Category Archives: Fun with Numbers

Records That Could Fall in 2022

We were supposed to be graced by the first meet of the college gymnastics season today, but since, er, um, circumstances dictated otherwise, I’m instead looking at some of the college gymnastics scoring records that we could see bite the dust in 2022 (as long as there are…meets that happen), and a few other records that almost surely won’t.

Team NQS – 198.120 (Oklahoma, 2018)

It’s not a season unless at least one team is bumping up against the 198 mark for NQS. Oklahoma’s 198.120 from 2018 still stands for now, but Oklahoma also went 198.115 in 2019 and looked nearly sure to break the record in 2020 with a 198.080 and two road meets left before the season was canceled.

Most 198s in a season – 19 (2018)

The 2021 season saw a piddly-by-comparison 13 scores of 198, so there’s still some way to go to reach the 19 recorded in 2018 or the 18 recorded in 2019, but if it happened in 2018 or 2019, it can happen in 2022.

Most 10s in a single meet – 7 (Michigan @ Georgia; March 8, 1997)

This is among the oldest-standing scoring records in college gymnastics, a dual meet in which Georgia saw four 10s (Leah Brown and Kim Arnold both got 10s on vault and floor) and Michigan got three 10s (Sarah Cain and Nikki Peters on vault, Heather Kabick on floor) in a meet Georgia ended up winning easily 198.475-196.225.

The record has been under serious threat three times since then, competitions where six 10s were scored—a UCLA quad meet with Michigan, Minnesota, and Fullerton in 2002; an Arizona State/UCLA meet in 2003; and the UCLA/Oklahoma meet from 2018—but it is yet to be matched. 

Highest cumulative score (2 teams) – 396.600 (Florida @ Oklahoma; March 6, 2015)

In this meet, Oklahoma defeated Florida 198.500 to 198.100, one of 13 occasions in college gymnastics history in which two teams have scored 198 at the same time. In last year’s national championship, Michigan and Oklahoma combined for 396.4125, which ranks 6th on the all-time list.

Most 10s in a single day – 12 (March 12, 2004)

Thatttttt’s a lot of 10s. On this day, Arizona State recorded five 10s at home against Minnesota, while Florida hosted UCLA with only one 10 for each team (was that a try?), Washington scored two 10s at home against Boise State and Seattle Pacific, LSU scored two 10s away at Centenary, and Missouri got a 10 away against TWU. 

Highest team score – 198.875 (UCLA, Stanford, 2004)

UCLA and Stanford both scored 198.875 at meets within two days of each other during the 2004 season, which is ludicrous and would take a serious jump in scoring to be matched. The highest score in recent years is that 198.500 from Oklahoma in 2015. 

Most 10s in a Season – 91 (2004)

While the overabundance of the highest scores has been a source of angst in recent years, there were 31 tens in the 2021 season. It’s still nowhere close to the world of 2003 (83 tens) and 2004 (91 tens), which means those marks are probably safe.

Highest individual score – 40.000 (Karin Lichey, 1996)

I mean, it’s possible, but…






The Scores: Post-Nationals Edition

Now that the US national championship has provided a lovely, juicy, delicious (can you tell I’m hungry) chunk of new numbers to bolster and clarify Spreadsheet Nation, let’s take a new look at the updated scoring hierarchy and what it could mean for potential worlds team selection.

First, the athletes are ranked by peak score recorded on each event so far in 2019, with the top 3 on each apparatus highlighted.

Using those numbers, the highest-scoring team in a 3-count scenario would be as follows:

That team would be “burn down the world” good on bars and beam, though I do think the peak scores somewhat misrepresent vault because this group of 5 is far from the strongest vault team the US could come up with. It would be perfectly reasonable for the US to object to heading into worlds with McCusker, Lee, and Eaker on the same team knowing that one of them would have to vault in the team final.

Now, you could counter that argument with “but the other events are so good they make up for it” or “they’re going to win the team final anyway, so why not maximize event medal possibilities” in support of this team of five. Your choice.

Basically, counting the McCusker vault is the only non-amazing part of that team (should everyone hit), and there’s no other permutation of gymnasts that comes very close at all to matching this peak team score.

What the peak team doesn’t take into account, of course, is consistency, so it doesn’t mind if you fall 80 times as long as you hit once and that hit was an amazing score. Continue reading The Scores: Post-Nationals Edition