If you’ve followed NCAA gymnastics from quite some time, you know breast cancer awareness meets have become a staple season after season. In the last few years, we saw a few more themed meets emerge, like the ‘Be True’ meet at UNC to support the LGBTQ community or the Pink and Green meet at UGA. But of course, we had a few more ideas, some more realistic than others.
Throwback Leo Meet
This one was obvious, as you may have noticed that we at NCAA Gym News are slightly obsessed with older leos, and we are loving all the teams playing the game of #TBT on Twitter by posting some of their best (or worst) looks of the last decades. Now we need teams to actually make all our dreams come true and have one meet a year where everybody wears all the crushed velvet, weird key holes and polka dot leos. TWU is already doing it, but we need this to spread across the entire NCAA community. Honestly, the alumni meet would be a perfect opportunity where current gymnasts could wear leos (or replicas) from the same year as the alumni class… *hint* *hint*
Tigers are a popular mascot across the NCAA, and it just happens that we have four Tigers gymnastics teams: LSU, Missouri, Auburn and Towson. Let’s go all out and get all the Tigers to compete against one another, but more importantly we’d like to have each coach take a page out of the D-D Breaux dress code. Really, we are dying to see Jeff Graba in a jacket covered with tiger heads.
Senior Celebration Meet
This is a variant of Senior Night, but this would really be celebrating ALL the seniors. That means we would like to have the ones who haven’t done floor in four years basically roll around and have a dance-off. It could also mean letting the ones who do floor come out with a ridiculous routine of their own or try to replicate the dance moves of their teammates. Plus, we need Peng Peng Lee to go all out on her Extra Senior Senior Night and to show off her beautiful dance skills on the floor with some sassy choreography. This would be a great way to honor all the seniors and to have them go out on a fun and memorable note.
The state of Michigan is pretty big on NCAA gymnastics… So why not hold a “Celebrate the Mitten State” meet with Michigan, MSU, EMU, WMU and CMU!
The All-Stars Meet
Since event finals have been taken away from us, we have been plotting ways to highlight the best individuals in the NCAA, and that is where our All-Stars meet comes in. We would have four super-teams made of the top eight gymnasts (max) from each event compete against each other. Each team gets two specialists on each event, and both compete—but only the top score counts towards the team score. All the event scores then get added up into one “team all around” score, and the team with the highest total wins.
Canada vs. the U.S. Meet
Yes, we know this one would be unrealistic and basically impossible to organize… But with over 40 Canadians in the NCAA, they could totally have their own team and challenge an American one.
“We are the World” Meet
This one is inspired by Universiade and would celebrate all nationalities across the NCAA. The meet format would be teams of four, with three scores counting on each event. For example, we would have a team of Savvidou (UCLA), Lowery (Oregon State), McGregor (Boise State) and Sullivan (Iowa) for Australia/New Zealand, or Harrold (LSU), Mitchell (BGSU), Poliakova (Rutgers) and McPeak (BGSU) for a UK team. A Central/South American team could be Orrego (Iowa State), Amado (Boise State), Collantes (Boise State) and Pino (UCLA), and a France/Germany one would be Kuhm (ASU), Alicke (UIC), Knapp (Alaska) and Tratz (UCLA). We could even have an ‘island team’, with Gonzalez (UCLA), LeDuc (Illinois) and Verdeflor (PSU) who competed for the Philippines, paired with Williams (Cal) who represents Jamaica. As you see, we are inspired.
Do you have any themes in mind you’d LOVE to see come true? Let us know in the comments!
Article by Christina Marmet