Week 9 Rankings + RQS Update

One more week of regular, normal, average action, then it’s on to the conference championships, and then after that, it starts being actually important to do well. So close! With some schools taking byes this coming weekend like lazy garbage teams, we now know a few maximum RQS totals, so we can see exactly how high those teams will be able to rise. Or not rise.

The most critical ranking development came from the significant scores posted by Stanford and Nebraska on Sunday, rendering things somewhat less precarious for both teams. And more precarious for everyone else because now Nebraska and Stanford have proven 197 potential and are going to make some unlucky team very disappointed some day. No one wants a 197ing #3 seed. The problem for them is that Denver and Arkansas have also proven to be 197 teams, making it harder to move up into cozier, higher penthouse floors.

The Race for the Evening Session at SECs is also winding down, with Georgia currently on the outside looking in and trying to snatch Auburn at the last second. Oregon State also currently sits in 5th in the Pac-12, but Washington is the host of the championships this year, so this may get a little wonky. When Cal hosted two years ago, the home team’s session was the evening one, even though Cal was in the B group. It didn’t go well, but do we know if they’ve received the memo on that or if it will be more of the same? The Big Ten does things a little differently, putting six teams in the second session, with placement decided by the results at the Big Five meets this coming weekend. 

In scoring news, it’s March. That’s all you need to know. The judges felt like they had permission to start throwing out the 10s like candy again, to least to everyone who isn’t named Elizabeth Price. Sloan got another beam 10, Gnat got another floor 10, and McGee also got another floor 10, all gymnasts who have already received 10s on those events this season. Then in UCLA’s own SEC-themed carnival of insane scores, Danusia got her first beam 10 for a couple years, and Brittany Rogers got her first 10 ever, just not on the event where she was supposed to get it.

As usually happens in meets like those, the craziest scores weren’t the 10s but unjustified 9.925s and 9.950s that pushed the totals up and made the 10s almost necessary. That’s why it was so funny that Price didn’t get a 10 from both judges this particular bars routine. (I’m not as worked up about vault because it was not a true stick, in spite of doing the DTY. You can’t decide not to see it simply because of difficulty, as many times as we’ve seen that happen. )

Sure, Price has done this identical bars routine four or five times and never received 10.000 for it, but this time is somewhat different because it’s not like the judges were keeping themselves clothed and professional, even the particular bars judge who went 9.950 (and who also gave Sophina 9.900 for one of her Evel Knievel dismounts). They were throwing panties on every event for all the teams, and then…

9.975. OK? You’re choosing now to have scruples?

Anyway, to the rankings! I’m taking the rankings down much lower this week for a look at who is in regionals contention and how close the race is. (It’s close.)

Week 9 rankings

1. Oklahoma – 197.765

Road Score 1: 197.925
Road Score 2: 197.675
Road Score 3: 197.550
Road/Home Score 1: 198.075
Road/Home Score 2: 197.900
Road/Home Score 3: 197.775

Oklahoma keeps putting away 197 after 197 and remains safe at #1 until at least the conference championships. It’s hard to pick at a team with these scores because while there are momentary issues like weaker vault landings over the weekend, Oklahoma is hitting us in the face with solid gymnastics week after week. The real question I have is, interestingly, about the beam lineup. Now, it’s interesting in part because I always pretend to have a question about the beam lineup and then it always ends up being better than fine in the postseason because it’s Oklahoma and beam. But then again, I look at Kmieciak, Lehrmann, Catour, Brown, Jones, and Capps (the recent six) and I think…is this really the team’s best beam lineup?

2. Florida 197.580

Road Score 1: 197.750
Road Score 2: 197.525
Road Score 3: 197.075
Road/Home Score 1: 198.175
Road/Home Score 2: 197.875
Road/Home Score 3: 197.675

Florida gained some ground on Oklahoma this week after a crucially large road total, but it’s a bit of a treadmill process when Oklahoma keeps getting just as massive or more massive scores. The Gators compete at home next weekend for senior night and will host the annual 198 party, so they cannot drop that low road score and catch Oklahoma quite yet. The real question this week is how much of a 40 Bridget Sloan is going to have on Senior Night. I mean the score. 40.000. I’m talking about gymnastics.

The #2 ranking is safe for now, and much of the potential to challenge for #1 will come down to what Florida can do at SECs to get rid of that peasant 197.075.

Fun fact: Florida has hit all six beam routines just once since January and hasn’t had all beam scores reach 9.8 since January 15th. The balance beam situation vulture eyes are on all over the place this week.

3. LSU – 197.340

Road Score 1: 197.900
Road Score 2: 196.800
Road Score 3: 196.750
Road/Home Score 1: 197.925
Road/Home Score 2: 197.825
Road/Home Score 3: 197.425

The Tigers recorded a season high and used it to pass Alabama into 3rd, which is quite a solid ranking for a team that spent so much of the early half of the season significantly under-ranked. I see no reason to expect LSU’s RQS ascent to stop considering that those two non-bold road scores are pretty pedestrian by LSU standards and would constitute a weak meet at this point in the year. Florida is unreachable until SECs, but there will be an opening at that point if LSU records a couple more big 197s. Traveling to TWU and then to SECs, it seems realistic.

4. Alabama – 197.325

Road Score 1: 197.525
Road Score 2: 197.300
Road Score 3: 197.250
Road/Home Score 1: 197.550
Road/Home Score 2: 197.375
Road/Home Score 3: 197.175

Maximum RQS: 197.400

That 196.200 disaster against LSU was not a good note on which to leave the regular season, but with no meet next weekend, Alabama will have to live with annihilating my fantasy team and heading into SECs with the poor taste of sub-49 scores on bars and beam still lingering. The bars problem shouldn’t really be repeated, although Jetter’s double front is always a case of pass-the-stabbing-knife, but beam has been a case of the beautiful disasters this year, especially disastrous when some of the beautifuls aren’t competing. Winston only did one event over the weekend. What even was that?

Because LSU looks very likely to increase its RQS and Alabama is capped at 197.400, it looks like the remaining score will be more about fending off the others.

5. Utah – 197.105

Road Score 1: 197.525
Road Score 2: 197.150
Road Score 3: 197.075
Road/Home Score 1: 197.150
Road/Home Score 2: 197.125
Road/Home Score 3: 197.025

Utah finally broke through with a much-needed giant score, putting together a complete meet across all four events and increasing the team’s ceiling heading into a home meet against Georgia followed by Pac-12s, both of which we can assume will be high scores as well. We’re hitting the point in the season in which many of the rankings, especially at the top, are solidifying. Utah can’t rise any higher than 5th after this weekend and would need to continue going 197.5+ in both remaining meets to have any shot at Alabama.

6. Michigan – 197.085

Road Score 1: 197.275
Road Score 2: 196.975
Road Score 3: 196.900
Road/Home Score 1: 197.425
Road/Home Score 2: 197.225
Road/Home Score 3: 197.050

Michigan hasn’t been doing poorly exactly, but as other teams keep getting 197.5s, the Wolverines have begun bleeding a ranking spot per week. The weekend’s result will be quite disappointing, throwing away the opportunity for a season high by counting a fall on beam. For yet another team, beam is becoming worrisome as this falling issue has been lingering most of the season without ever being truly resolved. In fact, it has returned with strength in the last three meets, which have included a disaster, a half-disaster, and a barely-got-through. Depending on what Utah and Auburn score next time, Michigan is close enough to move back up to #5 with a recovery performance at the Big Ten semifinal. (Why don’t they call this meet the Big Ten semifinals again? Instead of the Big Ten Big Five Five Meet, or whatever?)

7. Auburn – 196.940

Road Score 1: 197.325
Road Score 2: 197.125
Road Score 3: 196.825
Road/Home Score 1: 197.275
Road/Home Score 2: 197.200
Road/Home Score 3: 196.275 

Auburn was presented with the golden opportunity of passing UCLA last weekend and comfortably did the job with yet another 197, bringing back the nailed-landings vault brigade that was so impressive that one time earlier in the season. The scary thing for the other teams is the 196.275 home score that’s still lurking around. Based on current form, we should expect Auburn to obliterate that this weekend. The Tigers have a peak RQS of 197.150 after the next meet, which means a ranking as high as #5 is conceivable.

In the other race, the one for the evening session at SEC Championships, a 196.950 would clinch Auburn’s spot and keep Georgia in the cold.

8. UCLA – 196.865

Road Score 1: 196.925
Road Score 2: 196.800
Road Score 3: 196.675
Road/Home Score 1: 197.475
Road/Home Score 2: 197.100
Road/Home Score 3: 196.825

Much like Michigan, UCLA falls in the rankings after a huge missed opportunity. In spite of competing without a number of important routines because of UCLA reasons, this meet was supposed to be a high 197. Continuing bars trauma and counting a fall on beam rendered the score barely usable instead of offensively huge. The Bruins will have another chance to snatch that huge score on senior day against Oklahoma, although moving up in the rankings will be a challenge with Auburn looking so likely to move up. Because UCLA’s bold scores are noticeably lower than those of the teams ranked above, it’s hard to envision much upward movement before regionals.

9. Georgia – 196.820

Road Score 1: 197.025
Road Score 2: 196.775
Road Score 3: 196.275
Road/Home Score 1: 197.525
Road/Home Score 2: 197.275
Road/Home Score 3: 196.750

This was not a weekend of rainbows for Georgia, but we’re starting to see them pull closer to a reasonable ranking for this roster’s talent level. The Gymdogs, however, still aren’t putting it all together, in the first meet of the weekend actually hitting beam but throwing up an anemic bars score, and then in the second meet of the weekend kinda-sorta hitting beam and then having an OOB fest on floor. Everything is still terrifying.

With that 196.275 still to drop, Georgia has a higher peak score than UCLA after this weekend and will view moving up as doable. Passing Auburn for that evening spot is also mathematically possible, but it can only happen if Auburn doesn’t hit that target score and Georgia goes, at very minimum, 196.900.

10. Denver – 196.605

Road Score 1: 197.050
Road Score 2: 196.350
Road Score 3: 196.125
Road/Home Score 1: 197.525
Road/Home Score 2: 196.825

Road/Home Score 3: 196.675

Sup, Denver. Denver has pushed into the top 10 (!) on the strength of two more big scores over the weekend. Significantly, Sunday marked Denver’s first truly huge road total, which had been one of the questions about this team. Was this just a home thing? Now, it was at Air Force, which wasn’t exactly a road meet (it’s like when UCLA used to go to CSUF). This same meet saw Minnesota record a season high by A FULL POINT in a loosely scored affair, so the next two weeks on the road will be critical. We know this is a 196 team. Whether it’s a high-196/197 team, which is what will ultimately determine Denver’s nationals hopes, is still up for debate. 

11. Arkansas – 196.470

Road Score 1: 196.700
Road Score 2: 196.200
Road Score 3: 196.150
Road/Home Score 1: 197.225
Road/Home Score 2: 196.700
Road/Home Score 3: 196.600

Arkansas drops a few spots this week on account of a mehish lowish 196 away against Missouri. Much like Boise State, Arkansas would always be hurt most by a case of the normal when the big teams start bigging, and that’s what happened. We just didn’t know that one of those big teams would suddenly be Denver. The HOGS now have to count a 196.200 road score, which really handcuffs their chances to move up, making placement in the #1 or #2 regional look like a solid bet. They’ll be fighting it out with a pretty equivalent team for a spot at nationals. 

Arkansas has been eliminated from contention for the evening session at SECs.

12. Boise State – 196.365

Road Score 1: 196.425
Road Score 2: 196.425
Road Score 3: 196.400
Road/Home Score 1: 196.575
Road/Home Score 2: 196.300
Road/Home Score 3: 196.275

Boise State has been inching up a tenth every week, leading to a season-high 196.575 on Sunday. Now, the fact that Boise State has been wildly consistent with these scores means there’s not a lot of room to move up, and because Boise State hasn’t faced any difficult teams this year or had any big wins, it’s almost certain that they will be the overlooked mystery heading into regionals even if they do maintain a solid ranking. The mystery is heightened because regionals will be their first meet against an opponent of quality. What to expect…

13. Stanford – 196.305

Road Score 1: 197.400
Road Score 2: 196.650
Road Score 3: 196.250
Road/Home Score 1: 196.675
Road/Home Score 2: 196.075
Road/Home Score 3: 195.875

Maximum RQS: 196.610

Stanford can breathe a little easier now with that 197.400 which shot their ranking up to a much more normal station. The Cardinal are theoretically capable of moving as high as 10th depending on their performance at Pac-12s, but since they’re out of action this coming weekend, they’ll also be quite vulnerable to getting passed by a number of teams (could theoretically finish the weekend as low as 19th, though a lot of huge scores would have to happen) including two Pac-12 foes.

Cal needs a 195.675 to move ahead of Stanford this week, and Oregon State needs a 195.850. Both teams should reach those marks rather easily, which means Stanford may very well be out of the big-girl session at Pac-12s. That would be a rather shocking turn of events. 

Stanford would take this #13 spot in a second if things were actually to finish this way. In a regional with Oklahoma and Boise State, Stanford would be favored to advance. It’s just…going to take a massive result at Pac-12s to make that happen.

14. Cal – 196.290

Road Score 1: 196.900
Road Score 2: 195.650
Road Score 3: 195.575
Road/Home Score 1: 196.825
Road/Home Score 2: 196.750
Road/Home Score 3: 196.650

This is what still makes Stanford a little vulnerable. Cal’s bold scores are good and very competitive. If Cal can continue scoring these mid 196s, a ranking of 11th or 12th is not out of the picture. 

15. Missouri – 196.235

Road Score 1: 196.625
Road Score 2: 196.050
Road Score 3: 195.825
Road/Home Score 1: 196.650
Road/Home Score 2: 196.625
Road/Home Score 3: 196.050

16. Oregon State – 196.205

Road Score 1: 196.350
Road Score 2: 196.225
Road Score 3: 195.325
Road/Home Score 1: 196.850
Road/Home Score 2: 196.800
Road/Home Score 3: 196.325

Oregon State was in a dire position a week ago, but three solid home scores in a row have solved a problem like a beaver. At least for the moment. There’s still the matter of that 195.325 that must be removed if Oregon State is going to avoid a nasty placement, but of course the good news about that score is that if the Beavs are indeed able to drop it, they could possibly move into the top 12.

16. Nebraska – 196.205

Road Score 1: 196.350
Road Score 2: 196.150
Road Score 3: 195.350
Road/Home Score 1: 197.350
Road/Home Score 2: 196.775
Road/Home Score 3: 196.400

Nebraska also came up with a season high and savior score over the weekend in a meet featuring the returns of Laeng and Orel, which served to make the team look much less sparse and horrifying. It was always a less urgent performance than some of the others because the real urgency comes this weekend on the road at the Big Five when that 195.350 must be eliminated. If that happens, expect Nebraska’s ranking to skyrocket, but if it doesn’t, that was the last chance since Nebraska is hosting Big Tens. 

18. Iowa – 196.200

Road Score 1: 196.275
Road Score 2: 196.275
Road Score 3: 196.075
Road/Home Score 1: 196.650
Road/Home Score 2: 196.375
Road/Home Score 3: 196.000

Iowa recorded a number of bigger 196s in the middle of the season, but the scores have leveled off in the last couple showings, meaning it’s likely that Iowa will act as a really dangerous spoiler as a regional host rather than a contender for a second seed, which was on the table earlier. But, with those home 196s this year, Iowa is certainly in the regional spoiler conversation. 

19. Minnesota – 196.105

Road Score 1: 197.225
Road Score 2: 196.300
Road Score 3: 196.175
Road/Home Score 1: 196.200
Road/Home Score 2: 196.075
Road/Home Score 3: 195.775

The problem with recording one giant score is that it must be dropped, so Sunday’s 197 only really helps Minnesota if it happens again.

20. Arizona – 196.080

Road Score 1: 196.375
Road Score 2: 196.000
Road Score 3: 195.775
Road/Home Score 1: 196.475
Road/Home Score 2: 196.150

Road/Home Score 3: 196.100

Arizona was able to drop another weak score with the performance at Oklahoma over the weekend, but it was not enough to change the ranking scenario. Competing at home next weekend, Arizona will not be able to move into the top 18 before Pac-12s and cannot make the top-seeded session. Vault has been the death of this team.

21. Kentucky – 195.965

Road Score 1: 196.700
Road Score 2: 195.800
Road Score 3: 195.800
Road/Home Score 1: 196.650
Road/Home Score 2: 196.050
Road/Home Score 3: 195.525

Note: Kentucky’s last two scores are 196.700 and 196.650. We can argue crazy scoring in both affairs, but that’s still something we don’t usually see from Kentucky.

22. George Washington – 195.905

Road Score 1: 196.175
Road Score 2: 196.075
Road Score 3: 195.750
Road/Home Score 1: 196.600
Road/Home Score 2: 195.800
Road/Home Score 3: 195.725

GWU is continuing to record good scores but not good enough to maintain that untenable early-season ranking. This is still a very solid RQS picture ,and GWU has a legitimate shot at staying in the top 25, which would a tremendous finishing point.

23. Illinois – 195.765

Road Score 1: 196.300
Road Score 2: 195.875
Road Score 3: 195.725
Road/Home Score 1: 196.525
Road/Home Score 2: 195.500
Road/Home Score 3: 195.425

Just when it looked like things were finally turning around, Illinois counts an 8 on bars. At this point, it’s highly unlikely that Illinois will snatch a #3-seed at regionals, but still, if I’m any of the teams, I don’t want to see Illinois end up in my section. This roster is still too impressive to tolerate as a #4 seed.

24. Washington – 195.750

Road Score 1: 196.250
Road Score 2: 196.175
Road Score 3: 195.350
Road/Home Score 1: 196.450
Road/Home Score 2: 196.325 
Road/Home Score 3: 194.650

Washington is trudging up the rankings toward something more realistic, heading out on the “road” to Seattle Pacific tonight with a chance to get rid of that 194 and potentially move into the top 20.

25. West Virginia – 195.665

Road Score 1: 196.225
Road Score 2: 195.250
Road Score 3: 195.250
Road/Home Score 1: 196.800
Road/Home Score 2: 195.800
Road/Home Score 3: 195.800

26. Eastern Michigan – 195.635

Road Score 1: 196.600
Road Score 2: 195.975
Road Score 3: 195.800
Road/Home Score 1: 195.750
Road/Home Score 2: 195.600
Road/Home Score 3: 195.050

27. Southern Utah – 195.595

Road Score 1: 196.000
Road Score 2: 195.250
Road Score 3: 195.050
Road/Home Score 1: 196.300
Road/Home Score 2: 195.975
Road/Home Score 3: 195.700

SUU is a competitive team being held down by weak road scores, which continued after counting a fall on beam over the weekend. High 195s are quite attainable for this group, so they’ll have a solid chance to move back up into the top 25 after the two remaining meets.

28. Penn State – 195.550

Road Score 1: 196.350
Road Score 2: 195.925
Road Score 3: 195.700
Road/Home Score 1: 195.675
Road/Home Score 2: 195.350
Road/Home Score 3: 195.100

The descent of Penn State grows ever more extreme. Remember three years ago when Penn State made nationals? When you go to Arizona State and are in a fight to see which team can be more of a mess, it’s not a good season. 

28. Ohio State – 195.550

Road Score 1: 196.350
Road Score 2: 195.975
Road Score 3: 195.275
Road/Home Score 1: 195.800
Road/Home Score 2: 195.675
Road/Home Score 3: 195.025

Also remember when Ohio State made nationals? 

30. New Hampshire – 195.400

Road Score 1: 195.800
Road Score 2: 195.225
Road Score 3: 195.100
Road/Home Score 1: 196.075
Road/Home Score 2: 195.550
Road/Home Score 3: 195.325

Early in the season, UNH was in a fight with George Washington to reign EAGL, but things have gone downhill for New Hampshire since the beam dominance and 196s of January. It’s particularly interesting that beam has been the downfall of the last two meets, since that’s supposed to be the strength.

31. BYU – 195.370

Road Score 1: 195.575
Road Score 2: 195.550
Road Score 3: 195.100
Road/Home Score 1: 195.750
Road/Home Score 2: 195.475
Road/Home Score 3: 195.150

32. Utah State – 195.350

Road Score 1: 195.750
Road Score 2: 195.475
Road Score 3: 195.100
Road/Home Score 1: 196.025
Road/Home Score 2: 195.425
Road/Home Score 3: 195.000

33. Central Michigan – 195.345

Road Score 1: 195.700
Road Score 2: 195.400
Road Score 3: 195.275
Road/Home Score 1: 196.125
Road/Home Score 2: 195.175
Road/Home Score 3: 195.125

34. Michigan State – 195.170

Road Score 1: 195.425
Road Score 2: 195.275
Road Score 3: 195.100
Road/Home Score 1: 195.575
Road/Home Score 2: 195.175
Road/Home Score 3: 194.875

35. Kent State – 195.145

Road Score 1: 195.325
Road Score 2: 194.625
Road Score 3: 193.725
Road/Home Score 1: 196.125
Road/Home Score 2: 196.050
Road/Home Score 3: 196.000

Now that’s a scoring disparity. Almost an identical thing happened last year, when counting a road 193 kept Kent State out of regionals despite more than competitive home scores. Will the same thing happen again? Two road meets left to fix it.

36. Iowa State – 195.100

Road Score 1: 195.625
Road Score 2: 194.725
Road Score 3: 194.200
Road/Home Score 1: 196.025
Road/Home Score 2: 195.650
Road/Home Score 3: 195.300

It’s a similar look for Iowa State, currently holding onto the final position but without any margin over the contenders.

37. NC State – 195.090

Road Score 1: 196.175
Road Score 2: 195.925
Road Score 3: 195.450
Road/Home Score 1: 194.900
Road/Home Score 2: 194.700
Road/Home Score 3: 194.475

This is the weird season for NC State, when venue renovations mean that this Saturday’s meet is the team’s first and only home meet of the season. This could finally be the chance to benefit from the kind of home score that all these other adjacent teams have been able to take advantage of, with Kent State and Iowa State having to head out for road meets. 

38. Bowling Green 195.050

Road Score 1: 195.725
Road Score 2: 195.350
Road Score 3: 194.800
Road/Home Score 1: 195.425
Road/Home Score 2: 195.150
Road/Home Score 3: 194.525

Bowling Green! And with an extra meet in hand coming up this Thursday to bump that score up!

39. Maryland – 195.015

Road Score 1: 196.025
Road Score 2: 195.125
Road Score 3: 194.400
Road/Home Score 1: 195.500
Road/Home Score 2: 195.350

Road/Home Score 3: 194.700

The rest of the teams are far enough back that we’ll deal with them next week if there’s still an outside chance they could get in, but this is most likely the contending group.

11 thoughts on “Week 9 Rankings + RQS Update”

  1. So we're positive that if a team hosts conference champs, it counts as a home meet? For some reason I was under the impression that conference meets were always neutral, but that may just be because the SEC has chosen “neutral” sites for the last few years. Are we 100% on that, because it makes a big difference for some of these teams. Also, F**K YES, BOWLING GREEN!!

  2. hosting conference championships has always been counted as a home meet for the hosting team

  3. Yup, we're positive. I've always assumed it's why the SEC starting holding the championships at quasi-neutral sites.

    UW did indeed move into the top 20 – they're now at 19. Had their season high (196.6) so are now using their previous season high of 196.45 in their average, dropped a 194.65 from their average, and still are counting the 195.35 from Arizona as their sixth score. With two meets left (home vs Denver & SPU – will be interesting to see how UW & Denver really stack up – and then Pac12s, which they're hosting) – they should have little trouble getting rid of that last low score. Knock on wood and all that, of course.

  4. I hate how everyone just dismisses obvious deductions because of the gymnast or affiliation with the school. Like Bridget Sloan's flexed feet in her Ray or Ebee Price's bent arms in her clear hip. These two should never get a 10.0 on bars for any reason until they fix the deductions that are clear to the eye.

  5. I happily have the opportunity to watch several conferences/meets. I am always amazed by the difference in the scoring. I'm not saying that scoring is grossly different at the same meet but the difference between the conferences is, without sounding overly dramatic, staggering. I watch SEC, PAC 12, Michigan etc and I see 9.95 flow generously where the same performance on the west coast would only rate a 9.85-.875. It so vastly affects the rankings for regionals etc that there needs to be some oversite somewhere. It is really interesting at nationals where everyone is judged by the same judges how close the scores really are. OK , I vented now I'm fine.

  6. I'm not sure I agree. I've watched the SEC and PAC12 a ton this year, with a few OU and Big Ten meets thrown in. To me, UF and LSU have the most blatantly consistent overscoring, followed by UCLA, Utah, BAMA, and OU all about equal. Watch UCLA vault and bar scores, especially at home. They are routinely gifted.

    The truth is the best teams will always get the benefit of the doubt. UGA used to have some of the worst “home” scores, but the last few years haven't been that bad compared to the rest of the country. In fact, I would argue UGA scoring is more fair this year than UCLA and Utah. Part of that is because UGA is in a bit of a “slump” and they no longer get the benefit of the doubt to the same extent that they did during their title run. That scoring has now gone to UF, LSU, OU, BAMA, etc. because they are the favorites.

    The same can be said in elite gymnastics. Team USA, Russia, China, etc. will always get the benefit of the doubt compared to Australia or Italy (for example). When you've proven yourself to the best, it's tough for judges to go in completely unbiased. It happens across all sports. There's a reason there's a home court advantage in basketball and top football programs are nearly always ranked to the start season, regardless of talent returning (i.e. Alabama, Ohio State, Oklahoma, etc.).

    Gymnastics also is influenced by name recognition. Sloan can get a 10 for a bars routine that Rogers from UGA would get a 9.95 for and that a Mizzou athlete would get a 9.9 for. Is it fair? No. But until judges are held responsible and either publicly reprimanded and/or suspended for blatant over or under scoring, it won't change. If conferences reprimand and suspend refs for other sports, they should do the same for judges in gymnastics.

  7. I second the Bowling Green comment! I saw them in person this year and they are really good. Routines to watch are Caroline Ellingboe on bars (she has a full twisting DLO), Laura Mitchell on beam (innovative mount), and Victoria Heath on floor (very clean tumbling). Alyssa Nocella and Lauren Feely are also solid all-arounders for this team. Am really pulling for them to make regionals- would be the first time ever for them.

  8. I will say it once and a million more times: gymnastic scoring is subjective. Unless they go to Elite scoring it will always be subjective. They can deduct for anything (lack of flow, stalling, stutter stepping, the list goes on). You can cry all you want about “over scoring” but no one cares, especially not the coaches or gymnasts. The best team who hits at NCAAs will win.

  9. Judges don't have instant replay or the same point of view as the cameras. They may see something very differently than we do. angles matter.

  10. Just watched a Bowling Green meet. Here's hoping they get in this weekend. It appears they have some chemistry and it's a young team. Get there this year and they may be back for a few more. 2 seniors. It's a nice story they're even as close as they are. And what is with the Mitchell beam mount? Awesome!

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