Men's gymnastics national semifinal kicks off today
The GIST: While the women recover from yesterday’s action, 12 men’s teams will hit their national championship semifinal mats today. The fellas will compete in six events, with the top three teams from each semi advancing to tomorrow’s six-squad final to try and hoist the season’s ultimate hardware. Gym rats, assemble.
- With No. 1 Stanford vet (and U.S. Olympian) Brody Malone presumably still out with a knee injury, all Cardinal hopes will be on freshman phenom Asher Hong to stick the landing for the defending champs. No pressure.
The matchups: The 1 p.m. ET semifinal will feature the heavily favored Stanford squad against five other teams all aiming to buck them off the (pommel)horse. Their biggest competition? No. 4 Illinois, who tasted glory by making the 2022 final and are now looking to eat the whole damn championship cake.
- With frontrunners No. 2 Oklahoma and No. 3 Michigan vaulting in the 7 p.m. ET semifinal, the late session will likely be the most competitive. But with Michigan’s Paul Juda (last year’s all-around champ) injured, the Wolverine to watch is freshman Fred Richard.
The individual qualifiers: Six all-arounders and six specialists in each event from non-qualifying schools will advance alongside today’s six victorious teams to tomorrow’s final, all hoping to snag solo national titles. Of these individual contenders, Oklahoma’s rising star sophomore Raydel Gamboa is poised to dominate the all-around.