No. 11 Nebraska, No. 6 Minnesota at No. 12 Iowa
Date: Saturday, Feb. 11
Start Time: 7 p.m. CT
Location: Iowa City, Iowa
Venue: Carver-Hawkeye Arena
TV: BTN, BTN2Go.com
Live Stats: HawkeyeSports.com
The No. 11 Nebraska men's gymnastics team will hit the road for their Big Ten conference opener this weekend, facing the No. 12 Iowa Hawkeyes and the No. 6 Minnesota Golden Gophers in Iowa City on Saturday night. The meet is slated for a 7 p.m. start at Carver-Hawkeye Arena and will be broadcasted live on BTN and BTN2Go.com.
Live stats will be available for the meet and can be found by following the link at the top of the page. Fans can also follow the team on Twitter (@NebraskaMGym) for live updates during the meet.
Nebraska in the National Rankings
The Huskers tumbled two spots to No. 11 nationally in this week's GymInfo poll, released on Monday, Feb. 6. NU holds a sixth place among Big Ten teams and is fifth in the Western region. The Oklahoma Sooners maintained their No. 1 position in the poll, which is calculated by average team score. Big Ten teams Illinois and Penn State rounded out the top three.
In individual events, the Huskers came in 11th on floor exercise (55.400), ninth on pommel horse (54.750), 11th on still rings (55.417), eighth on vault (57.200) and ninth on both parallel bars (55.867) and still rings (55.417).
Four Husker athletes also appeared in the individual rankings of the latest poll. Sophomore Eric Schryver continues to be a national leader on pommel horse, ranking seventh overall (14.200). Freshman Grant Perdue appears on vault at 19th (14.533), while senior David Jacobs is also 19th on high bar (14.025). Senior Andreas Hofer rounded out the Huskers in the rankings, coming in at 14th in all-around competition (81.850).
Scouting the Minnesota Golden Gophers
Head Coach: Mike Burns
2012 Record: 2-0
2012 High Score: 345.400 (at Air Force, 1/21/12)
No. 6 Minnesota is 2-0 on the season after defeating UIC at home and Air Force on the road. The Golden Gophers return 11 letterwinners form last season's squad, which finished fifth in the Big Ten and eighth in the nation.
Minnesota's strength thus far in 2012 has been on parallel bars, where they rank second nationally (57.133). The Golden Gophers add rankings of fifth on high bar (56.133), sixth on vault (57.833), seventh on still rings (57.233), eighth on pommel horse (54.967) and ninth on floor exercise (57.667).
The Golden Gophers feature two athletes in the top ten of the national parallel bars rankings. Senior Russell Dabritz ranks seventh in the event (14.700), while senior Ross Cameratta is ninth (14.567). Sophomore Zack Chase is also a leader for Minnesota, appearing at fifth nationally on vault (14.900).
Scouting the Iowa Hawkeyes
Head Coach: J.D. Reive
2012 Record: 1-1
2012 High Score: 332.100 (vs. UIC, 1/28/12)
The No. 12 Iowa Hawkeyes are 1-1 this season, logging a win against UIC and a loss to Big Ten foe Illinois. The Hawkeyes sent six gymnasts to the NCAA Championships in 2011, the team's first season under Head Coach J.D. Reive.
Iowa ranks in the top ten nationally in still rings, coming in at ninth (56.067). The team adds eleventh place rankings in vault (57.000) and parallel bars (54.933).
The Hawkeyes are led by junior Javier Balboa, who ranks fifth nationally on parallel bars (14.767) and 12th in all-around competition (83.000). Freshman Brandon Field also appears in the national rankings, coming in at 15th on vault (14.600).
NU will hit the road for Minnesota next weekend, facing the No. 6 Golden Gophers for the second time in two weeks. The meet is slated for a 1 p.m. start on Saturday at the Sports Pavilion in Minneapolis, Minn.
Last Time Out: Nebraska Finishes Third at Stanford Open
The No. 9 Nebraska men's gymnastics team posted a team score of 332.600 to finish third at the Stanford Open on Saturday night. No. 6 Stanford finished in first (348.400), while No. 5 California took second place (339.000) and Washington finished in fourth (251.200).
Freshman Grant Perdue led the Huskers on the night, cracking the top three of both floor exercise and vault. Perdue posted a 14.80 on floor exercise before adding a 14.70 on vault.
Additionally, senior Andreas Hofer tacked on a fourth-place finish in the all-around competition with a mark of 81.50. Sophomores C.J. Schaaf and Eric Schryver finished fourth and fifth in parallel bars with marks of 14.20 and 14.10, respectively.
NU had a strong night on floor exercise, posting a mark of 57.40, three points higher than their season average. Perdue led the way for the Huskers, assisted by Hofer's score of 14.50 and freshman Hayden Henrioulle's 14.10 mark. Sophomore Wyatt Aycock also contributed a score of 14.00 for the Huskers.
The Huskers also had a strong showing on high bar, led by Schryver's mark of 14.00. Freshman Connor Stillwell added a 13.90 and senior Will Eastman posted a 13.80 to help NU reach its team mark of 55.20 on the event.
Nebraska fell behind slightly on pommel horse and vault, normally two of the team's strongest events. The Big Red posted a team score of 53.80 on horse, slightly lower than its season average of 55.225. Hofer's mark of 13.80 led the Huskers on horse. NU added a mark of 56.10 on vault, paced by Perdue's third-place score as well as freshman Gabriel Jolley's mark of 14.20.
Nebraska Joins Top Men's Gymnastics Programs in Big Ten
The 2012 campaign will mark the beginning of a new era for NU men's gymnastics, as the team begins its first season as competitors in the Big Ten in January. The traditional strength of the conference in men's gymnastics points toward a competitive season for the Big Red.
The No. 9 Huskers were picked to finish sixth in the Big Ten Men's Gymnastics Preseason Coaches' Poll, illustrating the top-to-bottom strength of the conference. Three-time defending conference champion Illinois topped the poll, while Michigan and Penn State rounded out the top three.
Two Huskers were named to the Big Ten's 2012 Gymnasts to Watch list in the preseason. Senior Andreas Hofer and sophomore Wyatt Aycock were listed among the 14 conference gymnasts. Hofer has competed in the individual all-around finals at the NCAA Championships two times and finished in a tie for 11th at the 2011 NCAA Championships. Aycock will be looking to improve on his freshman campaign in which he posted a school record mark of 88.60 in all-around competition against Iowa and Minnesota.