Up to No. 3 in the latest GymInfo rankings, the Oklahoma men’s gymnastics team faces its biggest test of the season at the Pacific Coast Classic, Feb. 23 in Oakland, Calif. Five of the top 11 teams in the country, including No. 1 Stanford, will join the Sooners at the Oakland Convention Center. The meet, hosted by USA Sports Management, is scheduled for a 9:30 p.m. Oklahoma time start and will be broadcast by Fox Sports Net nationwide via satellite at a later date.
Oklahoma enters this year’s Pacific Coast Classic as the two-time defending team champion, while senior co-captain Jonathan Horton boasts consecutive PCC all-around titles. The Sooners won last year’s event with a score of 218.450, besting Stanford’s 216.650 and avenging an early season loss to then-No. 1 Michigan, while the 2006 squad claimed victory with a 217.300 total. Horton is also the two-time defending PCC rings champion, and claimed the floor title at last season’s meet.
This year’s OU squad heads to Oakland with an undefeated 7-0 record that includes victories over Pacific Coast opponents Michigan and Iowa. This weekend’s meet will be the Sooners’ first look at Mountain Pacific Sports Federation rivals No. 1 Stanford and No. 4 California. The Sooners will not see the Cardinal and Golden Bears again until the MPSF Championships, April 5 in Lincoln, Neb.
“This meet gives us a great opportunity to meet some of the West Coast teams we haven’t seen yet this year,” OU head coach Mark Williams said. “It also helps that the meet format is very similar to the conference and NCAA championships. We’ve had pretty good success there in the past and we’re hoping to continue to improve on what we’ve done so far this season.”
Fans can access live scores from the meet at SoonerSports.com, as well as on the official site of USA Sports Management and the Pacific Coast Classic, usa-sports.org.
The goal of the USA Sports Management Group is to provide direct assistance in preserving men’s collegiate gymnastics programs and increase scholarship and training opportunities in the United States.
In 1969 approximately 230 collegiate gymnastics programs existed. Today only 19 NCAA programs remain in the U.S. Proceeds from the Pacific Coast Classic benefit two organizations that significantly impact the future of men’s gymnastics in the United States: Men’s Intercollegiate Gymnastics Support Program (MIGSP) and the National Gymnastics Foundation Men’s Scholarship Program.