100 Things We’re Excited For in 2018

There’s only 100 days until the start of the 2018 season! And to celebrate the mark, we thought of 100 things we’re excited about (or hopeful to see) in the coming year. From leotards to big skills, there are so many things to exhilarated about with just 100 days to go.

    1. Lots of awesome recently-graduated gymnasts becoming volunteer/grad/undergrad assistants or choreographers: Hallie Mossett at UCLA, Ashleigh Gnat at LSU, Baely Rowe at Utah and Chayse Capps at Oklahoma
    2. Teams rising and falling with all the coaching changes in the offseason—plus, finding out if all the coaching changes are for the better
    3. UCLA’s 2018 leotards. Will it switch to Under Armor with it’s new sponsorship? (Same thing for California! And Michigan’s switch to Nike!)
    4. Penn State and Sarah Brown’s prospects now that the program is finally in the light and on the rise once again
    5. Georgia beam under Courtney Kupets *cough* Suzanne Yoculan
    7. Elizabeth Price finally getting a 10 and winning all the things in her senior year
    8. Speaking of Stanford… Tabitha Yim bringing the Cardinal out of the 30s and back to the top 10 where it belongs
    9. Arizona State because hot damn it’s already looking like fire in the few training updates we’ve seen
    10. The rivalry between the Michigan schools as so many of them are on the rise
    11. The fight for the night session at Pac-12s and the increased parity in the conference in general
    12. Kiana Winston being a leader for Alabama in her senior season
    13. Sonya Meraz and Janay Honest’s first seasons as scholarship athletes
    14. Denelle Pedrick continuing to develop into a standout for CMU
    15. Boise State finally, finally *fingers crossed* making it to nationals
    16. Lynnzee Brown becoming Nina McGee 2.0 and everyone falling in love with her the way we already have (yes, we realize she has barely been in college for a month)
    17. Seeing how TWU performs after winning its 10th national title in 2017
    18. Seeing whether Oklahoma make it a three-peat or if LSU finally give D-D Breaux the title she deserves (or another team winning altogether)
    19. Kennedy Baker’s floor routine
    20. Peng-Peng Lee’s victory lap
    21. Amy Smith leading Utah State to greater heights (and more LGBT meets!)
    22. Vivi Babalis’ floor music created in part by Georgia football star Sony Michel
    23. Temple continuing to break records
    24. Greg Marsden’s hot takes for the sheer drama of the thing
    25. (PLEASE GOD) a new postseason format being approved
    26. Elise Ray continuing to lead Washington to even more success
    27. Seeing whether EMU will thrive under yet another head coach
    28. Bailie Key and Peyton Ernst hopefully returning to competition at Alabama
    29. Alex McMurtry’s vault… Because duh
    30. More double-twisting Yurchenkos than ever before (see Kentucky’s Mollie Korth’s and Missouri’s Aspen Tucker’s training videos)
    31. A surprise team making nationals (or regionals, even)
    32. No major season-ending injuries for our favorite stars (or anyone for that matter)—fingers crossed!
    33. Amanda Wellick’s return to Arkansas and performing better than ever
    34. Arizona thriving despite losing its head coach right as fall practice kicked off
    35. For Auburn to beat Alabama (so it can at least move one step closer to evening that record and making it a true rivalry)
    36. Unexpected upsets
    37. The battle for SEC freshman of the year
    38. Even more options in Cal’s crazy diverse vault rotation
    39. Real perfect 10s
    40. A perfect 40 (we can dream right?)
    41. Michigan’s return to super six (hopefully!)
    42. More Omelianchiks making it into lineups (We’re looking at you, UCLA)
    43. Stella Savvidou finding her consistency on floor
    44. Seeing Jazzy Foberg back in competition
    45. Seeing how Catie Conrad does in her senior season after transferring to Pitt
    46. Olivia Karas contending for a national ranking in the all around
    47. Hallie Mossett’s floor choreography
    48. Dana Duckworth’s, Elise Ray’s, and KJ Kindler’s pep talks
    49. Hailey Burleson and Joslyn Goings’ all around rivalry in their senior season
    50. Felicia Hano and the Glenn twins’ return from injury
    51. Natalie Brown being recognized as one of the top beamers in the country
    52. Oregon State exploring the possibilities of its gigantic sophomore class
    53. Goofy team mottos and chants that people on the outside never quite understand (#SIP)
    54. India McPeak and Laura Mitchell shining and scoring more 9.9s in their senior season at Bowling Green
    55. Our favorite supercoach couple of Jordyn Wieber and Chris Brooks thriving and meeting up at nationals
    56. Cheeseburgers on beam, blondies and mansions
    57. Seeing what BYU and SUU can accomplish with their massive freshman classes
    58. Kynsee Roby becoming Nebraska’s new star freshman and being nationally recognized as a top bar and beam worker
    59. Another superclose battle for the ECAC and MAC Championship titles
    60. Lexy Ramler leading Minnesota’s revival and bringing crazy difficulty and uncommon skills to the NCAA scene
    61. Witnessing the continued impact of last season’s smaller-stage star freshmen: Daisy Todd (Temple), Jade Buford (Yale), Mollie Korth (Kentucky) and Shannon Hortman (BYU)
    62. Anne Kuhm being a superstar at ASU
    63. Alyssa Baumann shining at Florida and hopefully bringing the onodi back hand spring loso beam series
    64. Sacramento State’s Lauren Rice’s hair and beam and floor routines
    65. All of the unique skills that DIII teams bring to the table
    66. Marissa Beucler’s return to NCAA gymnastics, as an assistant coach at Bowling Green.
    67. Kentucky continuing to rise without losing any 2017 routines (and maybe even making nationals)
    68. Michigan State improving both physically and as a team under a new coaching staff
    69. Iowa State’s Haylee Young slaying her senior season
    70. Seeing how Alaska performs and improves under new head coach Tanya Ho
    71. The continued rise of Lindenwood and Bridgeport
    72. Meredith Paulicivic leading Ohio State (and the choreography she’ll bring to the floor)
    73. Emily Muhlenhaupt’s freshman season at Boise State—a gymnast who was elite and dropped down to level 10, so we’re excited for her “return”
    74. Skyler Sheppard’s new start at Auburn and seeing what she can bring to its lineups
    75. The return of Abby Milliet after an injury cut her 2017 season way too short
    76. Freshman Geneva Thompson leading Washington’s charge for bigger vaults and eventual increased vault difficulty
    77. Macy Toronjo’s hopeful debut on beam and bars after all the Snapchat teasers
    78. Megan Skaggs killing it at Florida—particularly on floor as we can’t wait to see that huge tumbling and sassy attitude on the NCAA stage
    79. Florida possibly posting a full lineup of 10.0 start vaults
    80. Christina Desiderio coming to LSU a year early
    81. Seeing whether Denver keep its stock on the rise after a successful 2017
    82. The Stanford freshmen class that’s chock full of talent whether it lives up to expectations
    83. Oklahoma on beam—because, Oklahoma on beam
    84. Kindler choreo and finding out the stories behind each routine
    85. Ariana Orrego, Peru’s first Olympian, competing for Iowa State
    86. Lacy Dagen joining the Beavers and hopefully competing after an injury-ridden two years at Florida
    87. The return of Sabrina Schwab at Utah and her lovely artistry and lines
    88. More Elevate the Stage meets and more teams getting podium experience
    89. Sami Durante at LSU, living her best life after all the drama at Georgia
    90. A bounce back year for Arkansas (or at least full lineups at every meet)
    91. Maddie Karr continuing to do Maddie Karr things and getting the 10.0 on vault that she deserves
    92. The promise of better Michigan choreography (or so Karas’ blog says…)
    93. More team chalkography… If the gymnast can’t do it herself, let the team do it!
    94. Seeing how Illinois fares under Nadalie Walsh and a new coaching staff
    95. The Szafranski sisters reunited at ASU—we hope that Ashley continues to build on her freshman campaign and that Kaitlyn finally gets a chance to compete
    96. Kirah Koshinski of West Virginia totally slaying it on vault and floor
    97. The return of Toni-Ann Williams and her dynamic skills to the competition floor
    98. Mary Jane Horth’s fifth season and, hopefully, a shot at a national title on bars (or at least making it to the big show)
    99. Really exciting out of conference matchups that are already on the docket
    100. NCAA gym continuing to grow in popularity and recognition

This list can’t possibly cover everything we’re excited about for 2018. What did we miss that you can’t wait to see or experience in the coming season? Let us know in the comments or on social media.

Article by the editors at NCAA Gym News


  1. As much as I love Michigan, and want them to make super six all the time, I think 2019 is our season to make the Super Six, and potentially win.

  2. What is the significance of Sonya Merez and Janay Honest being given scholarships? Does it make them more likely to compete? (International fan here who doesn’t quite understand US College recruiting/scholarships)

    1. Scholarship vs. walk-on doesn’t really have anything to do with their abilities as gymnasts. It basically just means they get their schooling paid for, perhaps taking the stress off having to get student loans, etc. However, “earning” a scholarship is a big honor and seen as a huge achievement in college athletics.

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