The Balance Beam Situation

Because gymnastics is a comedy, not a drama

2018 NCAA Schedule

The gymnastics season is dead, long live the gymnastics season!

The world championship ended four days ago, which is like four months, which is like 50 years. It was forever ago, and it’s high time that we move on and start looking at an NCAA season that is a mere 85 days away, which is like two days, which is like a second.

It’s happening!

Preparations for the NCAA season begin with the schedule. At this point, enough schools except Alabama and the Iowas have released their full slates that we can now put together a fairly complete picture of the season to come.

I have added the link to the full 2018 schedule featuring all the teams and all the meets (that we know of so far) to the top of the site where it will sit for the whole season, but below is a quick schedule-at-a-glance rundown of the higher-profile meets in the upcoming season for all your mental-note and calendar-planning needs. Meets featuring two or more nationals-qualifying teams from last season are in bold.

(Re: the full schedule, keep in mind that some schools don’t understand how time zones work or are laboring under the misapprehension that they’re attending meets that don’t actually exist, so expect changes as we go.)

MEET WEEK 1 – January 1-7
Friday, January 5
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Alabama @ Michigan
TBA – Arkansas @ LSU
Monday, January 8
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Cal, UC Davis, Sacramento State, San Jose State @ Stanford
MEET WEEK 2 – January 8-14
Friday, January 12
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – LSU @ Florida
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Arkansas @ Kentucky
TBA – Georgia @ Alabama
TBA – Missouri @ Auburn
Saturday, January 13
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Nebraska @ Penn State
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Ohio State @ Michigan
Sunday, January 14
5:00 ET/2:00 PT – UCLA, Utah, Washington, Stanford (@ Reno, NV)
MEET WEEK 3 – January 15-21
Monday, January 15
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – Oklahoma @ Georgia
Friday, January 19
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Auburn @ Georgia
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Florida @ Kentucky
TBA – Alabama @ LSU
TBA – Arkansas @ Missouri
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Oregon State @ Utah
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Michigan @ Illinois
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Denver, Illinois-Chicago, Seattle Pacific @ Boise State
Saturday, January 20
3:30 ET/12:30 PT – Cal @ Washington
6:00 ET/3:00 PT – UCLA @ Arizona
MEET WEEK 4 – January 22-28
Friday, January 26
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Oklahoma @ Florida
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Utah @ Arizona
TBA – Kentucky @ Auburn
TBA – Missouri @ Alabama
TBA – Georgia @ Arkansas
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Boise State @ Southern Utah
Saturday, January 27
3:00 ET/12:00 PT – Michigan @ Nebraska
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Illinois @ Penn State
5:30 ET/2:30 PT – Stanford @ Oregon State
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Metroplex Challenge (LSU, UCLA, Washington, NC State)
MEET WEEK 5 – January 29-February 4
Friday, February 2
5:00 ET/2:00 PT – Arizona @ Cal
TBA – Florida @ Auburn
TBA – Kentucky @ LSU
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Iowa @ Illinois
TBA – Arkansas @ Alabama
Saturday, February 3
3:30 ET/12:30 PT – Washington @ Utah
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Missouri @ Georgia
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Minnesota @ Nebraska
Sunday, February 4
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Oklahoma @ UCLA
MEET WEEK 6 – February 5-11
Friday, February 9
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Alabama @ Florida
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Georgia @ Kentucky
TBA – LSU @ Missouri
TBA – Auburn @ Arkansas
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Illinois @ Minnesota
Saturday, February 10
2:30 ET/11:30 PT – UCLA @ Cal
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Michigan State @ Michigan
4:30 ET/1:30 PT – Oregon State @ Washington
5:00 ET/2:00 PT – Nebraska @ Iowa
Sunday, February 11
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – Stanford @ Arizona
MEET WEEK 7 – February 12-18
Friday, February 16
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Florida @ Georgia
TBA – GymQuarters Session 2 (LSU, Missouri, Arkansas, Minnesota)
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Oklahoma v. Nebraska (@ Oklahoma City, OK)
TBA – Kentucky @ Alabama
Saturday, February 17
3:30 ET/12:30 PT – Arizona @ Oregon State
10:30 ET/7:30 PT – Cal @ Stanford
Sunday, February 18
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Utah @ UCLA
MEET WEEK 8 – February 19-25
Friday, February 23
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – LSU @ Georgia
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Arkansas @ Florida
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Michigan, Denver, Utah State, Bowling Green (@ Toledo, OH)
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Missouri @ Kentucky
TBA – Alabama @ Auburn
Saturday, February 24
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Stanford @ Washington
Sunday, February 25
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – Utah @ Cal
5:00 ET/2:00 PT – Missouri @ Illinois
6:00 ET/3:00 PT – Oregon State @ UCLA
MEET WEEK 9 – February 26-March 4
Friday, March 2
7:30 ET/4:30 PT – Nebraska, Georgia, Illinois, Stanford (@ Augusta, GA)
TBA – Florida @ Missouri
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Arizona @ Arkansas
Saturday, March 3
3:00 ET/12:00 PT – Washington @ Southern Utah
5:00 ET/2:00 PT – Michigan @ Oklahoma
Sunday, March 4
TBA – Auburn @ LSU
3:00 ET/12:00 PT – UCLA, Iowa State, Kent State @ Nebraska
MEET WEEK 10 – March 5-11
Monday, March 5
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Southern Utah @ Denver
Friday, March 9
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Nebraska @ Florida
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Alabama v. Auburn (@ Huntsville, AL)
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Denver, Arkansas, Arizona State @ Oklahoma
Saturday, March 10
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – Utah @ Michigan
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Boise State @ Georgia
Sunday, March 11
6:00 ET/3:00 PT – UCLA @ Stanford
MEET WEEK 11 – March 12-18
Thursday, March 15
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Boise State, BYU @ Washington
Friday, March 16
7:30 ET/4:30 PT – Oklahoma @ Alabama
9:30 ET/6:30 PT – Georgia @ Utah
Saturday, March 17
TBA – Arizona @ LSU
TBA – Big Five – Nebraska, Illinois, Maryland, Ohio State @ Michigan State
TBA – Big Five – Michigan, Iowa, Minnesota, Penn State @ Rutgers
MEET WEEK 12 – March 19-25
Friday, March 23
6:00 ET/3:00 PT – DIII Team Final
Saturday, March 24
12:00 ET/9:00 PT – ECAC Championship (Philadelphia, PA)
1:00 ET/10:00 PT – Big 10 Championship Session 1 (Champaign, IL)
TBA – SEC Championship Session 1 (St. Louis, MO)
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – EAGL Championship (Towson, MD)
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – MAC Champsionship (Mount Pleasant, MI)
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Pac-12 Championship Session 1 (Tucson, AZ)
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – DIII Event Finals
5:00 ET/2:00 PT – Big 12 Championship (Ames, IA)
6:00 ET/3:00 PT – Big 10 Championship Session 2 (Champaign, IL)
TBA – SEC Championship Session 2 (St. Louis, MO)
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – MIC Championship (St. Charles, MO)
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Mountain Rim Championship (Cedar City, UT)
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Mountain Pacific Championship (Colorado Springs, CO)
TBA – Pac-12 Championship Session 2 (Tucson, AZ)
MEET WEEK 14 – April 2-8
Saturday, April 7
TBA – Penn State Regional
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – NC State Regional
TBA – Alabama Regional
TBA – Minnesota Regional
6:00 ET/3:00 PT – Utah Regional
TBA – Ohio State Regional
MEET WEEK 15 – April 9-15
Friday, April 13
3:00 ET/12:00 PT – USAG Championship Semifinal 1
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – USAG Championship Semifinal 2
Saturday, April 14
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – USAG Championship Team Final
Sunday, April 15
TBA – USAG Championship Event Finals
MEET WEEK 16 – April 16-22
Friday, April 20
TBA – National Semifinal 1
TBA – National Semifinal 2
Saturday, April 21
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Super Six

You’ll note that the first weekend of the season is not super packed, but we will have Alabama/Michigan getting us underway as the very first meet of the year, which is a solid introduction.

You’ll also note that there’s a refreshing lack of overlap among the big meets this season. Few of the clashes we really care about are sharing a day, and even those that are, like Oklahoma/Alabama and Georgia/Utah on March 16th, or LSU/Florida and Georgia/Alabama on January 12th, look like they’re going to be spaced out well enough that they won’t conflict. It’s a far cry from last season when every single meet was at the exact same time.

Elevate the Stage, which used to be the annual Alabama/Auburn podium meet, has expanded to become four NCAA meets this season in Reno, Toledo, Augusta, and Huntsville. The complaint about that Alabama/Auburn meet has been the lack of TV coverage, so let’s hope something happens this year because those would be four exciting meets to miss out on. Many of the cool kids are going, particularly those Pac-12 teams that don’t typically have as many opportunities to compete on podium pre-nationals.

The UCLA/Oklahoma meet on February 4th will be live on big ESPN, which is a coup.

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