NLI Highlights — Gymnastics news — Notes from NCAA signees
The IX: Gymnastics Saturday with Jessica Taylor Price, November 13, 2021
It’s that time of year again — that time when all our favorite elites and L10s pull the trigger and officially sign with their NCAA programs of choice. Spencer at The Balance Beam Situation has a full list of signees from this week, but here are some highlights:
Oklahoma signed elites Faith Torrez and Ava Siegfeldt:
Kayla DiCello signed with Florida, and Alabama signed a huge class that includes Karis German:
Lilly Lippeatt is all grown up and headed to LSU:
eMjae Frazier is going to Cal:
… and Ciena Alipio will be joining UCLA:
Honestly, my favorite part of NCAA gymnastics is watching all my favorite elites thrive in college, so today has been a great week.
- Sunisa Lee is Pop Sugar’s cover star. Just look at those photos!
Unfortunately, in the article she says she was the victim of a racist attack, which is horrible, and hopefully she is able to get the help she needs after that experience. Otherwise, there are a lot of great tidbits in the article, which I highly recommend.
- Tom Forster did an interview with a random podcast, after shirking the media all through the Olympics. It comes out Tuesday.
- Morinari Watanabe was re-elected FIG president (Inside the Games).
- Angelina Melnikova and Nikita Nagornyy won the Swiss Cup (h/t Blythe), where Guilia Steingruber also got a standing ovation:
Olivia Greaves was unfortunately injured during the competition and had to pull out.
- The GOAT tour wrapped up, and it’s all quite bittersweet. There were unfortunately technical difficulties during the last performance, but Laurie Hernandez took the mic and the women improvised, giving us this glorious moment:
If you missed it, the tour will be available to stream (for a fee) on December 4th. Meanwhile, Simone Biles will rest and regroup after the tour, and says she hasn’t made any decisions about her gymnastics career moving forward (ABC News).
Tweet of the week
Bask in the glory of Ana Padurariu’s sheep jump:
And shield your eyes from NCAA leo monstrosities:
Five at the IX: NCAA Signees
Here’s what a few NCAA signees and their coaches had to say after officially committing to their programs.
“I chose to be a Florida Gator because it has always been my dream school. When I toured the University of Florida, I loved the atmosphere and it felt like home. I’m looking forward to being a part of such an amazing team, having the Gator chomp in my floor routine and driving a Vespa. Go Gators!” — Kayla DiCello, Florida
“Lilly is another in a long line of CGA elite national team members that have gone on to college. We expect her to be very successful like those that have come before her. She possesses some unique skills in her arsenal that will set her apart from the run of the mill collegiate routines.” — LSU coach Jay Clark on Lilly Lippeatt
“Once I visited and met the coaches, I felt right at home and loved every second of being on campus. I felt so comfortable and I knew it was the right fit for me gymnastics and education wise.” — Faith Torrez, Oklahoma
“I chose Oklahoma because it was everything I was looking for. From the coaching staff, the team and, of course, the desire to win a national championship, it’s everything I could have dreamed of.” — Ava Siegfeldt, Oklahoma
“I am so excited to watch eMjae perform on the college stage. She has incredible power on floor and vault, and is also a vibrant performer. Her elevated skill selection on bars and balance beam will make for multiple options in regard to routine construction. I am also thrilled to add eMjae’s electric personality and passion, which will be a great fit with the Cal community.” — Cal coach Elisabeth Crandall-Howell on eMjae Frazier
“We are very excited about Makenna joining our program next fall. Her love for gymnastics is infectious! She brings all-around potential and is coming from the same gym as Utah great Tory Wilson. Makenna has gone 9.95 or higher three times on vault in the last two years, including a perfect 10, which is rare at the club level. It was very important to our program to continue to bring in vaults that not only start from a 10.0 in NCAA, but vaulters who demonstrate a high level of success with this event.” — Utah head coach Tom Farden on signee Makenna Smith
“The school, gymnastics family and everything about Alabama instantly felt like home. I felt an instant connection the minute I stepped on campus.” — Karis German, Alabama
“When considering what college I wanted to attend, I was looking for three main components. I wanted a coaching staff that truly cared about me as a person, not only what I could bring in my gymnastics. I wanted a team that has a strong bond like a family, because I know how important it is to have people supporting you day in and out. Lastly, I wanted a team that wanted to win! I want to raise the collegiate bar, and I know that this team already has,and will continue to do that! So that’s why I chose the University of Minnesota.” — Seria Johnson, Minnesota
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