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Things Are Happening – March 9, 2017

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A. Weekend schedule

Friday, March 10
Scores Watch
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – [22] West Virginia @ [3] Florida LINK SEC+
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Towson @ NC State LINK ACC+
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Ball State @ Kent State LINK FREE
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Temple @ William & Mary LINK FB
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Winona State @ UW-Eau Claire LINK
7:30 ET/4:30 PT – UW-La Crosse @ Gustavus Adolphus LINK
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – [12] Kentucky @ [15] Missouri LINK SEC+
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Pitt @ [20] Auburn LINK SEC+
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – San Jose State, Centenary @ Arkansas LINK
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Lindenwood @ Illinois State FREE
8:30 ET/5:30 PT – New Hampshire @ [2] LSU LINK SEC+
8:30 ET/5:30 PT – Iowa State @ [6] Alabama LINK SEC+
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – [8] Denver @ [10] Boise State LINK FREE
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – [21] Southern Utah @ [23] Utah State LINK FREE
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Arizona @ BYU LINK FREE
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Sacramento State, Bridgeport @ Arizona State LINK FREE
10:00 ET/7:00 PT – Air Force @ UC Davis LINK FB
Saturday, March 11
Scores Watch
1:00 ET/10:00 PT – Brown, Cortland, Rhode Island @ Springfield FREE
1:00 ET/10:00 PT – Ursinus @ West Chester
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – Northern Illinois @ Central Michigan LINK FREE
3:00 ET/12:00 PT – Big Ten Qualifier: [13] Nebraska, [24] Ohio State, Michigan State, Maryland @ [19] Illinois LINK BTN
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Big Ten Qualifier: [11] Michigan, Minnesota, Penn State, Rutgers @ [16] Iowa LINK BTN
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – [5] Utah @ [7] Georgia LINK SEC+
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – SEMO @ Western Michigan LINK
5:00 ET/2:00 PT – Illinois-Chicago @ [9] Oregon State LINK FREE
5:00 ET/2:00 PT – Hamline @ UW-Whitewater LINK FREE
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Bowling Green @ [25] Eastern Michigan LINK EMU
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Seattle Pacific @ [14] Washington FREE
Sunday, March 12
Scores Watch
1:00 ET/10:00 PT – Penn, Southern Connecticut, Ithaca @ Temple FREE
1:00 ET/10:00 PT – Stanford, NC State, Yale @ [18] George Washington LINK GW $
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – Cornell, Brockport @ Towson
3:00 ET/12:00 PT – North Carolina @ [4] UCLA LINK P12
5:00 ET/2:00 PT – [1] Oklahoma @ [17] Cal LINK P12
Monday, March 13
Scores Watch
7:30 ET/4:30 PT – [21] Southern Utah @ BYU LINK FREE

The final weekend before championship season is upon us. It’s an odd one because the “conference schedule” is over, so that means we get a lot of haphazard matchups between random teams. Not a bad thing—we get to see teams we don’t usually—but it doesn’t make for a ton of exciting meets. The highest-profile contests will come on Saturday and Sunday with Utah/Georgia and Oklahoma/Cal, though it’s Friday’s Denver/Boise State meet that may prove the most worthwhile of all. These are two fairly even teams, both often hovering around the 197.0 marks and both looking to play the same spoiler role in the postseason.

B. Meet Notes

C. Bad Penny

Weirdly, it appears that haphazard, unprofessional, and negligent handling of sexual abuse cases is grounds for removal, even in the world of US National Governing Bodies. Wonders never cease.

Members of the USOC told Christine Brennan, “Hey, this makes us look bad. Steve Penny should go so that we don’t have to talk about this anymore and can do better at all the PR. I mean, because of protecting children. That. We care about that.” Exact quote.

But, even though the USOC cares about sexual abuse now, starting Tuesday, it has no power to travel back in time and say this years ago when it should have happened. Nor does it have the power to fire Penny or ask for his resignation. That power lies with the USAG board. So, Penny promptly called up his knitting circle, a.k.a. the USAG board, at 1-(800)-BEST-BITCHES to tell them to run outside and support their BAE 5EVER publicly, which they did in a statement titled, “This Isn’t Short-Sighted, March Edition.”

We’ll see how long Penny digs his fingernails into the door frame on the way out.

D. American Cup

So, that was three-and-a-half hours we’ll never get back. It co-starred the glorious form of Yul Moldauer and the smoldering aftermath of a scorched world.

Of note, Riley McCusker came in with all the excitement and freshness of a newborn basket of sea otters but had the misfortune of immediately falling into a coastal eddy made of emotions as part of Strike Force Bring Martha Back from the Dead Out of Retirement.

After verge-of-tears-ing her way through bars and beam, McCusker went to floor where NBC treated us to the obligatory, “THIS FLOOR ROUTINE WILL DETERMINE THE COURSE OF HER WHOLE LIFE, WILL SHE FAIL AND NEVER STOP CRYING??????” Even though in 30 seconds she’ll go to Jesolo, hit the all-around, it’ll be like, “What’s American Cup?” Because of, you know, how critical American Cup has been in the course of no one’s career.

Or, sorry, I mean, “VALERI OUT THIS IS THE END OF GYMNASTICS.”

In spite of herself falling on beam, Ragan Smith won the American Cup trophy, an exotic piece made from 24-karat starring-off-into-the-middle-distance-in-despair, because this thing was just a big old mess. Highlights like Kim Bui’s lovely bars hit and Melanie De Jesus Dos Santos sticking her double tuck off beam were few and far between, with Smith running away with the title on difficulty and Asuka Teramoto finishing second on “I’m just not going to fall, guys…” Everyone else got an 11. I’ve watched all the routines. I would not wish it on any but my worst enemies.

The Routine and D-Score Database has been updated with the routines from the American Cup competitors.

E. Gymnix

Next on the elite agenda is this weekend’s International Gymnix competition in Montreal. The senior division features all the major, healthy Canadians, a couple relevant Australians, and a Chuso in a pear tree. The junior division is headed by a quartet of Americans (Malabuyo, O’Keefe, Perea, and Lee) and some Italians who will be the future of that team’s competitiveness (the D’Amatos, Villa, and Iorio). Sydney Johnson-Scharpf and Carmen Machado are among several other Americans competing in a separate Challenge Gymnix division because of sure.

Malabuyo, O’Keefe, and Perea are seniors next year, while Lee is a senior in 2019. At this point, they’re the strongest juniors the US has to offer. First person to tweet, [BLANK] WOULD HAVE WON THE AMERICAN CUP IF SHE HAD BEEN AGE ELIGIBLE wins.

F. GymCastic

On this week’s episode, I got the fun job while Jessica and Uncle Tim did real, important things. They ran through all the latest sexual abuse news and Senate bills and document releases (we recorded before the latest Steve Penny developments), while I mostly just talked about Bart Deurloo’s balls. Hero’s work.

In competition news, we broke down the key points from the American Cup, as well as highlights of the Nastia Cup and all the latest 10s and cracky scoring developments in NCAA gym.

G. Beam Routine of the Week

Thinking about double pike beam dismounts this week. I don’t know, maybe watching those American Cup routines subconsciously made me seek out beam therapy. This double pike made Sarah Patterson do a literal prance.

 

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