New season brings great competition to gymnastics


Iowa State Daily

Ronayne said he first noticed gymnastics in the 1976 Olympics.

Isaac Hunt

Iowa State is experiencing changes in sports due to the Big 12 conference changes during the past few years.

For gymnastics, scheduling and competition do not have as big of an impact. In this sport, scoring big points is more heavily emphasized rather than winning and losing.

Iowa State may be without rivals Nebraska and Missouri on the schedule next year, but that will not stop the team from facing tough competition. Coach Jay Ronayne is looking forward to facing former six-time national champion UCLA.

“If you compete against great competition, it helps your team get better,” Ronayne said. “Next year we’re going to some places we don’t normally go.”

Returning one junior, six sophomores, one freshman and bringing in six recruits in 2012, the team can use the experience.

ISU gymnastics may be losing three of its top senior performers, but the bounceback should not take long.

Former team captain Michelle Browning has been a leader of the team since she came to campus and losing that leadership will be hard to replace. However, Browning said she is not worried about how the team will do without her and the other seniors.

The ISU coaches’ resumes are endless, along with a returning co-captain in Elizabeth Stranahan and a huge 2012 junior class, the Cyclones will be surely be back in the top 25, a place where they have made themselves comfortable in the past.