Regional Scoring Comparison

A weekend without women’s college gymnastics. What are we going to do? Good thing they’ve scheduled Jesolo for tomorrow, which I assume was done specifically with us in mind so that we don’t have withdrawal symptoms. Very considerate.

I’ll get into the real business of regional previews at some point. Perhaps. Maybe. But for now, I have some numbers. They’ll be helpful in making any sort of apparatus-based regional prognoses. For each regional, I have assembled a batch of vaguely relevant scores and averages (using home averages for host teams and road averages for everyone else, which should help provide a method to evaluate how much boost the host teams may get from being at home). Each score is followed by the team’s ranking within the regional in that category, with blue indicating that a team is overperforming its seeding in that category and that other weird color indicating that a team is underperforming its seeding in that category. That should give a quick glance at what some of the danger areas are for each team, as well as where those teams might pick up some ground. You’ll see that, as expected, the category rankings for the Morgantown and Berkeley regionals are all over place. They’ll be the most fun.

NORMAN, OKLAHOMA REGIONAL:

[1] Oklahoma
RQS: 197.895 [1]
Season high: 198.500 [1]
Season average: 197.675 [1]
Home average: 197.963 [1]
VT RQS: 49.495 [1]
VT average: 49.456 [1]
Home VT average: 49.494 [1]
UB RQS: 49.475 [1]
UB average: 49.408 [1]
Home UB average: 49.413 [1]
BB RQS: 49.530 [1]
BB average: 49.363 [1]
Home BB average: 49.544 [1]
FX RQS: 49.560 [1]
FX average: 49.448 [1]
Home FX average: 49.513 [1]

[2] Oregon State
RQS: 196.680 [2]
Season high: 197.250 [2]
Season average: 196.352 [2]
Road average: 196.592 [2]
VT RQS: 49.285 [3]
VT average: 49.155 [3]
Road VT average: 49.175 [3]
UB RQS: 49.215 [2]

UB average: 48.998 [4]
Road UB average: 49.113 [3]

BB RQS: 49.145 [2]
BB average: 49.059 [2]
Road BB average: 49.092 [2]
FX RQS: 49.360 [2]
FX average: 49.141 [2]
Road FX average: 49.213 [2]

[3] Penn State
RQS: 196.665 [3]
Season high: 197.025 [3]
Season average: 196.282 [3]
Road average: 196.321 [3]
VT RQS: 49.310 [2]
VT average: 49.205 [2]
Road VT average: 49.271 [2]
UB RQS: 49.180 [3]
UB average: 49.089 [2]
Road UB average: 49.125 [2]
BB RQS: 49.125 [3]
BB average: 48.945 [3]
Road BB average: 48.979 [3]
FX RQS: 49.190 [3]
FX average: 49.043 [3]
Road FX average: 48.946 [3]

[4] Southern Utah
RQS: 196.100 [4]
Season high: 196.475 [4]
Season average: 195.644 [4]
Road average: 195.529 [4]
VT RQS: 49.055 [4]
VT average: 48.979 [4]
Road VT average: 48.946 [5]
UB RQS: 49.095 [4]
UB average: 49.025 [3]
Road UB average: 48.975 [4]
BB RQS: 49.045 [4]
BB average: 48.773 [4]
Road BB average: 48.850 [4]
FX RQS: 49.060 [5]
FX average: 48.867 [5]
Road FX average: 48.758 [5]

[5] Missouri
RQS: 195.720 [5]
Season high: 196.150 [6]
Season average: 195.131 [5]
Road average: 195.125 [6]
VT RQS: 49.030 [6]
VT average: 48.935 [6]
Road VT average: 48.883 [6]
UB RQS: 48.975 [5]
UB average: 48.775 [5]
Road UB average: 48.725 [6]
BB RQS: 48.890 [5]
BB average: 48.552 [5]
Road BB average: 48.788 [5]
FX RQS: 49.120 [4]
FX average: 48.869 [4]
Road FX average: 48.721 [6]

[6] NC State
RQS: 195.385 [6]
Season high: 196.175 [5]
Season average: 194.746 [6]
Road average: 195.250 [5]
VT RQS: 49.045 [5]
VT average: 48.950 [5]
Road VT average: 48.963 [4]
UB RQS: 48.885 [6]
UB average: 48.650 [6]
Road UB average: 48.763 [5]
BB RQS: 48.720 [6]
BB average: 48.484 [6]
Road BB average: 48.663 [6]
FX RQS: 48.905 [6]
FX average: 48.661 [6]
Road FX average: 48.863 [4]

MORGANTOWN, WEST VIRGINIA REGIONAL

[1] Florida
RQS: 197.790 [1]
Season high: 198.225 [1]
Season average: 197.536 [1]
Road average: 197.308 [1]
VT RQS: 49.540 [1]
VT average: 49.482 [1]
Road VT average: 49.508 [1]
UB RQS: 49.500 [1]
UB average: 49.409 [1]
Road UB average: 49.371 [1]
BB RQS: 49.360 [1]
BB average: 49.225 [1]
Road BB average: 49.071 [2]
FX RQS: 49.505 [1]
FX average: 49.420 [1]
Road FX average: 49.367 [1]

[2] Stanford
RQS: 196.720 [2]
Season high: 197.525 [2]
Season average: 196.180 [3]
Road average: 195.903 [3]
VT RQS: 49.280 [2]
VT average: 49.136 [3]
Road VT average: 49.122 [3]
UB RQS: 49.420 [2]
UB average: 49.091 [3]
Road UB average: 48.963 [3]
BB RQS: 49.225 [2]
BB average: 49.009 [3]
Road BB average: 49.009 [3]
FX RQS: 49.185 [3]
FX average: 48.943 [5]
Road FX average: 48.809 [5]

[3] Illinois
RQS: 196.515 [3]
Season high: 197.350 [3]
Season average: 196.210 [2]
Road average: 196.246 [2]
VT RQS: 49.065 [4]
VT average: 48.981 [4]
Road VT average: 49.004 [4]
UB RQS: 49.305 [3]
UB average: 49.204 [2]
Road UB average: 49.218 [2]
BB RQS: 49.200 [3]
BB average: 49.065 [2]
Road BB average: 49.107 [1]
FX RQS: 49.100 [5]
FX average: 48.960 [4]
Road FX average: 48.918 [4]

[4] Arkansas
RQS: 196.285 [4]
Season high: 196.650 [4]
Season average:195.900 [4]
Road average: 195.804 [4]
VT RQS: 49.280 [2]
VT average: 49.225 [2]
Road VT average: 49.179 [2]
UB RQS: 49.095 [4]
UB average: 48.968 [4]
Road UB average: 48.904 [4]
BB RQS: 48.755 [5]
BB average: 48.495 [6]
Road BB average: 48.600 [5]
FX RQS: 49.260 [2]
FX average: 49.211 [2]
Road FX average: 49.121 [2]

[5] New Hampshire
RQS: 195.860 [5]
Season high: 196.525 [5]
Season average: 195.138 [5]
Road average: 194.879 [6]
VT RQS: 48.875 [6]
VT average: 48.783 [6]
Road VT average: 48.746 [6]
UB RQS: 48.915 [5]
UB average: 48.690 [5]
Road UB average: 48.625 [6]
BB RQS: 49.065 [4]
BB average: 48.883 [4]
Road BB average: 48.854 [4]
FX RQS: 49.010 [6]
FX average: 48.781 [6]
Road FX average: 48.654 [6]

[6] West Virginia
RQS: 195.355 [6]
Season high: 196.075 [6]
Season average: 194.996 [6]
Home average: 195.325 [5]
VT RQS: 49.015 [5]
VT average: 48.918 [5]
Home VT average: 48.845 [5]
UB RQS: 48.680 [6]
UB average: 48.545 [6]
Home UB average: 48.795 [5]
BB RQS: 48.720 [6]
BB average: 48.559 [5]
Home BB average: 48.575 [6]
FX RQS: 49.125 [4]
FX average: 48.973 [3]
Home FX average: 49.110 [3]

BERKELEY, CALIFORNIA REGIONAL

[1] Utah
RQS: 197.670 [1]
Season high: 198.250 [1]
Season average: 197.418 [1]
Road average: 197.185 [1]
VT RQS: 49.560 [1]
VT average: 49.480 [1] 
Road VT average: 49.440 [1]
UB RQS: 49.500 [1]
UB average: 49.398 [1]
Road UB average: 49.365 [1]
BB RQS: 49.320 [1]
BB average: 49.205 [1]
Road BB average: 49.110 [1]
FX RQS: 49.425 [1]
FX average: 49.336 [1]
Road FX average: 49.270 [2]  

[2] Georgia
RQS: 196.875 [2]
Season high: 197.450 [2]
Season average: 196.375 [2] 
Road average: 196.179 [3]
VT RQS: 49.280 [2]
VT average: 49.217 [3] 
Road VT average: 49.196 [4]
UB RQS: 49.320 [2]
UB average: 49.260 [2]
Road UB average: 49.254 [2]
BB RQS: 49.195 [2]
BB average: 48.798 [3]
Road BB average: 48.650 [4]
FX RQS: 49.295 [2]
FX average: 49.100 [3] 
Road FX average: 49.083 [3]  

[3] Boise State
RQS: 196.495 [3]
Season high: 196.800 [4] 
Season average: 196.107 [3] 
Road average: 195.921 [4]
VT RQS: 49.265 [4]
VT average: 49.230 [2] 
Road VT average: 49.218 [3]
UB RQS: 49.320 [2]
UB average: 49.239 [3]
Road UB average: 49.211 [3]
BB RQS: 48.945 [3]
BB average: 48.820 [2]
Road BB average: 48.829 [2]
FX RQS: 49.110 [6]
FX average: 48.818 [6] 
Road FX average: 48.664 [6]   

[4] Cal
RQS: 196.240 [4]
Season high: 197.325 [3] 
Season average: 195.863 [4] 
Home average: 196.256 [2] 
VT RQS: 49.275 [3] 
VT average: 49.154 [4] 
Home VT average: 49.281 [2] 
UB RQS: 49.140 [4]
UB average: 49.004 [4] 
Home UB average: 49.050 [4]
BB RQS: 48.770 [5]
BB average: 48.552 [5] 
Home BB average: 48.581 [5]
FX RQS: 49.295 [2] 
FX average: 49.152 [2]
Home FX average: 49.344 [1]  

[5] Utah State
RQS: 195.560 [5]
Season high: 196.35 [6] 
Season average: 195.096 [5] 
Road average: 195.238 [5]
VT RQS: 48.975 [6] 
VT average: 48.940 [5] 
Road VT average: 48.916 [6]
UB RQS: 48.885 [5]
UB average: 48.583 [6]
Road UB average: 48.640 [6]
BB RQS: 48.900 [4]
BB average: 48.658 [4]
Road BB average: 48.747 [3]
FX RQS: 49.125 [5]
FX average: 48.915 [5] 
Road FX average: 48.934 [4]   

[6] BYU
RQS: 195.365 [6]
Season high: 196.375 [5]
Season average: 194.818 [6] 
Road average: 194.921 [6]
VT RQS: 49.000 [5]
VT average: 48.905 [6]
Road VT average: 48.921 [5]
UB RQS: 48.880 [6]
UB average: 48.716 [5]
Road UB average: 48.683 [5]
BB RQS: 48.585 [6]
BB average: 48.234 [6]
Road BB average: 48.446 [6]
FX RQS: 49.165 [4]
FX average: 48.964 [4] 
Road FX average: 48.871 [5]   

AMES, IOWA REGIONAL

[1] LSU
RQS: 197.650 [1]
Season high: 198.375 [1]
Season average: 197.484 [1] 
Road average: 197.242 [1]
VT RQS: 49.540 [1]
VT average: 49.455 [1]
Road VT average: 49.479 [1] 
UB RQS: 49.390 [1]
UB average: 49.298 [1]
Road UB average: 49.183 [1]
BB RQS: 49.355 [1] 
BB average: 49.284 [1]
Road BB average: 49.154 [1]
FX RQS: 49.560 [1]
FX average: 49.448 [1]
Road FX average: 49.425 [1]   

[2] Nebraska
RQS: 196.990 [2]
Season high: 197.325 [2]
Season average: 196.618 [2] 
Road average: 196.545 [2]
VT RQS: 49.450 [2] 
VT average: 49.400 [2]
Road VT average: 49.380 [2]
UB RQS: 49.220 [2]
UB average: 49.034 [2]
Road UB average: 49.145 [2]
BB RQS: 49.110 [2]
BB average: 48.984 [2]
Road BB average: 48.755 [3]
FX RQS: 49.325 [3]
FX average: 49.198 [2]
Road FX average: 49.265 [2]   

[3] Denver
RQS: 196.455 [3]
Season high: 196.925 [3]
Season average: 195.960 [3] 
Road average: 195.854 [3]
VT RQS: 49.305 [3]
VT average: 49.192 [3] 
Road VT average: 49.193 [3] 
UB RQS: 48.975 [5]
UB average: 48.835 [4]
Road UB average: 48.789 [5]
BB RQS: 49.070 [3]
BB average: 48.769 [4]
Road BB average: 48.721 [5]
FX RQS: 49.330 [2]
FX average: 49.163 [3] 
Road FX average: 49.150 [3]    

[4] Washington
RQS: 196.030 [4]
Season high: 196.600 [4]
Season average:195.646 [4]
Road average: 195.846 [4]
VT RQS: 48.985 [4]
VT average: 48.864 [4] 
Road VT average: 48.863 [5] 
UB RQS: 49.080 [3]
UB average: 48.898 [3]
Road UB average: 49.067 [3]
BB RQS: 49.055 [4]
BB average: 48.961 [3]
Road BB average: 49.017 [2] 
FX RQS: 49.095 [5]
FX average: 48.923 [5]
Road FX average: 48.900 [6]   

[5] Michigan State
RQS: 195.710 [5]
Season high: 196.325 [5] 
Season average: 195.117 [5] 
Road average: 195.158 [6]
VT RQS: 48.890 [5]
VT average: 48.804 [5]
Road VT average: 48.769 [6] 
UB RQS: 48.980 [4]
UB average: 48.777 [5]
Road UB average: 48.692 [6]
BB RQS: 48.895 [5]
BB average: 48.542 [5]
Road BB average: 48.747 [4]
FX RQS: 49.235 [4]
FX average: 48.994 [4] 
Road FX average: 48.950 [4] 

[6] Iowa State
RQS: 195.390 [6]
Season high: 195.950 [6] 
Season average: 194.902 [6] 
Home average: 195.365 [5]
VT RQS: 48.875 [6]
VT average: 48.783 [6] 
Home VT average: 48.920 [4] 
UB RQS: 48.900 [6]
UB average: 48.727 [6]
Home UB average: 48.805 [4]
BB RQS: 48.815 [6]
BB average: 48.513 [6] 
Home BB average: 48.700 [6]
FX RQS: 49.010 [6]
FX average: 48.879 [6] 
Home FX average: 48.940 [5]  

AUBURN, ALABAMA REGIONAL

[1] Alabama
RQS: 197.490 [1]
Season high: 197.800 [1] 
Season average: 197.175 [1] 
Road average: 197.104 [2]
VT RQS: 49.460 [1]
VT average: 49.371 [1] 
Road VT average: 49.350 [1] 
UB RQS: 49.390 [1]
UB average: 49.206 [1]
Road UB average: 49.267 [2]
BB RQS: 49.335 [1]
BB average: 49.200 [1]
Road BB average: 49.088 [2
FX RQS: 49.465 [1]
FX average: 49.398 [1]
Road FX average: 49.400 [1]   

[2] Auburn
RQS: 197.045 [2]
Season high: 197.750 [2] 
Season average: 196.635 [2]
Home average: 197.170 [1]
VT RQS: 49.345 [2]
VT average: 49.196 [2]
Home VT average: 49.310 [2] 
UB RQS: 49.265 [2]
UB average: 49.152 [2] 
Home UB average: 49.295 [1]
BB RQS: 49.315 [2]
BB average: 49.088 [2]
Home BB average: 49.225 [1] 
FX RQS: 49.315 [2]
FX average: 49.200 [2] 
Home FX average: 49.340 [2]  

[3] Minnesota
RQS: 196.450 [3]
Season high: 196.875 [3]
Season average: 195.598 [3] 
Road average: 195.642 [3]
VT RQS: 49.255 [4]
VT average: 49.102 [4] 
Road VT average: 49.125 [3] 
UB RQS: 48.980 [4]
UB average: 48.760 [4]
Road UB average: 48.617 [5]
BB RQS: 49.045 [3]
BB average: 48.723 [3]
Road BB average: 48.863 [3]
FX RQS: 49.200 [3]
FX average: 48.998 [5] 
Road FX average: 49.004 [3]   

[4] Iowa
RQS: 196.030 [4]
Season high: 196.500 [5] 
Season average: 195.434 [4] 
Road average: 195.354 [4]
VT RQS: 49.045 [6] 
VT average: 48.782 [6] 
Road VT average: 48.761 [6] 
UB RQS: 49.175 [3]
UB average: 49.005 [3]
Road UB average: 48.957 [3] 
BB RQS: 49.010 [4]
BB average: 48.641 [4]
Road BB average: 48.671 [4] 
FX RQS: 49.060 [5]
FX average: 49.007 [3] 
Road FX average: 48.964 [4]  

[5] Maryland
RQS: 195.505 [5]
Season high: 196.075 [6] 
Season average: 194.981 [6] 
Road average: 195.275 [5]
VT RQS: 49.065 [5]
VT average: 49.002 [5] 
Road VT average: 49.025 [5] 
UB RQS: 48.920 [5]
UB average: 48.752 [5]
Road UB average: 48.868 [4]
BB RQS: 48.790 [5]
BB average: 48.454 [5]
Road BB average: 48.639 [5] 
FX RQS: 48.965 [6]
FX average: 48.773 [6] 
Road FX average: 48.743 [6]   

[6] George Washington
RQS: 195.490 [6]
Season high: 196.875 [3] 
Season average: 195.065 [5]
Road average: 194.700 [6]
VT RQS: 49.315 [3]
VT average: 49.127 [3] 
Road VT average: 49.044 [4] 
UB RQS: 48.735 [6]
UB average: 48.563 [6]
Road UB average: 48.359 [6]
BB RQS: 48.680 [6]
BB average: 48.375 [6]
Road BB average: 48.390 [6] 
FX RQS: 49.115 [4]
FX average: 49.000 [4] 
Road FX average: 48.906 [5]   

COLUMBUS, OHIO REGIONAL

[1] Michigan
RQS: 197.270 [1]
Season high: 197.825 [2] 
Season average: 197.143 [1] 
Road average: 197.017 [1]
VT RQS: 49.330 [2]
VT average: 49.264 [2]
Road VT average: 49.267 [2] 
UB RQS: 49.370 [1]
UB average: 49.264 [1]
Road UB average: 49.271 [1]
BB RQS: 49.325 [2]
BB average: 49.286 [1]
Road BB average: 49.263 [1]
FX RQS: 49.365 [1]
FX average: 49.330 [1] 
Road FX average: 49.217 [1]   

[2] UCLA
RQS: 197.200 [2]
Season high: 197.950 [1] 
Season average: 196.768 [2] 
Road average: 196.613 [2]
VT RQS: 49.375 [1]
VT average: 49.325 [1] 
Road VT average: 49.333 [1] 
UB RQS: 49.280 [2]
UB average: 49.066 [2]
Road UB average: 49.033 [2]
BB RQS: 49.400 [1]
BB average: 49.184 [2]
Road BB average: 49.058 [2] 
FX RQS: 49.340 [2]
FX average: 49.193 [2] 
Road FX average: 49.188 [2]  

[3] Arizona
RQS: 196.445 [3]
Season high: 197.125 [3]
Season average: 195.933 [3] 
Road average: 195.661 [3]
VT RQS: 49.020 [5]
VT average: 48.925 [4] 
Road VT average: 48.886 [5] 
UB RQS: 49.155 [3]
UB average: 48.992 [3]
Road UB average: 48.882 [3]
BB RQS: 49.120 [3]
BB average: 48.973 [3]
Road BB average: 48.964 [3]
FX RQS: 49.220 [4]
FX average: 49.044 [4] 
Road FX average: 48.929 [6]   

[4] Central Michigan
RQS: 196.190 [4]
Season high: 196.400 [5]
Season average: 195.110 [6] 
Road average: 195.625 [4]
VT RQS: 49.055 [3]
VT average: 48.871 [5] 
Road VT average: 49.004 [3] 
UB RQS: 49.115 [4]
UB average: 48.808 [5]
Road UB average: 48.875 [4]
BB RQS: 48.870 [5]
BB average: 48.377 [6]
Road BB average: 48.596 [4] 
FX RQS: 49.255 [3]
FX average: 49.054 [3] 
Road FX average: 49.150 [3]  

[5] Kentucky
RQS: 195.745 [5]
Season high: 196.575 [4] 
Season average: 195.468 [4] 
Road average: 195.071 [6]
VT RQS: 48.980 [6]
VT average: 48.855 [6]
Road VT average: 48.813 [6] 
UB RQS: 48.940 [5]
UB average: 48.861 [4]
Road UB average: 48.754 [6]
BB RQS: 48.985 [4]
BB average: 48.773 [4]
Road BB average: 48.529 [6]
FX RQS: 49.140 [5]
FX average: 48.980 [5]
Road FX average: 48.975 [5]   

[6] Ohio State 
RQS: 195.400 [6]
Season high: 196.200 [6] 
Season average: 195.169 [5] 
Home average: 195.335 [5]
VT RQS: 49.050 [4]
VT average: 48.963 [3] 
Home VT average: 48.960 [4] 
UB RQS: 48.795 [6]
UB average: 48.660 [6] 
Home UB average: 48.780 [5]
BB RQS: 48.845 [6]
BB average: 48.608 [5] 
Home BB average: 48.580 [5]
FX RQS: 49.080 [6]
FX average: 48.938 [6]
Home FX average: 49.015 [4] 

Regional Selection

Once again, we have been graced with a totally necessary selection show to announce which 19th-36th ranked teams have been distributed into which regional championships (I CAN’T WAIT). It was originally supposed to begin at 3:00 ET but was bumped to 3:30 ET because that’s how we roll in the world of NCAA gymnastics. Fashionably late. Or just late. Without telling anyone.

Here is what we learned:

1) The NCAA really loves an over-dramatic opening montage. Selecting the regionals is like the Olympics x every important moment of your life + a million. Lesson learned.

2) Also, some regionals or whatever.

EVENING SEMIFINAL:

OKLAHOMA REGIONAL:
[1] Oklahoma
[12] Oregon State
[13] Penn State
Southern Utah
Missouri
NC State

AUBURN REGIONAL:
[5] Alabama
[8] Auburn
[17] Minnesota
Iowa
Maryland
George Washington

IOWA STATE:
[4] LSU (“Lymeenis Hall”?)
[9] Nebraska
[16] Denver
Washington
Michigan State
Iowa State

AFTERNOON SEMIFINAL:

WEST VIRGINIA REGIONAL:
[2] Florida
[11] Stanford
[14] Illinois
Arkansas
New Hampshire
West Virginia
(Tsikhanovich from Bridgeport is in this regional)

OHIO STATE REGIONAL:
[6] Michigan
[7] UCLA
[18] Arizona
Central Michigan
Kentucky
Ohio State

CAL REGIONAL:
[3] Utah
[10] Georgia
[15] Boise State
Cal
Utah State
BYU

Thoughts:
It’s a pretty straightforward distribution. There are threats in every regional, but that West Virginia one may be the most interesting. Florida, Stanford, Illinois, and Arkansas all together. Stanford is going to have to get on those beam routines. Also, Cal was always going to be the most dangerous of the unseeded hosts. They’ll attempt to sink their claws into Utah, Georgia, and Boise State, and could be a real threat if Georgia is having one of those Georgia beam days.

The semifinals look like they’re pretty well balanced, but Auburn and Nebraska won’t love that setup should they advance to nationals because Oklahoma/LSU/Alabama is a pretty tough trio to break into. If all the regionals seeding go to plan, the second semifinal looks like the one with more upset potential.

I’ll have more thoughts as we get closer. Regionals will take place throughout the day on April 4th.

Conference Championships Saturday!

Saturday, March 21

11:30 ET/8:30 PT – Big Ten Championship Session 1 (Ann Arbor, MI) (Scores) (Stream, w/ TV subscription)
1:00 ET/10:00 PT – ECAC Championship (New Haven, CT) (Stream, w/ subscription)
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – SEC Championship Session 1 (Duluth, GA) (Scores) (SECN Stream)
2:00 ET/11:00 PT – MAC Championship (Kent, OH) (Scores) (Stream)
4:00 ET/1:00 PT – Pac-12 Championship Session 1 (Salt Lake City, UT) (Scores) (Stream, w/ TV subscription)
4:30 ET/1:30 PT – Big Ten Championship Session 2 (Ann Arbor, MI) (Scores) (Stream, w/ TV subscription)
5:00 ET/2:00 PT – MIC Championship (Denton, TX) (Scores) (Stream)
6:00 ET/3:00 PT – SEC Championship Session 2 (Duluth, GA) (Scores) (SECN Stream)
6:00 ET/3:00 PT – Big 12 Championship (Norman, OK)
8:00 ET/5:00 PT – Mountain Rim Championship (Denver, CO) (Scores) (CSL Stream)
9:00 ET/6:00 PT – Pac-12 Championship Session 2 (Salt Lake City, UT) (Scores) (Stream, w/ TV subscription)
10:00 ET/7:00 PT – MPSF Championship (Anchorage, AK) (Scores) (Stream)

It’s happening. And it’s going to be a long day. Make sure you have your provisions. Lots of snacks. More booze. Your shrine to Stella Umeh. The usual. I’ll start blogging in earnest around 2:00 ET with the start of the SEC Championship.

Note that the EAGL Championship isn’t until tomorrow, which will be surprising if you’re me and thought it was today. It was originally supposed to be today, as all conference championships are, but George Washington wasn’t able to host because of another scheduling conflict (why aren’t these things worked out in advance?), so now it’s tomorrow at Towson.

Week 10 rankings – (GymInfo)

Keep in mind that today we enter the land of four judges. The high and the low scores are dropped,  and the remaining scores are averaged, meaning that individual judges who are a little too enthusiastic or a little too a-prune-with-legs will usually be thrown out in favor of a happy medium. Or unhappy medium because let’s be honest, we’re going to be unhappy.

The first session from Big Tens is already in the books, with Iowa snatching the victory with a very solid 196.500 that should probably beat a couple of the teams in the later session. That’s a season high and makes two weeks in a row of breaking 196.400 at away meets. They take the clubhouse lead over Maryland with a 196.075 (also a season high, spotting a trend?), Michigan State with a 195.650, and Rutgers with a 193.125.  

A reminder, in the first session of SECs we have Georgia starting on vault, Arkansas starting on bars, Kentucky starting on beam, and Missouri starting on floor. Sadly for Missouri, Shauna Miller is still available on just bars and beam and not all the events, so we will be denied that vault.

Arkansas’s score is something to keep an eye on because the Razorbacks are currently sitting in the precarious 18th spot in the rankings, but we won’t really know anything about where they’ll finish until Minnesota and Cal have gone later in the day.

Bart is ready to go! Of course he is. A couple dozen people are waiting for the meet to start! It’s a four-ring circus! Amanda Two is reporting that Jay is back on floor.

Starting right away!

Rotation 1:
Persinger – VT – back into the lineup – very secure landing – basically stuck, but a large pike in the air. You can see why she’s in for Vaculik if she has been landing like that in training.

Marino – VT – The 1.5 has been touch-and-go lately, but this was one of her better ones in terms of completion of the vault and leg form. Still a pretty large bounce forward, though, so won’t be a big score.

They’re struggling a little with what routines to show/general facts early in the competition. So we’re just watching Katie Carlisle stand around for 15 hours like this is an NBC competition or something. 

Carlisle – BB – solid loso series with good leg extension – full turn is fine – split jump and a pause before the split 3/4 with a check – very low on her punch front, can’t save it and comes off. Sticks gainer full.

Scoring update? Come on people.

Rogers – VT – Oopsie. Great height on her 1.5 but lunges 1100 feet out of the vault – not what they needed in these landings so far after Persinger.

Jay – VT – There’s a stronger 1.5 – just an average step forward on the 1.5, but the rest was her usual vault and it should be the strongest score of the routines we’ve seen.

Kappler – FX – Opens with a punch rudi, though struggles a bit to connect it to a bhs loso like it’s a beam series – finishes with a pretty solid double tuck.

We’re getting highlights of a Canizaro mistake on bars, so Arkansas is already counting a couple 9.7s on bars.

Wellick – UB – they need a big hit from her and she’s starting securely – handstands look close enough, hits the tkatchev – and just a small step on the double front. Their previous best score was a 9.800, so this should be good enough. Just 9.775. Thought it would get into the 9.8s. Spread was 9.700 to 9.900 from the judges.

Zaziski – UB –  ACK! Arches her full turn but saves it – solid on the tkatchev – misses a following handstand in there – bail is clean – hop forward on the DLO, short, and then another step to salute. Pulled it out, but not one of her strong ones because of the arch on that pirouette.

Lots of 9.7s so far. We’ve seen no gymnasts score higher than 9.850.
“You can tell the judges are warming up as well in this first rotation.” The Kathy shade begins.

Heimsath – FX – Missouri is right in this with the scores in the first rotation so far – not mich height on the double pike put pulls it around – a larger lunge – leaps looked OK – 1.5 to layout, layout a little arched but good control – double tuck is nearly a carbon copy of the double pike landing with a little slide. Solid, not much invested in performance, but hit tumbling and acceptable leaps.

Amanda Two is interviewing Danna and asking about Persinger sticking, and Danna is like “but no one else did…so shut up.” She’s happy with the enthusiasm. Uh oh. Kiss of death. At least the vaults were big.

After 1: Georgia 49.125, Missouri 49.075, Arkansas 48.825, Kentucky 48.275
Remember that time yesterday I was singing Kentucky’s praises on beam? This is why I should never say anything. Kentucky counts a beam fall and is basically out of it now. Arkansas was able to avoid counting a fall on bars but couldn’t get out of those 9.7s. Thought Wellick’s routine was fine, but they needed a big score from Zaziski and she arched a handstand pretty majorly.

Georgia, Georgia. Needed those vault landings and they didn’t come. I thought Jay’s vault was pretty good, with just the medium step forward. That could have gone higher than 9.850, but overall it was more of the same story of the last few weeks, large lunges and getting stuck down in the 49.1s.

Still waiting on the final score from Missouri. Finally in, and it’s a 49.075 for Missouri on floor, which is a big deal for them.

Noticing a few large spreads so far in the scores. A couple routines have had .200 spread and a lot have had .150.

Rotation 2:
“Jay Clark was in charge for a few years before moving on.” Yeah. Moving on.

Jay – UB – hit first hs – strong Ray – focusing well on hs – clean on the bail – finishes with a big DLO and a small slide back. Good hit.

We’re definitely focusing on Georgia in this broadcast, which is understandable since they’re the strongest and most famous team here and at home-ish.

Vaculik – UB – a little late on a few of these early handstands – missing each of the first three – very nice on the jaeger and bail – and holds onto the stick on the tuck full. Solid on all the major skills but will get hit for the handstands.

Kappler – VT – Doesn’t have the same dynamics as the Georgia vaults, but clean form in the air, bounce back.

Schick – UB – How did I miss that she was back on bars? Interesting…nice hs – high and clean piked jaerger – good bail – don’t love her toe-on technique – one short hs at the end – sticks the DLO – nice work. Her best bars routine for Georgia? Well done.

Zaziski – BB – This is the vital rotation for Arkansas, even more so because of the low score on bars. secure on the switch side, slightly crooked but not extreme – clean on the loso series and secure – switch to straddle 1/4 are OK – covers a check on the full turn by pretending she was doing a 1 1/4 turn, like you do – check on kickover front – some small issues of tightness here, but this will be a good score – large step-salute forward on the 1.5, though.

Davis – UB – “Davis and Rogers kind of sounds like movie stars in a film.” KATHY JOHNSON. great opening hs and brilliant tkatchev – clean form throughout on the bail – good rhythm through the shoot – hits the hs – had a great one going, but then a large-ish bounce back on the dismount. Was going to be an amazing score before that. Bart tried to name check Usain Bolt. It went just OK.

Rogers – UB –  Yes with the stalder and Ricna, obviously – excellent bail and shoot as well – also hitting these handstands – comes in a little short on her DLO with a hop. THESE LANDINGS LADIES. Still a strong rotation with great work on the bars themselves. But it needed to be a huge score, and the landings will mean it’s not a huge score.

Puryear – FX – punch rudi to solid loso with some ragged leg form on the twist – switch ring is fine – split leap is a little short – does an orphan straddle jump because why not – Good landing on the double tuck, comfortable chest position and controls that step back. Judges starting to throw the 9.9s here. Floor has seemed a little soft so far. Can’t wait until the evening session. KYTRAGETSA20.

Waltz – FX – Pulls around a big wolf 1.5 well to start – large double pike with a solid landing as well – also controlled on the front full to layout (some leg break on the layout) and the double tuck. Great comfort on those tumbling passes to land them with ease and good position.

Amanda Two is now talking to Shannon about Missouri’s performance. They have confidence after floor. He’s proud of them. He comes across well in interviews.

Georgia goes 49.375 on bars, which is fine. A good chance for the best rotation score we’ll see in this session, but they had a chance to take advantage of it for bigger scores. Davis went 9.875 and Rogers went 9.900 and you could argue that both gave away a full tenth on the dismount alone. Kentucky just had a gigantic floor score as well with a 49.300, capped by 9.900s from Puryear and Waltz. It’s what solid tumbling does for you. Good recovery after the beam problem. 

Missouri continued the solid performance with a 48.850 on vault to stay around 196 pace for the moment, while Arkansas is well below 196 pace after two events. They just can’t get out of the 9.7s. They go through beam, which was the idea, but no one hit 9.800. We only saw the Zaziski routine, but I didn’t think it would be as low as 9.725. Once Georgia goes to beam we’ll get a better sense of whether the beam judges are really nailing the strictness in this session.

After 2: Georgia 98.500, Missouri 97.925, Kentucky 97.575, Arkansas 97.500.  

Rotation 3:
Phipps – VT – Interesting that she’s starting – has GREAT distance on her handspring tuck half – and a strong landing as well. We’ll see if going with her first pays off in the rest of the scores. You know I love creative lineup orders. 9.725. I don’t think it worked.

A little bit of feels during the Shelby Hilton chant.

Furuyama – VT – larger lunge back out of the full – some piking and a low landing. 

Kappler – UB – good first hs – nice finish on the full turn – leg break on the bail and a little arch but saved to pretend she was just really nailing the handstands – short on final handstand – step back on tuck full dismount – some errors.

Mitchell – VT – front handspring, handspring front pike – solid landing – smallish step forward – and better on the leg form than the bend she has shown previously.

Natalie Vaculik fell on beam. OVER.

Anyone else looking at the scores for MACs? They’re not dropping the high and low judge scores. Tori Garcia got a 9.713 on vault. OK.

Babalis – BB – Poor loso series – super tight – comes off the beam with no chance to save it. ALL THE FALLS. Counting a fall not. Very good switch – step back on pike jump – wobbles on choreography, so that’s where this routine is – nice kickover front. Hop on front full.

This reminds me of the beam rotation from Nationals in Jay Clark’s last year.

 Zaziski – FX – Fine double pike – a little leg separation and a minor slide – short landing and crunches in the knees a little on the double pike with a step – switch side and wolf are just OK, could be closer to full split – layout to front full with a small stumble. Some landing issues there.

Rogers apparently had a big break on her beam routine as well. I’m dead.

Broussard – BB – Long wait for the Rogers score. Judges often have trouble with that routine composition. Can we see another routine please? This just makes me continue weeping over Georgia’s beam performance.

Yikes. Rogers broke on her bhs 3/4 and then came back onto the beam awkwardly. Deciding if it counts as a fall? This is the second time in a few weeks that has happened for her on beam. That one sad little pompom with the Georgia team.

Actually Broussard – BB – GET THIS – solid on the one-arm bhs and loso series – good switch and does well not to give away a check on the straddle 1/4 – strong full turn – wobble on side aerial – lands low on her gainer full with a hop. Breaks in that routine but she got it.

9.400 from Brittany Rogers. It just gets worse.

 Box – BB – Very strong loso series from Box – solid secure – tight a little on the switch but fine – solid leaps overall – pretty full turn – very strong aerial with great leg form – sticks the 1.5. Great routine. Such an important hit. We’ll hear a lot of “the silver lining is Broussard and Box” about this rotation. 9.925. This was a “it’s not that hard guys, because I’m awesome” kind of routine.

Still, a counting 9.4 and a counting 9.2. Not helping.

Arkansas recovered on floor for a 49.200, featuring a 9.900 from Elswick. Missouri goes 49.00 with a bunch of 9.800s. Missouri still in this for 196, but they’ll need a strong beam. Tim Garrison is the state bird of Kentucky. Like Missouri, Kentucky also continues to get those 9.800s, they’re just working against an early beam fall.

You guys, Missouri is winning. YESSSSSS.

The interviews between the rotations with the coaches are always, “HOW PROUD ARE YOU OF THIS TEAM? SO PROUD, RIGHT?” I wish they would just ask pride-neutral questions and let the coaches tell us exactly how they feel. They’re usually not that proud.

After 3: Missouri 146.925, Arkansas 146.700, Georgia 146.650, Kentucky 146.450.   

Rotation 4:
Georgia is still probably the favorite to take this thing, but floor hasn’t exactly been confidence-inspiring this year. Missouri still has to contend with beam. Arkansas is suddenly is pretty good shape as well since vault can be a high score for them with Eslwick and Wellick.

Reynolds – FX – soldi double pike with a fairly low chest on landing – good switch side and popa. Her music kind of sounds like someone spitting directly into a mic. front full to loso is secure as well. It’s vital that they have her back in the lineup because she’s such a reliable 9.850 of a hit. And strong on the 1.5 as well. Good work.

Elswick – VT – Arkansas starting with some solid 9.8s. Good vault but not her best control – bounces back. She can stick that.

Brown – FX – Nice power on the double pike but a small slide back – does keep it in bounds – strong double tuck – good security on the landing – just losing it in the feet – hits her split full and popa with a good position – 1.5 to layout – JUST pulls around that layout – does well to get it to her feet but will be a big deduction. No height and loses form.

Zaziski – VT – They’ll getting all the 9.8s they need. Excellent power and some of her best control. She has improved this vault a lot. Good form – small slide back.

Marino – FX – That DLO improves her routine so much – good control and body position on landing – controlled on her 1.5 to layout as well – good split full and popa. This routine has finally arrived. Slides back on double pike, but will be another helpful score. Cassidy is really proud of her. 

Kentucky trying to come back from a bars fall now in the second position.

Casey Jo! Putting the beam magic into Missouri. And then points to the beam at the end of her talk. “Yep, that’s where you go.”

Bart’s lessons: We don’t say you had a bad rotation, you had a challenging rotation.

Schugel – BB – Completely loses herself right after the loso – looked like she landed securely but then couldn’t hold it – large wobbles but stays on – two switches series, which I hate on principle, but she hits it – sticks gainer full.

Arkansas just comes up short of 196 with a 195.950.

Box – FX – Great high double pike as always – 1.5 to layout – looked like she overdid the 1.5 a little so the layout wasn’t as big as usual – dances out of it a little to cover up a slide – excellent switch side and popa – enough control on double tuck. Good hit.

Kent State and Central Michigan appear to be in control at MACs so far.
Kentucky counting a fall on bars as well now. Missouri stuck in the 9.7s on beam, so this is Georgia’s meet (session) to lose now with just Jay to go.

Jay – FX – Good on the full out – much better chest position and just the controlled step – stays in bounds – front full to layout is solid – she cheats her wolf jump a bit – good straddle – bounces out of her double pike, so that will take the score down a bit, but she does stay in once again. They have desperately needed this routine back.

Waiting on Jay’s score. Other finals, Arkansas 195.950, Missouri 195.700, Kentucky 195.025.  

Jay goes 9.850 on that routine because of the slide on the last pass, which puts them at a final of 196.000.

Well, that was a little meh for everyone except Missouri. All the teams in the second session should be able to beat these scores comfortably. Georgia had a useful bars rotation (though needed more sticks) and a solid floor performance that can get even better once Jay has more routines under her belt, but of course beam was the major disaster for a 48.150. Can’t afford that, and this score means Georgia can’t move out of 10th place and is still going to be pretty a nerve-wracking one to watch at Regionals.

Arkansas also would have hoped for a bit higher score. The 195.950 puts them in danger of losing their current 18th ranking spot if Cal and Minnesota have good meets.

Danna interview. “Do you think that score will hold going into the next session?” Danna is like, “UM NO OBVIOUSLY.”

Time for a short break before the first session of Pac-12s gets going.

Now I turn on the back Pac-12 Network and Amanda Two is looking at me again! She’s everywhere!
Kent State and Central Michigan still look to be fighting it out for the MAC title, with Kent State still just over 196 pace after three events and Central Michigan with two 49+ events already in the books.

Jim informs us that this has been a season of both successes and failures.”A lot of cheers, a lot of tears.” Apparently, we’ve had champions come out of this session before. We have?

Profile of how amazing Toni-Ann Williams is. It’s a lot of amazing.
Taylor Allex has the highest AA score in ASU history…over the last four years. So, not history. And now there’s a commercial for the championship showing Dabritz vault with a voiceover of Amanda going “She did the 1.5!” while she’s doing the full. Great.

Rotation 1: (Arizona vault, Cal bars, Washington beam, Arizona State floor)
Wobma – VT – Just coming back – just a layout yurchenko.

Richardson – UB – Getting the stare from Elise Ray in the background – nice height on tkatchev and good counter rotation – solid hs – also a large DLO with just a small hop back. Very nice start for Cal.

We’re going one routine at a time, so get your patient shoes on because this will be a long day.

Stowe – BB – clean aerial to bhs – fluid in the connection – switch to a beat jump is fine – straddle 3/4 was a bit short of 180 but no wobble – sticks gainer pike. Classic leadoff routine – solid work.

Miceli – FX – We’re just hoping for six people on each event in some of these rotation – gets through the double pike, low landing but retains enough control – just layouts middle pass and pretty arched in those layouts with not a ton of height – short of position on her split full and popa – rudi to straddle jump to front tuck – the straddle jump went awfully sideways but she manages to pull off the front tuck anyway. They got a hit routine, no major errors, so it’s fine.

Felix-Terrazas – VT – A little big of leg separation in the air and not a lot of distance – step back.

Widener – UB – a little tight on early hs – but another big tkatchev into a solid overshoot – just a bit short on a couple handstands – tuck full dismount with large lunge. Came in short there.

Goings – BB – has a wobble just walking along the beam, so get it together. Good loso series – nice position on the straddle and straddle 1/4 – that’s 180 – pretty finish on the full turn as well – split jump to gainer loso – side aerial to a stuck layout full. Good work after that weird opening wobble.

Levin – FX – slide back on a lowish double pike to start – front layout to front full, not maintaining the straight shape throughout – switch ring and split half looked fine – very low on her rudi, got negative height – pikes but pulls it through.

Laub – VT – Good height on yfull – some piking at the end – small hop back.

Takara – UB – Huge height on gienger and does well to keep her legs together and sticks the tuck full dismount. Great on the big skills – a couple handstand issues and a big elbow bend on her clear hip, but solid.

Fechter – BB – nice front handspring mount – a little tight in her full turn but fine – low on the ickover front but holds on without a wobble and connects into bhs – split 3/4 is OK – also does well not to check – minimizing the errors here and sticks the gainer pike. Good.

Borman – FX – Some bounce on the double pike but a little better finishing position – same on the double tuck – some sliding but hitting the passes – a little lack of control on her tuck jumps – solid on the 1.5 to layout. Not much amplitude in her skills but no big errors. They’re getting through.

Sisler – VT – Pretty controlled on the landing – also some piking and not huge distance, but just a small hop back.

Owens  – UB – half turn to a bail hs – some foot issue there but fine – clear hip up to high bar – small hop back on a solid DLO. Cal is looking pretty good on bars –

Northey – BB – comfortable full turn – straddle 3/4 is good – also strong on the loso series – was a little off line on her kickover front with one foot hanging off the beam but solid to hold onto the landing and go right into the beat jump – too big a lunge out of the 1.5 to finish but good on the beam.

Salas – FX – “She needs to pop one here.” OK. front double full with a smallish stumble to the side – front layout to front full looked really nice as it was going – but a large lunge out of it an OOB – finishes with a fine double pike.

Edwards – BB – Good height on her vault – bounce back – still lacking a little bit in the leg form, which was a strength in the past – just breaks slightly at the end.

Williams – UB – Solid shaposh in the air but she doesn’t really get up to horizontal afterward – small leg break in the bail – UH OH – has to cast again after her bail to get back to the high bar – great stick on the tuck full –

Janik – BB – Grabbing her foot under the beam like a beast – aerial to bhs – saves the combination to continue moving into the bhs without a real check – switch to beat jump – nice full turn – check on the side aerial – sticks gainer full. Wish they had fewer gainer fulls, but they’re working for them.

Allex – FX – You so thought she was going to flash a U with her hands at the beginning didn’t you (DO THEY GET A BONUS FOR THAT?) – fine on the double arabian with a lunge – really good on the 2.5 to front full – completes the skills with a controlled landing – hits her straddles – nice rudi as well – SO clearly their best floor routine. Different league than the others.

Cindric – VT – Fine yfull as well – starts with pretty good form but has to pike at the end, medium hop back – lots of piking in the Arizona vault lineup and not getting the landings.

Ho – UB – Good toe shoot – hs look OK – another huge gienger with solid form – pulls in that tuc full a little but lands it with good control – not really a stick with a hop to salute – but more good work.

McCartin – BB – Love her furious beam face – incredibly short on her aerial and comes off the beam – not a single chance to save it. Tries again and falls again. Won’t count it anyway so it doesn’t matter if she doesn’t get the combination, so forget it – into bhs – split jump to stag – hits the side aerial. Sticks gainer full. Still a good beam for Washington.

Sundby – FX – Full in with strong control on the landing – split full to split jump full are both OK – around and somewhere in the vicinity of 180. 2.5 to front tuck just stays in – also well completed – bounces way out of her double tuck with multiple steps and an OOB. Shame.

After 1: Cal 48.950, Washington 48.900, Arizona 48.875, Arizona State  48.425
The first rotation is finally over. 

Scores staying conservative and appropriate in that first rotation. I was impressed by Washington’s security and solidity on beam until McCartin. They hit their skills, gave away very little on wobbles. Cal was OK on bars, nothing serious but a few minor errors in most routines. Could have used a big hit from Williams, but she had the biggest mistake with having to recast after her bail. 

The second session at Big Tens is beginning with 9.8 central from Penn State on bars and Nebraska on beam. Especially important for Nebraska on beam.

For the subsequent rotations of the first session of Pac-12s, I think I’ll do notes and reactions rather than going skill by skill. It’s a lot of routines. I’ll save my identifying of every leap series energy for later when things get real in the SEC and Pac-12s. I have no way to watch Big Tens, so to anyone watching, reactions are appreciated.

In my fantasy gym team news, I’m already having some problems. Babalis on beam, Toni-Ann on bars. I needed these scores.

Rotation 2: (Arizona State vault, Arizona bars, Cal beam, Washington floor)
Arizona State is the second team in a row starting vault with a layout yurchenko. What conference is this?

Howard UB – very clean on her giant full and double back – just a few foot form issues etc on the bars, but equivalent to what Cal was doing there.

Howe did quite well on BB. She’s doing a Peszek no-hands routine – and had a check or two but some lovely elements as well.

Podlucky FX- bounces out of her double pike mount a billion steps and goes OOB – the rest was OK. It’s an improvement over last year when they really struggled to get the routines out there on beam, but they’ll need to drop it.

Rene Lyst is bringing the cleavage realness this week. I think she got my notes. Another layout yurchenko for ASU. It’s not a yurchenko full!

Felix Terrazas – UB – She’s one of the big height tkatchev Arizona girls – also the small form breaks but sticks the dismount.

Owens shows hit work on beam with a check or two and a bounce on the double full dismount – but scores on beam have been tight and the first few Cal gymnasts are giving reason to go not-huge in the scores, which has been the problem this year.

Stowe’s floor work is similar to her beam work. It’s not big, and you can see the little issue on skills like the straddle jump in combination not being 180, but secure tumbling and should help them out.

Salas for Arizona State starts bringing the 10.0 SV, so that’s something –

Mills on UB needs to take a cue from Cal in the gienger legs deparmtent – a few short handstands and a step on landing.

Ho – BB – big break at the hips on a bhs – Oh, Cal. Better after that and a stuck gainer full, though.

Fechter – FX – The gymnast whose name sounds most like a curse but isn’t – Really good 1.5 to loso opening pass – she is aggressively confident in all her movements –

Big scores coming at Big Tens, led by Illinois on vault with a 49.400, but Minnesota goes in the 49.3s and Penn State in the 49.2s. The problem was Nebraska beam. The same old story. A 48.725 while counting a bunch of 9.7s and a 9.6. Ruh roh.

Love to see Sundby doing that tuck 1.5 vault – hop to the side, but good use of originality.

Laub’s tkatchev isn’t the usual Arizona tkatchev, and she has a hesitation in a handstand, but mostly hit. High DLO – she used to do a DLO 1/1 right? Or am I thinking of someone else?

ALL THE 9.6s for Cal on beam. Save it, Toni-Ann. Aggressive work on her acro and holding onto it – just a step back on front layout full. Errors but a good hit. They’re just barely getting through beam but need a big score lie yesterday.

Three layout yurchenkos for ASU on vault. Oh dear. 

Love the height on Burleson’s double pike – pretty tumbling – she’s so lithe that she looks too fragile to do a floor routine (I’ve been watching too much NCAA) but good mix of form and power in that one.

Allex usually does a y1.5 but does the Sundy special tucked version this time – step forward.

Ortiz! I was just getting ready to praise her tkatchev and then she does an overshoot right to the ground. Don’t need the score, but it means they’re still going to struggle to get onto 196 pace.

This is more like it for Cal on beam from Palomares. Very solid on bher acro – and an attitude turn as well. The best way to my heart! a couple checks – on aerial, on straddle – sticks gainer full.

Janik is continuing the new trend of all Lindsay Sterling all the time for floor music. Odd on her opening double pike – got no height and just pulled it around with a very low chest. Also a staggered landing on the rudi.

cindric is in a pressure situation for Arizona and must hit her bars. Comes through it cleanly – leg break on the bail and just a hop on the double front. Good hit.

Minnesota is ON IT today to take that seeded spot away from Arkansas.

Cal was on the way to saving this rotation, but Draghi does have a big bend on her acro series, just like any of the people in this lineup. Sticks gainer full.

Music problems for Northey. A couple music problems already in this meet. Washington is definitely hitting so far for the most 9.8s of anyone. This is a good day for Washington so far. They’re Missouri-ing this meet. Northey can finally go now – a little short on the double pike with a hop forward, big high 1.5 to front tuck, the split full was the main question mark in this routine, but a solid hit. Washington should take the lead with that score.

After 2: Washington 98.000, Arizona 97.850, Cal 97.700, Arizona State 96.900
Washington has been the only truly solid team so far. Arizona with some general landing mistakes and Cal still very much falling victim to the beam monster with another 48.7, which has been the theme all season.

Expecting something similar to the first session of SECs here. Some people flirting with 196 but nothing to challenge to top teams. Cal does have the confidence of having finished the two weak event sand going now to the two strong events with just a .300 deficit.

In other news, Michigan nailed floor for a casual 49.450 after dropping an OOB from Casanova, to put them about on par with what Minnesota and Illinois are doing, a little ahead. Penn State with a 49.000 on beam, which is OK but not keeping up with the current 49.300 pace. Still with floor and vault to come, though, just like Cal. Vital floor rotation coming up for Nebraska now.

In rotation 3 in the first session of Pac-12s, Shelby Edwards is leading off Arizona on beam, and I’m obsessed with her attitude turn and general existence, as I’ve said many times. A step back on her series and a check or two but mostly solid. Small hop on front tuck full. Starting to make up ground with that. Boo to that 9.750. It was a solid routine. Some definitely tight beam scoring in this session. Saving it for Danusia?

Good clean yfull from Yacalis for Washington – step back – she was their best vaulter a lot of the time last season.

ASU still has a bit more depth on bars. This is the event where they have been able to put up 6 people consistently – Gades has a good full turn and a clean pak, which is work of a heightened level to most of the ASU rotations. Big cowboy on double front with a larger step back. 

Shay Fox is up on beam now – floaty skills and a very nice style in her general movements and acro skills – sticks gainer pike with a HUGE college salute. I think it took my eye out.

Cal’s early floor work has been solid.  A form issue here and there but some very solid landings to get those scores.

Alright, midway through the second rotation here now, but SEC Session 2 begins soon so I’m going to stop half-assing this Pac-12 commentary and take a short blogging break until SECs start. because that’s how I roll.

We’ve got a series fight going on at Big Tens right now, with Michigan, Illinois, and Minnesota all bunched tightly. Note, Minnesota still has to do bars and beam.

At SECs we’ll start with Florida on vault, LSU on bars, Alabama on beam, and Auburn on floor. Florida should be able to take the lead after one rotation. LSU and Alabama can’t afford to let the lead get too big.

Nebraska’s vault score is a fine 49.325, but that’s lower than the vault scores for Michigan, Illinois, and Minnesota, which shouldn’t be happening to Nebraska. Minnesota now counting a 9.6 on bars because of course.

Floor scores going pretty high at Pac-12s. Will be interesting to see how they fare in the second session.

SEC time! Time to relive Georgia’s disastrous beam. Bart has upgraded it from challenging to disastrous. I’m nervous. Why am I nervous? I’m none of these people.

Kathy says this is LSU’s year. Bold statement. The KATHY HAS SPOKEN. Everyone perform accordingly.

Rotation 1:
To bring Baker and Sloan back in on vault, Bridgey is out. Interesting call. Starting with Spicer now, fine form and a small bounce back. Solid opening.

Gnat – UB – It’s painful to hear all these cheers and not know what’s going on, but I do favor the speed of SECs over the plodding pace of Pac-12s.  good first hs – nice finish on full turn – good legs on the gienger – a small leg break on the gienger and one short hs – sticks the DLO. One of her good ones.
Savona went 9.850 in the first spot.

9.900 for McNeer on beam.

Sloan – VT -Big big yfull as always – great form – just the small step back with one foot. Well done. 9.925.

Williams – BB – just pulls around her popa to complete the full turn – a little squatty on the punch front landing but no wobble – long pause before series, but very good – not quite as confident as last week, but OK – small check on full turn – small step on 1.5. Good.

We didn’t see it, but it appears both Hunter and McMurtry got 9.950 on vault.

Jordan – UB – good opening hs – lovely toe point and height on jaeger – hits bail – all handstands look good – step forward on DLO.

LSU hasn’t hit the 9.9 mark on bars yet.

Courville – UB – Opens with her excellent jaeger – clean handstands – small leg break on the bail – just bends a bit to hold onto the stick on the tuck full dismount. How much Courville helps this rotation. She saves so much ground. 9.925.

Beers – BB -Good switch – looked like she would come in short on the side somi but controlled it well with no wobble – good legs on the loso series and secure – split jump to sheep with a step – just short on her 1.5 with a step back. Good, but did give away a couple .050s.

49.625 on vault for Florida. That’s the kind of advantage they were looking for. No one else has very 9.9y.

Is Auburn in this meet? You wouldn’t know. 

Clark – BB – Great on the leaps. She has the second-best leaps in this rotation after Sims. Solid on loso series Secure on the sheep jump, though I would like to see a bit more head release. Check on the kickover front with a bend to the side – 1.5 is off to the side with a step. She just screamed at the camera. Because you need to sometimes.

LSU went 49.375 on bars. Good score. It’s a multi-tenth deficit to Florida, but not devastating. Alabama’s 49.275 will be harder to come back from, but that was a good beam rotation, so if that’s consistent with the other beam scores, they’ll still be in it.

Floor the last event still going. Atkinson FX – massive tuck full mount with a bit of a slide – solid on the split and wolf – 1.5 to layout to a huge wolf jump – does well to control it and keep it in bounds – good form and exceptional amplitude – bounces back out of her double pike – JUST does stay in bounds. Kathy is all about this routine. Is her name Macadaeg?

Rhonda is telling us about Florida’s incredible start. It was their best vault rotation at SECs ever.

Sadly, Auburn has to count a 9.6 on floor, which is devastating for their chances of contending, in spite of Atkinson’s great routine.

After 1: Florida 49.625, LSU 49.375, Alabama 49.275, Auburn 49.075 
Both LSU and Alabama are heading to a big event at this point, and it’s necessary that they keep pace with what Florida puts up on bars. From what we saw in that rotation, LSU had some very nice bars work. A minor form break from Gnat, a non-stick from Jordan, but small errors into a strong hit from Courville. Nothing to worry about in that performance. Same from Alabama. But the Tide did need to be a bit more sure in those routines and stick more dismounts to get the kind of 49.5 they got last time out.

The upgrade on Rheagan is that they’re taking it event by event for now to see if she does the AA today. How can you do that to our hearts, though?

This rotation break needs to last long enough for us to watch Toni-Ann Williams on vault. Plan these things well.They did plan these things well, but Williams does have a little bounce back this time. Cal will be good enough on floor and vault to break 196 at this meet, though. And Minnesota is counting a bars fall, so things are getting interesting in the top 18.

Rotation 2:
Did we really get a commercial during actual gymnastics? These people…

Frost – FX – finishes with a very strong double pike landing.

Guy – VT – Great height and power on the vault – a little bit of soft knees and a bounce back. Good work. 

Hunter – UB -good firs ths – huge hindorff as always – toe on – clean form on the bail – rhythm through the shoot – borderline final hs – flings out her tuck full so far and still stuck it. She’s laughing. HA! So Kytra to screw up her dismount kind of and still stick it.

Hambrick – BB – We missed Macadaeg’s routine. KATHY WILL BREAK YOU. Lovely L turn and a strong aerial – clean on the switch to straddle 1/4 – good loso series (“That was the taj mahal of layout stepouts”) – just a step or two back on the 2/1 dismount.

Just a 9.725 from Macadaeg. World over.

Sloan – UB – Excellent Ray except for the feet as always – does have the break in the bail this time – strong handstands throughout – sticks the DLO cold. Great routine. Rhonda just flew into the sky and turned into confetti about that routine.

10 for Sloan. Again. Not as strong as her last 10. With the leg break on the bail. 10 from all four judges as well.

Courville – BB – Lots of 9.8s so far – compared for Florida’s 10 millions – lovely L turn – wobble on the arabian but held onto it – another check on the loso – a little tightness so far? – hits the sheep jump well – great switch and split – wobbles again on the aerial connection into sissone. Sticks gainer full. Tight routine, though. She hasn’t done beam in a while.

Beers – FX – Alabama is getting the scores so far on floor that LSU did not get on beam – big DLO, slides back a little – front layout to front full is solid – split full is very good, would like to see the front leg higher on the switch ring – excellent double back.

Michigan is destroying the meet at Big Tens BTW – 
Three scores in the 9.7s for LSU on beam. Not good.

C Sims – FX – The usual DLO – big but comes in a little short – clean on the middle pass and good control on the landing – hits her leaps with solid extension – easy double pike with a good chest position. Nice hit. Alabama has delivered on floor. It’s just that Florida is building up quite a lead.

Halfway: Florida 99.200, Alabama 98.750, Auburn 98.375, LSU 98.350
Florida has exactly the meet they were hoping for through two events. And a Sloan 10 doesn’t hurt. The big disappointment in that rotation was LSU on beam, not getting the big score I expect from a rotation with that talent. They’re 0.850 behind Florida already, and it seems impossible to see a comeback from that without a Florida counting mistake. Alabama has performed pretty well so far through two events, couldn’t expect all that much better in the routines that we’ve seen, but it’s still almost a half point deficit. This Florida beam rotation will be decisive. For the rest of the teams to get back into the meet, Florida will have to show some cracks here. Otherwise, they’ll just be able to cruise to the title.

The good news for LSU is that it’s still their best two events to come. 

Big comeback for Nebraska after beam to finish with a 196.875. It won’t challenge Michigan’s excellent final score of 197.825, but it’s about as good as they could expect.

Rotation 3:
Savona – FX – Needs a 13. The 1.5 to double back is rock solid as always – full in middle pass has great control as well and she finishes it basically in the middle of the floor – straddle position is great – does slide back on her double pike, which is uncharacteristic. Still gets a 9.900 so look out.

Fassbender fell on beam on a bhs. This is the opening Alabama needs. Will it be a thing? Florida knows how to make meets interesting (I’m talking to you, Super Six 2013).

These beam judges are having a bit of a time today. After the Rogers debacle earlier.

Williams – VT – Going back to the full, after so many weeks of 9.825s, it’s understandable. Huge vault. Great form. Steps back. Kathy is NOT OK with that downgrade. No deductions other than the step though. 9.875.

Spicer – BB – Small bend on her loso  – not huge amplitude on the switch – the shush is good – round off gainer full with a bounce. Hit.

Clark – VT – GREAT. Excellent height and form, and just a bounce in place that’s almost nothing.

Jordan – FX – Hitting the floor in her choreo, presumably out of frustration over LSU’s performance so far. Nails the double pike as always – front full to layout is fien and her straddles are more than fine. Just great form and control throughout. No real errors there, should be a great score. 

McMurtry – BB – perfectly solid on the punch front – but you could tell she was off line on that loso in the air and she comes off. Counting a fall now. BEAM, people. Short on the switch – sticks the 2.5

LSU and Alabama are nailing these rotations. Florida is counting a fall. It just. got. interesting.

Hugely important beam routines for Hunter and Sloan now. The LSU team is singing along to “22” because obviously.

Courville – FX – Good double arabian this time on her return to the lineup – well controlled – high on the double pike and just the smallest slide – great leaps obviously – front tuck through to double back is just a little short with a step forward – did she just fall on her ending pose? LOL.

 Hunter got a 9.600. Oh god.

Sloan – BB – She has PISSED BRIDGET BEAM FACE – small check on the aerial into her bhs connection – good switch to split jump – pretty full turn – excellent side aerial – sticks the double full. Did have that early check.

Hall – FX – One of her strongest DLOs – great control – great on her switch side to popa again – Kathy doesn’t like the toe point, which is very valid, but if they’re starting to deduct for toe point on floor, everyone would get a 9.600. Great double tuck. One of her very good ones. 

Alabama’s 49.500 on vault is a pretty big deal now. LSU goes 49.550 on floor to keep themselves in it to challenge Alabama. Florida goes 48.625 on beam, even with Sloan’s 9.950. It would have been manageable if not for the Kytra 9.600.

After 3: Alabama 148.250, LSU 147.900, Florida 147.825, Auburn 147.525
Alabama is the one with the big lead now, but it’s not over yet since they have had some struggles on bars over the weeks and LSU is going to a potential huge score on vault. And Florida is going to a potential huge score on floor. Alabama still has to deliver the sticks in this rotation. And the not-falls.

I was worried about that 49.275 on beam from Alabama, but it turns out that’s an amazing score because everyone else is sucking majorly at beam today.

Rotation 4:
McNeer – UB – Wonderful Ray – best in the competition – she arched a hs and Kathy GASPED IN PAIN. A little floppy on the bail – does stick the DLO, but that one mistake will be an issue.Still a 9.850. OK.

Ewing – VT – Big 1.5 – has a leg break on the block and then a hop forward, but pretty good.

Jetter – UB – Jetter is back on bars. Interesting. How is that double front going to be? Good Ray as well but not as big and clean as McNeer’s nice down to the low bar – and just a step back on the double front. Not too bad.

Jordan – VT – Big and clean full – just a bounce in place. Her usual great vault.

Spicer – FX – Solid on the piked full in – though staggered as always – very strong front full to front pike – good security on the landing  – way short on her split leap full – a little bounce on the double pike – 

Gnat – VT – Just the full, which is sensible, and just a small bounce in place, coming off a 9.950 from Hambrick. LSU getting these vaults.

A Sims – UB – Kathy is warning us that the form will be a problem. It is trhoughout – but the weiler half and bail are solid – along with a small slide on the DLO. Great on the skills, but every one had a leg separation, especially the DLO. 9.900 because WTF.

Are LSU’s 9.9s going to be enough to beat Alabama’s 9.8s now? I wish the scores updated faster because it makes it basically impossible for us to follow what is happening. If you can have quick updating of scores in every meet during the year, why not at SECs?

Beers – Just a bit of a leg break on the bail after the shaposh but well hit – handstands look fine – bends a lot to hold onto the double front landing and then slides to salute – not a stick. 9.900.

Alabama basically just needs one more hit.

LSU finished 197.450.

Clark – UB – toe on – also some leg breaks in the shaposh to bail – not quite as sure as the Beers routine, and then the DLO was high and huge and then she still managed to land on her knees. What? They didn’t need it, though.

I love how Florida’s floor rotation doesn’t even exist anymore.

197.525 is the final score for Alabama, just holding off LSU.

Hunter – FX – Excellent DLO – great on the new middle pass as well – excellent control – Florida hasn’t had the scores in the first few routines, but the floor score to win actually may have been doable with some huge home-style scores. Nails the double back as well. Wonderful. Her usual great routine. 9.975. Because only Sloan gets 10s.

Caqautto – FX – She’ll get an 11 so that Florida can win, front double full to punch front is back in the routine this week (look how that worked out) – rudi to a huge split jump as well – very strong stick on the double pike. Well, it’s better than the routine she got a 9.950 for at Super Six last year, so that’s something. Waiting on the final scores now.

Bart keeps saying she needed a 10 for that routine. Wrong. Just so wrong. Bridgey couldn’t mathematically catch Alabama at that point.

Alabama’s 197.525 is enough for the win. Huge accomplishment after those disappointing losses this season.

FINAL: Alabama 197.525, LSU 197.450, Florida 197.400, Auburn 196.925
Not having a rotation that you screw up. That’s the lesson on how to win this SEC title. Alabama was consistent and everyone else had a poor beam rotation.
Note that Auburn finished with a great 49.400 on beam.

The good news for Florida is that they were going to dominate this meet with a hit beam rotation, which shows that they have established some distance from the rest of the SEC even in spite of this performance.

Interviewing Dana now. She’s a little bit happy. Just a little.

PHEW. Exhausting. And we still have Pac-12s in an hour or so!

As for Oklahoma in the Afterthough Championships, they’re in line for the strongest score of the day so far, challening Michigan, even after a low number on bars because beam and floor have been so high.

While we wait, it’s time for some RQS figuring.

Penn State got a 196.725 today, finishing with an RQS of 196.665.
To move ahead of Penn State, Oregon State needs a 196.850 tonight, and Stanford needs a 196.900. Denver is just getting underway now but will not be able to catch Penn State.

#16 Illinois finishes with an RQS of 196.515, which could put them as high as #14 if things fall their way.

In a big result for #19 Minnesota, they will pass Arizona and Arkansas and finish with an RQS of 196.450. 

#17 Arizona finishes at 196.445, and falls behind Minnesota but can still pass Boise State depending on BSU’s score.

#18 Arkansas finishes at 196.285. #20 Cal finishes at 196.240.

So, Minnesota and Arizona hold onto their top 18 spots, while Arkansas and Cal will not break the top 18 and will be #4 seeds at Regionals.

Note that there’s a separate link for the live scoring of the second session at Pac-12s, which I have added at the top.

Right now Oklahoma has the highest score on the day, just outpacing Michigan. The theme of Michigan’s season has sort of been “don’t be sucky at anything,” and it’s working really well. They’re never sucky at anything. 

Pac-12s is almost upon us. Lineups are starting to come out. UCLA is starting with Honest and Meraz on vault, before going to Cipra, Bynum, Peszek, and Williams. Is this the best vault lineup this team can do? I’m still very unsure. I need some more Pinches in my life. And interesting that Irvin isn’t making it. For now. There will be 16 changes in the next 7 minutes.

PAC-12 CHAMPIONSHIPS

Opening broadcast highlights are Dabritz and Ebee being excellent on vault. And then that time Honest did a Shayla.

A retrospective now on Arizona’s victory in the first session, coming back to top Cal and Washington.

Star profiles now. Dabritz. Peszek. Gardiner. Taylor Rice because Taylor Rice. PRICE IS DOING BARS AGAIN.

This UCLA tennis player in this commercial is spouting all the UCLA gymnastics quotes. It’s funny to hear it from another sport.

Rotation 1: (Utah vault, UCLA bars, Oregon State beam, Stanford floor)
Lothrop – VT – (in instead of Rowe or Lewis) – Good landing on the full – a leg break on the balck and then a hop back –

THESE UCLA LEOTARDS YOU GUYS.

Francis – UB -good first hs – strong shaposh and perfect on the bail – shoot well to high bar – and then sticks the double pike like every single time. Great start.

Witherby – BB – OK on the aerial – a bit slow into the bhs connection – good height on the switch side – wobble on full turn – double pike dismount with a hop back. The opening they needed.

Shapiro – FX – Shapiro is doing floor! Stanford is bringing it with the good lineups today. 1.5 to half with a little short landing on the half – gingerly landed – just a front layout to front tuck middle pass – I hope that wasn’t intentional. Marvelous leaps obvious – moves gracefully – gets a solid double pike to finish.

Partyka – VT – Good height and distance – small hop back – great form. The judges already backed themselves into a corner by overscoring Lothrop’s vault with a 9.850, because all the rest of these vaults are going to be better, as this was.

Meraz – UB -toe on – smaller leg break in the bail this time – handstands look OK – tkatchev is lower but hit – that wonky straddled DLO with a pike and a larger lunge back.

SCP – BB – “This is a very savvy gymnastics crowd.” Because they cheered a big score for the home team? Good position on the switch – wobbles on the loso series but saved it – tight on the full turn – this routine is a little tight so far, but a good finish with a side aerial to layout full stuck. Florida could have used that today.

Daum – FX – low chest on the double pike but secure – split positions look fine – 1.5 to layout is hit – coming back from her injury, she still doesn’t have quite the same oomph in her floor work this year, but this is pretty solid so far – same on the double back as double tuck. Lower chest but secure landing.

Lee – VT – Great height and form and just a little bounce. Excellent vault and landing. Better than Partyka’s, so let’s see where we go from here. 9.950. Here we go.

DeJesus – UB -good full turn – those legs on the gienger though – those legs – very clean on the bail and shoot to the high bar – basically a stick on the tuck full this time, though she did lean back into the salute. She usually improves the legs on the gienger as the year goes on, but not this time.

Perez – BB -solid on the aerial to bhs – nice full turn – good sheep jump and displays of flexibility. Gainer full finish.

Dear camera people, you need to have people’s feet in the shoot so we know how the landing is.

Vaculik – FX -High double tuck, great landing, secure and chest way up – 1.5 to layout to stag is well done – hits her leaps as well – strong start – also secure on the double pike – a good, clean Vaculik routine. Much needed.

Wilson – VT – The way the scores are going, she doesn’t need to stick for a 10. Looks like a bounce in place, but once again we can’t even see the landing. Yeah a bounce in place – doesn’t move that much. 10.000 Because why the hell not?

Mossett – UB – Big jaeger, very well done – sluggish on the pak with a leg separation but works through it – steps back on the tuck full but a solid hit for her as well. 

McMillan – BB – excellent kickover front to bhs – tight on the full turn – wonderful front handspring to her knees – switch with a pause to the straddle 1/4, bothj are OK – small bounce on gainer full – good hit.

Rice – FX – Another strong double pike, not quite Vaculik level but solid and hit – layout half to front full. We’re already seeing the lack of Ebee in this lineup tonight in the difficulty department, though. Switch ring and switch side. Just slightly short on double tuck with a lunge.

Delaney – VT – Should get an 11. Comes in a little shorter this time. Really wanted the stick there – small hop to the side.  She gets a 9.850, which is like an apology score for Wilson’s 10.

Peszek – UB – great full turn – amazing gienger as always – great hs and strong on the bail – shoot to hb is the most improved part of her routine – the DLO was better in teh air but she hopped forward. She’ll be pissed about that landing. Just a 9.875? Come on. Just.

Tang – BB – Off line on her kickover front – one foot was almost entirely off the beam and she has to check – nice on the gainer loso – wolf turn is fine for a worf turn – fine switch to straddle 3/4 – hops forward on gainer full. OK routine but too many wobbles for the score they needed.

Hanset – FX – front 2/1 is fine – a little ragged in the legs with a step to the side – 2.5 into front tuck that got one inch off the ground but was comfortably around – 2.5 dismount – another solid enough hit. Stanford it getting the benefit a little bit on floor so far.

Dabritz – VT – Sticks her yfull – well now you have to, don’t you? Because that was actually a really great stuck vault. Doesn’t bring her feet together on landing, though. Ooh, on replay leans back to salute.

Lee – UB – Excellent Bhardwaj – misses her shaposh half. BUUUUUHHHHH. No point. Shut it down. Still got a 9.400 with a fall. PENG.

Gardiner – BB – Hits her wolf turn – nice leaps – very clean aerial and solid on her loso series as well – this is the hit they’ve been looking for – strong side somi as well – sticks the gainer full. Well done.

Spector – FX – Short on her double arabian with a step back – switch side and popa are around – front layout to front full with a stumble to the side – low chest on the double tuck –

After 1: Utah 49.675, UCLA 49.275, Stanford 49.275, Oregon State 49.000.
How did Stanford manage that 49.275 on floor? But really, how did Tory Wilson get a 10 for that vault? That she didn’t stick. I was because Lothrop got a 9.850 and there was nowhere else to go. Still some great, great vaults for Utah in that rotation, doing exactly what they needed to do to open up a huge lead after one event – Partyka and Lee couldn’t have done much better, and Dabritz was almost there. Peszek got a little hosed on her bars score, but they couldn’t take advantage of the Peng number, which hurt a ton. A few too many wobbles for OSU on beam (especially from Tang which could have been a great score), but they too did what they needed to do. Gardiner and McMillan could have gone higher, don’t you think?

Utah is in good shape. The way this meet looks so far, they’ll probably need to pull a Florida to get it back to interesting.

Rotation 2:
Hanset – VT – Sticks her front pike half – low chest but a great landing – very well done. 10? 20? 30? 9.850.

Hughes – UB – nice half turn – high tkatchev but needs more distance from the bar and counter rotation – short handstand or two – large-ish lunge back on tuck full. Fine, not amazing, but fine.

Meraz – BB – very solid punch front – and strong on the loso series as well. She has been an important addition to this lineup because she isn’t fragile to wobbles like so many of her predecessors – solid on switch half to wolf as well. Sticks the 1.5. Form issues, but no wobble issues at all. Good start.

Radermacher – FX – nice front 2/1 into a punch front with a hop – good, regular, solid leadoff work, and a strong front full to front tuck ending, which is stuck. Good.

D McNair – VT – Fine full – bounces up and to the side – others will have more distance.

Rowe – UB – good full turn – a bit more distance from the bar on her tkatchev – hits the bail well – short on final hs – whips around her DLO a little with a hop back.

Williams – BB – Very strong a secure on loso series – holds onto the straddle 3/4 well also – pretty full turn – she is like a different person on beam this year – and just as I say that, she’s off on her kickover front. Oh, UCLA. Sticks gainer full. Some serious pressure on these routines now.

Witherby – FX – tuck full is solid to start, good chest position and a small step that stays in bounds – high 1.5 into layout – a little crooked on the switch side – nice popa – stumbles back on double pike and goes OOB.

Vaculik – VT – Good distance – a little piking – small slide/hop –

Wilson – UB – good full turn – OK legs on the gienger into the overshoot – tuck full dismount with a hop back. One of her medium routines. Better in the legs, but didn’t stick the dismount.  9.900.

DeJesus – BB – Good aerial – small hesitation into bhs – switch to split – kickover front is solid – small check on the full turn (Sophina!) – hop back on gainer front full. You needed to stick that.

Perez – FX – Lands a little low on the opening double pike – but overall solid on the tumbling work – a little too much open-mouth work in this floor routine but otherwise it is legitimately fun – 1.5 to half – a little ragged in body shape, but a good routine.

Rice – VT – Full – good form in the air – step back, fairly large compared to the other steps we’ve seen tonight.

Lopez – UB – very late on her full turn, finishes at horizontal – hits tkatchev – some foot form on the bail – sticks the DLO – good after that early mistake on the full.

Francis – BB – beautiful side aerial – small hesitation on the aerial into the bhs – switch to split jump is very nice as always – check on the y spin – just seems a little tighter than usual but nothing major – side aerial to full is the best one she’s ever done – great rhythm and better chest position on landing.

Tang – FX – High double pike with a strong landing – split full position is nice – solid 1.5 to layout as well – she has had to come back slowly this year, but this routine is back. Finishes with a clean rudi.

N McNair – VT – Best height and landing so far – just a bounce in place but works to hold the landing – strong laidout form.

Lothrop – UB – Not as much height on the jaeger but solid – very nice on the bail, clean legs throughout – whippy on the DLO with a small step on landing. 9.950. OK. Sure. Fine. 

One judge gave Danusia’s beam a 9.800. Don’t talk to me.

Peng – BB – Excellent flares as always – huge switch and split jump – great on the layout to two feet as well – nails the punch front – double turn is exceptional this time – just the dismount left. Just a small shuffle on the 2/1, but that’s really it. 9.925. Sanity restored.

Gardiner – FX – a little stumble on the 2.5 – 1.5 and has to pike her layout connected out of it – got no rebound into that connection and did well to save it from being a problem – we can downgrade it  to an issue. Low chest on double pike but secure.

Price – VT – Almost sticks it. Amazing and huge as always – just a small step forward. Haven’t you learned, Ebee? It you bounce back it doesn’t count. You just can’t step forward.

Dabritz – UB – Basically has to get a 10 at this point right? Great on the comaneci and the jaeger 0 clean bail – hit handstand – doesn’t stick – hops forward, pretty big too, which will bring the score down a bit. 9.925 still.

Peszek – BB – Good aerial to back tuck and does well to dance out of the back tuck to avoid a wobble – switch and straddle are solid – strong full turn – combo dismount into layout full with a small hop. Good Peszek routine, but she and Peng needed to stick those dismounts for the huge, huge scores. still 9.950.  

McMillan – FX – front 2/1 to front tuck with a smaller stumble back – good split full position, definitely 180 – back 1.5 to layout is strong – excellent rudi to finish, great landing.

One judge gave Peszek a 10! LOL. Trying to make up for the Utah scores? Final is a 9.950.

After 2: Utah 178 BAJILLION, UCLA 98.700, Stanford 98.550, Oregon State 98.325
Utah giving relatively nothing away in these routines, but it doesn’t matter even when they do. UCLA recovered on beam for a good rotation score to keep themselves around 0.500 back and in position to hope for a Utah beam disaster. Stanford endures the weaker events well and is still in contention for a big result if they hit bars and beam the way they can. Given the standard, we should see a lot of 9.9s for Stanford on bars. Oregon State uses a bunch of 9.9s to stay fairly close on floor.

Rotation 3: (Oregon State vault, Stanford bars, Utah beam, UCLA floor)
Dessaints – VT – Nice yhalf – fooled the camera people that that – good height and clean form – pretty big step forward.

Utah crowd cheering because I’m sure someone else got a 9.950 before the event started.

Wing – UB – good first hs – very clean form on the shaposh and just the slightest leg break on the pak – nice handstsnds – full into the stuck double tuck – lovely routine.

Wilson – BB – very secure on the two loso series with some mushy legs – switch leap=nope – hits straddle 1/4 – short on split jump as well, but the acro is very solid – sticks the 1.5 – pretty much as good as she can do. Didn’t give away anything beyond the built-in deductions.

Gerber – FX – Fine double back – could use a little more control – solid on the 1.5 to front pike to leap – good control through it – switch ring to split full and wolf full – pretty low on the double back dismount but maintained enough control.

Jimenez – VT – Really strong distance on that vault, but a pretty big bounce back as well.

N McNair – UB – good first hs – great height on that pike jaeger – clean form on the bail – perhaps one borderline hs there – sticks the tuck full – great routine again. This is what Stanford needs.

Dabritz – BB – good full turn – balance check on loso series – secure on the switch half though iffy – hits the side aerial as well – switch to straddle 1/4 is hit as well. So glad she has turned into a beamer this year. It’s just right. Sticks 2/1. A couple checks, but very good work.

Hall – FX – big cowboy on the doubel arabian and a pretty uncontrolled lunge out of it – just stays in bounds – I’m not feeling that pass – OK front full to pike but another slight slide – good on the leaps – solid and secure double pike, low chest.

Gardiner – VT – Good form on the full – medium sized step back – doesn’t give away much of anything except for the step.

Vaculik – UB – clear hip hect  – GIENGER – hitting all the handstands – smallest leg break on the bail hs – leg separation on the DLO but a great stick.

Stover – BB – nice aerial to start – secure on the loso series – htis the switch and straddle 1/4 well – she started the season wobbly but has developed much more confidence. Sticks the gainer full.

Francis – FX – whip to a stuck double back – that’s the Danusia floor we know – strong landing on the 2.5 as well – with an acceptable level of stepping out of it – excellent on the leaps – shoots the camera. I’M JUST DEAD OUT OF LOVE. Noooooo Nush. Very short on dismount with a large lunge. Girl.

Aufiero – VT – Bounces back on her full this team. She has stick capabilities, but not this time. Oregon State has improved the form and power on vault quite a bit lately, though.

Shapiro – UB – Great shoot to high bar – half turn – to a huge jaeger with great toe point – hitting the handstands – clean on the pak as well – almost sticks the DLO with a hop forward to salute. Still, great work.

Lee – BB – If you’ve already given Dabritz a 9.925, what are you going to give Lee? A 50? Full turn is strong – check on her two loso series – strong switch and straddle 1/4 – that’s how you do it, rest of the team. Hits her side aerial – bounces back on 2/1. A few errors there, which means she won’t get rewarded for the superior quality of her execution.

Cipra – FX – Solid on the double tuck – fine on the 1.5 to layout as well – this is an easy set of tumbling for her talent level, though, so it should be perfect – leaps are quite good – FALLS ON DOUBLE PIKE WHY.

Keeker – VT – good half – also quite high and maintaining good form – larger hop forward.

Price – UB – GET THIS. strong shapish to clear hit – excellent Church to bail – hitting all the handstands – just a hop back on the DLO. Needs more time with that dismount, but the rest of it was amazing.

Rowe – BB – full turn – slight hesitation between switch and straddle 1/4 – hits her loso series but leg form could be better – does very well to save her kickover front because she was well sideways – large break, though – sticks 1.5. 9.775 anyway, in spite of a gigantic wobble dance.

Peszek – FX – Big on the DLO and a very controlled landing (some piking in the second salto) – her best DLO in a while – front full to a slightly whippy front layout – switch ring and split full are fine ish – this routine is called “My name is Sam Peszek, you don’t need anything else from me” – strong double pike – good control. She’s getting back.

McMillan – VT – Excellent power and height on the full – just a hop in place, good form. SOOO glad she’s finally able to vault. Same landing as Wilson. Just saying.

Hong – UB – Tkatchev is fine – it’s never been her best skill but it has improved – bail is amazing as are all the handstands – lands her DLO squatty with a bound forward. Boo.

Lothrop – BB – switch side half is good – solid landing the loso series as well – switch side is the usual slightly crooked – height on leaps is a thing in this routine, but she’s giving away no wobbles – step on 1.5 dismount. Good hit. They got through beam. Ignore the scores, it’s a positive that they got through those routines.

Bynum – FX – Good DLO. She has improved that so much. Front to double back is OK with a slide on the double back – split full was not there – Strong double tuck to end. Pretty good on the passes and should manage a strong score.

UCLA behind Stanford after three. EEEEEEnteresting.

After 3: Utah 148.625. Stanford 148.075, UCLA 148.050, Oregon State 147.600
This meet is too long. I’m so gymnastics-ed out after this whole day.
“The Red Rocks currently lead” Ya think?
Too many landing mistakes in that UCLA floor rotation. Stanford’s bars rotation was magical. I wish Ivana Hong had hit her dismount, though. But so clean and great work.

Utah basically has to cough on the floor to get a 198 in this meet.

I figured out UCLA’s leo. If So You Think You Can Dance existed in 1993, this is what you would wear to your audition. 

Rotation 4:
Honest – VT -UCLA changing the lineup because obviously.

Showing Cory. “He’s no longer allowed on the floor.” LOL.

Honest – VT – One of her better vaults – good height – smallish bounce. Better on the toes as well.

Keeker – UB -Nice half to turna  hit piked jaeger – not huge height – some handstand issues – small shuffle on DLO.

Wing – BB – hits her bhs 1/1 – was a little off line but fulled her feet back not to wobble – good aerial but big wobble on her loso to follow – swims to save it – boo – strong full turn – finishes with a stuck gainer full. Shame about the wobble.

Rowe – FX – short on double pike with a lunge forward – double full to loso – split full is good – 1.5 to layout is fine – pulls it together after a weaker first pass.

Cipra – VT – Her best landing ever. She always bounces. I’ve never seen her land with that control. Very small hop and piked a little at the end.

Keeker – UB – very clean on teh bail to stalder shoot – good finishing position on the full turn and then slides her feet together on the double tuck landing. Pretty work. Didn’t give away much.

McNair – BB – very strong loso series – secure side somi – check on the full turn – nice side aerial as well – great height on her switch and straddle 1/4 – pretty big hop back on 2/1.

Lee – FX – Her 3/1 – good landing – front layout to front full with a bouncy slide forward – switch ring and split half are nice – another bounce on her double tuck – so much the control she has shown in a couple of these passes, but not much else to take.

Peng – VT – Great height and form, but not the landing – pretty big bounce on this one. Her best vault of the season came that time she was in the lineup, got taken out, and then nailed her exhibition. Maybe just tell her she’s doing exo?

SCP – UB – stalder to start – a fiarly Utah tkatchev – a little crooked on the bail – high DLO with a stick. That DLO was one of the things that kept her down Florida’s bars depth chart last year, but she got it here.

Rice – BB – This is exactly what I need to reinvigorate me for another half rotation – check on the sheep jump – pretty full turn – kickover front is hit – I feel like Taylor Rice could fit in a teacup. NOOOOO. Ouchie. Splits the beam on her loso series and then slams to the ground. That hurt like whoa. Sticks the gainer full.

Wilson – FX – She just did a DLO to her face. So that happened. Stops the routine. Picking her up and carrying her off the floor. Clearly a major injury. Well now I feel like shit for giving so much shit about that 10.

Irvin – VT – Huge height on her vault but doesn’t stick this time. Another pretty big hop back.

Tang – UB – Late-ish on the giant full – clean on the bail with a bit fo foot form – nice tuck full with a hop in place. Good routine.

Hanset – BB – nice loso series – mostly secure on the leaps – check on her aerial when connecting to the wolf jump – just bits of tightness here and there – good full turn – sticks the 1.5. Good ending after a couple medium issues at the beginning.

Lothrop – FX – Pressure now on this routine to drop the Wilson score. Worried for Utah about what they’re going to do without Wilson, she’s so essential to these lineups as a sure hit – small slide on tuck full – 1.5 to layout is hit well – good straddles – strong double pike with a stick. Good recovery routine. 

Oooh, she’s in tears. I might be feeling an emotion you guys.

Peszek – VT – Just a bit short on her full this time – rare to see her short on that full – step forward –

McMillan – UB – Good jaeger to overshoot combination – one ify handstand – small hop back on DLO. Oregon State is quietly putting together a solid meet, just not the big scores.

Vaculik – BB – Great switch into rulfova – good loso series  as well – hitting a very clean and secure routine. She has come a long way as an NCAA beamer – bounce back on double full, but good work.

Dabritz – FX – Good piked full in – finishes with solid chest position – just the smallest slide – rudi to loso is great – hits split and wolf – and nails the triple full. One of her better ones.

Williams – VT – She also lands just a bit short on her full with a hop forward, but strong distance and form.

Aufiero – UB – good full turn – tkatchev is solid – short on a hs or two in there but otherwise solid – sticks the DLO. Pretty good work. Oregon State will be happy with this score in spite of the finish.

Hong – BB – Everything, obviously – lovely onodi to bhs – excellent and high loso series as well – fluid full turn – real sheep jump as well, and sticks her gainer pike. Wonderful finish for Stanford there.

Tutka – FX – Final routine of the meet – good tuck full, bounces back and does well to keep it in – layout to punch rudi is solid – and a strong double tuck – nice hit – secure and finish the meet.

Well, that was a weird meet. It was all crazy scoring, and then it was all Tory Wilson injury. ‘

FINAL: Utah 198.150, UCLA 197.350, Stanford 197.175, Oregon State 196.900 

Rounding things up with those shifting RQS rankings beginning at #11, Stanford finishes with a 196.720, Oregon State finishes at 196.680, Penn State at 196.665, Illinois is next on 196.515, then Boise State on 196.495, then Denver on 196.455, followed by Minnesota at 196.450, then Arizona in 18th at 196.445.

Higher up the rankings, Utah moves to 197.670, which goes ahead of LSU’s 197.650.

SEC Championship Preview

Heads up. The conference championships are tomorrow, and things get started earlier than normal with the first session of Big Tens beginning at 11:30 ET. I’ll be popping in and out blogging throughout the day, paying special attention to the evening sessions from Pac-12s and SECs. Can you believe we actually get to watch the SEC Championship? Live. With our eyes. It’s a brand new world.

So let’s get right to what we’ll be looking at tomorrow using our eye holes. As with the Pac-12, I’ll break the competition down by session because that’s an organizing principle that helps make things less rambling (allegedly), but keep in mind as I talk about the top-ranked teams that Georgia is also a team. Even though they’re in the day session, they’re right in this thing for a good score and a competitive finish. Adhering to the seedings and finishing 5th would be a disappointing result, but the title race is likely to come down to the top three seeds, Florida, LSU, and Alabama. Although wouldn’t it be the highlight of your life if Auburn won?

EVENING SESSION: Florida, LSU, Alabama, Auburn

Florida enters as the top-ranked team and the easiest pick to win, but LSU does have a victory over Florida this year and is pretty much on par with the Gators in most areas, and probably stronger in a couple. The Sloan and Courville factors will be fascinating to watch. Courville has missed some serious time lately, but LSU needs her badly—especially on bars. Sloan is just trying to get back into the AA at the perfect time, but she still has some rust on beam and hasn’t done floor yet. The fight will be to see which AA star is able to contribute more championship-caliber routines. That could be decisive given how evenly matched these teams are in so many areas. If you’re suddenly missing a crucial 9.950 that you usually rely on, that’s everything. Alabama should be able to put the pressure on both these teams and place well, but to actually win this thing, they’ll have to step up the quality to a level we haven’t seen yet. The capability is there, but winning may very well take a 197.900 or more, which Alabama hasn’t brought this year, even at home. Let’s get to it.

Rotation 1 (Florida vault, LSU bars, Alabama beam, Auburn floor)

As the top-ranked team, Florida gets the benefit of the best rotation order and should be able to take advantage of that for an early lead. If the Gators aren’t winning after the first rotation, something will have gone wrong and we’ll all be tittering with the excitement of things not going to plan. I love when things don’t go to plan as long as they don’t involve me. Florida has broken 49.500 in four of the last five meets, and that’s the minimum level of scoring I expect in this meet from a lineup that has clearly improved over last year and ends with Baker, Sloan, Hunter, and McMurtry. Hunter and McMurtry have to do poor vaults to go as low as 9.900, and while Florida does occasionally have a case of the bounce-a-thons (though mostly earlier in the season), they’re also the team most likely to get a good vault score even without sitcking because those final four vaulters give away nothing in form, distance, amplitude etc. That’s a tough group to match.

Alabama has the unfortunate task of starting on beam, not just because beam is a horror but because it’s the hardest event to get a huge score on. That means even if they have a good rotation, they’ll probably be starting from a hole. I really do enjoy this beam lineup and was pleased to see things finally come together in the most recent meet after too many consistency problems early in the year. If you haven’t seen Keely McNeer do beam in a while, she’s lovely and sets up the lineup perfectly for the dance-element clinic named Aja Sims and the classic bam-bam Bama routines from Williams, Beers, and Clark. Depending on how well they stick the parade of 1.5 dismounts, 49.4 is realistic. Overall, this beam rotation will give us a good sense of whether it’s an Alabama day. If they get the scores on beam, they should be able to hang right with Florida and LSU for the next couple rotations on vault and floor and make a legitimate run at the title. But up until last weekend, Alabama had three consecutive meets of 49.225, and the competition here is too strong to get away with that kind of score. Suddenly you’re three tenths behind and trying to make up ground against Bridget Sloan’s bars and Jessie Jordan’s beam, which is sort of a lost cause.

Like Alabama, LSU is in a major pressure situation in the first rotation because bars remains the big question-mark event. The performance in the most recent meet against Centenary was uncommonly rough and sorely lacked a dose of Courville, but it does highlight the fact that this rotation has the fewest likely 9.9s of all the LSU events. They’ll need to use at least two of Gnat, Hambrick, and Savona, all of whom have made tremendous strides as bars workers in the last year or so, but bars is still not the ideal event for any of them. The lineup sometimes ends up being Courville and a lot of supporting 9.850s, which is good for a 49.3 but not the 49.450-49.500 that pretty much every rotation is going to need to score To get that big score, LSU needs to bring back those suck-it-because-we’re-better-on-bars-than-you-think-we-are resentment sticks that so impressed everyone in the first meet of the season. For people like Jordan and Zamardi, that can turn their 9.850s into vital 9.900s. They need to do some anger bars.

The bars score is my primary hesitation in predicting LSU to win this championship. I’m worried the rotation will be a little flat. But if they do bring the sticks and shed those average scores, then I’m confident enough in the next three events to consider this meet completely even. At that point, it could just as easily go to LSU or Florida, and we’d be in for a real treat for three more rotations. Let’s hope we get it. Question: if you’re putting together that LSU bars lineup, do you go with Gnat or Hambrick?

Auburn is playing with the big girls now, so while Auburn has been amazing this season, we have to evaluate this team not just on the scale of their own improvement or capabilities but in comparison to the best teams in the conference. Auburn’s floor is good. It can be a real asset, especially when Caitlin Atkinson is in the lineup and getting her 9.9s. I particularly appreciate the commitment to difficulty through most of the lineup coupled with the pragmatism to downgrade some of those piked full-ins to tucked in order to give away less in chest position and landing control. But at the same time, most of these floor routines are more 9.850 than 9.900, which becomes a consideration in a meet where 197.9 is the expectation and everyone will be shooting rainbows of 9.9s out of every orifice. It’s a strange world where 9.850 is a score that can take you out of contention, but that’s where we are. Floor 9.850s could keep them in the respectable low 197s instead of the rarefied high 197s. If Auburn is going to stay in the picture and not be the afterthought of the late session, that will require a couple 9.9s in the opening rotation.

Rotation 2 (Auburn vault, Florida bars, LSU beam, Alabama floor)

If the LSU Tigers (I have to specify because Auburn is also the Tigers, which is no help to anyone) do start out with a clear deficit after the first rotation, it becomes even more important that they take advantage of the huge scoring potential and wealth of 9.9s they have on beam. LSU is ranked third in the country on beam right now, having lost a little ground in the weeks that Courville has been out of the lineup, but there’s still a good argument for LSU as the top beam team. Oklahoma has a very good argument too, as does the second half of the UCLA lineup, but I’d take LSU in a beam fight any day. Jordan, Courville, Macadaeg, Gnat. All possible 9.950s. The one concern in LSU’s beam lineup is the consistency of the freshmen. Both Macadaeg and Hambrick can get a little tight and wobbly for 9.750, and you cannot count a 9.750 in this meet. It’s like getting a 2. Those Macadaeg and Hambrick beam routines are among the most critical of the meet for LSU. Hit those two, and things get good, especially because LSU is finishing on the LSU events, floor and vault. If they do have a lead halfway through, or even are within two tenths, I say it’s advantage LSU from then on out.

Alabama has managed a season of fairly consistent 49.450s on floor, which is a solid number and around the kind of score they’ll need in this meet. Maybe a bit more. A fluffy 49.5+ on floor would not be amiss in providing a little comfort because, unlike LSU, Alabama isn’t ending on a strength and needs to take advantage of bigger scores in the earlier rotations. Alabama probably needs to beat least in second after floor to have a real shot. I do still have some questions about this Alabama floor lineup, though. (The first of which is, who exactly is in this lineup?). Lauren Beers can bust out a comfortable 9.950, but other than her, this team is relying on a lot of people who were borderline lineup members/definite bench members in past seasons and who can be great for 9.9, as in the case of Carley Sims, but who also have some tendency to throw in an awkward landing for 9.825. It has to be a good day for Clark and Sims. If it is, don’t worry about Alabama’s floor. 

Even as recently as a few weeks ago, bars looked like Florida’s primary vulnerability, but the return of Bridget Sloan has changed the identity of that lineup dramatically. Suddenly, she’s popping up with a casual 10, replacing what was often a 9.825 without her, and as a result, Florida hasn’t gone under 49.450 on bars since her return. That’s going to make it very tough for anyone else to push back during this rotation. Although, the rest of the lineup has been known to throw some regular-season Stanford landings out there and bounce for 9.850, so keep an eye on that. We’re in stick season now, and this meet is too close to have five 9.850s leading up to Sloan. That would open the door for an LSU beam special.  

Auburn is almost there on vault. It truly is a whole lineup of possible 9.9s, but it hasn’t really come together all at the same time to get that LSU, Florida, Utah-type vault score. Still, Atkinson has an exceptional 1.5, and Rott and Demers can both stick some seriously clean fulls when Demers is at full strength. Bri Guy hasn’t quite been the same vaulter since her injury, but her vault remains impressive. For Auburn, this meet is about keeping pace as much as possible and then pouncing on potential mistakes if they’re to finish any higher than fourth. If all those vaults arrive at the same time (with stronger landings than they have shown in most meets so far), a 49.400 is doable, which would make it much easier to keep pace. If Auburn has a surprise event up its sleeve, it’s vault.

Rotation 3 (Alabama vault, Auburn bars, Florida beam, LSU floor)

There’s a good chance this competition will be decided in rotation three as Florida goes to its lowest-scoring event while LSU heads to its highest-scoring event. There won’t be a better opportunity for LSU to put a mark on the meet. After this, the Gators go to floor, and if they have a lead, I certainly see them keeping it. Can you imagine Florida handing things off to Baker and Hunter on floor and having them fall apart? I can’t. That’s why it’s so critical for Florida to get through beam (not with one-balance-check 9.850s but with 9.9s that come close to matching what LSU is going to get on floor). It didn’t happen when Florida visited LSU earlier this year, ultimately deciding the meet.

Now, Florida’s beam rotation has scored very well this season. The Gators are #2 in the country on beam, and ahead of LSU, so I probably have no reason to see beam as a vulnerable event for them, but I do wonder about it. I think it’s because, when Sloan wasn’t around, they didn’t have that true “you’re definitely getting a 9.950” routine. Everyone seemed likely to slide through with a 9.875 to secure a good team score without anyone asserting herself as a major beam worker, which made the rotation seem flatter than those that feature beam stars. Kytra was thrust into the position of being the big beam worker, but her routine can be a little too balance checky to take on that responsibility. That said, the last few weeks have been good. Sloan is back. Boyce is back. The 49.4s are flying again. This rotation should be solid enough to survive. But, beam being beam and floor being floor, Florida can put up a solid hit on beam and still drop as much as a couple tenths to LSU’s floor rotation, and that’s exactly what LSU is hoping for. 

LSU is #1 in the country on floor, surprising no one. Starting with Savona’s nailed passes, right through Jordan’s clean, pretty work, and Gnat, who has figured out how to tumble like an NCAA beast for 9.9s, up to Hall’s 9.950-10, this lineup is starting to look more and more impervious with each passing week. It’s the kind of lineup where 49.500 would be just an OK score and much more should be expected. It’s the chance for LSU. If they don’t take control on floor in the third rotation, it’s not going to happen.

It’s important not to overlook Alabama in this rotation as well, heading to vault and also in a position to make up some serious tenths by hitting to potential. Perhaps not to the same level as LSU, but there’s more than enough quality in Alabama’s vault rotation to rely on it for a big score. It needs to be. Alabama heads to bars in the final rotation and is likely to give back some ground, so any hope for the big win will rest on establishing a lead during vault. The Tide made some good progress with their vaulting last week, getting Brannan’s 1.5 into the lineup while making the smart call to downgrade Beers back to the full to be assured of the score she needs. Alabama should dominate vault. It’s vault. But my concern remains the landings. They need more control. Kayla Williams and Kaitlyn Clark have amazing, event-final worthy vaults, but both had meh landings last week for 9.825, which is far below their talent level. This has happened to Williams a bunch of times this season. I would hate to see her continue getting stuck with those 9.825s, even though she’s Kayla Williams and should not have to suffer the indignity of having to look at something so common and ratty as a 9.825.

Auburn’s bars. It’s the least predictable of the Auburn events (49.100 or 49.400? Let’s spin the wheel and find out!) and also the biggest difference between a good Auburn meet and a bad Auburn meet. Unlike the other teams in this session, they are more likely to suffer from a nasty case of the 9.775s. These aren’t weak routines, just occasionally ragged. We won’t see a lot of scores descending down into the 9.7s in this session, and having a rash of them on bars again would be the kiss of death. To avoid being “and also competing in this session, Auburn,” everyone has to have a perfect meet, and that will mean sticks for 9.850s before handing things off to the excellence of Atkinson and Walker for 9.9s.

Rotation 4 (LSU vault, Alabama bars, Auburn beam, Florida floor)

Florida and LSU both head to very strong events in the final rotation, and I think we’re all selfishly hoping the meet is still super close by that point so we get something like Courville vault vs. Hunter floor with victorious 9.975s hanging in the balance. That wouldn’t be boring. Expect the scores to fly, although I am very interested to see the vault landings for LSU. When LSU underperforms in the postseason, it’s often because they suddenly lose the vault sticks and can’t rely on vault to be the huge score they need. In 2013 Super Six, it was a 49.175 on vault that pushed LSU down to 5th, and last year, it was a 49.325 on vault that allowed Florida and Oklahoma to pull away. 49.325 tied for the team’s lowest event score. Vault should never be LSU’s lowest event score. Sticks haven’t been that frequent for LSU so far this year (even sometimes when they get 10s), so I’ll be watching to see how those landings develop this week.

Florida’s floor is a very strong rotation as well, but I do think it needs Baker and Sloan to complement the scores from Hunter and Caquatto to be truly formidable and best-in-the-nation quality. If all four aren’t in the lineup, the Gators start having to pull out some 9.850s from the depth chart, which would impede their ability to erase a possible deficit on the last event. But if those four are competing, this rotation is a good bet for some serious end-of-meet 9.950s and a massive total. It’s a close race across the nation, but Baker and Hunter are the strongest 1-2 punch on floor and solely on their own merits can give Florida what would basically be an unassailable final rotation score. But, if it’s possible, the potential Sloan-ification of floor will be something to follow [seeing now that she’s not adding it back until possibly regionals, why I read that as conference championships the first time is just one of those mysteries…]. I would be such a great help to have her up to speed by the time it becomes important to have a 9.925 from her instead of a 9.850 from someone else.

Auburn is sitting in what is normally the no-fun, 4th seed position of finishing on beam, but that’s not so much of a worry for this team. Beam has suddenly turned into a pretty strong event, especially because of the lovely work from Demers and Walker leading up to the strength from Atkinson, even when they do force her to perform the watered-down dismount. I love that double pike, and I take it as a personal affront when we don’t get to see it. We should expect a 49.3 from this group on beam, as on all the events. While a humongous total seems unlikely, I am expecting Auburn to come up with at least a workable low-mid 197 that keeps them in the meet with a chance to take advantage of a random miss from someone. Anything below 197 will be a sign that they underperformed.

As for Alabama, bars is a fascinating rotation. They have plenty of bars talent, especially when Kaitlyn Clark’s massive DLO is in the lineup to round out the new sturdiness from Beers and the exceptional work from Bailey and Winston. At the same time, there’s still some uncertainty in this group because of Bailey’s continued injury questions and a general lack of the landing stickiness that has defined Alabama’s bars rotation for the last few years. I spent so long bemoaning Kim Jacob’s missed handstands, but she would stick that DLO every single time and get a 9.925 regardless. So would Sarah DeMeo. Those sure, stuck DLOs have been missing this season, to be replaced by slightly nerve-wracking double fronts from Beers and Jetter (when she was in the lineup) and the general tendency to bounce for a 9.850. Stick, and they won’t give away too much to Florida and LSU at the end, but keep bouncing, and they’ll get left way behind.

AFTERNOON SESSION: Georgia, Arkansas, Kentucky, Missouri

As much of an ego blow as it is for Georgia to be placed in the training wheels session of SECs, there’s a chance it may be a blessing. Georgia is the best team in this session, and compared to the other teams, their routines are going to look really 9.9y. Plus, they’re basically at home. If the judges have been nipping on the cooking sherry a little earlier than normal, they might be really excited about Georgia’s performance and decide to throw out a huge score. The flip-side of that theory is that the judges may also be so conscious of how many top-level routines are going to be performed in the evening session that they end up being quite stingy about saving the big scores until later, which would not be so great for Georgia.

A lot has been made (by me) about Georgia’s struggles on beam and floor. Floor appears to be coming around. Marino has finally introduced the DLO, which makes her routine much stronger, and once Jay is back in the lineup to pair with Box, floor has no excuse to be anything but solid. It’s not at the same level 9.9 level as Florida and LSU, but it shouldn’t hurt the team’s score. Beam still scares the crap out of me, but in this meet, I’m actually most interested in vault and bars. Sure, if they have a beamtastrophe, they’re out of it, but if they don’t, Georgia’s ability to contend for a solid third-place finish will be dictated by the performance on their would-be strengths. I say would-be because vault has been disappointing these last few weeks. The landings have been all over the damn map, and when you have Jay, Rogers, and Davis (and an occasional good one from Broussard as well) in the lineup, 49.1 is not good enough. That needs to be a 49.4.

But really, if the Gym Dogs want to make a real statement at nationals, they need to get a 49.500 on bars. They won’t have enough margin on the other events to afford even a 49.300 on bars. It has to be 49.500. With this talent, with three realistic 9.950s from Davis, Rogers, and Brown, I was happily predicting Georgia would be the top team on bars this year, so it’s a bit disappointing to see them ranked 4th in the SEC alone. But, things finally appear to be rounding into shape at the right time. Georgia is still capable of winning bars at this competition even from the first session (since the theme of my preview of the evening session was basically “I’m worried about bars”). Showing another 49.500 would go a long way to making the case that they’re better than #10 in the country and that they’re not a trendy upset pick for regionals after all. 

As for Arkansas, the doomsday predictions were in full force this season in the first year PG (Post-Grable, though I shouldn’t have to translate that because all your timekeeping should always be done with respect to Katherine Grable, otherwise you’re a failure of a gymnastics fan). This year was obviously going to be a disaster, but it turns out, it hasn’t been a disaster. It has been sort of the same as always. Wellick and Zaziski have comfortably slotted into Arkansas’s traditional two-AAers-who-carry-the-team slots, and Zaziski is a real find. Over the next couple seasons, she should evolve into another of those beloved Arkansas gymnasts who always gets overlooked but is amazing.

Arkansas is less likely than Georgia to break into the higher echelon but should put up some solid 9.850-9.875s for a respectable finish. More importantly, Arkansas is currently in a very precarious position when it comes to finishing in the top 18 and getting a regionals seeding. It may not end up being in their hands, but they need to do everything possible to get a big score and avoid finishing in those 19th and 20th spots. Beam is the biggest obstacle in that quest. It has been a monumental struggle this year with a lot of lineup shuffling. They’ve hit all six beam routines in just three meets this season and have scored 49 just twice. The beam performance will tell us everything, but if they get through it somehow, a mid-196 is reasonable.

Kentucky is a resilient group. And by resilient, I mean cursed. But I think people who have a positive attitude about life use words like resilient. It started with everyone breaking into several pieces at the same meet and ended with the discovery of Shelby Hilton’s brain lesions in her MRI after her bizarre floor fall. So basically every terrible thing has happened to Kentucky this year. These lineups are so depleted now that it will be tough to expect a significant score. Although, they have recorded their two highest scores of the season in their two most recent meets, featuring Shannon Mitchell finally getting the beam scores her routine has merited for four years, so what do I know. Kentucky is in a similar position to Washington in the Pac-12 in that if a few teams are having a nasty on beam, Kentucky can use its quality on that event to make a move into the 196s and outperform that #7 seeding.

Once again, Missouri comes into the conference championship as the lowest-ranked team in the SEC, but the scenario is much different than it has been for the past two years, when Missouri stumbled into SECs having already been eliminated from regionals contention after a fairly poor season. This has been a rebound year, and Missouri is already guaranteed a spot at regionals. The freshmen have reinvented this team. At their healthiest (Shauna Miller is still coming back), the freshmen are contributing a solid 11 of the 24 routines, and a heavy majority of the 9.8s are coming from the AA performances from Miller and Becca Schugel. Miller is a star in the making, especially on vault, peaking at 9.975 this year, so I hope she’s ready to come back there. Missouri won’t get the kind of score it takes to make an impact at SECs, but this has been an important step and an applause-worthy season. Give these freshmen a little more time, and they can start leading Missouri out of the conference basement.

Pac-12 Championship Preview

EVENING SESSION (Utah, UCLA, Oregon State, Stanford):

Now that Utah is part of the Pac-12, it seems like we always go into the Pac-12 Championship with pretty much the same story. Utah is the highest-ranked and most consistent team, the safest pick to win, but UCLA might be the more talented group if they can actually put it together. Stanford is the dangerous floater who has enough concentrated pretty to beat anyone on any day but might also fall 100 times, and Oregon State always looks like the fourth-best option but then sometimes wins. Every time I’ve done a preview of Pac-12 Championships, it has been a variation on that same story. This time, it’s pretty much the same setup again, except Utah enters in a stronger place compared to the last few years. This year’s Utah team is sturdier on beam and even deeper on vault (not to mention the bonus of being home team), and it would be an upset if Utah fails to win. Let’s break this thing down by rotation.

Rotation 1 (Utah vault, UCLA bars, Oregon State beam, Stanford floor)

The rotation order couldn’t have worked out better in terms of giving us an early sense of who’s really in the meet. We’ll know after the first rotation which teams are legitimate challengers for the title because the Utes begin on their best event while the three other teams all begin on their weakest events. The teams that haven’t figured out their weakness will be in a 0.500 hole after 11 minutes, and it’s hard to see a team coming back from that without the help of a Utah mistake.

A 0.500 hole after the first rotation is a realistic possibility because vault is the one event where Utah can truly pull away from the field. The Utes are the #1 team in the country on vault and have been breaking 49.500 all over the place, especially at home. They’ll need to show that 49.500 vaulting again on Saturday. Sure, they can win this meet without hitting 49.500 on vault, but looking toward nationals, there’s no way Utah contends with the top three without some 49.500 vaulting, at least 49.500. They have too many 9.9s to expect any less, with the usual big three of Dabritz, Delaney, and Wilson, who now have the benefit of nearly equivalent vaults from Lee and Partyka.

UCLA will need to keep things relatively close at the outset on bars, and has the talent to do so, but bars has been a real adventure this year. An adventure called The Chronicles of 9.650. Francis has been a shining beacon of stuck double pikes in the first spot, but for the Bruins, the focus will be on getting through the next three routines intact so that they can hand things off to the 9.9s from Peszek and Lee. Because Peszek and Lee have such high scoring potential, UCLA can get away with 9.825-9.850s from Meraz, Mossett, and DeJesus (DeJesus has the potential for more but has looked sloppier this season) and still be in reasonable contention for a 49.400, but they have to be 9.825s. Not those 9.6s and 9.7s.

It has been a somewhat similar story for Oregon State this year on beam. Beam hasn’t been a great event for the Beavs post-Leslie Mak, but it really should be much better. Maddie Gardiner and Chelsea Tang are both excellent beamers for realistic 9.9s, so if everyone else can get their 9.825s, that makes for a solid rotation score that can keep them in contention as they go to the higher-scoring events. The problem is how infrequently that has actually happened. Too often, they’ve been caught by a little inconsistency and more than a little case of the early-rotation 9.7s. It will be a recurring theme that Oregon State is just a couple early-lineup routines away from being a really good team. 

As for Stanford on floor, it’s all about the Ebee. No rotation in this competition needs a single gymnast more than Stanford’s floor needs Price. Once again this season, Stanford has been a little too average and flat on floor. There’s just not enough going on there. They can pull together a rotation of 9.850s, but that’s not competitive with the teams throwing up easy 9.9s in spots 4, 5, and 6. Price has competed on floor once this year, performed a medium-quality routine by her standards, and scored a 9.975. If she’s available, 49.3s-49.4s are suddenly completely doable. It not, that puts so much pressure on bars and beam to be perfect at the end of the meet because they will be giving up ground right from the start. 

Rotation 2 (Stanford vault, Utah bars, UCLA beam, Oregon State floor)

The Bruins move to beam in the second rotation, and beam is where they can make their mark. While Utah has at least a fair claim as the top team in the conference on the other three events (at least that’s what the rankings tell us), UCLA is the best beam team in the Pac-12. Even though they’ve had a fair few falls, BRUINBEAMTERROR (trademark) has been considerably less terrifying this year. There has only been one beamtastrophe! That’s pretty good! The key to beam success this year was always going to be finding three solid 9.8s in the first three spots, and it appears they have them now in Meraz, who has been a very sturdy find, Williams, who has come into her own in the last few weeks on an event that has often been her struggle, and DeJesus. If those three can get their 9.850s together and hand things over to Francis, Peszek, and Lee, all of whom have 10 potential and all of whom I’ve talked about ad nauseum, the Bruins should get a huge beam score.

They may not gain ground immediately, even with a big beam number, because Utah will be on bars at the same time, but they would gain ground comparatively once everyone has done beam. UCLA needs to use beam to keep it close after two in order to make a move during rotation three.

While it’s not much of a surprise that Utah is the #1 team in the country on vault given the number of accomplished vaulters on the team, it’s much more surprising that the Utes hold the same #1 ranking on bars. It’s not Florida. It’s not Oklahoma. It’s not Georgia. It’s Utah. The 10-machine named Georgia Dabritz certainly helps, but more than that, Utah is getting the very most out of this bars team, which became abundantly clear last week in Athens. It’s not a lineup of stars (besides Dabritz) and in fact it’s a pretty unremarkable group on paper, but while other teams with much more bars talent—like Stanford—are still giving away tenths on dismounts, Utah is hitting each handstand and sticking each landing. Nowadays, that basically amounts to an auto-9.900. If Utah isn’t in control of this meet halfway through, something will have gone wrong.

For Stanford, vault is a less extreme version of floor. They have more 9.900 potential on vault in the form of the clean work from Nicolette McNair and Taylor Rice, but make no mistake, it also comes down to Price. Of course, finally having six whole vaulters now would be a nice boost as well, but with Price’s 9.950 rounding out the rotation, 49.400 isn’t a leap of the imagination, even if the rest of the vault lineup is just McNair, Rice, an actual bag of rice, and several ghosts. Note that the Cardinal will compete on their two weaker events in the first two rotations, so don’t expect a huge number halfway through. Third place would be expected and not a problem. If they’re even remotely within striking distance of the top at that point, watch out. Bars and beam can both be fabulous. 

One of the most interesting rotations of the meet will be Oregon State on floor. How competitive are they here? The Beavs have had some huge floor rotations this year full of 9.9s, but when they’re suddenly going up against floor from UCLA and Utah (and just a few hours after floor from Cal), is it still a 9.9 parade? It needs to be. Having Risa Perez (whose enthusiasm accomplishes the unthinkable, making me not hate a happy routine) and especially Kaytianna McMillan in this lineup is such an important lift this year. It starts to bring back shades of that floor fire from the Blalock, Vivian, Jones, Stambaugh group, which feels like 11,000 years ago. McMillan had been relegated to bars and beam early in her collegiate career because of injury, but she came to Oregon State as a vault and floor girl. Those are her events, and I’m glad she’s starting to see time and scores. They’ve desperately needed those routines for a year and half, and it’s finally happening. This is the one event where Oregon State has proven the ability to get an absolutely massive number, and that’s what can keep them within sight of the other teams. Unlike Stanford, if OSU is trailing at halfway, it’s much harder to envision a comeback.

Rotation 3 (Oregon State vault, Stanford bars, Utah beam, UCLA floor)

This is the rotation in which UCLA, Stanford, and to some extent Oregon State will hope to make a move. Utah has improved a ton on beam this year, and the potential from Lee and Stover makes the future look extremely bright, but it’s still the event where they’re most likely to get stuck in the 9.825s and most vulnerable to recording a beatable 49.200-49.250 (though that also may be mitigated at home). Sometimes the splits aren’t there, sometimes the height of leaps isn’t there, sometimes the wobbles are there, and it will come down to the strictness of the judging on the day. I don’t think Utah is helped by going to beam right after the performances from Danusia and Peng, who will set the leap standard comparatively high.

I’m not sure what to make of Oregon State’s vaulting yet. The Beavs have made some clear strides, and Gardiner, Keeker, and Aufiero can each get their 9.9 on with a stick, but they still need more depth. They tend to get stuck with some low scores early in the lineup, which isn’t going to work moving forward. In the current scoring climate, you can’t have a 9.750 on vault. You can’t count a 9.800, because Florida already got six 10s while you were chalking up. It has to be one of Aufiero’s 9.925 days. And speaking of 9.925s, let’s get to Stanford’s bars. Stanford must make a move and gain some serious tenths on bars.

Stanford is too talented not to be getting 49.400s on bars every time out. I mean COME ON! Ivana Hong. Sami Shapiro’s handstands. The Vaculik gienger. Becky Wing’s gorgeous leadoff routine. Stanford should be the best bars team in this competition and should make up ground during this rotation. But it will come down to the sticking. So often, Stanford has a 9.950 routine going on the bars themselves that turns into 9.850 because of the dismount. If Sami Shapiro is getting a 9.850 on bars, the world is broken and we need a new one. Because Utah goes to floor and UCLA goes to vault in the last rotation while Stanford goes to beam, Stanford must erase nearly all, if not completely all, of any potential deficit by the end of bars. As much as Ivana Hong is the world’s perfect human on beam, the Cardinal cannot go to beam with tenths to make up. That’s just too hard to do.

UCLA’s floor is an interesting monster because they have mixed and matched so much that…who even knows what the lineup is going to be? No one. Not all of those routines are created equal, and they still haven’t really separated the MEHs from the YESes, which means UCLA’s floor performance this year has not lived up to its potential quality very many times. But, there’s still a big score in there somewhere. When Peszek, Cipra, and Francis are around at the same time, good things will happen. Like Price, Peszek has barely competed on floor this year, but now we’re getting to the time of year she has been saving her legs for. Hopefully, there are still a few more 9.9s left in those rice-paper feet. I also think it has been a smart call to move Bynum to the anchor position because now she’s getting the huge 9.925s that she never really got before the move. Even with Peszek in the lineup, Bynum probably should stay anchor because Peszek doesn’t need the anchor spot to get a big score (though UCLA is traditionally less likely than some other teams to manipulate the lineups in that way).

Rotation 4: (UCLA vault, Oregon State bars, Stanford beam, Utah floor)

It’s hard to imagine Utah heading to floor at home with a lead and relinquishing it, so the other teams must be able to use their strengths in the second and third rotations to, at the very least, keep pace with the Utes before the floor 9.9s start falling like rain. But at the same time, Utah has shown some vulnerabilities on floor this year. It’s a good rotation, but not their strongest recent floor rotation, and at times the losses of Damianova and Del Priore have shown up. Less sureness, more uncontrolled passes. Most egregiously, there was that performance last week against Georgia, which was flat-out poor from a number of people, not just from Wilson and her magical 9.650. I can’t think that will happen again, especially at home, but it does raise some doubt. There are two or three question marks in this lineup leading up to the strength from Dabritz and Tutka, which may prevent Utah from getting a true final-rotation score explosion.

UCLA finishes on vault, and I’m still waiting for that first-week performance to show up again. UCLA was excellent on vault in the first week, nailing landings all over the place, and while there have been shades of it since, no performance has quite lived up to the first one yet. As on floor, there has been a lot of lineup switching. I think they’re so giddy about finally having 9 or 10 legitimate vault options that they just go “WEEEEE!” and throw any of them out there. But they do have enough high-scoring options that 49.400 should be a comfortable result. Peszek obviously. Williams has proven her new 9.9-itude. Irvin is a sticker, even though she vaults diagonally. She’s like a bishop of gymnastics. I’d love to see Pinches and Cipra back, but who knows. The way this vault lineup has been going, Danusia will suddenly vault this week. Still, UCLA doesn’t have an excuse to give up much ground in the final rotation. Every Super Six-hopeful team should be able to get at least a 49.400 on vault, otherwise you’re out in the cold.

While Stanford is beautiful on beam, and likewise has little excuse to give up ground there, I’m still worried about this rotation. The lack of Morgan and Spinner has shown through in many of the performances, which have seen too many early 9.800s for a Stanford team. You’re Stanford! You don’t get 9.800 on beam! A hit from Wing in that first spot is essential. She has occasional consistency issues, but when she hits, she can be a marvelous 9.900 that lifts the whole group. It’s hard to imagine Stanford scoring the big upset without a competition-best beam rotation, so watch for those Wing, Rice, and Vaculik routines to tell us whether this rotation will be a competition-best one, or just an Ivana-Hong-and-guests one. 

One of the reasons it’s so important for Oregon State to get those McMillan and Gardiner 9.9s on floor and that Aufiero 9.9 on vault is that they’re ending on bars, which has been fine but not exceptional this year. The Beavs have lost some talent in the bars department the last couple years as their stars have gradually left. There’s still Aufiero to get the 9.9s, but the rest are getting stuck mostly in the 9.825-9.850s. Perhaps more than any other team, Oregon State has to stick those dismounts to pull out the scores. Especially if things get fancy in the last rotation, or if other teams haven’t been sticking (which would make a rotation of sticks look even better by comparison), OSU does have the potential to take advantage of the rotation order for a surprise big score here.

In all, Utah should be able to put together an early lead and ride it through the rest of the events, but this is far from an open-and-shut competition, especially if UCLA and Stanford do that thing that UCLA and Stanford do where they suddenly show up in the postseason looking a billion times better than during the regular season. The key for UCLA will be using beam to keep things close and then making a move on floor while Utah is on beam, so watch how the margin plays out in the second and third rotations. For Stanford, it’s about using Price to minimize the deficit from vault and floor, and then being the 9.950s they can be on bars and beam. For Oregon State, it’s being the little engine that could. Get 9.875 after 9.875 after 9.875, chip away and chip away, and take advantage of mistakes. Nail floor and be the most solid team overall. Those are the routes to victory. But let’s not forget about the afternoon session because there is a wealth of talent there and some serious contenders for top-four places.

AFTERNOON SESSION (Arizona, Cal, Washington, Arizona State):

The four-team separation in the Pac-12 is still alive and well, but as we saw last year when Cal finished third, the quartet is not immune. Cal and Arizona have both proven more than capable of recording competitive scores and taking advantage of a missed meet from one of the top teams. Or not even a missed meet (Cal’s season high is greater than Oregon State’s this year). One 48.900 rotation with a case of the wobblies from the teams in the top session, and they will be very vulnerable to getting passed.

Cal continues making tremendous progress. From the most extreme doldrums just five seasons ago, Cal has turned into a legitimately competitive team that is going to head to regionals as a true threat. While they haven’t quite made the jump into the thick of the top 15 yet (and we’ll get to beam in a minute), this team has taken another step forward this year, and that step is named Toni-Ann Williams. Top teams always have those huge 9.950s to rely upon, and now Cal has a couple. As a result, they’re currently #3 in the Pac-12 on vault and #4 on floor, and I certainly expect them to place right with at least a couple teams in the late session on those two events. If Cal isn’t vaulting at least level with Stanford and Oregon State, they will have missed an opportunity, but the progress on floor (not just from Williams but also from the introduction of Arianna Robinson and the now-healthy Dana Ho) is the most pleasant improvement from last season. If only they weren’t being pulled down by the beam monster.

Beam is the biggest obstacle standing between Cal and a legitimate challenge to the traditional Pac-12 powers. They’re right there on three events, and if Cal had been consistently hitting a 49.000 on beam this season, they would be 11th in the country right now and deserve it. Sadly, that hasn’t so much been happening. Early in the season it was a fall fest, and while they’ve started to cut out the falls, everyone in the lineup is still in danger of going 9.7. There’s no big 9.9 rotation savior the way that Williams has become on vault and floor. The beam performance will determine Cal’s fate. If they can get through beam, mid-high 196 is a real score and a repeat third-place finish is a real goal. 

The Arizona Wildcats (I really wish someone’s mascot was just a house cat, and the logo was a cat curled up into a ball going “meh”) come into Pac-12s as the highest-ranked team of the four in the early session. In fact, they’re just four spots below Stanford in the rankings. It’s a real credit to this team that they’ve overcome injuries to basically every essential contributor this year (from Klarenbach and Wobma before the season started to Allie Flores most recently), and have still been able to put together exactly the same regular season they always do, finishing ranked 17th and getting a couple high 196s here and there. They have, however, felt the pinch of some crucial lost routines, particularly on vault now, which may very well hurt their competitiveness at Pac-12s especially because vault is such a high-scoring event. It will be a struggle to keep pace there, but other events should remain competitive. Unlike Cal, Arizona’s greatest asset in this meet is beam.

As Cal and Arizona fight it out for afternoon supremacy, Arizona will need to take advantage of the clean, efficient elegance of that beam rotation to build up an advantage strong enough that Toni-Ann Williams can’t pick away at it. In particular, the work from Edwards, Fox, and Mills is a delight. Sometimes nerve-wracking, but a delight. A five-tenth advantage over Cal on beam is possible, and will probably be necessary. It will come down to whether Arizona’s bars and beam are stronger than Cal’s vault and floor. The classic showdown.

Washington does not have the same scoring potential as the six teams ranked above and look a pretty solid bet to adhere to the rankings and finish seventh. But while that might not seem like much, this has been a refreshing bounce-back season for Washington after a poor, not-six-people-in-every-lineup showing last season. This year, they’ve been solidly 195 and occasionally 196, which is much more what I expect from Washington in a normal year. In addition to Allison Northey the AA stalwart, Janae Janik is starting to find the consistency to go along with her lovely gymnastics, former elite Jackie McCartin has become a very useful beamer, and watching McKenzie Fechter aggressively pump herself up before routines is a life highlight. Like Arizona, the Huskies are most competitive on bars and beam, and because of those last four beam routines from Fechter, Northey, Janik, and McCartin, they too can make a statement in this session with their beam work. It’s unlikely that they will have the scores on the other events to put up a big challenge, and will be giving back tenths on vault and floor, but if other teams are falling, Washington can discreetly slip into a higher slot using their beam turning and flexibility super powers.

As for Arizona State, well, this is why we have sayings like “It’s a rebuilding year,” “You have to start somewhere,” and “Growth growth blah blah adversity.” I think that’s a saying, at least. I’m getting it embroidered on a pillow. With the gymnast exodus after Rene took over, coupled with the 11 thousand injuries this season, the devils of the sun don’t have the routines to be competitive. They can get a few solid scores from Taylor Allex and Tasha Sundby to bump up a couple rotation scores toward the high 48s, but mostly they’re looking at a lot of 9.7s and mid 48s. Finishing not-last would be a victory for ASU this year. On the positive side, that 162 earlier this month was just a one-week blip, and they were able to recover for a completely reasonable 195 last week. So the wheels aren’t completely off, just mostly. This is going to be a long process to turn Arizona State back into a team, but I do expect it to get better from here. Although, in the couple meets I’ve seen from Arizona State so far this season, Rene has been dressed kind of demurely (for Rene), and I think that’s what’s hurting the team the most. What happened to our girl?

Week 10 Rankings and Final RQS Scenarios

Dear everyone, you’re a tremendous disappointment. The end. It was the final week of the regular season, and you couldn’t even manage a single 198? No 10s for falls? Worthless. The most insane thing that happened over the weekend was that time Tory Wilson’s arm died in the middle of her final pass and she still got a 9.650, and that was barely surprising. Plus, all the seniors are getting married immediately upon finishing their final beam routines even though they were junior elites 4 months ago. Is college gymnastics just an elaborate dating website and no one informed me?

With just one week of meets remaining until we get our regional on, it’s time for another look at how  regional placement would work if the season ended today, which gives us a chance to see which teams currently find themselves in disastrous scenarios that they need to get themselves out of. I’m talking to you, Oregon State. Oregon State has missed nationals two years in a row, and getting paired with Oklahoma and Stanford would make an ignominious three-peat a little too possible.

REGIONAL 1: [1] Oklahoma (host), [12] Oregon State, [13] Stanford
REGIONAL 2: [2] Florida, [11] Penn State, [14] Denver
REGIONAL 3: [3] LSU, [10] Nebraska, [15] Boise State
REGIONAL 4: [4] Utah, [9] Georgia, [16] Illinois
REGIONAL 5: [5] Alabama, [8] Auburn (host), [17] Arizona
REGIONAL 6: [6] Michigan, [7] UCLA, [18] Arkansas

The main criticism I usually level at the regional seed organization system is that, since two teams advance from each regional competition, the best teams end up with the toughest challengers (the #1 team getting the #13 team as its 3rd seed), while the weaker teams get the easier challengers (the #6 and #7 teams getting the #18 team as a 3rd seed). But this year, the quality of the #3 seeds is high enough across the board that all the regionals would contain legitimate challengers if this ended up as the final scenario, and some of the lower-ranked top seeds would have some of the toughest 3rd seeds. That Michigan/UCLA/Arkansas regional would be no fun. For them. Tons of fun for us, just like the potential Oregon State/Stanford pairing and the Alabama/Auburn repeat pairing. And don’t forget about Cal, a dangerous host team still currently lurking outside the seeded spots.

Still, there’s one more meet to go and a lot of positional maneuvering to do, so let’s get to the rankings. I have included each team’s maximum possible RQS after conference championships to provide a sense of how high each team can possibly climb. I’ve also extended the rankings down through all teams capable of sneaking into the top 36 and advancing to regionals.

Week 10 rankings – (GymInfo)
1. Oklahoma – 197.860
Week 10: 197.725
Week 10 leaders: AA – None; VT – Scaman 9.950; UB – Wofford 9.900; BB – Clark 9.925; FX – Dowell, Brown 9.925

RQS
Road Score 1: 198.150
Road Score 2: 197.875
Road Score 3: 197.725
Road/Home Score 1: 198.500
Road/Home Score 2: 197.850
Road/Home Score 3: 197.700

Maximum RQS: 198.020

With the highest maximum RQS, the Sooners still control their destiny when it comes to the #1 ranking, but it’s much more of a fight than you might think based on Oklahoma’s season-long stranglehold on the top spot, having held it for the last 3 billion weeks. Because Florida has a pretty low score still to drop, Oklahoma would need a 198.175 at Big 12s to guarantee season-ending #1. It’s possible, especially at home. They’ve certainly done it before, but a 198 is never an easy score.

The other consideration right now for Oklahoma is the injury to Erica Brewer, suddenly making the Sooner lineups a bit more questionable than they were before (if she’s not able to return quickly). Natalie Brown did perform well as a replacement over the weekend, with lower difficulty but clean gymnastics. If they need to keep using her on floor, it might not be a bad idea to pull a Bridgey and keep her in the final spot.

2. Florida – 197.750
Week 10: 197.900
Week 10 leaders: AA – Hunter 39.675; VT – Sloan 9.950; UB – Sloan 10.000; BB – Boyce 9.925; FX – Hunter 9.975

RQS
Road Score 1: 198.100
Road Score 2: 197.425
Road Score 3: 197.200
Road/Home Score 1: 198.225
Road/Home Score 2: 198.125
Road/Home Score 3: 197.900

Maximum RQS: 197.955

Florida’s streak of four-straight years finishing the season at #1 is under severe threat. Still, the Gators do remain the only team with a shot at unseating Oklahoma for the top spot, with a relatively modest 197.200 that can be dropped with strong performance at SECs. At minimum, the Gators need a 197.775 at SECs to have a chance to move ahead of the Sooners, which is pretty realistic. If Florida doesn’t get a high 197 at SECs, it will count as a missed meet. It’s time to bring the quality. To win SECs, it’s going to take at least a high 197, if not a 198. 

3. LSU – 197.630
Week 10: 197.275
Week 10 leaders: AA – None; VT – Savona 9.950; UB – Wyrick 9.875; BB – Jordan, Gnat 9.950; FX – Hall 10.000

RQS
Road Score 1: 197.425
Road Score 2: 197.350
Road Score 3: 197.350
Road/Home Score 1: 198.375
Road/Home Score 2: 198.075
Road/Home Score 3: 197.950

Maximum RQS: 197.835

LSU was not able to record a counting score last weekend after a bars issue in the very first rotation. It should be noted that they did elect to rest a number of contributors in that meet before everything starts to get real, but that score does mean that LSU can no longer challenge for the #1 ranking. The Tigers can still possibly move ahead of Florida, but that will be challenging as well since the deficit is now more than a tenth. LSU would need at least a 197.975 at SECs to move ahead of Florida, and probably more than that since Florida should easily eclipse that drop-able 197.200. The biggest concern for LSU right now is getting Courville back in the AA. These teams at the top are too good for LSU to be able to survive without a 100% Courville.

4. Utah – 197.605
Week 10: 197.275
Week 10 leaders: AA – Wilson 39.275; VT – Lee 9.925; UB – Dabritz 9.975; BB – Rowe, Stover 9.900; FX – Tutka 9.925

RQS
Road Score 1: 197.850
Road Score 2: 197.275
Road Score 3: 197.025
Road/Home Score 1: 198.250
Road/Home Score 2: 198.050
Road/Home Score 3: 197.825

Maximum RQS: 197.690

You alright there, Utah? What was that floor rotation exactly? Are we past that? OK, good. Like LSU, Utah had one bad event over the weekend that prevented them from taking advantage of a golden opportunity to move into the top 3. Because the Utes are coming to the rescue of Mess-izona State and emergency hosting Pac-12s, they don’t have much room to move up in RQS anymore since all those road scores have to count. They could still potentially move ahead of LSU, but likewise would need a 197.975 at Pac-12s for a shot, along with some help from LSU, so #4 seems the most likely finish. They’ll be fine with that.

5. Alabama – 197.425
Week 10: 197.500
Week 10 leaders: AA – Beers 39.650; VT – Beers 9.950; UB – Clark, McNeer 9.875; BB – Williams, Beers 9.950; FX – Beers 9.950

RQS
Road Score 1: 197.675
Road Score 2: 197.350
Road Score 3: 197.200
Road/Home Score 1: 197.800
Road/Home Score 2: 197.500
Road/Home Score 3: 197.400
 
Maximum RQS: 197.545

Alabama is set. The Tide cannot move up any higher that their current ranking and cannot get caught by any other team, so 5th it is. It’s a solid finish for a team with a lot of uncertainty coming into the season, but they’re still a little more prone to mistakes than we usually expect from Alabama teams once March comes around. Right now, the Katie Bailey question is the biggest one dogging Alabama. She has returned on bars but still hasn’t been quite herself. She’s a necessary piece, and it’s going to be difficult to keep pace with hit meets from Florida and LSU at SECs without her routines.

6. Michigan – 197.185
Week 10: 197.000
Week 10 leaders: AA – Artz 39.550; VT – Artz, Sugiyama 9.950; UB – Artz, Brown 9.850; BB – Artz 9.900; FX – Sugiyama 9.925

RQS
Road Score 1: 197.675
Road Score 2: 197.125
Road Score 3: 197.000
Road/Home Score 1: 197.300
Road/Home Score 2: 197.250
Road/Home Score 3: 197.250

Maximum RQS: 197.270

Like Alabama, Michigan cannot move up any higher than the current ranking, but unlike Alabama, Michigan will have to fend off challenges from the teams below to remain in this spot. UCLA is the biggest threat, but that is pretty much meaningless. Even if UCLA does pass Michigan, both teams would still end up in the 6/7 regional, so it’s a wash. Auburn does have a chance to challenge and move up as high as 6th as well, but Michigan can fend them off with 197.400, which would guarantee them a spot in that 6/7 regional.

7. UCLA – 197.130
Week 10: 197.175
Week 10 leaders: AA – Meraz 39.300; VT – Peszek 9.925; UB – Lee 9.900; BB – Peszek 9.950; FX – Bynum 9.925

RQS
Road Score 1: 197.350
Road Score 2: 197.175
Road Score 3: 197.075
Road/Home Score 1: 197.950
Road/Home Score 2: 197.050
Road/Home Score 3: 197.000

Maximum RQS: 197.320

UCLA had an odd meet at Arkansas. Val wasn’t there, so what’s the point of having the meet if the star of the team isn’t even in attendance? She wasn’t the only thing missing. The Bruins are still withholding a number of routines that should be in the lineups on vault and floor, though that’s normal UCLA behavior for this point in the year. A million people are each till doing one event, and I would expect a few of them to be spectators starting next week.

But still, even though some of the lineups were a little flat, UCLA did enough to move up another spot in the rankings and keep scratching away at those bad scores. With a higher maximum RQS than Michigan, UCLA can dictate how this plays out. The Bruins need at least a 197.300 to have a chance at moving ahead of Michigan and can guarantee it with a 197.725. Auburn is also chasing, so to ensure that they stay ahead of Auburn, the Bruins need a 197.425 at Pac-12s. That seems quite doable with the right lineups, unless they have a disaster like last year.

8. Auburn – 197.025
Week 10: 197.100
Week 10 leaders: AA – None; VT – Atkinson, Guy, Rott 9.900; UB – Walker 9.900; BB – Walker 9.900; FX – Hlawek 9.925

RQS
Road Score 1: 197.025
Road Score 2: 196.875
Road Score 3: 196.825
Road/Home Score 1: 197.750
Road/Home Score 2: 197.300
Road/Home Score 3: 197.100

Maximum RQS: 197.210

Auburn has fallen to 8th but is still a realistic challenger to move up at least one spot if not two. It will be tough, though. At minimum, they’ll need a 197.375 at SECs to have a shot at challenging UCLA (197.625 to challenge Michigan) and would probably need more. Lower in the rankings, Georgia cannot catch Auburn, but Nebraska still could. The Tigers will need a 197.125 at SECs to guarantee that they remain at least at #8.

Auburn wasn’t able to make a big dent in the RQS rankings after a 197.100 over the weekend, which featured some Caitlin Atkinson resting in the final meet before championship season, but even though 197.100 is low compared to our expectations for top teams at this point in the season, it’s still historically high for Auburn. Getting that kind of score is a very new thing.

9. Georgia – 196.875
Week 10: 197.450
Week 10 leaders: AA – None; VT – Davis, Jay 9.875; UB – Brown 9.950; BB – Vaculik 9.900; FX – Marino 9.925

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.950
Road Score 2: 196.850
Road Score 3: 196.775
Road/Home Score 1: 197.450
Road/Home Score 2: 196.975
Road/Home Score 3: 196.825

Maximum RQS: 197.010

A 197! Praise be! Georgia even moved up a spot in the rankings! That vital 197.450 does give the Gym Dogs a little bit more wiggle room to improve their RQS, but not quite enough. They will not be able to advance any higher than 9th and are in some danger of being re-passed by Nebraska and falling back to 10th. Because Nebraska has the higher maximum RQS, Georgia does not control its own fate. Nebraska could pass regardless of what Georgia does, but frankly there’s not much difference between 9th and 10th in regional placement, so it doesn’t matter that much. The bigger issue is that no matter where they finish, Georgia is going to face a #3 seed at regionals that is easily capable of a mid 196 (or high 196 on a good day). This weekend, in that early session of “home” SEC championships, Georgia needs to prove that beating a mid-high 196 team is easy and that they don’t need to be perfect to do it. Because you’re not always perfect at regionals. 

10. Nebraska – 196.865
Week 10: 196.000
Week 10 leaders: AA – DeZiel 39.425; VT – Lambert, Williams 9.900; UB – DeZiel 9.875; BB – DeZiel 9.925; FX – Blanske 9.875

RQS
Road Score 1: 197.075
Road Score 2: 196.650
Road Score 3: 196.250
Road/Home Score 1: 197.325
Road/Home Score 2: 197.225
Road/Home Score 3: 197.125

Maximum RQS: 197.080

The Huskers have fallen to 10th after an unhelpful 196.000 at Pre-Big Tens that, by most accounts, came from a combination of errors and getting totally hosed with the floor scores. Nonetheless, with a low road score that’s itching to be dropped, Nebraska can still gain a couple spots and shake things up with a good showing at Big Tens. They’ll need a 197.075 to have a chance at moving ahead of Auburn, but can guarantee moving back ahead of Georgia with a 197.000. 

11. Penn State – 196.555
Week 10: 196.650
Week 10 leaders: AA – Tasng 39.300; VT – Sibson, Tasng 9.900; UB – Raygoza 9.900; BB – Sanabria-Robles 9.875; FX – Sibson 9.850

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.750
Road Score 2: 196.650
Road Score 3: 196.175
Road/Home Score 1: 197.025
Road/Home Score 2: 196.650
Road/Home Score 3: 196.550

Maximum RQS: 196.725

There’s a big break after the top 10, so Penn State has no chance of sneaking up any higher. But, one of the most significant races to watch on Saturday will be among Penn State, Oregon State, and Stanford because I think both Penn State and Oregon State will be desperate to avoid getting Stanford at regionals. Yes, all three teams have hit 197 this year and they’re all ranked similarly, but Stanford is a nightmare draw because of how many potential 9.9s they have. They’re so capable of a huge score, even if it’s a frustratingly infrequent development. Penn State or Oregon State could have a great meet and still get Ivana-Hong-9.950-ed out of contention. As of right now, Penn State would draw Denver and Oregon State would draw Stanford. You’d rather draw Denver.

Both Oregon State and Stanford have the higher maximum score than Penn State, so their performances at Pac-12s will be the biggest factors in dictating where Penn State ends up. 

12. Oregon State – 196.550
Week 10: 197.075
Week 10 leaders: AA – Gardiner 39.450; VT – Aufiero, Keeker 9.925; UB – Aufiero, McMillan 9.875; BB – Gardiner 9.850; FX – Perez, Tang 9.950

RQS
Road Score 1: 197.250
Road Score 2: 196.700
Road Score 3: 196.450
Road/Home Score 1: 197.075
Road/Home Score 2: 196.275
Road/Home Score 3: 196.250

Maximum RQS: 196.750

Oregon State didn’t have a good beam showing in their home finale, but they used a YIPPEE HOORAY senior night floor score to break 197 anyway and move up a few crucial spots in the rankings. Beam really is a worry, but this team does have enough Tang, Gardiner, Perez, McMillan, Aufiero 9.9s on one or two events to remain a concern for any school facing them at regionals. To be assured of moving ahead of Penn State, the Beavs will need a 197.150 at Pac-12s, though they can still get caught by Stanford. 

13. Stanford – 196.530
Week 10: No meet

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.625
Road Score 2: 196.525
Road Score 3: 196.275
Road/Home Score 1: 197.525
Road/Home Score 2: 197.000
Road/Home Score 3: 196.225

Maximum RQS: 196.790

Stanford has the highest maximum RQS of all the teams ranked outside the top 10, but it’s still going to take some serious doing to reach that mark and get up to the #11 ranking they probably deserve, and that would make for the cleanest regionals draw (also the least fun). The Cardinal will need a 197.225 to make sure they get above Penn State and a 197.350 to make sure they get above Oregon State. Looking at the roster, you’d say, “Yeah, 197.3, easy,” but it has only happened once this season, and that was at home. Stanford still has work to do to prove that this isn’t another one of those years where they’re crazy talented and then finish 11th at nationals. 

14. Denver – 196.455
Week 10: 196.850
Week 10 leaders: AA – McGee 9.950; VT – Ross 9.900; UB – McGee 9.900; BB – Ross 9.850; FX – McGee 9.950

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.850
Road Score 2: 196.450
Road Score 3: 196.150

Road/Home Score 1: 196.925
Road/Home Score 2: 196.725
Road/Home Score 3: 196.100

Maximum RQS: 196.620

Denver jumped up all the way to 14th from a ranking of 18th last week after getting a road 196.850, the latest in a series of 196s and one that is made more important because it wasn’t just another one of those “Denver got a 196.8 at home and that’s a thing now?” meets that happens every year. Another big 196 may happen again this weekend because Denver is hosting the Mountain Rim Championships, which sounds so much like a fake event that would be on Make It or Break It. Or when any sports movie has to make up a competition, and it’s always called the Central Alliance Cup, and you’re like, um that’s nothing.

While Denver’s max RQS is lower than that of the teams ranked above, they could also make it as high as 11th if things fall their way at the Central Alliance Cup. They need a 196.500 to begin to threaten the teams ranked above, and that’s definitely possible. Denver is the first team that isn’t mathematically guaranteed a spot among the 18 seeds, though it’s still very likely with just 196.225 required to make it official.

15. Boise State – 196.375
Week 10: 196.225
Week 10 leaders: AA – Morris 39.275; VT – Krentz, Morris, Perkins 9.900; UB – Morris, Perkins 9.875; BB – Josbacher 9.775; FX – Morris 9.850

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.625
Road Score 2: 196.225
Road Score 3: 196.025
Road/Home Score 1: 196.800
Road/Home Score 2: 196.725
Road/Home Score 3: 196.275

Maximum RQS: 196.530

Boise State doesn’t have quite the same maximum as Denver, and while they can conceivably move up as high as a tie with Stanford if everything falls correctly, the main focus will be on securing one of the 18 seeded spots. They look pretty good to do it since quite a few teams would need to pass to knock them out, but the magic number to score this weekend that would make a top 18 spot official is 196.550.

16. Illinois – 196.355
Week 10: 196.050
Week 10 leaders: AA – Horth 39.350; VT – Horth 9.850; UB – O’Connor 9.900; BB – O’Connor 9.875; FX – Horth 9.800

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.975
Road Score 2: 196.425
Road Score 3: 196.275
Road/Home Score 1: 196.500
Road/Home Score 2: 196.400
Road/Home Score 3: 196.175 

Maximum RQS: 196.515

Like Boise State, Illinois’ maximum score is not as high as the other teams ranked in this area, so their performance this weekend is about solidifying a claim to one of those seeded spots. They’re in OK shape, but it’s definitely not a guarantee since teams like Minnesota and Arizona have higher maximum scores (and mid-195s still to drop). Both can realistically pass Illinois, and Illinois’ magic number to keep a seeded spot is 196.800, which is a fairly tough ask. 

17. Arizona – 196.290
Week 10: 196.850
Week 10 leaders: AA – Cindric 39.350; VT – Sisler 9.850; UB – Cindric 9.925; BB – Fox 9.900; FX – Mills 9.900

RQS
Road Score 1: 197.125
Road Score 2: 196.050
Road Score 3: 195.450
Road/Home Score 1: 196.850
Road/Home Score 2: 196.625
Road/Home Score 3: 196.475

Maximum RQS: 196.625

Watch out for Arizona. On the strength of another big home score, achieved without Allie Flores as this team attempts to manage the near-Kentucky number of injuries that are piling up this season, Arizona has moved into a pretty threatening position considering that they still have that 195.450 to get rid of at Pac-12s. Even though the Wildcats can potentially get as high as #11, that’s unrealistic since they would need to pass so many teams to get there, but they can guarantee jumping ahead of both Boise State and Illinois with a 196.650 at Pac-12s, which would allow them to draw a more attackable #2 seed at regionals.

With that low score to drop, Arizona’s magic number to stay in the top 18 is just 196.400.

18. Arkansas – 196.275
Week 10: 195.900
Week 10 leaders: AA – Zaziski 39.450; VT – Wellick 9.900; UB – Zaziski 9.950; BB – Dillard 9.850; FX – Elswick 9.900

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.650
Road Score 2: 196.250
Road Score 3: 196.250
Road/Home Score 1: 196.650
Road/Home Score 2: 196.325
Road/Home Score 3: 195.900

Maximum RQS: 196.425

Because the Razorbacks don’t have a 197, or even a big 196, that could be counted if things go well over the weekend, their maximum score is fairly pedestrian. There’s not a lot they can do now. Because both Minnesota and Cal have higher maximum scores, Arkansas does not control its own seeded destiny. If both Minnesota and Cal have big days at conference championships, they can jump ahead of Arkansas and potentially knock them out of a seeded spot, even if Arkansas gets a season-high score.

Still, talk about a no-fun #4 seed to draw if Arkansas does end up getting knocked out of the top 18. It’s bad enough having to worry about these 196.8-capable #3 seeds.

19. Minnesota – 196.250
Week 10: 196.450
Week 10 leaders: AA – C Gardner 39.100; VT – Mable 9.950; UB – Tomson, Covers 9.925; BB – Hanley 9.850; FX – Mable 9.925

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.875
Road Score 2: 196.350
Road Score 3: 195.450
Road/Home Score 1: 196.675
Road/Home Score 2: 196.450
Road/Home Score 3: 196.325

Maximum RQS: 196.535

Minnesota is another team like Arizona with a very low score to drop, and that could allow them to climb the rankings significantly.  Even though they’re currently ranked outside the top 18, they’re right in the fight for a #3 seed and can even guarantee it with a 196.600 this weekend.

20. Cal – 196.190
Week 10: 196.125
Week 10 leaders: AA – Williams 39.475; VT – Williams, Palomares 9.850; UB – Williams 9.925; BB – Palomares 9.800; FX – Williams 9.925

 RQS
Road Score 1: 196.600
Road Score 2: 196.125
Road Score 3: 196.100
Road/Home Score 1: 197.325
Road/Home Score 2: 196.225
Road/Home Score 3: 195.900

Maximum RQS: 196.475

It’s going to be much tougher for Cal, but they too have a chance to move up into the seeded spots if things fall correctly. To do it, they’ll first need to move ahead of Arkansas. They do have a higher maximum score than Arkansas, so it’s possible, but it would take a 197.100 at Pac-12s to guarantee it, which is tough. More likely, they’ll have to hope Arkansas (and at least one other team) does not approach its maximum RQS and becomes beatable with a lower score. For Cal, it very much depends on how the other teams fare. But remember, Cal is hosting a regional and is another one of those very dangerous floaters regardless of seeding.

21. Central Michigan – 196.110
Week 10: 196.225
Week 10 leaders: AA – None; VT – Moraw, Teet 9.850; UB – Fagan 9.900; BB – Noonan 9.900; FX – Moraw 9.925

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.400
Road Score 2: 196.225
Road Score 3: 196.175
Road/Home Score 1: 196.150
Road/Home Score 2: 196.125
Road/Home Score 3: 195.875

Maximum RQS: 196.215

Now we move into the batch of teams that cannot move into the top 18 yet are still guaranteed to make regionals. That’s everyone from Central Michigan through the rest of the 20s in the rankings. These teams will be the 4th and 5th seeds at various regional competitions and will be at the mercy of the draw to see where they fall.

22. Washington – 195.960
Week 10: 196.600
Week 10 leaders: AA – Northey 38.725; VT – Northey, Stowe 9.850; UB – Janik 9.900; BB – McCartin 9.900; FX – Podlucky 9.875

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.600
Road Score 2: 196.300
Road Score 3: 196.125
Road/Home Score 1: 195.950
Road/Home Score 2: 195.775
Road/Home Score 3: 195.650 

Maximum RQS: 196.150

23. Southern Utah – 195.945
Week 10: 196.325
Week 10 leaders: AA – None; VT – Ramirez 9.850; UB – Ramirez 9.875; BB – Jaworski 9.900; FX – Webb 9.900

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.225
Road Score 2: 195.750
Road Score 3: 195.500
Road/Home Score 1: 196.475
Road/Home Score 2: 196.325
Road/Home Score 3: 195.925

Maximum RQS: 196.140

24. Iowa – 195.790
Week 10: 196.425
Week 10 leaders: AA – Metcalf 39.275; VT – Glover 9.900; UB – Drenth 9.925; BB – Drenth 9.900; FX – Drenth 9.800

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.425
Road Score 2: 195.850
Road Score 3: 195.225
Road/Home Score 1: 196.375
Road/Home Score 2: 195.775
Road/Home Score 3: 195.725

Maximum RQS: 196.030

25. Kentucky – 195.735
Week 10: 196.175
Week 10 leaders: AA – Waltz 39.400; VT – Phipps 9.850; UB – Waltz 9.850; BB – Waltz, Mitchell 9.925; FX – Mitchell, Waltz 9.850

RQS
Road Score 1: 195.950
Road Score 2: 195.825
Road Score 3: 194.975
Road/Home Score 1: 196.575
Road/Home Score 2: 196.175
Road/Home Score 3: 195.750

Maximum RQS: 196.055

26. New Hampshire – 195.660
Week 10: 196.150
Week 10 leaders: AA – Pflieger  39.325; VT – Pflieger 9.875; UB – Kerouac 9.825; BB – Hill 9.900; FX – Broccoli, Pflieger, Rudiger 9.850

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.150
Road Score 2: 196.075
Road Score 3: 194.700
Road/Home Score 1: 196.525
Road/Home Score 2: 195.900
Road/Home Score 3: 195.475

Maximum RQS: 196.025

27. Missouri – 195.635
Week 10: 196.150
Week 10 leaders: AA – Schugel 39.300; VT – Schugel 9.800; UB – Schugel 9.850; BB – Kappler 9.900; FX – Harris 9.925

RQS
Road Score 1: 195.975
Road Score 2: 195.850
Road Score 3: 195.275
Road/Home Score 1: 196.150
Road/Home Score 2: 195.800
Road/Home Score 3: 195.275

Maximum RQS: 195.810

Back to regionals! It’s been a hard road.

28. Michigan State – 195.610
Week 10: 195.250
Week 10 leaders: AA – Burt 39.075; VT – Cartwright 9.875; UB – Burt, Cartwright 9.775; BB – Westney 9.850; FX – Lagoski 9.800

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.325
Road Score 2: 196.275
Road Score 3: 195.625
Road/Home Score 1: 195.750
Road/Home Score 2: 195.250
Road/Home Score 3: 195.150

Maximum RQS: 195.845

29. Utah State –195.555
Week 10 A: 196.350
Week 10 A leaders: AA – Landes, Martinez 39.250; VT – McIntire 9.875; UB – Cuba 9.800; BB – Belliston, Sanzotti 9.825; FX – Landes, McIntire, Sanzotti 9.875

Week 10 B: 196.325
Week 10 B leaders: AA – Landes 39.250; VT – Kerr 9.850; UB – Cuba, Peel 9.850; BB – Cuba 9.875; FX – McIntire 9.875

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.325
Road Score 2: 195.750
Road Score 3: 195.500
Road/Home Score 1: 196.350
Road/Home Score 2: 195.100
Road/Home Score 3: 195.100

Maximum RQS: 195.805

30. Iowa State – 195.390
Week 10: 195.300
Week 10 leaders: AA – Brown 39.400; VT – Middlekoop 9.800; UB – Ledesma 9.875; BB – Brown 9.950; FX – Young 9.900

RQS
Road Score 1: 195.375
Road Score 2: 195.175
Road Score 3: 194.950
Road/Home Score 1: 195.950
Road/Home Score 2: 195.775
Road/Home Score 3: 195.675

Maximum RQS: 195.590

This is the cutoff. Iowa State is guaranteed a spot at Regionals, but all the lower teams are at least somewhat vulnerable, some more than others.
————————————————————————–

31. BYU – 195.365
Week 10: 196.375
Week 10 leaders: AA – Johnson 39.450; VT – Johnson 9.925; UB – Van Mierlo 9.850; BB – Schult 9.875; FX – Johnson 9.900

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.375
Road Score 2: 195.675
Road Score 3: 195.425
Road/Home Score 1: 195.450
Road/Home Score 2: 195.300
Road/Home Score 3: 194.975

Maximum RQS: 195.645

To guarantee regionals qualification, BYU must score 195.100 this weekend.

32. Ohio State – 195.355
Week 10: 195.250
Week 10 leaders: AA – Harrison 39.125; VT – Van Putten 9.850; UB – Van Putten 9.800; BB – Harrison 9.900; FX – Harrison, Mattern 9.775

RQS
Road Score 1: 195.650
Road Score 2: 195.250
Road Score 3: 195.200
Road/Home Score 1: 196.200
Road/Home Score 2: 195.650
Road/Home Score 3: 195.025

Maximum RQS: 195.590

To guarantee regionals qualification, Ohio State must score 195.200 this weekend.

33. West Virginia – 195.345
Week 10: 196.075
Week 10 leaders: AA – Haley 39.075; VT – Lawrence, Muhammad 9.850; UB – Goldberg 9.900; BB – Gillette, Goldberg, Idell 9.825; FX – Idell 9.925

RQS
Road Score 1: 195.350
Road Score 2: 195.300
Road Score 3: 194.975
Road/Home Score 1: 196.075
Road/Home Score 2: 195.900
Road/Home Score 3: 195.200

Maximum RQS: 195.565

To guarantee regionals qualification, West Virginia must also score 195.200 this weekend. 

34. George Washington – 195.325
Week 10 A: 195.125
Week 10 A leaders: AA – Winstanley 39.375; VT – Corcoran, Drouin-Allaire 9.925; UB – Winstanley 9.825; BB – Winstanley 9.875; FX – Raineri 9.875

Week 10 B: 196.875
Week 10 B leaders: AA – Winstanley 39.550; VT – Drouin-Allaire 9.950; UB – Mishlove, Winstanley 9.850; BB – Winstanley 9.900; FX – Drouin-Allaire 9.925

RQS
Road Score 1: 195.725
Road Score 2: 195.125
Road Score 3: 195.025
Road/Home Score 1: 196.875
Road/Home Score 2: 195.725
Road/Home Score 3: 195.025

Maximum RQS: 195.695

To guarantee regionals qualification, George Washington must score 195.350 this weekend.

35. Maryland – 195.290
Week 10: 194.875
Week 10 leaders: AA – None; VT – Skochko 9.850; UB – Karen Tang 9.800; BB – Slobodin 9.825; FX – Giameo, Walters 9.750

RQS
Road Score 1: 195.525
Road Score 2: 195.375
Road Score 3: 195.350
Road/Home Score 1: 196.000
Road/Home Score 2: 195.275
Road/Home Score 3: 194.925

Maximum RQS: 195.505

To guarantee regionals qualification, Maryland must score 195.425 this weekend.

36. Eastern Michigan –  195.280
Week 10: 195.525
Week 10 leaders: AA – Willette 39.000; VT – Valentin 9.800; UB – Valentin 9.875; BB – Gervais 9.875; FX – Loehner, Slocum 9.800

RQS
Road Score 1: 195.575
Road Score 2: 195.525
Road Score 3: 195.225
Road/Home Score 1: 195.275
Road/Home Score 2: 195.250
Road/Home Score 3: 195.125

Maximum RQS: 195.370

Eastern Michigan sits in the final regionals spot for the moment, but this is another team that does not control its own destiny. NC State has a higher maximum score, so if Eastern Michigan isn’t able to move ahead of any of the higher-ranked teams, they could get passed by NC State and not be able to do anything about it. It will be a nail-biting, wait-and-see day for Eastern Michigan.

37. NC State – 195.270
Week 10: 196.000
Week 10 leaders: AA – Woodford 39.175; VT – Knight 9.875; UB – Turner, Watkins 9.800; BB – Woodford 9.850; FX – Watkins 9.900

RQS
Road Score 1: 196.175
Road Score 2: 196.000
Road Score 3: 195.075
Road/Home Score 1: 195.850
Road/Home Score 2: 194.800
Road/Home Score 3: 194.625

Maximum RQS: 195.580

NC State has that very low score still to drop and can guarantee moving into the coveted top 36 spots with just a 195.225.

38. Kent State – 195.005 
Week 10: 195.050
Week 10 leaders: AA – None; VT – Drooger, Timko 9.850; UB – Drooger, Romito, Timko 9.825; BB – Stypinski 9.875; FX – Stypinski 9.925

RQS
Road Score 1: 195.050
Road Score 2: 194.725
Road Score 3: 193.800
Road/Home Score 1: 196.800
Road/Home Score 2: 195.750
Road/Home Score 3: 195.700

Maximum RQS: 195.225

Kent State cannot advance to Regionals. Road scores. They’ll end you.

39. San Jose State – 194.845
Week 10: 194.675
Week 10 leaders: AA – Guyer 39.050; VT – Heinl 9.850; UB – Herr 9.875; BB – Guyer 9.650; FX – Guyer 9.900

RQS
Road Score 1: 195.150
Road Score 2: 195.125
Road Score 3: 194.675
Road/Home Score 1: 195.675
Road/Home Score 2: 194.750
Road/Home Score 3: 194.525

Maximum RQS: 195.075

San Jose State cannot advance to Regionals.

40. Bowling Green – 194.835
Week 10: 195.700
Week 10 leaders: AA – Nocella 39.225; VT – Ali 9.850; UB – Reis 9.850; BB – Ellingboe 9.800; FX – Nocella, Rae 9.850

RQS
Road Score 1: 195.250
Road Score 2: 195.200
Road Score 3: 193.025
Road/Home Score 1: 195.700
Road/Home Score 2: 195.500
Road/Home Score 3: 195.200

Maximum RQS: 195.370

Bowling Green is quite a way back in RQS, but because they have that yucky 193 road score to drop, there’s still a chance they can move into the Regionals spots if a bunch of things fall their way on Saturday. To have any chance, they’ll need a 195.275 at conference championships, and that is a score they’ve reached in their last two meets.

41. Davis – 194.795
Week 10: 196.900
Week 10 leaders: AA – Judal 39.450; VT – Montell 9.900; UB – DeFrancesco 9.925; BB – Judal 9.850; FX – Stamates 9.950

RQS
Road Score 1: 195.325
Road Score 2: 194.800
Road Score 3: 193.950
Road/Home Score 1: 196.900
Road/Home Score 2: 195.175
Road/Home Score 3: 194.725

Maximum RQS: 195.385

Davis is also very far back, but because of that insane home score they just got on senior night, their maximum possible score just increased by a significant margin. It’s still very unlikely that they’ll get up to a top 36 spot because they would need a 196.375 this weekend to have even the vaguest, remotest shot. They haven’t come close to getting that score this year except in the most recent meet. Still, it’s technically possible.

Starting with North Carolina and Northern Illinois tied at #42, all the remaining teams have been eliminated from Regionals contention.