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Gymnastics: Utes' coach says not his policy to redshirt athletes often

Published April 9, 2009 4:54 pm

Utah gymnastics » And several gymnasts have the flu this week, which means alternates may compete next week in NCAA Championships.
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Most coaches would regret not redshirting an athlete who has competed just once for their team, but Utah coach Greg Marsden has no such thoughts about freshman Cortni Beers .

Beers hasn't competed for Utah's second-ranked gymnastics team since the first meet of the year, when she scored a 9.175 on the uneven bars and a 9.7 on the balance beam.

Those appearances burned the chance for her to be redshirted, but Marsden said it wasn't in his policy to redshirt athletes that often.

"More often than not, by the time they are done with four years, it's time for them to move on in terms of focusing on any school they have remaining or focusing on that transition to their lives," he said. "We hardly ever intentionally just not compete somebody."

He'd rather have all of his gymnasts in the mind-set they will compete, just in case something happens -- as it did last week when senior Nina Kim was sick.

Jacquelyn Johnson (9.825, bars) and Stephanie McAllister (9.8, beam) competed for the first time on those events as they filled Kim's spots.

With several gymnasts suffering from the flu this week, Marsden wouldn't rule out the possibility that Beers and others may have to perform next week when the Utes compete in the NCAA Championships in Lincoln, Neb.

"If we have a couple kids out with the flu, then, boom, she is in," he said. "Our alternate has gone back between she and Jac and who has been training well and who helps us. It's not out of the realm of possibility we'll be putting her in to do a routine."

Kim update

Kim, who missed the regional competition with illness, said she is feeling better and is working out again, although she still isn't 100 percent.

She acknowledged she is worried her stamina will be affected at nationals and isn't sure whether she'll be able to do the upgrade on floor she had prepared for regionals.

"I'd like to do it, but I have to see how I feel endurance-wise," she said.

Kim is ranked sixth nationally in the all-around with a regional qualifying score of 39.485.

Up next

The Utes will hold a mock meet in practice today to stay sharp for nationals, then practice on Saturday and Monday. The Utes leave for Lincoln, Neb., on Tuesday. Marsden estimated from ticket sales that the Utes will have about 250 fans travel to nationals.

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