BYU

The Mount: Predictions, Picks, and Other Things to Know Ahead of Week 2

While things are just getting started, week one brought the drama, high-stakes, and entertainment that is sure to continue into week two. With a number of stellar matchups on the schedule, you won’t want to miss a second.

Must-Watch Meets

Stanford at Michigan

Friday, Jan. 12 at 7 p.m. ET | BTN+

Prediction: Michigan 60.00%, Stanford 40.00%

The Wolverines had an off-kilter start in their Super 16 session last weekend. Don’t hit the panic button yet! It’s undeniably a rebuilding year, and some week one weirdness is not a cause for alarm. Still, it’s reasonable to assume we’ll see some lineup shuffling at home; Farah Lipetz or McCaleigh Marr on beam, maybe.

This is our first look at the Cardinal. Stanford will be without Anna Roberts and likely without any freshmen in lineups this week, which is a reasonably significant blow. If Michigan can bounce back from last weekend, it should easily take the win at home.

Additional notes about the predictions: Due to Michigan’s uncharacteristic week one performance, the Cardinal originally had a slight edge with a 52.55% chance of winning. However, after it came out that the Cardinal would be without star all-arounder Anna Roberts as well as its freshmen, Michigan retook the “lead” with just around a 60% win probability.

Sprouts Farmers Market Collegiate Quad

Session 1 with Arizona, Boise State, Nebraska, and North Carolina

Friday, Jan. 12 at 9 p.m. ET | ACC Network

Prediction: Arizona 63.41%, Nebraska 26.41%, Boise State 7.77%, North Carolina 2.41%

Kicking off its 2024 season, Arizona will be looking to test the waters and see where it ranks among other top teams. The Wildcats will be ecstatic to welcome back Malia Hargrove for her fifth year and will have expectations for her to bring in big scores on all four events. Be on the lookout for Arizona freshman Abigayle Martin, too, who finished seventh in the all-around at last year’s level 10 nationals and has potential to bring in big numbers on bars and beam. 

Nebraska will be on Arizona’s tail throughout the meet. Alongside all-arounders Emma Spence and Sophia McClelland (who was mysteriously absent from last week’s contest), the Huskers will add standout Utah transfer Lucy Stanhope to its lineups. Stanhope can break into any event but will be most vital on vault, where she has scored as high as 9.950 at Utah with her Yurchenko one and a half.

Boise State had an up-and-down week one meet, but will be looking to bounce back in a big way in Salt Lake City to earn a strong road score to kick off its seeded regionals campaign. And, while North Carolina may not have the scoring potential for an upset here, the focus will be more on cleaning up some of the mistakes that plagued it at last week’s home quad.    

Additional notes about the predictions: Bars and Beam are key for Nebraska, if it can outscore the competition on either of these events, its win probability goes up to 53%.

Session 2 with LSU, Oklahoma, UCLA, and Utah

Saturday, Jan. 13 at 4 p.m. ET | ABC

Prediction: Oklahoma 52.60%, Utah 22.89%, LSU 16.89%, UCLA 7.62%

NCAA gymnastics’ debut on ABC in 2024 will be a big one, as four teams with legitimate title hopes will be on display with LSU, UCLA, and Utah trying to topple two-time defending champion Oklahoma. The Sooners rolled to victory at last week’s Super 16, posting the nation’s top score in the process, while the Tigers and Red Rocks opened with wins at home. The Bruins placed fourth in their Super 16 session but still did well enough to rank in the top 12.

We’ll be treated to an epic all-around battle as LSU’s Haleigh Bryant posted the best four-event total of week one, but within three-tenths of her were Sooners Faith Torrez, Jordan Bowers, , Audrey Davis, Katherine LeVasseur, and Bruin Selena Harris. Not to mention, her Tiger teammates Aleah Finnegan and Kiya Johnson can also contend for the top spot should they get the green light on all four. The same goes for the Utes’ Olympic silver medalist Grace McCallum and reigning NCAA all-around champion Maile O’Keefe. What a field!

Additional notes about the predictions: Despite a strong overall performance week one, vault was the Utes’ weakest event and as a result, dropped their win percentage from 23% down to only 10%. Winning this event, however, can bring their win percentage up to 30%. Oklahoma will be a hard team to beat in any scenario here though!

Session 3 with BYU, California, Michigan State, and N.C. State

Saturday, Jan. 13 at 9 p.m. ET | ACC Network

Prediction: California 87.6%, Michigan State 12.37%, BYU 0.02%, N.C. State 0.01%

Session three of the inaugural Sprouts Farmers Market Collegiate Quad features a lot of exciting gymnastics from each team, but all eyes will surely be on California and Michigan State. The Bears and the Spartans could both make a nationals run this year, and this meet will give us more insight into just how plausible that run will be. Both teams made uncharacteristic mistakes on beam and floor last week, so we’ll have to see if they can make the necessary adjustments.

As for the other two teams competing in this session, keep your eye on beam! BYU and N.C. State were forced to count sub-9.5 scores last week, and correcting that could be the key to challenging Cal or Michigan State. 

Finally, it would be silly to not discuss Sage Kellerman’s perfect 10 on vault for Michigan State last week. More big scores like that could help the Spartans close the gap between them and Cal. 

Additional notes about the predictions: Michigan State is looking for Cal to falter to win this one. While it can increase its win chances to 37% by outscoring the Golden Bears on bars (a tough task), the Spartans’ best bet is if Cal goes sub-49 on beam, which gives them the slight advantage with a 52% win probability.

Brown, Iowa State, Rutgers, Talladega, and William & Mary at Fisk

Monday, Jan. 15 at 4 p.m. ET | TBD

Prediction: Iowa State 79.61%, Rutgers 19.70%, Brown 0.66%, Fisk 0.01%, Talladega 0.01%, William & Mary 0.01%

This Martin Luther King Jr. Day meet is a special one: In honor of the holiday and of Black history in the making in college gymnastics, Fisk is hosting a meet between six teams that are all led by Black woman head coaches. Brittany Harris, Ashley Miles Greig, Umme Salim-Beasley, Aja Sims-Fletcher, and Kelsey Hinton will join Corrinne Tarver in Tennessee for a meet that’s not just historic but also incredibly varied and exciting in terms of athletic performance and style. Iowa State, fresh off a hot start at Nebraska last week, is a strong favorite, but you won’t want to miss individual performances from gymnasts like Fisk’s all-around star Morgan Price.

Additional notes about the predictions: Iowa State will be hard to beat in this meet, but if Rutgers can post the highest score on any two events, its win chances increase to 39%.

Upset Alert

Washington at Iowa

Friday, Jan. 12 at 7:30 p.m. ET | BTN+

Prediction: Iowa 64.95%, Washington 35.05%

The Huskies put together a pretty solid showing in their Super 16 session, held back by a counting fall on bars in an otherwise nice performance. Cleaning up that event would go a long way in making this a competitive matchup. We haven’t seen the Hawkeyes yet, and former five-star recruit Eva Volpe’s readiness is a bit of a mystery. Iowa will likely look stronger on bars and beam this year, but it’s hard to say what Zivat- and Zuhlke-less vault and floor lineups will look like. This meet could be closely matched, or Iowa could run away with it.  

Additional notes about the predictions: Beam is key for Washington, if it can win that event, its win probability increases to 58%. However, it may all be moot, as Iowa fifth-year JerQuavia Henderson announced Wednesday she is stepping away from gymnastics and school. With her absence, Iowa’s chances drop to 49%.

Kent State at Pittsburgh

Saturday, Jan. 13 at 4 p.m. ET | ACCNx

Prediction: Kent State 70.60%, Pittsburgh 29.40%

The Golden Flashes will be eager to start their season with a road win while the Panthers will be equally as eager to improve on their week one outing. The key for both teams will be laying down a hit beam rotation (sans Reyna Garvey for Pitt), and snagging as many scores above the 9.800 benchmark as possible in the process. We can expect to see plenty of new faces across both lineups, as Pitt may tweak strategies and Kent State will look to its strong freshman class. While the team score is always the priority, we’ll be treated to a who’s who of specialists Saturday—keep an eye on the ACC’s first Newcomer of the Week Emily Todd on bars, and a no-nonsense beam outlook for new Kent State gymnast Nene Alvine.

Additional notes about the predictions: Despite this looking like a relatively close matchup prior to week one, the data now shows a bigger edge for the Golden Flashes. However, with Pittsburgh competing at home, anything can happen. If Pitt can win beam, its win chances increase to 65%. Floor is also an important event for the Panthers’ chances, with their win percentage reaching 56% if they can outscore Kent State on that event, although our simulations show that winning floor is the most unlikely of the four events since the Golden Flashes are so strong there.

Wondering how we came up with the predictions for each meet? Read more about our methodology.

There’s Other Stuff Happening Too

We’d be remiss to let a preview for week two go by without bringing up these additional points.

  • Clemson will make its long-awaited program debut at home on Friday against William & Mary. The roster features a formidable mix of proven veterans—including transfers Lauren Rutherford and Kaitlin DeGuzman, as well as several members from Utah State’s 2022 MRGC championship-winning team—and high profile newcomers. 
  • Talladega will also be kicking off its inaugural season with not one but two multi-team meets: Friday night at Florida alongside Fisk and George Washington, and Monday at the aforementioned Martin Luther King Jr. meet in Nashville. The Tornadoes, led by head coach, former Alabama standout, Aja Sims-Fletcher, are the second HBCU to sponsor women’s gymnastics following Fisk’s historic 2023 debut and boast an exciting roster that includes numerous transfers, international gymnasts, and former elite athletes. 
  • Fourth-ranked Alabama will host third-ranked Missouri in a battle to top the SEC rankings. Both teams came out swinging with scores over 197 in their respective season debuts, though the Crimson Tide undoubtedly had the harder draw in week one. Can the Tigers keep the momentum rolling in Tuscaloosa? Alabama’s fifth-year star Luisa Blanco is the marquee name coming into this meet, but she’ll face stiff competition for the individual (if not the all-around) titles. Also, keep an eye out for both teams’ freshmen: They may play a larger role this week after impressive debut performances.   
  • Despite having to count a fall on floor, Arizona State staved off an upset against visiting Central Michigan in its Monday home opener. Expect some of last week’s exhibition routines to feature in the lineups, as the Sun Devils will have much less room for error on the road against a strong Denver squad in week two. The Pioneers are currently tied for No. 6 in the rankings thanks to a steady performance at their Super 16 session in which they outpaced the field by over a point and swept the individual titles. Senior Jessica Hutchinson has picked up the mantle vacated by 2023 graduate Lynnzee Brown along with former five-star recruit Madison Ulrich, who notched a 39.325 in her collegiate debut.  

Fantasy Corner

If you’re playing fantasy gymnastics this year, you want to do the absolute best you can do. Right? We have you covered with tips and tricks all season long in Fantasy Central. Managing editor Emily Minehart and data editor Dara Tan, will be bringing you the latest updates on injuries, scoring statistics, sneaky waiver wire targets, and more.

CGN Pick’em

Illustrated headshot of Brandis Heffner

Brandis (Last Week: 2-3; Overall: 2-3)

  • Stanford at Michigan: Michigan
  • Collegiate Quad Session 2: Oklahoma
  • Collegiate Quad Session 3: California
  • MLK Day: Iowa State
  • Washington at Iowa: Iowa
  • Kent State at Pittsburgh: Pittsburgh

Illustrated headshot of Claire Billman

Claire (Last Week: 3-2; Overall: 3-2)

  • Stanford at Michigan: Michigan
  • Collegiate Quad Session 2: Oklahoma
  • Collegiate Quad Session 3: Michigan State 
  • MLK Day: Iowa State 
  • Washington at Iowa: Iowa
  • Kent State at Pittsburgh: Kent State

Illustrated headshot of Elizabeth Grimsley

Elizabeth (Last Week: 3-2; Overall: 3-2)

  • Stanford at Michigan: Michigan
  • Collegiate Quad Session 2: Oklahoma
  • Collegiate Quad Session 3: California
  • MLK Day: Iowa State
  • Washington at Iowa: Iowa
  • Kent State at Pittsburgh: Kent State

Illustrated headshot of Emily Minehart

Emily M (Last Week: 4-1; Overall: 4-1)

  • Stanford at Michigan: Michigan
  • Collegiate Quad Session 2: Oklahoma
  • Collegiate Quad Session 3: Michigan State
  • MLK Day: Iowa State
  • Washington at Iowa: Iowa
  • Kent State at Pittsburgh: Pittsburgh

Rebecca Scally Illustrated Headshot

Rebecca (Last Week: 2-3; Overall: 2-3)

  • Stanford at Michigan: Michigan
  • Collegiate Quad Session 2: Oklahoma
  • Collegiate Quad Session 3: California
  • MLK Day: Iowa State
  • Washington at Iowa: Iowa
  • Kent State at Pittsburgh: Pittsburgh

Savanna Whitten illustrated headshot

Week 2 Guest: Savanna

  • Stanford at Michigan: Michigan
  • Collegiate Quad Session 2: Oklahoma
  • Collegiate Quad Session 3: California
  • MLK Day: Iowa State
  • Washington at Iowa: Iowa
  • Kent State at Pittsburgh: Kent State

Want to join in on the predictions? Tag us on social media with your picks then tune into the meets to see how well you do!

How to Watch

Looking for more info on how to watch your favorite gymnasts and teams in action? Head to our master schedule for all the scoring, video, and live blog links, or head to our annual “How to Watch” article to see what platforms you have access to with various streaming services.

Fri Jan 12
6:00 pm

Iowa State at Penn State

Fri Jan 12
7:00 pm

West Chester at Maryland

Fri Jan 12
7:00 pm

Fisk, George Washington, and Talladega at Florida

Fri Jan 12
7:00 pm

Missouri at Alabama

Fri Jan 12
7:00 pm

Stanford at Michigan

Fri Jan 12
7:00 pm

William & Mary at Clemson

Fri Jan 12
7:00 pm

Central Michigan, Greenville, and Texas Woman’s at Illinois State

Fri Jan 12
7:30 pm

Washington at Iowa

Fri Jan 12
7:30 pm

Centenary at SEMO

Fri Jan 12
7:30 pm

Gustavus Adolphus and UW-Stout at Hamline

Fri Jan 12
8:00 pm

Georgia at Arkansas

Fri Jan 12
8:30 pm

Kentucky at Auburn

Fri Jan 12
9:00 pm

Sprouts Farmers Market Collegiate Quad Session One

with Arizona, Boise State, Nebraska, North Carolina in West Valley City, Utah
Sat Jan 13
12:00 pm

Northern Illinois at Bowling Green

Sat Jan 13
2:00 pm

Ithaca at Brockport

Sat Jan 13
2:00 pm

Oregon State, Southern Connecticut, and Utica at Rutgers

Sat Jan 13
3:30 pm

UW-Oshkosh, West Virginia, and Western Michigan at Illinois

Sat Jan 13
4:00 pm

Kent State at Pittsburgh

Sat Jan 13
4:00 pm

Sprouts Farmers Market Collegiate Quad Session Two

with LSU, Oklahoma, UCLA, Utah in West Valley City, Utah
Sat Jan 13
5:00 pm

Eastern Michigan at Minnesota

Sat Jan 13
9:00 pm

Sprouts Farmers Market Collegiate Quad Session Three

with BYU, California, Michigan State, and N.C. State in West Valley City, Utah
Sun Jan 14
1:00 pm

Cornell, Penn, Temple, and Yale at George Washington

Sun Jan 14
2:00 pm

Ball State and Towson at Ohio State

Sun Jan 14
2:00 pm

Bridgeport and LIU at New Hampshire

Sun Jan 14
2:00 pm

Greenville at Lindenwood

Sun Jan 14
4:00 pm

Arizona State at Denver

Sun Jan 14
5:00 pm

San Jose State at Sacramento State

Mon Jan 15
4:00 pm

CANCELED – Brown, Iowa State, Rutgers, Talladega, and William & Mary at Fisk

Mon Jan 15
6:00 pm

Best of Utah

with BYU, Southern Utah, Utah, Utah State
No event found!

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Article by the editors of College Gym News

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