Byron Knox, who led Bridgeport’s gymnastics teams for 16 years, has been named head coach at Southern Connecticut. The move comes after a couple years of turmoil for the Owls, who saw their longtime head coach Jerry Nelson retire after 2019 before coming back mid-season in 2020 after Head Coach Mary Fredericks was removed from the coaching staff during week eight.
At Bridgeport, Knox led the Purple Knights to six straight USAG national championship titles from 2009 to 2014 and 11 consecutive ECAC championships (12 overall). He was also named USAG head coach of the year four times and NCAA regional coach of the year six times, including in 2013 when Bridgeport qualified as a team to regionals, making it only the second time ever a Division II program managed the feat (Lindenwood has since added its name to that short list after it qualified a team in 2019).
The move leaves more questions for Knox’s former squad as it was announced in July that the University of Bridgeport would be purchased by three local colleges and cease to operate independently. It seems unlikely gymnastics will survive the transition, however no formal plans have been announced. The departure of the coach that made it an institution, in addition to five offseason transfers, raise further questions.
Article by Elizabeth Grimsley
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