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Olympic gold. Men’s gymnastics struggles to survive

The death of the 117-year-old champion, who won championships and created the Olympic Games, came to an end. And then voting.

The fact that the former did not change the latter resulted in a sharp look at the steadily declining support for men’s gymnastics at the NCAA level, one that would eventually have a surging effect at the top and bottom of the food chain for internal relevance. The US Olympic Movement.

That breath. John von Rothlisberger could hear that last fall at a meeting of the Board of Regents at the University of Minnesota. At one point, someone asked how much money the school gymnastics department would save by approving a proposal to cut down on men’s gymnastics, men’s tennis, and men’s indoor swimming. Athletics director Mark Coyle said $ 45-65 million was needed to make up for the shortfall. partly to the COVID-19 epidemic.

Answer? $ 1.6 million. Or more than 1% of the gymnastics department’s $ 123 million budget.

“Everyone was terrified,” said Rothlisberger, three-time Olympic gold medalist and three-time NCAA Golden Globes champion. “It did not make much sense. … (We hoped) maybe we could reconcile ոնե at least save our sport, և they were like. “No, let’s vote.”

And they did. Seven at the end of the 2020-21 academic year in favor of men’s gymnastics, men’s tennis and men’s closed track. Five against.

The decision by Minnesota came two months after the state of Iowa announced that it was suspending men’s gymnastics, men’s tennis, men’s “women’s swimming” and diving. Again, administrators pointed to the long-term financial impact of the epidemic.

The losses will leave only five men’s gymnastics programs in the Big Ten, only 11 at Division I level overall, including the three service academies. And that leaves the US men’s gymnastics program in limbo, trying to regain its place among the world’s elite while dealing with a declining talent base.

There are 11,000 boys or men involved in US gymnastics, down from 13,000 in 2007. With only 6.3 scholarships in Section I, opportunities to compete and at least a portion of college education for a fee are becoming increasingly scarce. ,

Unlike women’s gymnastics in the United States, where athletes typically reach their final stages of adolescence before moving on or retreating to the next wave, most male athletes do not reach their peak until the mid-20s, making NCAA levels a perfect nutritionist. system:

For decades, US gymnastics has filled its Olympic team with NCAA veterans. Athletes who have attended college or trained with a college in this millennium have accounted for nearly 75% (26) of the US Olympics (including alternatives).

Almost, without a doubt, there will be a case when 2021 is announced this summer. The team, which is probably led by NCAA champion ազգային US national champions Sam Mikulak և Yul Moldauer.

This is the group that Shane Viscus intends to be part of, which is one of the reasons he went to the US Olympic Paralympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Minnesota last fall. It was a step he considered necessary to give him the best chance of reaching Tokyo. It was also a matter of survival. USOPTC will be operational in a year. The Minnesota Plan, at least not at Section I level.

“(NCAA level support) is definitely declining. I’m afraid that if this is not an alarm. If there is no real change in the NCAA, then I’m afraid that more programs may be cut. NCAA gymnastics may.” “It should be eliminated,” said senior Viscus, who was studying part-time this semester and participated in the “Big Ten” title fight last week.

Whiskey was lucky to have options. Everything is much gloomier for teammate Mike Moran. Mora from New York, New Jersey, admits that there were people around him who discouraged him from competing because they viewed his chosen sport as a “dying body.”

Which exacerbates the pain of his demise. Moran is at best a prospect for the 2021 Olympic team, but his passion and dedication are an important part of the recipe needed to develop Olympic programs.

“Less than 1% of college athletes go to the Olympics, but they are overwhelmed by the masses,” said Brett McClure, former head coach of the 2004 Olympic և Cal College, who now serves as a senior in the U.S. Men’s Gymnastics Program. Director: ,

And the masses are shrinking.

“US gymnastics looks at the NCAA just like the NFL looks at college football,” Rothlisberger said. “Every team is like a mini-Olympic training center. When that’s gone, you have two coaches at USOTC who can carry 15 boys. See what it will do to your feeder. “You will see a stream of boys falling because they have to worry about their future.”

A decision that, like Moran,’s can be made in the early 1920s. It could have come much earlier.

McClear բոլորը Everyone involved in sports understands the criteria. Football և Men’s basketball pays for most bills. Sports directors are increasingly concerned about what a changing economy means for Olympic sports. At the 2016 Rio Games, almost 80% of the 558 U.S. athletes dropped out of the American College program.

Most of the 85 programs cut by Division I universities since the coronavirus epidemic last year involved Olympic sports. There are proposals on the horizon being considered by the NCAA և Congress that would allow players to cut sponsorship deals և make money from their names, similarities և images (NIL). The far-reaching bill proposes revenue sharing between “athletes” in sports programs.

This is likely to mean more money for a lucrative sport, an idea that runs counter to what is supposed to be the ideal of a college sports experience. Or at least what it used to be.

“College athletics, as we’ve known for a long time, will not be the way it used to be,” said Minnesota coach Mike Burns. “Reduction և correction is probably the direction that everyone is thinking about.”

Oklahoma longtime coach Mark Williams, who also led the 2016 The US Olympic team, which will soon lead nine national championships, fears what to expect if the NCAA model does not become stable anymore.

“Our budgets are not going to be easily duplicated by USOTC if we pay them off,” he said.

That’s the “if” that will become a reality later this month in Minnesota, Iowa. Ironically, on April 16-17, the Golden Gophers will host the 2021 NCAA Men’s National Collegiate Athletics Championship.

The whiskey will be there. Moran and the rest of Minnesota, too. At some point, Moran will return to the field, thinking about his future, maybe about his sport.

“It’s kind of sick of approaching it, everything else in life is the same. How do you feel about life when you know there is death in the end?” he said. “It makes the year more special as the reality approaches. I have no fear in that. I’m 21 years old և I’m not afraid to die. I have that growing appreciation for any moment that ends. ”

Even if it is the last one.

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AP Olympic Games. Https://apnews.com/hub/olympic-games և https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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