Jan. 6, 2003

NORMAN, Okla. - The GymInfo Preseason Women's Gymnastics Poll was released Monday and the Oklahoma women's gymnastics team was ranked No. 12, the highest preseason ranking in the history of the program. The Sooners finished the 2002 season as the 13th-ranked team in the country, which also happened to be OU's preseason GymInfo ranking.

"This is the highest we have ever been ranked in a preseason poll and we are excited about that," said OU Head Coach Steve Nunno. "It is nice that the coaches feel we will be a part of the 12 teams at the NCAA's in April. I think we are better than where we were picked but the season hasn't started. The poll means nothing until you step into the arena and compete. Once we do that, we will be able to gauge our standing on the national scene."

Only the Nebraska Cornhuskers, who return eight All-Americans and were picked at No. 5, are ranked higher than OU in the Big 12. Iowa State and Missouri landed at No. 18 and No. 20 respectively.

Last season OU finished third in the Big 12 behind champion Nebraska and Iowa State.

The Oklahoma women's gymnastics team begins the regular season Saturday at 3 p.m. in the Super Six Invitational in Athens, Ga. The event, being held in the Stegeman Coliseum on the University of Georgia campus, will be broadcast on ESPN with commentators Chris Marlowe and Kathy Johnson Clarke.

GymInfo Preseason Coaches Poll

1. UCLA 2. Georgia 3. Alabama 4. Utah 5. Nebraska 6. Michigan 7. Stanford 8. Florida 9. L.S.U. 10. Arizona 11. Minnesota 12. Oklahoma 13. Oregon State 14. Iowa 15. Arizona State