Category Archives: Stuff and Nonsense

Things Are Happening – December 8, 2017

A. NCAA training

LSU unveiled its vault secret weapon, Sarah Edwards, who only had a full last time we saw any videos of her gymnastics.

Last week, we got into a discussion of Georgia’s current lineups (because Georgia, we’re not mad at you, we’re worried about you), and Emily has us covered with the latest.

Continue reading Things Are Happening – December 8, 2017


Things Are Happening – December 1, 2017

A. The Ponor

Catalina Ponor competed at the Mexican Open last weekend and cried during her farewell Beyonce (all Olympic medalists are entitled to one farewell Beyonce), convincing me to start taking this slightly more seriously as a retirement. We’ll see how the rest of the quad goes. #PonorforLate2019.

She was here, you guys.

She lived. She loved. She did. She done. She blinded her enemies with those hip bones. She won five Olympic medals. She tricked you into thinking Romanian gymnastics wasn’t on the road to a garbage dump for a solid 10 years.

And she did the worm. You know, the retirement worm. Obviously my favorite part. The other best part is when she takes off her flappy and throws it at that photographer.

B. Just Simone things

Simone got everyone talking this week when she casually blooped that she already has all her skills back, being back to real training for not even a full month and all.

Are we surprised?

As long as she has the endurance, the skills aren’t even that hard for her. Which is sort of the whole point of Simone.

So, plenty of time to learn some new stuff, right? There’s a juicy new quad’s code to work with.

Today’s Project: How would you adjust Simone’s 2016 beam routine to best take advantage of the 2017 code?

For reference, here’s a side-by-side comparison of how the 2016 and 2017 codes would treat her 2016 beam routine.

2016 2017
Wolf turn 2.5 – E Wolf turn 2.5 – D
Barani – E Barani – F
Bhs + layout stepout + layout stepout – B+C+C = 0.2 CV Bhs + layout stepout + layout stepout – B+C+C = 0.2 CV
Punch front + sissone – D+A = 0.1 CV Punch front + sissone – D+A
Switch split + switch 1/2 + back pike – C+D+C = 0.2 CV Switch split + switch 1/2 + back pike – C+D+C = 0.2 CV, 0.1 SB
Aerial + wolf – D+A = 0.1 CV Aerial + wolf – D+A
Bhs + bhs + full twisting double tuck – B+B+G = 0.1 CV Bhs + bhs + full twisting double tuck – B+B+G = 0.3 CV
CR – 2.5 CR – 2.0
Acro – GEDDC – 2.3 Acro – GFDDC – 2.4
Dance – EDC – 1.2 Dance – DDC – 1.1
CV – 0.7 CV – 0.8
Total D – 6.7 Total D – 6.3

Do you turn the wolf turn into a triple? Downgrade to a double? Or ditch it entirely?

How do you change the punch front and aerial combos to take advantage of CV and SB?

Punch front + one-arm back handspring + stag ring?

Side aerial + back handspring + Worley + straddle jump + Arabian? I’m only half kidding.

C. McKenna Kelley and Emily Schild

The NCAA preseason injuries are starting to pile up, as they always do. The most severe so far is McKenna Lou Kelley’s torn Achilles, which will keep her out for the entire 2018 season. The SHE’S MARY LOU’S DAUGHTER quotient is going to be so much lower this season. Not gone entirely (you know we’re going to see shots of her in a boot on the sidelines with Mary Lou doing some sort of pietà tableau—you KNOW it), just less. Continue reading Things Are Happening – December 1, 2017

Things Are Happening – November 17, 2017

A. NCAA training

Utah heard our concerns and made sure to affirm that there actually are more than four people on the team this year. At least five or six. Good to know. Of particular importance in these videos is the 1.5 from Kim Tessen.

Only 55 days until our first meet. Make. Every. Day. Count. #WIL #GoUtes

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Beam series Sunday! #WIL #GoUtes 🙌🏻

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Middle Pass Monday! #WIL #GoUtes

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Alabama montage. If Nickie Guerrero is full-time incorporating that one-leg flourish out of her final layout stepout, I’m on board.

Denver is dismounting bars. And providing today’s NCAA code lesson. Continue reading Things Are Happening – November 17, 2017

Things Are Happening – November 10, 2017

A. …And Aly…

Aly Raisman Says She Was Sexually Abused By U.S. National Team Doctor

How many more? The answer is probably a lot. And Aly is not going to be quiet about it. She’s the hero gymnastics needs but doesn’t deserve.

Did you think that when we first saw Little Baby ASac competing as a junior elite that we would soon literally want her to be the president of the United States? Because I’m pretty sure I’m planning to write her name in for every single category in the next election.

Note to the new CEO: Get Aly on your side. Meet with her. Defer to her. Listen to her. Publicly acknowledge her concerns and develop an action plan with her. As the most prominent and publicly angry and outspoken victim/member of the good guys team, Aly is the leader. The longer USAG waits to fall into line with Aly and show that it is fully listening to/embracing what she’s saying and then trying to do something about it (not just “we sincerely blah blah blah” from afar), the longer USAG will be the bad guy.

Speaking of being the new CEO of USA Gymnastics…

B. Kerry Perry’s name rhymes

And we’re not going to be able to get past that. Just ever. It’s basically all I can say.

In case you haven’t heard: to attempt to deal with its prolonged and callous disregard for the safety of all athletes under its care, USA Gymnastics has finally appointed a new CEO, a rejected children’s poem named Kerry Perry. Continue reading Things Are Happening – November 10, 2017

Things Are Happening – November 3, 2017

A. NCAA News

In Utah developments, Sabrina Schwab has taken a medical retirement after missing the majority of last season with a torn ACL. Injuries more than ability were always the concern for Schwab, someone who was WOGA catnip for the top NCAA coaches from a young age but also missed most of her L10 career with various ailments and bodily catastrophes.

Those injury concerns are what ultimately led UCLA not to offer Schwab a scholarship after her initial verbal. Utah gladly swooped in and took the risk on Schwab because of her sky-high potential, which worked out for one season of pretty 9.9s, but not beyond. The Utes should still have enough returning routines this season to fill out lineups, but Schwab’s were scores they would have been counting on.

We’ve seen some (IDed!) videos of Utah’s training come out over the last couple weeks, though it is slightly unsettling that we’re just seeing the same four gymnasts over and over. You have other people training……right?

Vault and bars highlights from Friday's intrasquad! #WIL #GoUtes

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Beaming after our intrasquad yesterday! #WIL #GoUtes 🙌🏻

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Oklahoma is qualifying for the toe-point Olympics this week. Plus, Brehanna Showers busting out her Shushunova.

Release, catch, repeat! #SIP

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Meanwhile, Kocian isn’t telling you whether she’s going to have to redshirt in 2018 or not.  Continue reading Things Are Happening – November 3, 2017

Things Are Happening – October 27, 2017

A. NCAA Training

It’s a mostly NCAA training kind of week since everyone is still in a worlds hangover and little else is going on.

Alabama held its annual Halloween-tide Ghosts and Goblins preview, with the featured attraction being how Bailie Key looked on beam.

Key did only beam and the interior of bars. The UA Medalist Club streamed the whole thing on facebook (the future is now!), so you can watch all manner of routines if that’s your kind of thing.



Beam and Floor 1

Beam and Floor 2

Florida is showing off floor passes this week (with IDs! 10 points to Florida!). We have to keep in mind that it’s October and, as you may have heard, sometimes people train things in October that don’t make it into the competition season, but I’m pleasantly surprised to see Baumann working the double layout. I had her in the “immediate front 2/1 in college” column.

These passes are (E)xquisite! 💥💎🐊 #GoldMoney #FreshLegs #OnFire

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Also, Baumann is good at beam. Sort of duh.

Denver’s floor passes. To answer your questions, 1) That’s Emily Glynn with the open full-twisting double back, and 2) Yes.

Continue reading Things Are Happening – October 27, 2017

Things Are Happening – October 20, 2017

A. McKayla and Tatiana and Hunter and Rachel and Jamie and Jeanette and

FULL Hunter link

B. NCAA training

Peng is back at it for UCLA.

🙋 if you're excited for one more year of @pengpengclee gymnastics!

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Phew. But let’s talk about Peng’s routine composition for a while because it’s always a point of contention. She does so much difficulty, but sometimes that means she wobbles for 9.625 instead of getting a 9.9+ every time out. And she’s too talented not to get a 9.9 every time out. Do you take some risk out, as UCLA did last postseason? Continue reading Things Are Happening – October 20, 2017

Things Are Happening – October 13, 2017

A. Morgan Hurd is world champ, BTW

That happened. It needs to be addressed. It’s very exciting, even if the all-around competition itself was a little “where is everyone else?”

It felt like a normal all-around competition, but where the lead group of six suddenly went missing right before the meet and we were just left with everyone else. Still, it made up for that by being super close and featuring a group of frontrunners that was very easy to support and for whom it is very easy to enjoy success. A highlight of a somewhat trashy worlds.

Plus, Hurd will be a great example in all future “nationals means nothing” arguments because nationals means nothing. Almost as little as Classic.

If you’re me, you’ve already started casually pondering “What’s the 2018 team going to be?”-related questions and then died from thinking about it. I know that we always say, “That team is going to be impossible to pick!” and then it ends up being super possible to pick because of gymnastics. But also, you guys. When the current world champion is just in the maybe pile…

Which brings us to…

B. Simone’s Unvacation

We can’t really say comeback, because she never officially left, but Simone has taken the next step in returning from her…extended, pretty stressful-seeming vacation?…by detailing her plan for 2018 competitions.  Basically, she watched #trashworlds and was like, “Alright, enough of that racket. Mama’s home!” Continue reading Things Are Happening – October 13, 2017

Things Are Happening – September 22, 2017

I’m back! Much has happened since I abandoned you, some of it even interesting, so let’s get into the highlights.

A. Worlds team drama

Finally, the FIG unveiled the nominative roster for worlds, meaning we kinda/sorta/barring any last minute tricks know who will be in Montreal in a week’s time. In case you missed it, I’ve already broken down the US team. Short version: without knowing the ranch scores, it’s fairly easy to justify this as a reasonable team, though one without “everyone here will win a medal” ability, which is a bit of a change from recent years. Much of the dissatisfaction with this team seems to be born of a feeling of “I just wish the options were better,” which is manifesting as “this was the wrong person to take.”

The drama and gymternet betrayals are not limited solely to the US, however, with the international field bringing its own wagonload of sturm und drang.

So, yeah, Italy. Continue reading Things Are Happening – September 22, 2017

Things Are Happening – September 1, 2017

A. Post Hiatus

First, a little housekeeping. You won’t see any new posts for the next several weeks as I will be gallivanting around England going, “La la la” and not sitting here writing things. I’ll be back in time for a few worlds previews before heading off to Montreal.

This post is a little longer than usual to tide you over.

B. Chinese National Games

Qualification is complete at the Chinese National Games, with predominately the usual suspects doing the usual things. Scoring looks fairly realistic because of domestic Chinese competitions. It’s not crazy tight like it used to be (everyone gets a 7.0 E!), but…normal. Worlds-level scoring. Calmer than pretty much all the other domestic competitions.

In the all-around, the leader is junior Chen Yile, just to establish what the internet is going to be obsessed with for the next year. She’s followed by Liu Tingting, then Wang Yan, Luo Huan, and Shang Chunsong in that order. They’re all quite tightly packed, so this result is not decisive, but it does reinforce the idea that Liu and Wang would be the two AAers for China at worlds. Luo really needs to start beating Wang to make her case since it will be very tough for Luo to get a specialist spot.

On vault, Wang Yan and Liu Jinru qualified 1-2, both performing their Rudi and Tsuk 2/1 combos. (Apparently you guys really don’t like the term Kas 1/1, though it is the more accurate reflection of the technique used. Yes, it’s a MAG term. But…so is Tsuk. I get scolded either way, so I’m not too bothered.)

On bars, Fan Yilin qualified first, well in front of the rest of the group. That’s a critical result in helping to make her case. If Wang Yan is one of the AAers, then China will definitely need to take a medal-contending bars specialist to worlds (because otherwise what’s even the point), and Fan is reestablishing herself as the top nominee.

I heard at nationals that this dismount (which Riley McCusker also performs) has been reevaluated to a D. It used to be an E. Continue reading Things Are Happening – September 1, 2017