SoonerSports.com  Men's Gymnastics Blog

 
 OU Men's Gymnastics Blog
Welcome to the men's gymnastics blog on SoonerSports.com. Here you will find team updates, behind-the-scenes info, photos and video.

Oklahoma Men's Gymnastics
View complete team information including roster, schedule and stats:

Roster | Coaches | Schedule | Stats

  M Gymnastics Tradition

8 National Championships
35 Individual National Titles
18 Conference Championships
107 Individual Conference Titles
Seven Nissen-Emery Winners
219 All-Americans
 
  OU All-Access

Exclusive player and coaching staff interviews, live webcasts, game highlights, OU coaches' shows, press conferences and feature video on Sooner All-Access.

OU All-Access | Live Events

  Boomerblast

Boomerblast is the official email newsletter of the Sooners. This free weekly communication provides Sooner fans an inside look at OU:

Get Boomerblast | Learn More

  Join the Sooners

OU fans have made the Sooners a social media powerhouse. Join more than a quarter million fans:

OU on Facebook | Twitter | YouTube
 
   

April 2, 2012 | OU Named About.com's Fan Favorite 

Every year, the About.com Readers' Choice Awards showcases the best products, features and services in multiple categories, from technology to gymnastics. This year, About.com readers and fans voted the University of Oklahoma as their favorite men’s gymnastics program and former OU gymnast Jonathan Horton as their favorite male gymnast.

Voting took place on About.com between Feb. 22 and March 21, with the official results released on March 30.

Other categories included favorite women’s NCAA team, leotard and grip brands, gymnastics club and camp, female gymnast, gymnastics website and Twitter feed. For the full results, visit here.

The fan-favorite Sooners now turn their eyes to the postseason, starting with the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) Championships on April 7 in Colorado Springs, Colo.

Oklahoma is chasing its eighth conference crown in the past 10 years and 10th under Williams.

March 16, 2012 | Dalton Competing with Team USA 

Oklahoma junior Jake Dalton will be suiting up in a different uniform this weekend – Team USA. Dalton is one of three American male gymnasts that has selected to represent the United States at the 2012 Kellogg’s Pacific Rim Championships in Everett, Wash.

The international event features more than 200 athletes in artistic gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics, and trampoline, March 16-18, at the Comcast Arena and Comcast Community Ice Rink in Everett, Wash.

Dalton will be joined on the United States’ three-man roster by Michigan’s Sam Mikulak and former Sooner Chris Brooks (2006-2009). Brooks and Dalton were both members of the 2011 World Championship team that secured the United States a spot in the 2012 Olympics last October.

For more information on the Pacific Rim Championships, visit USA Gymnastics’s web site.

The West Seattle Herald recently wrote a feature story on Dalton and his training for the 2012 Olympics, which can be read online here.

March 15, 2012 | Catch the Sooners on TV

Sooner fans can catch a tape delayed broadcast of the Oklahoma men's gymnastics team's win over Michigan from this past Saturday on Thursday, March 15 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, March 17 at 12 p.m. on Cox Channel 3 (703 HD) in Oklahoma City and Tulsa.

Sooner Sports Properties and SoonerVision HD produced the meet with former OU gymnast and American Olympian Bart Conner providing the play-by-play alongside color analysts Jason Laughton and Hollie Vise.
The No. 1 Sooners close out their regular season home slate with a tri-meet against No. 9 Nebraska and No. 11 Air Force on March 17 at 7 p.m. at the McCasland Field House. 

Single-meet tickets ($8 Adult and $5 Youth) for all regular-season home meets are for general admission.

Tickets can be purchased online at SoonerSports.com or by calling the OU Athletics Ticket Office at (800) 456-GoOU. For more information on OU men's gymnastics, visit www.SoonerSports.com.

March 5, 2012 | Men's Gymnastics Meet to be Televised 

This Saturday's meet between the top-ranked Oklahoma men's gymnastics team and No. 8 Michigan is scheduled to be televised from Lloyd Noble Center. The Sooners dual meet with the Wolverines on March 10 will air on a tape-delayed basis on Thursday, March 15 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, March 17 at 12 p.m. on Cox Channel 3 (703 HD) in Oklahoma City and Tulsa.

Sooner Sports Properties and SoonerVision HD will put on the production with former OU gymnast and American Olympian Bart Conner providing the play-by-play from Norman alongside color analysts Jason Laughton and Hollie Vise.

In preparation for the NCAA Championships, held at OU's Lloyd Noble Center on April 19-21, Oklahoma will host the Michigan meet at the LNC to preview the venue, rather than its normal home of the McCasland Field House.

The Lloyd Noble Center meet will also be OU's Cheer Like a Champion Night. The event includes a giveaway of 250 free "Boomer Sooner" fan banners.

February 9, 2012 | Williams Previews Sunday's Tri-Meet

The top-ranked University of Oklahoma men's gymnastics team takes on a pair of top-10 conference foes Sunday in Berkeley, Calif., when it competes against No. 5 Stanford and No. 7 Stanford. OU Head Coach Mark Williams previews the meet along with reviewing this past weekend's performance at the 2012 Winter Cup:


Januray 31, 2012 | Sooners Hold Onto No. 1 Ranking

Despite suffering its first loss of the season this past weekend to No. 2 Illinois, the Oklahoma men's gymnastics team retained its No. 1 spot in this week's GymInfo Rankings.

The Sooners (6-1, 1-0 MPSF) fell on the road to the Fighting Illini, 349.800-347.70 on Saturday in Champaign, Ill.

Oklahoma is also ranked in the top five in all six events based on its season averages, including second in rings and third on floor and vault.

OU has a week off from NCAA competition as schools send select gymnasts to compete individually at the 2012 Winter Cup Challenge Feb. 2-4 in Las Vegas, Nev. The annual USA Gymnastics event determines the field for the 2012 Visa Championships later this year along with re-ranking the U.S. National Team.

The Sooners return to action Feb. 12 in a tri-meet against No. 7 California and No. 5 Stanford in Berkeley, Calif.

Below is a complete list of this week's rankings along with each school's average score from this season.

No. 1 Oklahoma (348.183)

No. 2 Illinois (348.000)
No. 3 Penn State (346.750)
No. 4 Ohio State (346.125)
No. 5 Stanford (342.800)
No. 6 Minnesota (340.967)
No. 7 California (340.675)
No. 8 Michigan (339.367)
No. 9 Temple (336.550)
No. 10 Air Force (334.250)
No. 11 Nebraska (333.483)
No. 12 Iowa (325.033)
No. 13 Illinois-Chicago (324.567)
No. 14 Army (323.900)
No. 15 Navy (317.750)

Januray 25, 2012 | Williams Previews No. 2 Illinois

The top-ranked University of Oklahoma men's gymnastics team continues its tough non-conference slate Saturday in a tri-meet against No. 2 Illinois and No. 7 Michigan at 5 p.m. in Champaign, Ill.

OU Head Coach Mark Williams sat down with SoonerSports.com to preview this weekend's No. 1 vs. No. 2 matchup.


Januray 24, 2012 | Sooners Back at No. 1

After dropping two spots following the first week of competition, the Sooners have reclaimed the top spot in the GymInfo Rankings. The Sooners vaulted to the No. 1 position after defeating No. 2 Ohio State on Saturday in Columbus, Ohio, 353.150-347.750.

The Sooners (5-0, 1-0 MPSF) swept all six team event titles and scored almost 10 points higher than their season-opener total at the Rocky Mountain Open from the weekend before.

For the second week in a row, Oklahoma will take on the No. 2 team in the country when they travel to Champaign, Ill., to face second-ranked Illinois along with No. 7 Michigan.

Below is a complete list of this week's rankings along with each school's average score from this season.

No. 1 Oklahoma (348.425)
No. 2 Illinois (347.100)
No. 3 Ohio State (346.125)
No. 4 Penn State (344.125)
No. 5 California (340.675)
No. 6 Stanford (340.000)
No. 7 Michigan (339.500)
No. 8 Minnesota (338.750)
No. 9 Nebraska (333.925)
No. 10 Air Force (332.525)
No. 11 Temple (330.800)
No. 12 Illinois-Chicago (324.250)
No. 13 Army (321.600)
No. 14 Iowa (321.500)
No. 15 Arizona State (314.100)
 
---------------------------------------------------------------

December 5, 2011 | A Day in the Community

The OU men's gymnastics team spent last Friday throughout the Norman community, interacting with kids and fans at Cleveland Elementary and the Norman Public Library.

In the morning, the Sooners attended Cleveland Elementary's assembly honoring the school's "Teacher of the Year" Regina Bell. Regina has played a crucial roll in the partnership between the school and the OU gymnasts. The Sooners surprised Regina by showing up to the assembly and addressing the students, showing their support for all of her hard work. To learn more about the team's volunteer work at Cleveland, click here.

Later in the evening, both the men's and women's gymnastics teams and the OU softball team signed autographs for fans and helped make crafts with kids at the Norman Public Library's Holiday Open House. To view a photo gallery from the Sooners' busy day in the Norman community, click on the picture below.
 

---------------------------------------------------------------
 
November 2, 2011 | Medal Mania!

It's an exciting year for your Oklahoma Men's Gymnastics Team! Current and past members of the OU gymnastics program helped the United States earn Bronze at the World Championships and qualify for the 2012 Olympic Games--now it's time for you to win a medal just for being a Sooner fan!

Oklahoma Gymnastics is excited to introduce Medal Mania!, a season long medal competition for gym clubs that are fans of OU Gymnastics. You can gain points for your club by attending OU men's gymnastics meets with your teammates, family and friends! Score for your club!

The Oklahoma Men's Gymnastics Medal Mania!  begins TODAY and concludes at the final home meet of the season as Oklahoma hosts Air Force and Nebraska on Saturday, March 3rd at 7 PM. All participating gyms will be recognized at this meet and the top three clubs will be honored in a medal ceremony on the floor at the meet.

Medal Mania

Here's how to get points:

bullet SEASON TICKETS

Season tickets are only $20 per person, which is a savings of over 35% on general admission adult tickets.

Season ticket holders also qualify to be the Very Important Sooners of the Meet--one season ticket holder will be randomly selected each meet to sit in special seating on the floor with their family or friends.

Each club will get five points in the Medal Mania! competition for each season ticket sold at their gym club!

***If you have already purchased season tickets, please call Ashley at 405-325-8237 to ensure your club receives points for these tickets.***

bullet GROUP TICKETS

Group tickets are also available for each meet. Each club will get one point in the Medal Mania! competition for each group ticket sold at their gym.

The point total for your gym will be calculated based on the total number of tickets sold with a 5 point value for each season ticket and a 1 point value for each group ticket.

bullet BONUS POINTS

Gyms can qualify for bonus points by...

Attending OU Intrasquads = 1 point per person

Making signs and bringing them to meets = 1 point per person/sign

Open practice field trips = 1 point per person (only available for youth in the 8th grade or younger)
***Though tickets can be sold to all ages, per NCAA regulations, only club members in the 8th grade or younger will be able to participate in the on-floor recognition and medal ceremony.***

For more information on Medal Mania! contact Ashley Payne in the Athletics Marketing Office at 405-325-8237 or at apayne@ou.edu.

---------------------------------------------------------------

October 5, 2011 | Podium Training in Tokyo

With just a few days before the start of competition at the 2011 World Championships, the U.S. Men's National Team practiced on competition equipment during podium training at the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium on Wednesday in Tokyo, Japan.

Team USA is well represented by the Sooners, with five of the seven U.S. National Team members being former or current University of Oklahoma men's gymnasts.  

The U.S. men drew the first of eight subdivisions and took to the floor for podium training alongside gymnasts from Puerto Rico, Japan, Portugal and mixed groups of Vietnam, Peru, Kuwait, and South Africa.

After the podium training, the gymnasts spoke with various media organizations and the USA Gymnastics communications staff. Below are post-practice interviews of current OU juniors Jake Dalton and Alex Naddour. Additional interviews featuring OU letterwinners and Team USA members Steven Legendre, Jonathan Horton and Chris Brooks can be seen here. The videos and lead photo are courtesy of USA Gymnastics.

---------------------------------------------------------------

September 27, 2011 | World Championships Media Day

In preparation for the 2011 World Championships, OU gymnasts Jake Dalton, Alex Naddour, Steven Legendre and Coach Mark Williams addressed the local media before Bob Stoops' weekly press conference on Tuesday.

The gymnasts and Coach Williams spoke to media members from multiple television stations and newspapers about the upcoming competition, which they'll depart for later this week.

The 24-team 2011 World Championships, held October 7-16 in Tokyo, Japan, will decide the 12 countries that will compete in the team portion of the 2012 Olympics in London.

Clips from Tuesday's interviews can be seen below.


---------------------------------------------------------------

September 8, 2011 | Men's Gymnastics Honored During Football Game

The University of Oklahoma men's gymnastics team was honored during the second quarter of the Sooner football home opener against Tulsa last Saturday. The gymnastics program found recent success at the 2011 Visa Championships, where five current or former OU gymnasts were awarded spots on the United States' World Championship Team.

Current OU gymnasts Jake Dalton and Alex Naddour and 2010 graduate Steven Legendre were honored on the field alongside head coach Mark Williams. The three gymnasts will be joined by 2008 Olympian and OU letterwinner Jonathan Horton on the six-man squad with Chris Brooks serving as the team's alternate. Williams was recently named assistant coach of the US squad.

The 24-team 2011 World Championships, held October 7-16 in Tokyo, Japan, will decide the 12 countries that will compete in the team portion of the 2012 Olympics in London.

The top eight teams at the World Championships (for both men and women) will earn the right to compete in the Olympic final next summer in London. Medalists in Tokyo's individual events will also qualify for the Summer Games.



---------------------------------------------------------------

September 6, 2011 | Gymnasts Sign Autographs at RV Tailgate

The OU men's gymnastics team helped kick off the Sooner football season by signing autographs and meeting with fans Friday night at the SooneRVillage in the Lloyd Noble Center parking lot. The SooneRVillage is OU's premier RV tailgate party on the weekend of home football games.

The gymnasts were joined on the eve of OU's home opener against Tulsa by members of the Pride of Oklahoma and OU spirit squads. More information on the SooneRVillage can be found on the Lloyd Noble Center's website.

Check out a photo gallery from the team's meet and greet at the tailgate.

---------------------------------------------------------------

August 15, 2011
| Sooners Set for Visa Championships

With the fall semester quickly approaching, the University of Oklahoma men's gymnastics team is already hard at work in preparation for this week's 2011 Visa Championships.

USA Gymnastics' national championship, the Visa Championships, is held Aug. 17-20 at the Xcel Energy Center in Minneapolis, Minn. The event features the country's best gymnasts vying for national titles and spots on the U.S. National Team in men's, women's and rhythmic gymnastics.

OU will be sending a total of 10 former or current gymnasts to compete, including eight Sooners in the 42-man senior division field. Current Sooners Chris Stehl, Preston Ellsworth, Jacob Dalton and Alex Naddour and OU letterwinners Jonathan Horton, Steven Legendre and Chris Brooks will all participate along with incoming OU freshman Dylan Akers. Freshmen Alec Robin and Danny Berardini will compete in the junior division.

While preparing for the Visa Championships, Sooner head coach Mark Williams and some OU gymnasts spoke with SoonerSports.com about the prestigious event.

---------------------------------------------------------------

June 28, 2011 | Sooners Prepare for 2011 Japan Cup

Former Sooners Jonathan Horton and Steven Legendre will join OU junior Alex Naddour on Team USA this weekend at the Japan Cup in Tokyo. The Sooner trio will be joined by Danell Leyva and John Orozco on the five-man American squad, with OU head coach Mark Williams serving as USA's coach.

The international competition takes place July 2-3 and serves as a precursor to October's 2011 World Championships, which will also be held in Tokyo.

Before flying out to Japan, SoonerSports.com caught up with Coach Williams, Legendre and Naddour to preview this weekend's event.

---------------------------------------------------------------

June 10, 2011 | Sooner up for Athlete of the Month

Oklahoma's Alex Naddour was named one of 11 finalists for USOC Male Athlete of the Month for the month of May.

Online poll counts for 10 percent of overall vote.

The Gilbert, Ariz., native recently represented USA Gymnastics and helped the team place second at the 2011 Stella Zakharova Cup on May 21 in Kiev.

Naddour, a sophomore at OU, placed third in the all-around. 

To vote for Naddour,  go to twtpoll.com

---------------------------------------------------------------

May 25, 2011 | Sooners in "Behind the Team" Episode

The most recent episode of "USA Gymnastics: Behind the Team presented by AT&T" gives fans an inside look at the Men's Training Camp. See the latest installment of "Behind the Team" at att.net/teamusa.

The U.S. Men's National Team deviated from its normal training camp to visit the University of Oklahoma for a team training camp this spring. Find out what it was like for the guys to "Change it Up" in this episode of "Behind the Team."

Some members of the USA men's team tell "Behind the Team" what it's like to balance school and gymnastics. Plus Jonathan Horton tells us how it feels to come back to his college to train.

The gymnasts are training for the upcoming Visa Championships and a shot at making the 2011 World Championships team.

The Sooners hosted the U.S. National Team Training Camp from March 24th through the 27th at the Sam Viersen Gymnastics Center.

The U.S. Senior National Team consists of the top gymnasts from around the country that represent the United States on an international level.

Overall, one third of the national team is from the University of Oklahoma men's program.

Gymnasts Attending the Camp

Chris Brooks
Jacob Dalton
Jonathan Horton
Steven Legendre
Alex Naddour
Danell Leyva
CJ, Maestas
Brandon Wynn
John Orozco

Names in italics represent past and present Sooner gymnasts on the Senior National Team.

---------------------------------------------------------------

May 13, 2011 | Legendre Competes in Moscow

Two-time world floor finalist Steven Legendre of the University of Oklahoma will compete this weekend in the International Gymnastics Federation's World Cup in Moscow, Russia, on May 13-14, 2011. More than 90 athletes from 36 countries are expected to compete in the two-day event.

Preliminaries, which feature 12 athletes competing on each apparatus, are scheduled for Friday, May 13. Competition begins at 2 p.m., with floor and vault; high bar is scheduled to start at 5 p.m. The final rounds, set for Saturday, May 14 at 1 p.m. (floor) and 4:50 p.m. (high bar), will feature four finalists per event. All times are local.

An Individual Apparatus Final World Cup event features twelve gymnasts per individual apparatus, with a maximum of two gymnasts per country. Invitations to the World Cup were based on performances at the 2010 World Championships.

For more information on the event and other USA Gymnastics events go to, visit usa-gymnastics.org