1. Florida Gators
Florida did not compete in week 5.
2. LSU Tigers
LSU’s season-high 197.550 saw the team gain a smidgen of ground on first-place Florida, though not enough to change the supremacy dynamic. LSU did not seem to show many negative effects from the tracing week—save for being without Sarah Edwards, which will be a concern on vault, the one weakness in Friday’s performance. Freshmen Chase Brock and Elena Arenas benefited from the break, looking quite a bit stronger than we had seen previously this season.
3. Utah Utes
Utah mostly kept pace with LSU by going 197.450 in week 5, helping to establish some clear separation between the top four-ish and everyone else heading into Utah’s off week. This performance garnered the team’s best floor score thus far as O’Keefe and Stanhope both showed the most comfort and control in tumbling passes we’ve seen from them. Now, everyone get your magnifying glasses out and try to find Jaylene Gilstrap.
4. Oklahoma Sooners
Oklahoma got well in week 5, scoring a 197.800 that came up just a half tenth short of Florida’s national high, though the actual real-life thing that happened was Oklahoma putting up four hit events free from (major) disasters. We were reintroduced to a team that’s supposed to be top 2 this year, though Oklahoma will probably have to wait until NQS kicks in to bring its ranking back up because those two low ones will weigh down the average.
5. Arkansas Razorbacks
Arkansas did not compete in week 5
6. Alabama Crimson Tide
Alabama did not compete in week 5.
7. Denver Pioneers
Denver’s 196.725 from Sunday won’t go down as an all-time performance, but the fact that the team was able to cobble together lineups of five and hit a meet despite having a huge chunk of the team COVID-unavailable was fairly miraculous. You would have thought there would be a counting 8.950 in there somewhere to make this one unusable.
8. Michigan Wolverines
Michigan did not compete in week 5.
9. Iowa Hawkeyes
In pretty much every respect, Iowa’s performance on Saturday was a big deal. The 196.800 total score ranks tied for 4th on Iowa’s all-time score list (the team record is 197.150), and Iowa notched a victory over the supposedly better Minnesota team as it continues a surprising assault on conference supremacy. The original posted meet score of 196.825 would have tied Iowa with Michigan for first in the Big Ten this week.
10. UCLA Bruins
UCLA did not compete in week 5.
11. BYU Cougars
BYU scored a season-high 196.825 in recording a comfortable statement victory over Southern Utah by a margin of more than a fall, moving ahead of some big-name teams in the rankings in the process. BYU will enter Wednesday afternoon’s meet against UCLA without the benefit of the weekend off that UCLA had, but also as gymnastic equals based on what we’ve seen so far this season.
12. Minnesota Gophers
Minnesota continued its mission to give everyone heart disease in week 5, looking on track for a score well into the 197s before counting a 9.075 on beam to end up with a merely pedestrian 196.375 and a loss to Iowa. This remains a 197-quality team with six meets remaining to get three good scores (very doable), but Saturday’s result now makes three straight missed meets. That means this is an actual problem now.
13. Georgia Bulldogs
Georgia did not compete in week 5.
14. Arizona State Sun Devils
Arizona State’s gigantic 197.150 in falling to Utah on Saturday isn’t breaking team records the way Iowa’s results have been because, a couple decades ago, ASU was a 198y team. But this performance should be treated with similar significance. The vault and bars rotations on Friday were the best I’ve seen an Arizona State team look on those events.
15. Kentucky Wildcats
Kentucky did not compete in week 5.
16. Cal Bears
Cal improved by about three tenths on its first-meet performance by going 196.075 to gain several spots in the rankings. This is still clearly a team working its way into the season, one that doesn’t have all the ideal gymnasts competing at their full difficulty. But, we saw progress in terms of fuller lineups and fewer SV problems, and Andi Li took a major step forward in her bars and beam routines.
17. Iowa State Cyclones
A victory over West Virginia also saw Iowa State record a season-high 196.125. While no one got a De Jesus 10 this week, the other Y1.5s improved on their scores from last time out to help vault remain a strength, though it was bars that provided ISU’s biggest total as Jade Vella-Wright recovered from a miss last week to lead the team.
18. Southern Utah Thunderbirds
Southern Utah will be disappointed about losing to BYU because of rivalries and whatnot, but the 196.175 is nonetheless a useful total and the team’s third-straight venture into the 196s, which is a status most teams haven’t reached yet. Shylen Murakami continues to be a star, clearly performing as the class of the team on both bars and beam.
19. Auburn Tigers
Well, that was better. Auburn won’t expect to be scored quite that charitably going forward (I mean, what are you, Oklahoma, Utah, and LSU?), but the team clearly took advantage of the week off and showed massive improvements. Stevens and Brusch returned to competition and Watson looked stronger again, establishing more complete and healthier lineups that got Auburn into the 197s in week 5, bypassing the 196s entirely.
20. Illinois Illini
After being stuck in the mid-195s for the first three meets, Illinois broke into the 196s in its fourth attempt—despite losing a tri-meet to Ohio State. Overall, there wasn’t a lot in this performance different from the previous meets, except for that whole not counting a fall part, which allowed for minimizing the number of 9.6s that had to be used. Just not falling as much was enough to get Illinois a 196.
21. Utah State Aggies
Utah State got back to the 196s this week in losing a nail-biter to Boise State on the road. USU’s start has been all over the place, but given the limited number of scores that need to count this season, recording two 196s—one of which is away—will end up being quite a luxury the rest of the way. Utah State is halfway done with scores but has more than half of its meets remaining.
22. Boise State Broncos
But it was Boise State that snatched victory from Utah State by the slimmest of margins. Surprising zero people, Boise State’s victory was based entirely on bars, where Emily Muhlenhaupt made an additional step forward by going 9.975, following her two 9.950s already this season. Muhlenhaupt now has scored at least 9.950 on nine occasions in her career, scoring 9.950 five times and 9.975 four times.
23. North Carolina Tarheels
Scoring 195.600 in an NC State quad meet showed improvement for UNC over the first meet of the season, and Elizabeth Culton is now 2-for-2 in 9.950s on beam. In this one, North Carolina broke the 49 mark on both bars and beam in the same meet (!), which is the first time the team has done that since February 2017. Has a monster been slain?
24. Ohio State Buckeyes
Ohio State reemerged into the top 25 this week following a 196.375 home victory, one that restored some of the promise of that first-meet 196. Bars had previously looked like a possible weakness for this team but it led the scoring on Sunday as the 9.9s flew all the way to a 49.300.
25. NC State Wolfpack
We’re still in the portion of the season where one big score can change the story. The season didn’t start well for NC State with a couple 194s, but successfully performing a non-beam disaster and a home-floor showcase allowed NC State to get into the 196s in its fourth meet, easily outpacing UNC, Towson, and Pitt in a quad meet.