Week 6 Rankings and Notes

equal-sign-clip-art-5pypjt-clipart 1. Oklahoma 197.813
  • 198.075 is OU’s second time breaking 198 this season
  • Sooners expand lead heading into RQS season
  • Nichols wins AA (BUT WHAT???), records first 10.000 on FX
  • Jackson’s FX 9.975, Dowell’s VT 9.950, Capps’ BB 9.950 also lead
equal-sign-clip-art-5pypjt-clipart 2. LSU 197.579
  • 197.700 is LSU’s highest total since season-opener
  • Edney wins AA again with 39.500
  • 9.950s from Hambrick (BB), Gnat (FX)
  • Harrold debuts in the VT lineup with 1.5
equal-sign-clip-art-5pypjt-clipart 3. Florida 197.521
  • Season-high 197.975 at home to beat Georgia
  • McMurtry scores third career 10.000 on UB
  • 9.975s from Hundley (UB) and Slocum (VT) are career-highs
  • Boren wins AA with 39.725
green-up-arrow 4. UCLA 197.025
  • 198.125 is the top score in the country so far this year
  • Team’s highest total since March 2004
  • Crack ain’t just for red states…
  • First career 10.000s for Kocian, Lee (UB)
  • 9.975s for Ohashi (BB) and Ross (UB)
reddownarrow 5. Utah 196.879
  • Utes fall behind the Bruins with 196.525 loss to Oregon State
  • 9.900s from Skinner on VT, FX lead team
  • Fall behind after counting two 9.775s on UB
equal-sign-clip-art-5pypjt-clipart 6. Alabama 196.725
  • Returns to earth a bit with 197.050 loss to Kentucky
  • Winston leads team AA with 39.500
  • Guerrero 9.950 on BB is team’s high score
  • Mahoney returns to UB lineup with 9.900
green-up-arrow 7. Boise State 196.405
  • Second-straight 197 bumps Boise State up to 7th
  • Remme leads with 39.475 AA, 9.925 on BB
  • Mejia leads UB with 9.925
reddownarrow 8. Michigan 196.338
  • Another week, another counting fall on UB
  • Michigan scrapes 196.025 but falls one spot
  • Artz wins AA with 39.575, FX with 9.925
  • Karas returns to AA (PHEW) with 9.875 on UB
green-up-arrow 9. Kentucky 196.257
  • Another week, another program record: 197.475
  • Korth, Hyland, Dukes go 1,2,3 in AA
  • 9.950s from Dukes, Hyland on BB are team’s high scores
reddownarrow 10. Georgia 196.229
  • Hovers around 49.1s for a hit meet and a 196.525
  • 9.900 from Babalis on beam (BEAM) is team’s top score
  • Snead returns on UB, and there was much rejoicing
green-up-arrow 11. Denver 196.161
  • Leapfrogs OSU with 197.125 win over Boise State
  • Karr wins AA with season-high 39.675
  • 9.950s for Karr and Addison on FX
  • 9.925 from Ogden takes UB to 49.400
reddownarrow 12. Oregon State 196.075
  • Drop one place despite 196.550 in win over Utah
  • McMillan ties for AA win w/ Skinner, leads team with 9.925 FX
  • McMillan ties for team lead on VT, UB, BB as well
  • McMillan, McMillan, McMillan
green-up-arrow 13. Southern Utah 195.940
  • A week of 196.7s puts SUU right back in the mix
  • 15 different gymnasts compete routines
  • Jorgensen takes FX with 9.950, Madison McBride UB with 9.925
green-up-arrow 14. Washington 195.875
  • 196.750 is the team’s highest total since March 2004 (a theme?)
  • Burleson wins AA with 39.425
  • Duranczyk scores career-high 9.950 on UB
reddownarrow 15. Missouri 195.861
  • Tigers drop after 195.725 quad meet win
  • Mistakes on UB drop total out of 196 contention
  • Ward’s 9.925 on VT leads team, obviously
green-up-arrow 16. Nebraska 195.729
  • Nebraska rights itself with second-straight score over 196.5
  • Laeng takes AA title with 39.325
  • 9.900 on BB from Schweihofer leads team
reddownarrow 17. Auburn 195.718
  • Counting UB mistake sends Auburn to 195.725
  • Otherwise team was on mid-196 pace
  • 9.900 on BB from Krippner was team’s high number
reddownarrow 18. Cal 195.708
  • Cal drops three spots after 195.325 loss to Arizona
  • Counting UB fall strikes again
  • Big VT scores of 9.900 after sticks from Peterson, Robinson
reddownarrow 19. Ohio State 195.646
  • Sneak win over Penn State with 195.950
  • Counting 9.6s on BB takes away a 196
  • 9.925s from Mattern (FX), Hofland (UB) lead team
reddownarrow 20. George Washington 195.613
  • Fall six ranking spots after 194.350
  • 0.000 on VT, followed by 9.5s, then 9.6s on UB destroy score
  • 9.825s on BB from Winstanley, Pfeiler are team highs
equal-sign-clip-art-5pypjt-clipart 21. Illinois 195.517
  • Second week into the 196s with 196.050 loss to Iowa
  • Leduc’s 9.875 on FX is team high, followed by raft of 9.850s on VT BB
  • Leduc wins AA with 39.350
equal-sign-clip-art-5pypjt-clipart 22. Iowa 195.489
  • For a sixth-straight week, since coaches poll, Iowa is stuck at #22
  • Season-high 196.475 in tri-meet win
  • Metcalf’s 9.925 on BB leads the team
equal-sign-clip-art-5pypjt-clipart 23. Arkansas 195.467
  • Despite having 1.75 total working legs, Arkansas hits 196 zone again
  • Garner records career-high 9.900 on UB
  • McGlone crashes into VT table in warmups, makes me 100% pee pants
equal-sign-clip-art-5pypjt-clipart 24. West Virginia 195.108
  • WVU clings to #24 despite poor 194.575
  • Three BB mistakes lead to 47.675, with no chance of survival
  • 9.875s from Goldberg, Wright on UB
green-up-arrow 25. Arizona 195.038
  • Jumps back into top 25 after 196.100 in win over Cal
  • Score includes counting a BB fall
  • 9.925 from Schneider on FX leads

Full rankings at RTN.

Theme of the week: gargantuan scores. Three teams scored over 197.9, four 10s were awarded along with a further five 9.975s, and in all eighteen 10s were given out by individual judges. We’re currently on pace to challenge the twenty-seven 10s awarded during 2014. It’s still nowhere near 2003-2004 levels, but there’s still time! (He says, pulling his own skin off.)

We had at least three teams set program records over the weekend (Kentucky, Southern Utah, Cornell), and at least another two (UCLA, Washington) record their highest team scores in over a decade. Southern Utah actually broke its program record twice this week, on Monday and then again on Friday.

The scoring title first appeared like it would belong to Florida with that massive early 197.975 (we had been waiting for weeks for Florida’s annual LA-LA-LA home scoring parade), but then Oklahoma swooped in with a 198.075, and then UCLA dropped from the sky the next day with a parachute made of famous names and said, “Nuh uh uh, 198.125.” We saw a lot of rainbow-unicorn scores in all these meets (and others—it’s not just a big-team thing, but it’s more extreme for big teams and results in more eye-catching ridiculata). Although, I think UCLA’s meet has garnered the most attention of the group because of the sheer number of 10s given out for what were non-10 routines. Really let Florida off the hook with that one.

If we’re all in agreement (and I’ve decided we are), the Peng bars 10.0 is fine. The others are less fine. This is a great example of the trouble judges find themselves in when they get too enthusiastic too early. Giving a 10 to Kocian and then a 10 to Ross (from one judge, the weirdest score of the whole day) for routines that were good—but not ideal—doesn’t allow for Peng’s routine, which was objectively better than the other two, to be properly rewarded with a higher score. Employing more of the range of scores would allow for a more accurate ranking of routines.

But for coaches, what happened is exactly what they want in this situation. A critical part of coaching strategy is the attempt to use lineup orders to trick the judges into giving inaccurate scores. (Or, I mean, we’re all in this together!) Having enough famous people on your team that you feel comfortable putting some of them in the middle of the lineup (or just not last) is an excellent way of doing just that.

The other significant story from that UCLA meet was Stanford’s performance, reinforcing the notion that this team is lost without Price. The most disturbing aspect of Stanford’s 194.175 is that it’s their third-highest score of the season. Stanford currently sits at #36 in the rankings, which is just barely qualifying-for-regionals level. Now, with a 193.2 and a 193.8 still to drop, Stanford should move up—even if things continue going poorly—and should not actually be in danger of missing regionals, but the fact that we even have to talk about that is disturbing. Finishing outside the top 18 and entering regionals unseeded, however, is starting to look like a quite likely scenario.

UCLA used this weekend’s score to jump ahead of Utah for #4 in advance of their meeting this Saturday night in Utah (at the exact same time as the Winter Cup final because ugh, scheduling). Massive scores were also a boon to Kentucky, Boise State, and Denver, who continued to upset the natural order of things by knocking down schools like Michigan, Georgia, and Oregon State.

For this week, our in-progress regionals placement would be as follows:

Meet 1: Oklahoma, Oregon State, Southern Utah
Meet 2: LSU, Denver, Washington
Meet 3: Florida, Georgia, Missouri
Meet 4: UCLA, Kentucky, Nebraska
Meet 5: Utah, Michigan, Auburn
Meet 6: Alabama, Boise State, Cal

Remaining hosts to be placed would be Illinois, Arkansas, West Virginia.

If past years are our guide, this should be our final week of ranking by average before getting into RQS next Monday. Tomorrow, I’ll break down the current RQS outlook team-by-team so we can see who desperately needs a road score as we head into the important part of the season.

Another theme of the week was botched vaults. I mentioned McGlone’s terrifying warmup vault in which she totally ate it during her run and slammed into that piece of rice paper that pads the base of the vaulting table, and was thankfully fine. George Washington also had a weird moment when McLaughlin pulled out of her round-off and didn’t vault, but then she immediately saluted and received a 0.000. Not sure what was happening there because she should have been given two more attempts. Unlike elite where you can get Kramarenko-ed, in NCAA it only counts as a vault if you go over the table, and she didn’t go over the table.

In the news, Kathie Klages, head coach at Michigan State, has been suspended according to an email sent out today to those involved. This is all linked to the Larry Nassar case and her alleged discouraging of athletes from contacting authorities about him.

And on that cheery note…

Unheralded stars of the week
Gymnasts from schools outside the top 25 who scored over 9.900

Morgan Lane, North Carolina – Beam 9.950 (meet 1), 9.925 (meet 2)
Lane’s beam makes the list twice this week because of Lane’s beam, though I was most impressed by her stick on her round-off full-on back pike vault. 

Jamyra Carter, Northern Illinois – Bars 9.925
Watch out for Northern Illinois as we move into RQS season, close to contention with a 192 road score still to drop.

Brittni Wilde Hawes, BYU – Bars 9.950
Notches her second career-high mark of the season, which had been 9.900 from the opening meet.

Rachel Stypinski, Kent State – Beam 9.950, Floor 9.925
Obviously. Now more than ever.

Jade Brown, Kent State – Floor 9.925
How do you keep not being a highly ranked team?

Aleeza Yu, Stanford – Vault 9.925
I keep forgetting to include Stanford in this category because it’s STANFORD.



17 thoughts on “Week 6 Rankings and Notes”

  1. Surprised you didn’t mention the horror of Nichols going sub 9.9 for the first time of the season and not having the highest AA score of the week nationwide, also a first!

    1. And the fact that she’s no longer ranked first on every event (she’s now 3rd on vault *gasp*)

    1. She’s done several exhibitions on beam and I’ve seen her do a dance through on FX in warm ups. But I don’t think she’s quite lineup ready yet.

    2. After recovering from her shoulder injury last year, she came back and was doing well, but then she developed some sort of issue that made her lose her vision for a while, I heard, and that set her back again in her attempts to come back. It’s sad because when I saw her at Nationals in 2014, I believe it was, I was like – this young woman is made for NCAA. I expected her to be one of those unexpected huge stars.

  2. Scoring nonsense aside, I do think the current top 6 are the most likely teams to make the Super Six. You never know because it seems like there is always a surprise, but if I had to put money down today, those would be my six.

    1. Not convinced by Utah at all. They are one injury away from disaster, and even with current roster they are scraping the bottom of viable routines. Not sure who I would pick over Utah, but I would definitely pick the field over Utah to make that 6th spot at this point.

      Alabama should be fine but is definitely not immune from upsets either. If they get Brannan back I would feel much more comfortable.

      I feel surprisingly good about Kentucky. They just have some sort of magical air about them I think. Not going to say they’ll make super 6 but I feel good about them getting to nationals at least.

      1. Don’t want to agree with you buttttttt! I think they need to nurture those they have and hope for the best. What they have is really good but consistency has been a bit of any issue. They had the same problem last year. A few of them still have the “deer in the headlights” look. Hope a few weeks more will cure that. UCLA is on a roll (scoring ?? a little bizzare but the talent is definitely there. The 4 judge system may give them a bit of a shock but they are definitely in the top 6.

  3. I feel like even with Ebee in the line-ups, Stanford is lost. She gives them 4 great routines when healthy, but you need more than that. I used to love this team’s gymnastics with their elegance and form but this year, it’s just yuck.

    1. I sort of agree. I am sad that Miss Price has be horribly under scored this year. I hope that she at least makes individual entry to region. I think she is brilliant.

    2. It is completely crazy that Stanford isn’t among the top teams in gymnastics. Its academics are second to none, and there’s no opportunity to go pro in the sport after college. Stanford historically does exceptionally well in these types of sports because they can usually have their pick of recruits due to academics. I know we have all heard rumors that the Stanford coach is punitive, and I can’t help believing them, because that’s the only explanation I can come up with for why Stanford doesn’t have a better track record.

      1. That’s the problem, they have to meet Stanford’s academic requirements AND get the gymnastics scholarship or walk on (where you also have to get into Stanford). Most elite gymnasts and even level 10 gymnasts don’t get the best schooling as they are normally doing online school but still mostly focused on gymnastics and their gymnastics career (especially elite gymnasts). Stanford gets a few gymnastics stars but that’s because it’s so hard to get into. With schools like Oklahoma, Florida, Utah, etc. there aren’t many academic requirements to get in, which is why so many Level 10s and Elite’s go there. It’s a great gymnastics school and you don’t need the stress of passing academic requirements.

      2. Speaking as a proud Stanford alum, even I have to admit that for a lot of the academically driven top elite girls (like Sam Peszek, Jennifer Pinches, Kyla Ross and Madison Kocian), UCLA is really the better mix of academic rigor and athletics. Stanford has never won an NCAA women’s gymnastics team title while UCLA has won six. Stanford clearly has a history of excellence in many Olympics sports (111 national titles, second only to UCLA). Gymnastics just isn’t one of them.

    3. Agreed. Ivana Hong and Sam Shapiro gave much elegance to the team. As they graduated all illusions that Stanford as a team has inherent elegance vanished.
      They are one of those teams whose floor choreography is a total snooze.
      I’m a big Price fan though.

  4. “Crack aint just for red states.”
    Best quote EVER, and sums up the 198+ for UCLA perfectly

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