No. 7 Ohio State Heads to NCAA Championships

April 18, 2012

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  • Ohio State at 2012 NCAA Men's Gymnastics Championships
    April 19-21, 2012
    Lloyd Noble Center - Norman, Okla.    

    Thursday, April 19
    2 p.m. ET - NCAA Qualifier (Session 1)
    8 p.m. ET - NCAA Qualifier (Session 2)

    Friday, April 20
    8 p.m. ET - NCAA Team Final (Session 3)

    Saturday, April 21
    8 p.m. ET - NCAA Individual Event Finals (Session 4)

    Championship Central 
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    PDF: NCAA Notes

    COLUMBUS, Ohio
    - The No. 7 Ohio State men's gymnastics team will begin its run at the 2012 NCAA Men's Gymnastics Championships competing in the first of two national qualifying sessions at 2 p.m. ET Thursday at Lloyd Noble Center in Norman, Okla.

    The Top three teams from each qualifying round advance to the team championships at 8 p.m. ET Friday before the top competitors on each event duke it out for individual NCAA titles at 8 p.m. ET Saturday.

    The national qualifier is comprised of 12 teams with the field split into two qualifying sessions held Thursday. Ohio State, as the seventh seed, will start the competition on pommel horse at 2 p.m. ET and will be joined by No. 2 Penn State, No. 3 Stanford, No. 6 Michigan, No. 10 Nebraska and No. 11 Iowa.

    Session two starts at 8 p.m. ET with No. 1 Oklahoma, No. 4 Illinois, No. 5 Minnesota, No. 8 California, No. 9 Temple and No. 12 Air Force competing for the final three spots.

    • Senior captain Ty Echard was named a 2012 Nissen-Emery Award Finalist by the College Gymnastics Association.
    • Ohio State finished fifth at the Big Ten Championships with a 343.650 team total. Echard claimed a share of the pommel horse title to earn first team All-Big Ten honors, while sophomore Misha Koudinov was a second team All-Big Ten selection.
    • The squad ranks No. 7 in the GymInfo national rankings released April 9 with a 345.012 national qualifying average (NQA).
    • The Buckeyes are polled in the Top 10 in five of the six events.  
    • The Scarlet and Gray are second in the country on pommel horse with a NQA of 57.787.
    • Echard is tied for fourth in the nation on pommel horse with of 14.950. Sophomore Michael Newburger is seventh with a 14.750
    • Echard helped the Buckeyes post a team record 61.05 on pommel horse March 9 on Senior Night vs. No. 4 Stanford after scoring a school record 15.9 on the event.
    • Junior captain Blaize Monks is tied for 14th on high bar with a 14.412, while freshman Danny Steiner is tied for sixth in the nation on floor exercise with a 15.200.

    • Freshman Larry Mayer is ninth in the nation on vault with a 15.025.  
    • The Buckeyes posted a season-high 347.750 team score vs. Oklahoma Jan. 21 in the season opener at St. John Arena.
    • The Buckeye freshman class claimed 24 Top 5 finishes in the 2012 regular season. Steiner led the 2015 class with 11 Top 5 marks.
    • Ohio State began the season winning the 2012 Windy City Invitational Jan. 14 with a 344.500 team score.
    • Sophomore Jeff Treleaven, a 2011 All-American, will receive a medical redshirt this year after suffering an injury earlier this season.

    Ohio State gymnasts have earned 26 NCAA individual championships. Brandon Wynn, who is currently the volunteer assistant coach on the squad, won back-to-back NCAA rings titles in 2010 and 2011, respectively. Former Buckeye Blaine Wilson leads the OSU record books with six national championships.

    Since Don Perry first earned All-America status on the trampoline in 1954, Ohio State has had 50 gymnasts collect the honor. In Ohio State history, former Buckeyes Mike Racanelli (1987-90) and Blaine Wilson (1994-97) tallied 10 individual honors each in only three seasons.

    Last season, the Scarlet and Gray collected seven All-America honors to tie the second-best single-season performance in program history and the most laurels since the 2005 campaign. Former Buckeye Brandon Wynn, Ty Echard, Kris Done and Jeff Treleaven all earned All-America honors at the 2011 NCAA Championships in Columbus.

    The Buckeyes last won the national title in 2001 in their home venue of St. John Arena in Columbus. Three members of the 2001 squad notched individual event championship titles as well. Jamie Natalie won the all-around, Daren Lynch won on vault and Raj Bhavsar, a 2008 U.S. Olympian, won on parallel bars.

    Ohio State won its second national crown at the 1996 NCAA Championship. Former Buckeye Blaine Wilson captured the all-around, rings and parallel bars titles. Teammate Drew Durbin earned a national championship on pommel horse.

    In 1985, Ohio State earned the program's first national championship. Twin brothers Noah and Seth Riskin were named co-champions on parallel bars at the event finals.

    Ohio State hosted the 2011 NCAA Championships, placing fourth in the NCAA qualifier at St. John Arena with a season-high 353.750. In all, seven Buckeyes advanced in the qualifier.

    In the individual finals, Brandon Wynn concluded his collegiate career with his second-consecutive NCAA rings title to up the program's total to 26 national championships and the fourth rings event title. The 2011 Nissen-Emery finalist became the first Buckeye to collect six career All-America honors since former Buckeye DJ Bucher (2005-08).

    Ty Echard finished third in the pommel horse finals with a 15.25 to collect his second career All-America laurel, while Kris Done earned his first career All-America honor following a 15.00 on high bar for fifth place. Jeff Treleaven also earned his first career All-America honor, notching a 16.10 on vault for third place.

    Senior captain Ty Echard was named a 2012 Nissen-Emery Award Finalist March 21 by the College Gymnastics Association. The Scarlet and Gray have produced a candidate to the award's finalists list 11 of the last 14 seasons.

    Echard was named an All-American in both the 2009 and 2011 campaigns after placing third on pommel horse in both the 2009 and 2011 NCAA Championships. A two-time All-Big Ten honoree, Echard holds the school record on the event with a 15.9 set in his final meet at St. John Arena against Stanford March 9. Overall, Echard has won 13 pommel horse titles in his career.

    Ohio State placed fifth with a 343.650 team total at the Big Ten Championships April 7 in Iowa City, Iowa. Individually, the Buckeyes were led by Ty Echard, who became the ninth member in program history to claim a Big Ten pommel horse title after tying with Craig Hernandez of Penn State with a 14.85.

    With his performance, Echard was named a First Team All-Big Ten honoree, while sophomore Misha Koudinov was selected to the second team.

    Koudinov, a native of Auckland, New Zealand, started the competition for the Buckeyes on floor where he nailed an impressive set and earned a 15.20 to tie for third place with Michigan's Sam Mikulak. Koudinov went two for two on the day when he competed on parallel bars with a solid performance that earned a 15.05 and second place overall.

    Senior Mike Behles was the lone Buckeye to qualify for rings where he tallied a 15.00 to place seventh. This was Behles' third appearance in the conference event finals.

    In his second Big Ten championship event finals, redshirt-sophomore Michael Newburger earned a 13.95 on pommel horse for sixth place.

    Also gaining valuable championship experience were freshmen Danny Steiner and Larry Mayer. Steiner, who competed on floor exercise, earned a 15.10 to earn fifth place. Mayer was the lone Buckeye to qualify on vault where he tallied a 15.15 for fourth place.

    Senior Ty Echard and junior Blaize Monks were named co-captains for the 2012 season. Echard, a two-time All-American on pommel horse, holds the program record on the event with a 15.9 set this year. Monks, a native of Noblesville, Ind., competed in three events for the team at the 2011 NCAA National Qualifer. He also placed eighth on high bar at the 2011 Big Ten Championship Event Finals.

    The Buckeyes began the 2012 campaign with great success, winning the Windy City Invitational Jan. 15 in Chicago, Ill., with a team total score of 344.500. The Buckeyes, which included five freshmen making their collegiate debuts, won the pommel horse (59.700) and vault (58.600) events en route to their first Windy City title since the 2006 season.

    The team claimed 13 Top 10 finishes including a first-place victory for senior Philip Onorato on vault with a score of 15.10. Three gymnasts for the Buckeyes started their season setting new career highs. Sophomore Brandän Jones set career highs on both floor exercise (14.7) and pommel horse (13.8). Sophomore Misha Koudinov rang in a career-high 15.1 on floor, while redshirt sophomore Michael Newburger earned a then career-best on pommel horse with a 14.4.

    The Buckeyes are led by first-year head coach Rustam Sharipov. A native of Kharkov, Ukraine, Sharipov was named the 2006 National Co-Assistant Coach of the Year, helping the Sooners claim the NCAA Championship. In 2008, Sharipov helped guide the team to a second national title and was named co-assistant coach of the year for the second time in his career. In 2011, he was named the CGA West Region Assistant Coach of the Year, leading the Sooners to a NCAA runner-up finish in the team finals at St. John Arena. Sharipov, who most recently coached the United States at the 2011 Pan American Games, has experience at the highest levels of gymnastics as both a coach and an athlete.

    Sharipov brings with him the experience of three Olympic medals including two gold medals.

    Joining Sharipov are assistant coaches Casimiro Suarez and Bob Gauthier. Suarez, a native of Havana, Cuba has coached at the junior, collegiate and international levels. He was named the Junior Olympic Coach of the Year in 2010 after being a U.S. junior national team coach since 2004. Suarez also served as Cuba's women's national team coach from 1991-1994 and was Brazil's women's national team coach from 1995-1998. He spent three seasons as an assistant coach at Oklahoma from 1998-2000. Bob

    Gauthier was an NCAA All-American at BYU (1984-85) and has coached gymnastics for more than 20 years at all different age levels at various local gyms. He also has spent time as an NCAA collegiate judge for 11 years. Gauthier was a member of the USA Gymnastics' team from 1985-1988.