No. 9 Nebraska at No. 7 Minnesota, No. 8 Illinois
Saturday, Feb. 1 | 7 p.m. CST
Minneapolis, Minn. (Sports Pavillion)
The No. 9 Nebraska men’s gymnastics team hits the road once again, heading to Minneapolis to face conference rival No. 7 Minnesota and No. 8 Illinois. The will take place in the Sports Pavillion at 7 p.m. CST. Fans who can’t make it to the meet will be able to view a webcast through Minnesota's subscription video service, Gopher All-Access. They can also follow the team on Twitter (@NebraskaMGym) or on Facebook (facebook.com/NebraskaMGym) for live updates from the meet.
Scouting the No. 7 Golden Gophers
A Glance at Minnesota
Head Coach: Mike Burns
2013 Record: 9-7
2013 NCAA Finish: 4th/6 (Session 1)
No. 7 Minnesota started the season with a loss at their annual alumni meet on Jan. 11. The Golden Gophers rebounded with a fourth place finish at the Windy City Invitational. Minnesota overcame Iowa and UIC led by junior Ellis Mannon, who took home the all-around title. Minnesota then returned to the Sports Pavillion to host the top-ranked Sooners. They finished behind Oklahoma, finishing the meet with a combined score of 427.650.
Scouting the No. 8 Illini
A Glance at Illinois
Head Coach: Justin Spring
2013 Record: 8-7
2013 NCAA Finish: 6th
No. 8 Illinois kicked off their season with a victory against the UIC Flames in Chicago. The Illini continued on with their success, finishing second at the Windy City Invitational. Illinois tied with No. 4 Ohio State, falling only to No. 2 Michigan. They earned a score of 436.050 and were led by sophomore C.J. Maestas, who tied for the rings title. The Illini then returned to Champaign, Ill., to host Ohio State. They came out with the win, finishing 3 points ahead of the Buckeyes with a score of 428.450.
Nebraska will fly to Ann Arbor, Mich., to face No. 2 Michigan in their home gym. The Wolverines will host NU at the Cliff Keen Arena on Feb. 8. The meet will kick off at 6 p.m. CST. After that, the Huskers will return to the midwest to face No. 10 Iowa and No. 7 Minnesota in Iowa City, Iowa, on Feb. 15.
Last Time Out: NU Opens at Home with a Bang
Nebraska faced No. 11 Air Force for their 2014 home opener. The Huskers dominated the meet, hosting the Falcons at the Devaney Center on Jan. 25. The team came out of the meet victorious with a score of 420.650.
Junior Grant Perdue returned as a leader of the Huskers grabbing scores in two events above 15. Perdue took home individual event titles on two of the three events he competed with a score of 15.05 on floor and 15.20 on vault.
Junior Robbie Kocks continued to impress on still rings, matching his season-opening score of 15.40 on the event. Kocks' consistency on the event placed him at No. 5 in the nation on the event. Redshirt freshman earned the second highest score on the event for the Huskers, grabbing a 14.40.
NU saw team scores above 70 on their first four events before struggling through parallel bars and high bar. Junior Louis Klein earned the highest score on high bar for Nebraska (13.50), followed by senior C.J. Schaaf.
Schaaf continued his consistency in the all-around, earning a total score of 81.900. Though he didn't take home the title, Schaaf earned scores over 14 in three of the six events.
Nebraska Holds No. 9 Nationally
The Huskers remained ninth in the national rankings after the third week of the season. Nebraska also stayed at sixth in the Big Ten rankings. Oklahoma stayed at the top for the third week in a row with an average team score of 443.150. Michigan held fast in second, followed by Stanford, Ohio State and California.
Nebraska also stayed at fourth on still rings, triumphing over Illinois (No. 7), Iowa (No. 8), Minnesota (No. 9) and Ohio State (No. 10). The Huskers finished fifth on pommel horse, eighth on parallel bars, ninth on floor and tenth on vault. Continuing to struggle on high bar, Nebraska dropped to No. 14 on the event, over a point behind the closes Big Ten team.
Individually, Nebraska saw sevent athletes in the national rankings this week. Junior Robbie Kocks moved up to the No. 5 position on rings after finishing with a 15.40 for the second week in a row. Donovan Arndt held his No. 11 placement despite not competing in the home opener last weekend.
Eric Schryver and Ethan Lottman tied for sixth on the pommel horse rankings, both earning high scores of 14.85 during the past two meets. Schryver dropped from the parallel bars rankings completely. He was replaced by sophomore and returning All-American Sam Chamberlain, whose 14.90 performance on the event last weekend propelled him into the No. 19 spot.
Junior Louis Klein dropped from the high bar rankings, while junior Grant Perdue broke into the floor rankings at No. 19. Senior C.J. Schaaf dropped one position on the all-around list, coming in eighteenth with a high score of 82.100.