. However, there has been enough concern in the Florida beam lineup that Kytra has been moved to the anchor position, so maybe that’s reason for a doubt or two to creep in. Kytra’s average on beam this year is in the 9.7s, and ever since the Super Six incident, her beam hasn’t been a guaranteed hit. Both Kytra and Alaina Johnson will have to get through without a major wobble so that Florida isn’t forced to count a couple of those 9.825s that I warned about.

LSU experienced a beam boost in 2013, and another boost in 2014, to become a solidly competitive team on this event. They haven’t yet recorded a beam rotation below 49, which is a huge deal for this team. The most important change this season has been the addition of Gnat, who can score right with Courville and Jordan and give the team a dynamic trio. However, like Florida, there is still some concern in this lineup. A couple of the early routines are still questionable, and they’ve been working against a low score for several meets lately. As great as Courville’s routine can be, there is definite risk in that arabian, which means that she might throw in a 9.7 with a big wobble that they certainly don’t want to count. That puts more pressure on people like Hall and Ewing to get their hits and not just rely on the back three to save the rotation.

Georgia has had a few more beam struggles this season that the other teams, not necessarily devastating scores (and still good enough to be #5 in the country) but some counting 9.7s and working against early falls. For the last two years, the story for Georgia has been big scores in the first two rotations that fall away in the last two. Georgia doesn’t always get the big beam scores that the others get, so aside from having the beginning of the rotation stay on the beam–obviously–they’ll need both Cheek and Earls to hit for those 9.9s, otherwise it’s hard to imagine this rotation scoring well enough to keep the Gym Dogs on pace. The team’s RQS is a 49.240, but they’ll need to beat by at least a tenth to stay close.

In the first session, if Arkansas is going to make a move on Auburn, it will happen on beam. Auburn has struggled with consistency this year, counting falls fairly frequently, so even though they have some sublime routines from Walker and Atkinson, Arkansas could use hits from Dillard, Nelson, and Wellick – even just for 9.825 or so – to build up a margin that Grable can bring home with her anchor routine. Auburn should be stronger on vault and floor, so if Arkansas is going to win the session, it will have to be because of beam.


Floor is the prime area where the judges are going to need to be wary of keeping their big scores to themselves like good little children because based on the scoring so far this season, with all these strong teams together in the same place, we could see the scores go so high so early that there would be no room to create any kind of separation between routines. Then, everyone is a 9.950 and there’s no advantage to the best routines. Florida, LSU, and Alabama have all scored at least 49.675 this season on floor, which is crazy and means that on any given day, any of them could score a remarkable number here.

These three teams are all very even, but I would say that Kytra gives Florida an edge because she is the most likely 10. Florida also has what I think is the smartest lineup construction of the three teams. Sloan and Hunter have the quality and notoriety to get big scores in any position in the lineup, so putting them at 4th and 5th, rather than the traditional 5th and 6th, allows them to boost the scores for Bridgey Caquatto’s pleasant and well-executed (but not Kytra-esque) routine and make it another contender for the 9.925s that it wouldn’t necessarily get going before those two. It’s a perfect example of difficulty building to cleanliness, which helps bump up the score for the cleanliness.

LSU and Alabama should also be right there for 49.5s or more, and therefore like vault, I don’t expect floor to end up telling us that much about who wins this meet. These three teams are too even for us to expect any one of them to move ahead or drop behind by an appreciable margin here. With Jacob and Milliner for Alabama and Courville and Hall for LSU, both teams have the 9.950s to keep up the scoring parade. Hall has been the queen of floor 10s for a while now, but she has since been eclipsed by Kytra and hasn’t received a 10 in over a month. What a drought! Her returning to the land of royalty at SECs would be a welcome development for LSU since these last couple weeks they have been throwing in a few 9.6s and 9.7s that we wouldn’t expect. All of these teams can get high 9.8s through to 9.9s during their floor rotations, so counting a 9.750 could be devastating by comparison. 

As for Georgia, this event is the team’s biggest challenge, a challenge that is not helped by the fact that the scores have been going so high on floor, meaning that a struggle rotation is much more dangerous on floor than it is on beam because it results in a larger deficit. Last weekend saw some progress on floor for Georgia in a season-high score, with Jay and Rogers both hitting their routines at the same time and no one giving away some kind of silly OOB error. The problem is that this was Georgia’s best floor showing and still resulted in a 49.450, which will probably end up being the fourth-best floor score we see at SECs, so the Gym Dogs are going to need to find even another gear up from last week to avoid giving up too much of a deficit.

It’s all happening. All the gymnastics. You should probably get excited.

Okay, DONE.

Pac-12 Championship Preview

It’s time for the Pac-12 Championship once again, that annual clash of teams who are really proud of their floor choreography and probably won’t peak until June, and as has been the case for the last couple seasons, we enter the competition without a dominant favorite. Utah comes in as the top seed, with UCLA close behind, and Stanford and Oregon State nipping at them a few places back in the rankings. This event has featured some upsets in recent years, and it’s easy to envision a back-and-forth affair with multiple lead changes where all four top teams at least pretend to be in the hunt for a while. Utah and UCLA have been the bigger scorers this season and therefore seem the likely favorites, but I don’t expect the competition to be as clear cut as that. We have seen Oregon State save its best gymnastics for Pac-12s several times in the last few years, and Stanford often makes a sudden, late, unexpected charge during the postseason. It’s going to be a competitive session.

But here’s something dumb: This year, because Cal is hosting the event and elected to be in the evening session, these four favorite teams will be competing in the afternoon session, while the bottom four teams (Cal, Arizona, Arizona State, and Washington) will be competing in the evening session. Yes, this is counter-intuitive and bizarre. Or, as Greg Marsden said, “It’s complete lunacy. It’s just really stupid.” Correct. Hole in one, Marsden.

I’ll be at the meet, and I expect it to be exceptionally anticlimactic in that second session when the title has already been decided hours before and everyone is just waiting around for these 9.750s to finish, like in a marathon when the stragglers finally stumble across the finish line well after night has fallen. Good for them for finishing, but everyone already tuned out after the medals were awarded.

It’s one of those short-sighted decisions that tends to occur a lot in NCAA gymnastics that are made solely with the immediate arena in mind (the hope of dragging in 11 more Cal fans in the evening session) at the expense of being broadcast-friendly or running a serious sporting event in a sane and exciting way.

Still, regardless of when the top seeds compete, it should be a close one. I was going to say “good one.” We hope it’s a good one. It could also be a mess. But I don’t expect a runaway regardless, so let’s break this thing down by event.


If Utah is going to win the Pac-12 Championship for the first time, it will be achieved on the strength of vault. There is no other team in the Pac-12 within two tenths of the Utes in RQS on this event, and they have recorded each of the top five vault rotation scores in the conference this season. Because the other events will be less cut and dry, Utah will want to fulfill the prophecy of RQS and build up something in the vicinity of a two-tenth advantage here, which is doable. None of the other teams have three vaulters as strong as Delaney, Wilson, and Dabritz, so if Utah is to take that big advantage on vault, they’re going to need 9.950s from their final three, which we have seen from time of time this season. But, to get those scores at Pac-12s, they’re going to need a couple more sticks than they have shown the past few weeks. You can never expect a 9.950 for a non-stick, especially in a postseason scenario. It happens, but you can’t expect it if you’re bouncing back on the landing.

Dabritz has downgraded back to the Yfull, which was expected. I’m actually surprised we saw as much of the 1.5 as we did, but Utah tends to revert back to safety in routine composition (which is also why we never see the Dabritz comaneci). It’s kind of disappointing because I like to see the 1.5, but on the other hand she’s more likely to stick the full. Though the decision really only pays off if she does stick, otherwise it’s quite hard for her full to score higher than Delaney’s and Wilson’s and build the scores to the end of the rotation. (If it were me, I’d have Dabritz doing the Y1.5 in the fourth position in the lineup, ready to bump up the scores for the cleaner landings from Wilson and Delaney to follow. I always like difficulty building to cleanliness as a lineup strategy.) 

The rest of vault is a bit of a mixed bag. UCLA has the biggest scorers of the rest of the group in Peszek and Courtney, who can both get 9.950 and will need it to make up for some of the landings we’ve seen at the beginning of this lineup. If UCLA can manage some 9.825s or 9.850s from Pinches and Mossett along with a hit from Bynum, who has been up and down, they should be in good shape. When the Bruins beat Utah on vault two weeks ago in Ann Arbor, the Bynum hit was a huge factor in that, but then she went and fell last weekend. Cameo performances from Michigan Sadiqua and January Sawa wouldn’t go amiss in keeping the Bruins competitive.

Stanford can be strong on vault, but we haven’t seen it nearly enough this year. With both McNairs, Rachel Daum’s power, Kristina Vaculik’s excellent distance, and Taylor Rice’s improved full, there’s excellent potential in this lineup. But, they need to continue putting the landings together and not bouncing and hopping all over the place, which tends to get them stuck in the 9.8s too often–also the problem for Oregon State. Both of these teams can comfortably put up low 49s, but it’s going to take consistent 49.3-49.4 rotations to win this title. Oregon State has received a boost from Erika Aufiero the past couple weeks on vault but also shows a lot of 9.825s, which has been the Beaver story since the departure of Britney Ranzy. The added trouble for Oregon State is that they haven’t shown the big event so far this year that can get a 49.5 to help overcome a 9.825 vault rotation.  

In the B session, Cal will need to make a move on vault to win its group. Serena Leong and Alicia Asturias have both shown 9.875-9.900 potential this year, and Dallas Crawford and Jessica Howe provide solid supporting vaults (though Howe has been slowed by a broken toe) to give the team depth of scores and security it hasn’t really had before. If one person is off, there are still possible 9.850s coming from elsewhere. Something 49.200-49.250, which they have reached a couple times on the road this year, would be very welcome and provide a nice early cushion.


Things get a little more complicated when it comes to bars because I’m not blown away by any of the Pac-12 teams on bars this year. The big scores have popped, and popped up pretty frequently, but I have concerns for each of the teams, which means that it’s probably going to come down to whichever team can stick more dismounts. In a year of high scoring, the dismounts become that much more important, so even if the routines themselves are a bit [side-eye], a team could still stick a bunch of dismounts to get a 49.500 and suddenly have a major advantage over the teams that are stepsville. 

Utah and UCLA come in ranked nearly identically on bars, and both teams have a number of likely 9.850s in their lineups. UCLA has a very clean opening from Danusia Francis usually for a 9.850, which helps set the tone, but much of the Bruins’ success will be decided by whether Olivia Courtney can stick her dismount for a 9.900 (she’s so capable of sticking that she needs to do it every week) and how everyone feels about Sophina DeJesus’s gienger. The crazy legs are getting better (as they did in March last year as well), and both gymnasts will need to bring their big home scores to set up Peszek’s anchor if UCLA is to win the event. If Courtney and DeJesus are doing the Ole Slop and Step, it could end up being a 49.2, which doesn’t remotely help.

I’m going to be the stick police for Utah most of all because that’s their path to 49.4, sticking five of six dismounts. Utah is always flirting with being nickel-and-dimed for flexed feet or amplitude or leg separations, so they need their sticks to erase that and allow Dabritz to finish them off with a 9.950.

Stanford is currently the #4 team in the Pac-12 on bars, but it’s easy to make the argument that they can be the best of the bunch. It’s another event where the McNairs provide a pleasing foundation, but Sami Shapiro and Kristina Vaculik should be the best 1-2 punch on bars in the conference. Shapiro can’t do a lot of the events anymore and has become a bars specialist (and honestly sometimes I forget she’s on the team), but her handstands and toe point remain gorgeous and put her in contention for huge scores with a stick. And Kristina Vaculik + Gienger = Done. The above routine got a 9.850. In other news, I don’t even know anymore. 

Oregon State was the bars master last year in winning the conference title with a 49.6 on the event that blew everyone away, but it’s hard to see that happening again this year with the lineup turnover they have undergone since last season. There are still several strong routines in this lineup with Aufiero and Hannah Casey regularly providing the scores to bring them into the 49.2s or 49.3s, but if they’re going to take advantage of other teams’ mistakes, they’ll need to do it here and they’ll need to do it with multiple 9.9s from some people who have been 9.850 so far like Harris, Tang, or McMillan. Watch those scores. If they’re feeling 9.875+, it could be a good day for the Beavs. 


How do you solve a problem like watching these teams on beam? It’s harrowing. It’s a shame that they make it so upsetting for us because there are a number of individual bright spots throughout the conference who are joys to watch on beam. UCLA has the biggest not-secret weapons on this event in Peszek and Francis, which is why they can still get a 48.9 while counting a fall and why, all things being actually hit, they should be the favorite to win the event. Both can easily go 9.950, and we expect at least a 9.900 from each. The questions revolve around the rest of the lineup because I’m not sure who’s even in it or why. There are 8 people who could conceivably come in, but no options are less terrifying than the others. Syd Sawa has become the anchor because one time she did one good routine as the anchor, but is that a reason? Who else is there? Mikaela Gerber? Ellette Craddock? The physical incarnation of generalized anxiety disorder? At this point, they’re just hoping for four people to stay on the beam before letting Peszek and Francis do their thing, but given the balance beam situation in this whole conference, that could be enough.

Now, it’s time for an important sidebar with Stanford. Hey, Stanford. You should be amazing on this event. Amazing. Work on that. With Shona Morgan’s brilliant leadoff routine, followed by solid, crisp gymnastics from Nicolette McNair and Amanda Spinner and improved consistency from Vaculik, the 49.4s should be flying off the shelves for this team most weeks. I’m still expecting it. On a strong day, Stanford can stay within an acceptable margin of the other teams on vault and bars, but to win the title, they’ll need something 49.5ish on beam, and that’s realistic. They have the beam workers to do it sitting right there in front of them. This is the absolute event to watch for Stanford because 1-6 they can set themselves apart with difficulty and quality the other teams don’t have, but if it’s a wobble day, it’s hard to imagine them coming back from that on the other events without a heaping of help from a couple teams.

Maddie Gardiner is another one of those joyful beam standouts who populates the otherwise nerve-wracking rotations in the Pac-12, and the fact that Oregon State has exceeded my expectations by being the #7 beam team this year is a result of her excellence along with Chelsea Tang’s solidity to bring them to 49.2s. If Oregon State wins this title, it will be a surprise, but it was a surprise the last two times Oregon State won as well, so there’s that. And if they do manage to win or challenge, beam can be one of their sneaky events where they don’t seem particularly flashy, but they creep in with 9.850s, pass up teams making mistakes, and suddenly look dangerous. 

I’ve saved Utah for last of the big favorites because I feel like I’ve said everything possible about Utah on beam this year a hundred million times already. It’s scary. There’s often a lot of tight gymnastics. And they need to hit. Just hit. They need to squeeze every tenth possible out of this lineup. I can’t imagine any team winning while counting a fall because that would mean it was a truly sucky meet, so Utah just needs to get it over with, hit, and let the other events do the talking. If it’s a good day on the other events, they could even get by with a 49.100 or so on beam.    

For the teams in the B session, it will solely be a matter of who hits the most routines. None of these teams have been able to break out of the 49.1s this season, so getting five people to stay on the beam could be the major asset in winning the session. Arizona has hit the 49 barrier the most this season, and has some elegant potential on the event even if consistency is a fleeting friend. In particular, Shelby Edwards is one to watch here if you’re looking for some less-heralded routines to keep an eye on.


Floor is probably the most wide-ranging event of the four at this meet because it is a boon for some teams and an unexpected enemy for others. Usually, we anticipate beam being the problem event  while most teams are able to put together enough double pikes for a rotation of 9.850s on floor, but it has been quite the struggle for a few of the Pac-12 teams so far this year. Not Utah, who is the #1 team in the country on floor and has broken 49.450 more often than not this season. A couple of the people early in the rotation can be hit or miss, but Wilson has impressive power when she’s on, Tutka can regularly be 9.9, Damianova is clean as can be and got her 10 last weekend, and Dabritz is Dabritz. A 49.500 is very believable, and what they end up needing out of their floor rotation will be almost entirely dependent on how beam goes.

UCLA is the next most likely to do well on floor, and even though they have been missing the potential 9.9s from Angi Cipra since her injury, having Peszek join Courtney and Sawa gives them a solid 9.9 trio at the back of the lineup that can keep pace with nearly any team in the country. Floor has no business not being a high-scoring event for UCLA, but they will need to have the utmost control of their landings. There was some bouncing back on tumbling passes and still receiving 9.950s happening over the weekend, and like Utah on vault, they can’t expect that kind of treatment as we move into the land of four judges. UCLA’s path to victory features staying level with Utah on floor, so they’ll need the big hits from the back three, a good start from Pinches (who has turned into an enjoyable floor leadoff these past few weeks), and some hypnotic hairography from Danusia to do it.

Beyond those two teams, it gets a little more depressing. Arizona is the next highest ranked team on floor, but the event can be very finicky for them, sometimes big 49s, sometimes nasty little 48s with falls. Kristin Klarenbach tends to anchor for big scores, and Arizona will need one of those 49.3 rotations to win the second session over Cal, who should be the other top contender. It’s still conceivable that Arizona could become a Regionals seed with a big result at Pac 12s, so there’s more riding on their result than we would normally see in the B session. It may end up that Arizona is fighting Cal to see which team can move up into the top 18 (so that will give us some storyline to watch in the evening group), and floor will be a big asset for Arizona if they are going to beat the hosts. I don’t see Arizona winning the session without winning floor. 

Stanford and Oregon State. Floor has been a struggle for both these teams for much of the year, and it’s the single biggest reason they are coming in below Utah and UCLA in the rankings and in likelihood of winning this meet. Hard as they may try, Oregon State can’t get over losing the routines they lost after last season, and all I seem to think when watching them on floor is, “Hmm, where’s Melanie Jones?” The 9.9s just haven’t been there often enough this year when they were almost guaranteed last year. Stanford is doing well to get Nicolette McNair back into the lineup to give them some more difficulty, but is it going to work? She needs to be competing, but she also needs to find a way to hit to help support the possible 9.9s we could see from Rice and Vaculik. Stanford is only 21st in the country on floor, and it has felt like it. If Stanford or Oregon State are to win, I have to think it will take a season-best on floor. 
So there we have it. Four events. Some greatness and some terror. Hopefully things are less clear now than they were when we started. You’re welcome.  

Week 10 Rankings and Final RQS Scenarios

The regular season is done and spent and wafting behind us in a cloud of 9.925-laden smoke. We have now entered championships season. Because we’ve had so many 10s this year (22 by my count so far, the most since the 10 explosions in the early 2000s when there were 11,000 each year), this has become a weekly rundown of the most recent 10s as well as the rankings, and this week we had five more entrants. Kytra on floor, obviously, but also some newbies: Scaman on vault, Clark and Francis on beam, and Damianova on floor. I’ll give you negative three guesses as to which was my favorite.

Now, onto the rankings. With just the conference championships remaining to change the RQS landscape before we head into Regionals, we now have a fairly reliably picture of how things will play out. First, note that the rankings below are adjusted from those currently seen on troester to reflect the most recent scores. Troester has Minnesota in 16th, but taking into account their results from the Big Ten quad meet, they are in 14th, so that’s where I have them.

For each team below, in addition to the RQS breakdown, I have included the team’s maximum possible RQS as a reference point to see what is possible for each team, along with a few notes about the scores they would need to move up or retain the current position. For the teams currently outside the top 36 (and therefore out of Regionals), I have included the score they would need to have any chance to move into that top 36 group. Because we can expect many teams to increase their RQSs over the weekend, these teams will likely have to score higher than the minimum number included here in order to stand a chance of advancing.  

Also for reference, the current Regionals placements if today’s rankings hold (and adjusting for hosts), would be as follows:

Regional 1: [1] Florida, [12] Auburn, [14] Minnesota (host – 7ET/4PT)
Regional 2: [2] LSU (host – 5ET/2PT), [11] Oregon State, [13] Illinois
Regional 3: [3] Oklahoma, [10] Stanford, [15] Penn State (host – 4ET/1PT)
Regional 4: [4] Alabama, [9] Nebraska, [16] Arkansas (host – 5ET/2PT)
Regional 5: [5] Utah, [8] Michigan, [17] Boise State (Washington host – 7ET/4PT)
Regional 6: [6] Georgia (host – 4ET/1PT), [7] UCLA, [18] Central Michigan

Week 10 Rankings
1. Florida – 197.790
Week 10: 198.200
Week 10 leaders: AA – Sloan 39.825; VT – Sloan, Hunter 9.950; UB – Sloan 9.975; BB – Sloan 9.950; FX – Hunter 10.000

Road Score 1: 198.200
Road Score 2: 197.400
Road Score 3: 197.175
Road/Home Score 1: 198.325
Road/Home Score 2: 198.125
Road/Home Score 3: 198.050

Maximum RQS: 198.020

It has been a road score challenge for Florida for much of the year, but it just took one big number to erase all of that and suddenly make them the top-scoring road team on the season with a 198.200. Florida is now in the clear driver’s seat when it comes to most things, including the season-ending #1 ranking. Their four scores in the 198s are basically unassailable at this point, and with a 197.175 still hanging around, the Gators will need just a 197.300 at SECs to sew up #1. Given the way things have been going, they would probably have to count a mistake even to get down as low as 197.300. The Gators will just miss out on a chance to pass UCLA’s record RQS of 198.055, but they can eclipse last year’s RQS total of 197.840 by scoring a 197.425 at SECs, and can break the 198 RQS barrier with a 198.225 at SECs.

2. LSU – 197.720
Week 10: 197.800
Week 10 leaders: AA – Courville 39.625; VT – Courville, Dickson 9.925; UB – Courville 9.950; BB – Gnat 9.950; FX – Hall 9.925

Road Score 1: 197.875
Road Score 2: 197.650
Road Score 3: 197.625
Road/Home Score 1: 198.050
Road/Home Score 2: 197.800
Road/Home Score 3: 197.650

Maximum RQS: 197.805

Florida had accrued enough huge home scores that it was going to take just one big road number for the Gators to jump to #1, and that’s just what happened, even though LSU put up a very strong 197.800 over the weekend with a consistent stretch of 49.4+ rotations. SECs is going to get fascinating because we could see three teams break 198 in that second session, and it wouldn’t even be that surprising. Another meet featuring strong 49.4 rotations for a high 197 would be a respectable outcome, but it’s quite possible to do just that finish 3rd. It’s going to take rotations of 9.9s, 49.5s and 49.6s, to win SECs the way things have been going so far this year. As mentioned, Florida basically has a stranglehold on #1 right now. LSU has put up consistently great scores all year, but the scores are all fairly close together, which means there’s not too much room for them to move up in RQS, even with a season high at SECs. They’ll need a 197.975 to have a shot at passing Florida if the Gators have a poor meet, but things get more interesting in the LSU/Oklahoma race.

3. Oklahoma – 197.660
Week 10: 197.425
Week 10 leaders: AA – None; VT – Scaman 10.000; UB – Kmieciak 9.850; BB – Spears 9.950; FX – Scaman 9.950

Road Score 1: 198.175
Road Score 2: 198.150
Road Score 3: 197.575
Road/Home Score 1: 197.700
Road/Home Score 2: 197.450
Road/Home Score 3: 197.425

Maximum RQS: 197.810

We’re living in a year where mid 197s are just average scores for the very top teams, and a recent flood of mid-197s has seen Oklahoma fall from first to third. These mid 197s are usually the result of a lower bars score, which I would not have called going into the year, or even early in the season when the Sooners looked exceptional on bars against Arizona. There’s just a lot of 9.850ing going around. (Even so, they’re still third in the nation on the event, but there have been way too many 49.1s lately.) Like LSU, Oklahoma has a slim, slim chance to pass Florida, but they would need a 198.100 at Big 12s along with some help to do it. But, Oklahoma does have a realistic shot at passing LSU this weekend. If both teams manage to score well and increase their RQSs, Oklahoma can move ahead of LSU by outscoring them by .125. The race between these two teams will be something to watch, especially for those 10-15 ranked schools.

4. Alabama – 197.405
Week 10: 197.925
Week 10 leaders: AA – Jacob 39.625; VT – Milliner 9.950; UB – Sims 9.900; BB – Clark 10.000; FX – Milliner 9.950

Road Score 1: 197.500
Road Score 2: 197.100
Road Score 3: 196.825
Road/Home Score 1: 198.250
Road/Home Score 2: 197.925
Road/Home Score 3: 197.675

Maximum RQS: 197.690

For most of the season, Florida, LSU, and Oklahoma have maintained an edge over the rest of the teams, but that discussion must be expanded to include four favorites because Alabama is scoring right with these other teams, as we would always expect from them coming to the postseason. I still have some questions, most of them regarding realistic bars scores, but at this point, Alabama appears at least in the same vicinity as the current top 3. This #4 ranking looks fairly comfortable for Alabama going into SECs, with some threat from Utah below. Alabama would need a 197.775 to guarantee staying ahead of Utah, which is certainly attainable given what we have seen the past couple weeks, but it probably won’t take quite that much. Utah would have to get a 198 at Pac-12s for that to be a realistic scenario. Also in the less realistic scenario department, Alabama could move ahead of Oklahoma with a 198.125 as long as Oklahoma doesn’t increase RQS at all.

5. Utah – 197.365
Week 10: 198.025
Week 10 leaders: AA – Wilson 39.400; VT – Wilson, Delaney, Dabritz 9.950; UB – Dabritz 9.925; BB – Delaney, Wilson 9.925; FX – Damianova 10.000

Road Score 1: 197.350
Road Score 2: 197.200
Road Score 3: 196.875
Road/Home Score 1: 198.025
Road/Home Score 2: 197.825
Road/Home Score 3: 197.575

Maximum RQS: 197.595

Utah hit beam over the weekend, and the rest is just sort of a blur because this is clearly a fantasy world. Oh, Utah, you used up your beam hit already. Now what are you going to do once the postseason starts? The Utes are in a very comfortable position with RQS, essentially guaranteed of staying ahead of Georgia and with a chance to move ahead of Alabama should circumstances play out in their favor. To move ahead of Alabama, they would need at least a 197.075, plus some help from the Tide not moving up at all. Although, given the current Regionals situation, there’s not much advantage (and perhaps a disadvantage) to being the 4th seed versus being the 5th seed. Pac-12s will not so much be about the score for Utah as it will be about trying to hit beam two meets in a row.

6. Georgia – 197.200
Week 10: 197.600
Week 10 leaders: AA – Rogers 39.600; VT – Jay 9.950; UB – Rogers 9.900; BB – Cheek 9.925; FX – Jay 9.950

Road Score 1: 197.600
Road Score 2: 196.875
Road Score 3: 196.825
Road/Home Score 1: 197.650
Road/Home Score 2: 197.400
Road/Home Score 3: 197.300

Maximum RQS: 197.365

Georgia may have lost to Utah on Saturday, but they’ll take that road 197.600 any day. They didn’t perform nearly as well as we would expect on bars in the first rotation, particularly in the landings, which basically took them out of the meet from the beginning, but the other three events were solidly encouraging. It was a much more consistent floor rotation than I’ve seen from this team all year. The 197.600 likely assures Georgia of remaining in this #6 spot. They can potentially tie Utah, but that would require a season-high score at SECs and Utah scoring 196.875 or lower at Pac-12s. It could happen, but it’s not the most likely scenario and would only result in a tie if it did happen (though both teams do currently have a similar 7th-best score, which could make a tiebreaker interesting).

7. UCLA – 197.005
Week 10: 197.050
Week 10 leaders: AA – Peszek 39.700; VT – Peszek 9.950; UB – Peszek 9.975; BB – Francis 10.000; FX – Courtney 9.950

Road Score 1: 197.500
Road Score 2: 197.475
Road Score 3: 196.675
Road/Home Score 1: 197.050
Road/Home Score 2: 196.925
Road/Home Score 3: 196.900

Maximum RQS: 197.170

Getting a 10 and counting a fall in the same beam rotation. That’s our UCLA. It has been the season of the ups and downs, and that beam rotation encapsulated it perfectly–the joy of Danusia’s 10 followed immediately by the Sawa fall, brought home even more by the fact that all we could see of Val on the feed was her frustrated right hand gesticulating. The Bruins may be able to get by through enduring the first couple routines and then letting Peszek, Francis, and Courtney save the day at the back of the lineups in the regular season, but they can’t afford days like Sunday in the postseason, with beam falls and two missed landings on vault. Nonetheless, the 197 was enough to clinch an important top-8 ranking. UCLA can’t move up any higher than 7th, though, and may be in a close fight with Michigan to see which team gets that spot since the maximum RQS for both teams is very close. The Bruins would need a 197.475 to assure themselves of 7th.

8. Michigan – 196.900
Week 10: 196.025
Week 10 leaders: AA – Sampson 39.600; VT – Sheppard 9.950; UB – Sampson 9.950; BB – Artz, Sampson 9.900; FX – Sampson 9.925

Road Score 1: 196.800
Road Score 2: 196.650
Road Score 3: 196.525
Road/Home Score 1: 197.825

Road/Home Score 2: 197.325
Road/Home Score 3: 197.200

Maximum RQS: 197.160

Everyone has a beamtastrophe from time to time, and while Michigan was not alone in doing so over the weekend, it was not the best time for the beam monster to creep up of them. What had been a comfortable two-tenth lead over Nebraska has become a much less comfortable .070 lead going into the Big Tens confrontation between the two teams, who do still look like the two clear favorites for the conference title. The positive news for Michigan is that they still have a very manageable 196.525 to get rid of. They’ll be guaranteed to fend off Nebraska as long as they score a 196.800 and will have a chance to challenge UCLA with a 197.050 depending on what the Bruins do.

9. Nebraska – 196.830
Week 10: 197.050
Week 10 leaders: AA – Wong 39.625; VT – Everyone 9.875; UB – Wong 9.925; BB – DeZiel 9.900; FX – Wong 9.950

Road Score 1: 197.225
Road Score 2: 197.050
Road Score 3: 196.650
Road/Home Score 1: 196.975
Road/Home Score 2: 196.850
Road/Home Score 3: 196.625

Maximum RQS: 196.950

It appears that Nebraska did just enough at the quad meet over the weekend to secure the #9 position unless they just get nipped by a series of Stanford-friendly events. None of the individual rotation scores were particularly large, but they did hit every event, didn’t have to count anything low, and had enough 9.875s to break 197 for the first time since early February. It’s possible that the Huskers could move ahead of Michigan depending on their results at Big Tens (and with the potential advantage over Michigan of competing in the later session). It’s just one ranking spot either way, but it could be an important spot if the current Regionals and hosting situation holds true. Nebraska needs at least a 197.000 to pass Michigan if Michigan does not increase.
10. Stanford – 196.640
No meet

Road Score 1: 197.275
Road Score 2: 196.825
Road Score 3: 196.300
Road/Home Score 1: 197.000
Road/Home Score 2: 196.750
Road/Home Score 3: 196.325

Maximum RQS: 196.835

Stanford was not in action last weekend, and what was a cushy position in the top 10 for most of the season has now become a bit more questionable. They have just a very slim chance of moving ahead of Nebraska with a season high and a low score from the Huskers, but they will mostly be concerned with fending off the assaults from Oregon State, Auburn, and Illinois, all of whom could potentially move ahead. It’s hard to say which of the spots in this 9-16 section will end up being most advantageous, but if I’m a team like Stanford, I would probably prefer to end up in LSU’s Regional at this point to avoid a meeting with a third-seeded host. 

11. Oregon State – 196.610
Week 10: 196.250
Week 10 leaders: AA – Gardiner 39.300; VT – Aufiero 9.900; UB – Aufiero, McMillain 9.875; BB – Gardiner 9.900; FX – Ponto 9.875

Road Score 1: 197.050
Road Score 2: 196.450
Road Score 3: 196.250
Road/Home Score 1: 197.100
Road/Home Score 2: 196.675
Road/Home Score 3: 196.625 

Maximum RQS: 196.780

The Beavers are very close to Stanford in the rankings now, and with a similar score ready to be dropped, Oregon State can move ahead of Stanford as long as they can separate themselves from that low 196.250 by a couple tenths and outscore the Cardinal by .125.
12. Auburn – 196.560
Week 10: 196.175
Week 10 leaders: AA – Atkinson 39.525; VT – Demers 9.900; UB – Walker 9.875; BB – Atkinson 9.950; FX – Atkinson, Webster 9.875

Road Score 1: 196.850
Road Score 2: 196.550
Road Score 3: 196.175
Road/Home Score 1: 197.100
Road/Home Score 2: 197.000
Road/Home Score 3: 196.225

Maximum RQS: 196.745

Auburn could move as high as 10th but will be more concerned with fending off the challenges from below with a number of teams at least potentially capable of passing and Illinois with the same maximum RQS should both teams record season highs.

13. Illinois – 196.495
Week 10: 196.875
Week 10 leaders: AA – O’Connor 39.100; VT – See, Buchanan 9.900; UB – Kato 9.900; BB – Horth 9.875; FX – See 9.925

Road Score 1: 196.875
Road Score 2: 196.500
Road Score 3: 195.850
Road/Home Score 1: 197.100
Road/Home Score 2: 196.775
Road/Home Score 3: 196.475

Maximum RQS: 196.745

Illinois could also move up as high as 10th and will need at least a 196.175 at Big Tens to have a chance to move ahead of Auburn and become a second seed should Auburn not manage a good score at SECs. 

14. Minnesota – 196.415
Week 10: 196.700
Week 10 leaders: AA – Mable 39.600; VT – Mable 9.900; UB – Mable 9.875; BB – Mable 9.925; FX – Mable 9.900

Road Score 1: 196.700
Road Score 2: 196.525
Road Score 3: 196.350
Road/Home Score 1: 197.250
Road/Home Score 2: 196.275
Road/Home Score 3: 196.225

Maximum RQS: 196.620

Minnesota can move up as high as 11th but would need to get a season-high road score of 196.950 to become a second seed, so remaining a third seed is much more likely. 

15. Penn State – 196.410
Week 10: 196.475
Week 10 leaders: AA – Stauder, Welsh 39.275; VT – Sibson, Welsh 9.825; UB – Stauder 9.900; BB – Stauder 9.900; FX – Musgrove, Welsh 9.850

Road Score 1: 197.200
Road Score 2: 196.475
Road Score 3: 196.150
Road/Home Score 1: 196.675
Road/Home Score 2: 196.600
Road/Home Score 3: 196.150

Maximum RQS: 196.620

Like Auburn and Illinois, Penn State and Minnesota also have the same maximum RQS so will be in a close fight this weekend to see which team hosts which top team and questionable second seed. Penn State would need a 196.900 to have any chance to be a second seed.  

16. Arkansas – 196.355
Week 10: 196.650
Week 10 leaders: AA – Grable 39.625; VT – Grable 9.925; UB – Salmon, Wellick 9.825; BB – Grable 9.925; FX – Grable 9.975

Road Score 1: 196.700
Road Score 2: 196.100
Road Score 3: 196.050
Road/Home Score 1: 197.100
Road/Home Score 2: 196.650
Road/Home Score 3: 196.275 

Maximum RQS: 196.565

Arkansas has a very, very slim chance to move up as high as #12, but they are another team primarily looking at being a dangerous third seed, a status they have already clinched.

17. Boise State – 196.200
Week 10: 195.925
Week 10 leaders: AA – Morris 39.350; VT – Black 9.875; UB – Morris 9.875; BB – Morris 9.800; FX – Perkins 9.875

Road Score 1: 196.325
Road Score 2: 196.000
Road Score 3: 195.925
Road/Home Score 1: 196.975
Road/Home Score 2: 196.550
Road/Home Score 3: 196.200

Maximum RQS: 196.410
Boise State could move into a tie for #15 but would need a 196.700 to have a chance to move up any spots. They would need a 196.450 to guarantee themselves a seeded spot at a Regional. 

18. Central Michigan – 196.165
Week 10: 196.175
Week 10 leaders: AA – None; VT – Moraw, K Petzold 9.850; UB – Bolender, Fagan 9.850; BB – Moraw 9.875; FX – Bolender, Moraw 9.900

Road Score 1: 196.500
Road Score 2: 196.425
Road Score 3: 195.925
Road/Home Score 1: 196.600
Road/Home Score 2: 196.175
Road/Home Score 3: 195.800

Maximum RQS: 196.325
Central Michigan is the bubble team right now when it comes to being seeded and can guarantee that third-seed status with a 196.525 at MACs. 

19. California – 196.095

Road Score 1: 196.725
Road Score 2: 196.075
Road Score 3: 196.025
Road/Home Score 1: 196.425
Road/Home Score 2: 196.275
Road/Home Score 3: 195.675

Maximum RQS: 196.305

Cal is just on the outside at the moment, but still has a 195.675 to drop with a home championships and cushy evening session spot coming up this weekend, so it seems doable. They would have to score at least a 196.025 to have a chance at one of the seeded Regionals spots.

20. Denver – 196.020

Road Score 1: 196.550
Road Score 2: 195.875
Road Score 3: 195.825
Road/Home Score 1: 196.725
Road/Home Score 2: 196.050
Road/Home Score 3: 195.800

Maximum RQS: 196.205
Denver could reach as high as 17th, but it’s going to be a bit tougher for them to become a third seed. They would need at least a 196.525 this weekend to even think about it. 

21. Arizona – 195.950

NOTE: Arizona’s ranking reflects the RQS before Monday’s meet, since Monday meets are not traditionally included in the rankings, but tonight’s 195.775 is included in the RQS calculations below.

RQS – Current 196.035 (ranking would be #20):
Road Score 1: 195.850
Road Score 2: 195.775
Road Score 3: 195.625
Road/Home Score 1: 196.925
Road/Home Score 2: 196.500
Road/Home Score 3: 196.425

Maximum RQS: 196.295

Arizona also has a chance to move up into the seeded positions if they can leapfrog several likewise contending teams right above. They would need a 196.275 at Pac 12s to be in it with a chance.

22. Arizona State – 195.745

Road Score 1: 195.900
Road Score 2: 195.575
Road Score 3: 194.950
Road/Home Score 1: 196.200
Road/Home Score 2: 196.175
Road/Home Score 3: 196.125

Maximum RQS: 195.995

23. New Hampshire – 195.720

Road Score 1: 195.925
Road Score 2: 195.600 
Road Score 3: 195.400
Road/Home Score 1: 196.675
Road/Home Score 2: 196.100
Road/Home Score 3: 195.575

Maximum RQS: 195.940

24. Ohio State – 195.680

Road Score 1: 195.925
Road Score 2: 195.675
Road Score 3: 195.275
Road/Home Score 1: 196.600
Road/Home Score 2: 195.900
Road/Home Score 3: 195.625

Maximum RQS: 195.945

25. BYU – 195.675

Road Score 1: 196.025
Road Score 2: 195.525
Road Score 3: 195.325
Road/Home Score 1: 196.425
Road/Home Score 2: 196.125
Road/Home Score 3: 195.375

Maximum RQS: 195.885

26. Kent State – 195.655

Road Score 1: 195.975
Road Score 2: 195.700
Road Score 3: 195.525
Road/Home Score 1: 196.225
Road/Home Score 2: 195.675
Road/Home Score 3: 195.400

Maximum RQS: 195.820

27. NC State – 195.615

Road Score 1: 195.525
Road Score 2: 195.450
Road Score 3: 195.400
Road/Home Score 1: 196.100
Road/Home Score 2: 196.050
Road/Home Score 3: 195.650

Maximum RQS: 195.755

28. Kentucky – 195.585

Road Score 1: 195.975
Road Score 2: 195.200
Road Score 3: 195.150
Road/Home Score 1: 196.275
Road/Home Score 2: 196.150
Road/Home Score 3: 195.450

Maximum RQS: 195.810

29. Southern Utah – 195.580

Road Score 1: 195.925
Road Score 2: 195.700
Road Score 3: 195.550
Road/Home Score 1: 195.600
Road/Home Score 2: 195.550
Road/Home Score 3: 195.500

Maximum RQS: 195.665

30. San Jose State – 195.510

Road Score 1: 195.725
Road Score 2: 195.550
Road Score 3: 195.400
Road/Home Score 1: 195.800
Road/Home Score 2: 195.775
Road/Home Score 3: 195.100

Maximum RQS: 195.650

31. UC Davis – 195.260

Road Score 1: 195.175
Road Score 2: 194.950
Road Score 3: 194.800
Road/Home Score 1: 196.425
Road/Home Score 2: 195.875
Road/Home Score 3: 195.500

Maximum RQS: 195.445

32. Utah State – 195.250

Road Score 1: 196.000
Road Score 2: 195.225
Road Score 3: 194.400
Road/Home Score 1: 196.000
Road/Home Score 2: 195.525
Road/Home Score 3: 195.100

Maximum RQS: 195.570

33. Rutgers – 195.200

Road Score 1: 195.825
Road Score 2: 195.275
Road Score 3: 195.250
Road/Home Score 1: 196.225
Road/Home Score 2: 195.075
Road/Home Score 3: 194.575

Maximum RQS: 195.530 

These top 33 teams have already clinched their spots at Regionals.
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
34. Washington – 195.100

Road Score 1: 195.175
Road Score 2: 195.000
Road Score 3: 194.300
Road/Home Score 1: 196.200
Road/Home Score 2: 195.650
Road/Home Score 3: 195.375

Maximum RQS: 195.480
Washington is on the cusp of guaranteeing a spot at its home Regional and needs just a 194.600 at Pac-12s to make it a certainty.

35. Maryland – 195.010

Road Score 1: 195.425
Road Score 2: 194.775
Road Score 3: 194.700
Road/Home Score 1: 195.525
Road/Home Score 2: 195.225
Road/Home Score 3: 194.925

Maximum RQS: 195.175
Maryland can guarantee a spot at Regionals with a 195.475 at EAGLs.

36. West Virginia – 195.000

Road Score 1: 194.975
Road Score 2: 194.925
Road Score 3: 194.175
Road/Home Score 1: 196.175
Road/Home Score 2: 195.500
Road/Home Score 3: 195.425

Maximum RQS: 195.150
West Virginia is currently ranked to advance but is also at a bit of a disadvantage by hosting Big 12s because there is no chance to get rid of that low away score. They’ll need to score better than the mid 195s to feel comfortable about fending off the Iowas. Usually, Big 12s is a bit of a snooze since Oklahoma will cruise to victory, but the West Virginia/Iowa State Regionals battle will be one to watch. Iowa State trails for now but has the slightly higher maximum RQS and could make the leap with a big score. 

37. Iowa 194.935

Road Score 1: 195.350
Road Score 2: 195.050
Road Score 3: 194.750
Road/Home Score 1: 195.125
Road/Home Score 2: 195.075
Road/Home Score 3: 194.675

Maximum RQS: 195.070
Must score at least 195.000 at Big Tens to have a chance to advance. 

T38. Michigan State 194.745

Road Score 1: 194.900
Road Score 2: 194.775
Road Score 3: 194.350
Road/Home Score 1: 196.200
Road/Home Score 2: 195.550
Road/Home Score 3: 194.150

Maximum RQS: 195.155
Must score at least 195.425 at Big 10s to have a chance to advance.

T38. Missouri 194.745

Road Score 1: 195.125
Road Score 2: 194.825
Road Score 3: 194.600
Road/Home Score 1: 195.725
Road/Home Score 2: 194.650
Road/Home Score 3: 194.525

Maximum RQS: 194.985
Cannot advance to Regionals.

T40. Iowa State – 194.700

Road Score 1: 194.850
Road Score 2: 194.250
Road Score 3: 193.725
Road/Home Score 1: 196.025
Road/Home Score 2: 195.925
Road/Home Score 3: 194.750

Maximum RQS: 195.160
Must score at least a 195.225 at Big 12s to have a chance to advance.

T40. Pittsburgh – 194.700

Road Score 1: 195.075
Road Score 2: 194.900
Road Score 3: 194.125
Road/Home Score 1: 196.125
Road/Home Score 2: 195.050
Road/Home Score 3: 194.350

Maximum RQS: 195.100
Must score at least a 195.625 at EAGLs to have a chance to advance.

42. Bowling Green – 194.695

Road Score 1: 195.925
Road Score 2: 194.325
Road Score 3: 194.175
Road/Home Score 1: 195.550
Road/Home Score 2: 194.825
Road/Home Score 3: 194.600

Maximum RQS: 195.045
Must score at least a 195.700 at MACs to have a chance to advance.

All remaining teams have been mathematically eliminated from advancing to Regionals.