Despite loss of stars, Sooner gymnasts poised to make run

BY ROBERT PRZYBYLO Modified: April 15, 2009 at 8:13 am •  Published: April 15, 2009

/> "He’s expanding on what he’s good at,” Williams said. "He’s a lot better on rings, p-bars (parallel bars) and the high bar this season.”

It’s more than a two-team race, but it might well come down to a tie-breaker between OU and Stanford. The Sooners won the first battle, but Stanford defeated OU two weeks ago to win the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation conference championship and took the No. 1 ranking away from OU. It is the first time since 2004 that OU has not won the conference championship.

"There is a lot of motivation that goes with that,” Legendre said. "We just have to have guys step up this weekend, myself included. We had the same goal coming into this season to win the championship. We’ve given ourselves that opportunity.”

NCAA men’s national championships
→When: Thursday-Saturday

→Where: Minneapolis, Minn.

→Scouting report: To go with sophomore standout Steven Legendre, OU coach Mark Williams said senior captain Chris Brooks has made the biggest improvement from last year. The preliminary rounds are Thursday with OU competing in the night session. If OU finishes in the top three of its session, it qualifies for the team finals Friday. The individual event finals are Saturday. OU won the national championship last year.

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