Courtney Willoughby, L10 from Brestyans Gymnastics in Massachusetts, has given George Washington University a verbal commitment. She finished 2nd AA (1st FX) at this year's Sand Dollar meet and 2nd AA at the All Olympia meet. She went on to finish 3rd AA at her state meet and a 2nd AA finish at regionals qualified her to JO Nationals.
Megan Whitney will transfer from Utah to Washington, according to a UW release. Whitney trained at the Desert Devils, the same club as incoming UW frosh Aliza Vaccher. Whitney is a former runner-up at the L10 Nationals.
Link: UW Release
Utah has officially accepted an invitation to join the Pac-10 Conference, further strengthening an already strong gymnastics conference. They currently compete as part of the WAC, which does not sponsor a conference championship. Eight teams currently now support the Women's sport in the Pac-10. Utah will begin Pac-10 competition for the 2011-2012 school year.
Colorado had previously announced it's intention to join the Pac-10 after NU moved from the Big 12 to the Big 10. Shortly thereafter, Boise State moved to the MWC. This all started a chain reaction of negotiations between schools, conferences (Big 10, Pac 10, and Big 12) and television networks. In the end, the remaining schools in the Big 12 decided to stay together as a conference after a new television deal was assembled that satisfied Texas. Some pundits speculated that the major sports television networks had a vested interest in preventing the spread of mega-conferences, each with their own television channels.
However, there is speculation that although the activity has settled down, it is not yet completed. Some schools, and more importnatly, boosters are still seeking out the best options for their schools.
Steve Shephard has stepped down as Head Coach at Penn State to pursue other career opportunities, according to a school release. He said in a statement, "I have decided to retire from coaching after a 30 year career in gymnastics, to pursue other career opportunities. It has been my great honor, and privilege, to work with all of the gifted young people associated with this program over the last 21 years."
Organization is an important component in the college search for athletes and completing a college-bound assessment for what you would like to achieve is a great way to start! Think of the assessment as the seed you want to plant to grow your recruiting effort. What grows will be determined by how you cultivate it from start to finish.
Looking at the “big picture” can be a tall task for most high school-aged athletes, but if you can begin with the end game in mind and work backwards in developing your personal plan for success, you will most likely run into the college assessment near the beginning of the checklist.
Vicki Chliszczyk has been named the Head Coach at Towson, replacing Dick Filbert, who retired. Chliszczyk has been an assistant for the past five season at Maryland and is a native of Canada, where she competed in gymanstics. She is just the fourth Head Coach in the 43 year history of the program. The full Towson release follows below.
Laura Moffat, L10 at the Gymnastics Academy of Atlanta, has accepted a one year athletic scholarship to the University of Georgia. She finished 7th on bars and 12th on beam at JO Nationals.
DU has hired Jay Hogue as an assistant. Hogue has been coaching at Broadway Gymnastics in Florida, and was a previous long-time staff member at Orlando Metro. He replaces Nilson Savage.
Link: DU Release
UCLA's Vanessa Zamarripa qualified to the VISA (US) Championships with her performance at the second elite qualifier held at Bieger's this weekend. She won her optional session and the compulsary section. Several incoming recruits and NCAA athletes were in action this weekend.
2011 Michigan commit Annettte Miele won this session and posted a VISA Championships qualifying score. LSU incoming frosh Gabrielle Swart and 2011 Michigan committ Morgan Steigerwalt competed in this session.
Incoming Minnesota transfer Justine Cherwink competed in this session.
Session 3 included Zamarripa and former Arkansas athlete Casey Jo Magee.
Conference re-alignment is shaking up the NCAA, driven by revenue sports like football, TV contracts and of course, money. So far, schools with gymnastics programs have already been affected. Nebraska has proposed a move to the Big 10 and Boise State is heading to the WAC. Other schools may also be changing conferences, so stay tuned to the changes this summer.
See this local Omaha station and their quote from NU Head Coach Dan Kendig. Link.
Gymnastics has the highest school average APR (Academic Progress Rate) among all Men's NCAA sports, according to a report released by the NCAA. Men's teams averaged 979. 925 is the minimum before penalties begin to be considered at any given school. Gymnastics is tied for third at 985 among Women's sports with Crew, with Field Hockey and Lacrosse leading the way. Three men's squads achieved APRs of 1000 (perfect), while 14 women's programs hit that mark. Only one team has failed to hit the 925 hurdle, but no penalties have been assessed.
Justine Cherwink will reportedly transfer to Minnesota for the 2010-2011, according to the Gopher Booster club website. Cherwink has been training at Denton Gymnastics while attending North Texas State, after graduating early from high school. At the 2010 L10 Nationals, in the Senior B division, she placed 31st AA, 7th (t) on VT and 8th(t) on FX. She also recently competed at the Elite Qualifier in Arizona, posting a solid 14.15 on a 5.3 start value (Yurchenko 1 1/2) vault.
Link: Booster Club