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First-Time Regionals Experience / Individual Qualifiers - Wildcard Idea?

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Spencer's Eye Roll
Joined: 4 years ago
Posts: 7
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Hi Jessica and Spencer,

I have been a long-time gym fan and Club Gymnerd member! Jessica mentioned on the podcast a few weeks ago how folks in the Northeast are willing to travel crazy distances to see meets. Well, case in point, this weekend I drove 11 hours in two days to see the Pitt Regional Final. I got back at 1am after the meet and then went to work at 8am the next day. Worth it? 100% 😂 I work at Cornell, and so far the biggest gymnastics meet I've been to was the USAG Collegiate Nationals which we hosted last year. It was such an amazing experience to see Florida, Cal, MSU, and ASU in-person! It was so exciting I swear it felt like it lasted only 20 minutes. Also, Spencer please make a gif of Anaya Smith of ASU jumping into Lacey Rubin's arms after vault, and literally causing her to fall over on the mat. 

I wanted to bring up ideas for new individual qualification routes to nationals. It just feels wrong that there are such limited spots, like last year when Haleigh Bryant didn't qualify, and this year having no Jade Carey nor Sierra Brooks in the AA. One of my students at Cornell manages the wrestling team, and she brought up how they have wildcard spots for nationals. I thought this was an interesting concept and wanted to hear your thoughts. I also think having the top qualifier from regionals, as well as anyone seeded 1-3 after regular season (or just go off regular season) could be a better scenario. Also, I am a huge proponent of bringing back individual finals - I am tired of individual accomplishments being overlooked in the NCAA gymnastics processes!