When NCAA Coaches Were Gymnasts

In just two days, the 2018 season will finally begin, but for now, let’s talk about what’s most important: the 80s. A time when all your dearest NCAA coaches were gymnasts.

See, you thought you left those makeup choices back in the first Bush administration. But you didn’t. The magic of the internet.

Some coaches got lucky because archaeologists have not yet discovered any extant video of them in situ, but that doesn’t mean we stop trying.

Jenny (Ester) Rowland – Head Coach, University of Florida

“Still very young but has quite a lot of charm.”


Dana (Dobransky) Duckworth – Head coach, University of Alabama



Megan (McCunniff) Marsden – Head coach, University of Utah

Rhonda Faehn – Former head coach, University of Florida

“For as big of a body as Rhonda has…”
I cannot. Where am I? What is happening, 1988?

“Valorie Kondos does this type of stuff…”


Chris Waller – Associate head coach, UCLA

The world may change, but Tim Daggett saying “explanation mark” is forever.


Tanya (Service) Chaplin – Head coach, Oregon State University

Oregon State assignment: Go to meets this season and shout, “Come on, T-Serv!”


Danna (Lister) Durante – Former head coach, University of Georgia

“Should be a piked double back…OK????”


Larissa (Lowing) Libby – Head coach, University of Iowa


Elisabeth Crandall-Howell – Associate head coach, Cal


Amy Smith – Head coach, Utah State University


Charlie Tamayo – Assistant coach, University of Georgia


Melissa Kutcher-Rinehart – Head coach, University of Denver


Heather Brink – Associate head coach, University of Nebraska


Kristen Smyth – Former head coach, Stanford University


Katie (Teft) Minasola – Head coach, Eastern Michigan University


KJ Kindler – Head coach, Oklahoma University (thanks MostepanovaFan!)

27 thoughts on “When NCAA Coaches Were Gymnasts”

  1. “a time when all your dearest NCAA coaches were gymnasts”… all except Head Coach Courtney!

  2. “For as big of a body as Rhonda has…”
    Tall. The word you meant to say is tall.

  3. And don’t forget way back when Miss Val did her first handstand!

    Oh wait…her first handstand was just last year…never mind! 😉

  4. “two flips, two twists”. Never change Tim, never change. Bless him lololololol

    1. Also, if you are at all able, somehow get this to all of them with your comments (and more importantly the gymnasts on their teams hahaha)

    1. I had to laugh at the wording, “Greg attracted the athletes” in the introduction to the first clip of Megan. He certainly did in her case.

    2. Didn’t she marry him like between junior and senior year or something?! And he called her to his office (when she was a freshman …) and was like ‘Oh hey I want to date you’? Kind of … yeah.

  5. Who is that with Tanya Service before she starts her routine? Is that Miss Val?

    1. It looks like her, i think she was already a coach at UCLA around this time. Crazy longevity, Miss Val ^^

  6. Heather Brink: Does the robot
    Commentator: ………. she doesn’t have that 10 does she

  7. That bars dismount Rhonda did is TERRIFYING. Thank goodness standing on the high bar is banned now.

  8. So I was going to suggest Jenny Hansen at Minnesota and even went and watched a bunch of videos of “her”…then was reading her University of Minnesota bio and realized that the Jenny (Alf) Hansen who coaches there is completely different than the Jenny Hansen who won three titles for Kentucky. Which explains why the gymnasts in the video didn’t look anything like her (I could understand the 1994 video but the 2011 video shouldn’t be so different). And why a 2012 article kept referring to her as Jen. Anyway, there’s my fun fact for the day.

  9. Oh look at Katie Teft doing the HOPFNER-HIBBS A C-RATED DANCE SKILL!!! Isn’t that right, FIG?

  10. Margie Foster-Cunningham, head coach of GW, when she was a gymnast at Penn State, 1980 AIAW National Gymnastics Championships

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