The Balance Beam Situation

Because gymnastics is a comedy, not a drama

2019 NCAA Schedule

We’re less than two months away from the start of the NCAA season. I know! It’s time to start preparing. Item #1, the schedule.

You can find the full, every-meet-ever schedule at the link below (or all season long in the menu at the top of the page).


We still have a few straggling teams yet to release their schedules, and the SEC really needs to get a move on with those meet times, but otherwise it’s pretty complete. (Of course, there will be changes as we go since a solid quarter of college programs still don’t understand how times zones work. But America is definitely going to be fine.)

Below, I’ve compiled a little schedule-at-a-glance, limited to just the two or three very biggest or special meets of each week (two Super Six teams from last year, major podium meets, classic or famous rivals…that kind of thing). Some weeks are a little heartier than others.

MEET WEEK 1 – December 31-January 6
Friday, January 4
TBA – Cal @ LSU
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Nebraska @ UCLA
MEET WEEK 2 – January 7-13
Friday, January 11
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Georgia @ Oklahoma
8:30 ET/5:30 PT – Michigan, Denver, Bowling Green @ Alabama
Saturday, January 12
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – UCLA, Cal, Michigan State, UC Davis (@ Anaheim, CA)
MEET WEEK 3 – January 14-20
Friday, January 18
TBA – Alabama @ Georgia
TBA – Florida @ LSU
MEET WEEK 4 – January 21-27
Monday, January 21
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Stanford @ Cal
Friday, January 25
TBA – LSU @ Alabama
Saturday, January 26
8:30 ET/5:30 PT – Metroplex Challenge (Oklahoma, Denver, Arkansas, Missouri)
MEET WEEK 5 – January 28-February 3
Friday, February 1
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Florida @ Oklahoma
Sunday, February 3
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Nebraska @ Michigan
MEET WEEK 6 – February 4-10
Saturday, February 9
3:00 ET/12:00 PT – Cal @ Utah
Sunday, February 10
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Oklahoma @ Denver
MEET WEEK 7 – February 11- 17
Friday, February 15
7:30 ET/4:30 PT – GymQuarters Invitational (LSU, Utah, Stanford, Missouri)
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Perfect 10 Challenge (Oklahoma, Washington, Arizona State, George Washington)
TBA – Florida @ Alabama
MEET WEEK 8 – February 18-24
Friday, February 22
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Georgia @ Florida
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Big Five (Nebraska, Iowa, Penn State, Maryland, Michigan State)
Saturday, February 23
3:30 ET/12:30 PT – UCLA @ Utah
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Big Five (Michigan, Illinois, Minnesota, Ohio State, Rutgers)
MEET WEEK 9 – February 25-March 3
Friday, March 1
TBA – Georgia @ LSU
TBA – Auburn @ Alabama
Saturday, March 2
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Michigan @ Utah
Sunday, March 3
1:00 ET/10:00 PT – UCLA @ Oklahoma
MEET WEEK 10 – March 4-10
Friday, March 8
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Elevate the Stage (Georgia, Arkansas, Minnesota, Michigan State)
Saturday, March 9
12:00 ET/9:00 PT – Oklahoma @ Michigan
TBA – Elevate the Stage (Alabama v. Auburn)
MEET WEEK 11 – March 11-17
Friday, March 15
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Alabama @ Oklahoma
Saturday, March 16
:00 ET/1:00 PT – Utah @ Georgia
MEET WEEK 12 – March 18-24
Friday, March 22
TBA – DIII Team Final
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – MIC Championship (Shreveport, LA)
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Mountain Rim Championship (Provo, UT)
Saturday, March 23
12:00 ET/9:00 PT – Big Ten Championship Session 1 (University Park, PA)
12:00 ET/9:00 PT – ECAC Championship (Ithaca, NY)
TBA – DIII Event Finals
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – Big 12 Championship (Norman, OK)
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – EAGL Championship (Durham, NH)
TBA – SEC Championship Session 1 (New Orleans, LA)
3:00 ET/12:00 PT – Pac-12 Championship Session 1 (West Valley City, UT)
3:00 ET/12:00 PT – MAC Championship (Dekalb, IL)
5:00 ET/2:00 PT – Big Ten Championship Session 2 (University Park, PA)
TBA – SEC Championship Session 2 (New Orleans, LA)
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Mountain Pacific Champshiopnship (Seattle, WA)
TBA – Pac-12 Championship Session 2 (West Valley City, UT)
MEET WEEK 13 – March 25-31
MEET WEEK 14 – April 1-7
Thursday, April 4
TBA – Georgia Regional Play-in
3:00 ET/12:00 PT – Michigan Regional Play-in
TBA – LSU Regional Play-in
TBA – Oregon State Regional Play-in
Friday, April 5
TBA – Georgia Regional Semifinal #1
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – Michigan Regional Semifinal #1
TBA – LSU Regional Semifinal #1
TBA – Oregon State Regional Semifinal #1
TBA – Georgia Regional Semifinal #2
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Michigan Regional Semifinal #2
TBA – LSU Regional Semifinal #2
TBA – Oregon State Regional Semifinal #2
Saturday, April 6
TBA – Georgia Regional Final
7:00 ET/4:00 PT – Michigan Regional Final
TBA – LSU Regional Final
TBA – Oregon State Regional Final
MEET WEEK 15 – April 8-14
Friday, April 12
TBA – USAG Championship Semifinal 1
TBA – USAG Championship Semifinal 2
Saturday, April 13
TBA – USAG Championship Team Final
Sunday, April 14
TBA – USAG Championship Event Finals
MEET WEEK 16 – April 15-21
Friday, April 19
TBA – National Semifinal #1
TBA – National Semifinal #2
Saturday, April 20
TBA – National Championship

-One noteworthy schedule change this year is the timing of the Big Five meets, which will now be in February instead of their typical position the week before the Big Ten Championships.

-Big-meet overlap is not too bad at all this season.  February 15 is packed, but otherwise the famous meets are being given room to breathe.

-UCLA will be competing in a new neutral-site quad meet at the Anaheim Convention Center, the non-specifically named “Collegiate Challenge.” Since the death of Fullerton, UCLA hasn’t had that opportunity for a fake road meet where it’s basically the home team but still gets to count it as a road score—which all the cool teams have. For example, Oklahoma still has the OKC meet (and Metroplex), and Utah and LSU will get to compete in road-counting conference championships where they’ll be the de facto home team this year.

-Speaking of UCLA and Oklahoma, their March 3 meet will once again be broadcast on Big ESPN.

-Note the new schedule for regionals weekend, in which what used to be one day of competition now magically lasts for three whole days. It’s a miracle. I’m very excited and hopeful that the new schedule results in less extreme overlap of all the competitions that has, in the past, made it impossible to watch any of the actual individual meets.

-There will be grumbling from the 29-36 teams that they have to compete in the play-in dual meets on that Thursday, but honestly they’re going to be the stars of a whole day of postseason competition, which would never happen otherwise. Those teams are typically the #6 seeds at regionals, and literally no one watches their routines because there are 25 other higher-scoring teams competing at the exact same time.

-On that topic, there will be several new ranking standards to watch this year. Making the top 36 will still be of paramount importance, but the race for the top 28 will be exceptionally significant as well because making the top 28 will mean avoiding that extra day of postseason competition. We’re also doing away with the traditional goals of being ranked in the top 6 or top 12. The new standard is the top 8 (#1 seed in the regional semifinal, seeded to advance to nationals) or the top 16 (#2 seed in the regional semifinal, seeded to advance to the regional final).

-In related NCAA news, we’re following the lead of elite with some new, stricter pause deductions this season. I’m interested to see how (or if) those are actually applied.

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