No. 9 Nebraska at Rocky Mountain Open
Saturday, Jan. 12 | 7 p.m. CST
Colorado Springs, Colo. (Cadet West Gymnasium)
The No. 9 Nebraska men’s gymnastics team will open their
2013 season this weekend against No. 3 Oklahoma, No. 11 Air Force, Arizona
State and members of the U.S. Olympic Training Center. The five-group rotation
will take place in Colorado Springs, Colo., at 7 p.m. CST in the Cadet West
The United States Air Force Academy will provide a live feed
to CBS Sports’ All-Access programming subscribers. Streaming will be available
on GoAirForceFalcons.com. Fans are also invited to follow the Huskers on
Twitter (@NebraskaMGym) for live updates during the meet.
Scouting the No. 3 Oklahoma
A Glance at Oklahoma
Head Coach: Mark Williams
2012 Record: 26-3
2012 NCAA Finish: 2
The Sooners enter 2013 following an eighth-straight
conference title and a second-place NCAA finish in 2012. OU scored 355.600 to
capture the MPSF championship over Stanford and California. They carried
momentum into the first day of NCAA competition, but lost their national title
to Illinois on the second night after scoring a 358.85 in April.
Oklahoma returns fourteen gymnasts from last season’s lineup
while adding three newcomers. All-Americans Troy Nitzky, Presten Ellsworth,
Chris Stehl and Danny Berardini lead the Sooners. Ellsworth led the Red Team to
victory earlier in the season during OU’s scrimmage meet.
Scouting the No. 11 Air
Force Academy Falcons
A Glance at the Air Force Academy
Head Coach: Kip Simons
2012 Record: 13-15
2012 NCAA Finish: N/A
After winning their third consecutive USAG national title,
the Falcons look to keep their No. 11 national ranking. The USAFA scored a
season-high 341.050 at the USAG championships, then a 335.950 at the MPSF
Championships. The Falcons finished their season with a 333.750 at the NCAA
They return fourteen gymnasts, adding four to their 2013
lineup. James Okamoto leads the Falcons as captain after receiving multiple
honors throughout the 2012 season, including Gymnast of the Week for the
Mountain Pacific Sports Federation and the College Gymnastics Association.
Scouting the Arizona
State Sun Devils
A Glance at Arizona State
Head Coach: Scott Barclay
2012 Record: N/A
2012 NCAA Finish: N/A
Arizona State returns to the Rocky Mountain Open as
consistent competitors. They return
twelve gymnasts for the 2013 season and welcome eleven freshmen to the team. The
Sun Devils open their schedule in Colorado Springs then continue on to the West
Point Open in West Point, N.Y.
Order at the Rocky Mountain Open
Horse, Rings, Vault, Parallel Bars, High Bar, Floor
Floor, Horse, Rings, Vault, Parallel Bars, High Bar
Rings, Vault, Parallel Bars, High Bar, Floor, Horse
Vault, Parallel Bars, High Bar, Floor, Horse, Rings
US Olympic Training Center
Parallel Bars, High Bar, Floor, Horse, Rings, Vault
Huskers Add Five New
Nebraska gained four freshmen in 2013, as well as one
transfer student. Joining the team are
freshmen Austin Epperson, Sam Chamberlain, Ethan Lottman and Colman Tokar.
Epperson came to NU after a strong junior career, attending Junior Olympic
Nationals and VISA Championships. The Allen, Texas, native previously trained
at the World Olympic Gymnastics Academy, the most decorated gymnastics club in
the nation. Chamberlain attended the Junior Olympic Nationals multiple times
during his junior career. A native of Franklin, Ohio, Chamberlain began getting
recruited after moving to Level 10.
Lottman holds the place of home-grown Huskers on the team as
the only Nebraska native. A strong competitor on the pommel horse, the freshman
was chosen to help strengthen the team’s core on horse. Tokar, a Minneapolis
native, came to Nebraska as a walk-on. Training on all six events, the freshman
lightens spirits in the gym with his cheerful personality.
NU also added Zach Hedval, a junior transfer from Grossmont
College. The Santee, Calif., native joined the Huskers to improve his skills on
rings, which he specializes on.
NU in the Preseason Polls: Ninth Nationally, Sixth in Big Ten
The GymInfo 2013 Preseason Coaches' Poll ranked the Huskers ninth nationally, announced in early October, matching where they finished in NCAA team competition in 2012. Illinois, the reigning national champions, topped the poll with six votes, followed by No. 2 Michigan and No. 3 Oklahoma.
Nebraska also grabbed sixth place in the Big Ten coaches' preaseason poll, announced in mid-December. The Huskers finished in the same position after their inaugural year in the conference. Michigan claimed the No. 1 position, jumping over reigning conference champions, Illinois, who received the No. 2 honors. Penn State (No. 3), Ohio State (No. 4) and Minnesota (No. 5) finished out the top 5. All seven of the Big Ten schools with men's gymnastics programs placed in the top ten nationally.
Nebraska will travel to Stanford, Calif., for the Stanford
Open following this weekend’s meet. They will then host the University of
Illinois-Chicago for their home opener on January 27 at 1 p.m. before heading
back on the road to challenge Minnesota in Minneapolis on February 2 at 7 p.m.