Around the Gymternet: Miss California eats ice cream

Kenzo Shirai

All together now ‘Songsong was robbed!!’” –Sara R of fame is clearly ready for Shang Chunsong’s return.

Tokyo World Cup

What happened? Kenzo Shirai got his groove back, winning the title with compatriot Wataru Tanigawa taking second and ‘Mercan Sam Mikulak in third. For the ladies, Mai Murakami took first, Trinity Thomas got silver, and Mélanie De Jesus Dos Santos of France snagged the bronze.

What else? There were some malfunctions. Chellsie Memmel isn’t here to judge, but actually she is. P.S.: Elizabeth Seitz is your 2018 World Cup Series all-around winner, and USA’s ladies won top country.


What happened? So much. Emma Malabuyo took the senior title, with Ragan Smith and Anastasia Iliankova taking second and third, respectively. Russia took the senior team title, Italy’s juniors snagged team gold, and Vladislava Urazova of Russia won the junior all-around. Malabuyo also took gold on floor and beam in event finals.

OK, but tell me the juicy stuff: I like how you think. Team Italy had some drama and I’m here for it. The podium was inflatable. Meanwhile, Sydney Barros of the Democratic Republic of Texas Dreams had an unfortunate landing on vault and withdrew with an ankle injury. If you missed the comp, Lauren rage blogged the whole thing.

NCAA corner

DI nationals: GET READY. Here’s the rotation order for Friday’s Semifinals I and II.

Other D’s: Texas Woman’s University won the Women’s Collegiate National Championships for Division I, II, and III schools with less than seven-and-a-half full scholarships (full results). Congrats, ladies!

Welcome freshmen: Rachel Baumann has officially committed to Georgia, and Norah Flatley signed with UCLA, to Coach Chow’s delight.

Hiring and firing: Rutgers has opted not to renew seven-year head coach Louis Levine’s contract.

Can’t stop won’t stop: Kentucky’s Alex Hyland is training an eight-part beam series, sort of like a Ken Burns documentary except interesting.

One excited Bruin: Katelyn Ohashi’s happiness is more important to me than my own.

The state of Michigan

The lawsuit: A woman alleges that three Michigan State University basketball players raped her in 2015, and that MSU discouraged her from reporting the assault, in a lawsuit filed on Monday.

Wait. I thought this blog was about gymnastics? OK, it’s a stretch. Hehe. The uni said on Wednesday that her allegations against the school are untrue, in a statement that experts say violated a student privacy law and will discourage survivors from coming forward. Interim University President John Engler says he “regrets” the level of detail in the statement.

Things can’t get worse, right? Wrong. Nassar survivor Kaylee Lorincz said at Friday’s board of trustees meeting that Engler offered her $250,000 to settle her case against the university. She says he also told her that survivor Rachael Denhollander took a similar offer, though Denhollander says she’s never met with Engler.

Responses: Engler says he remembers things differently. Survivors Lindsey Lemke and Rachael Denhollander and mom Lisa Lorincz are livid. Survivor attorney Jamie White says Engler’s done this before.

What else? Protesters made their presence known at the board meeting, but signs were prohibited, and survivor Morgan McCaul is not happy.

  • A memo released on Monday shows that former MSU president Lou Anna Simon was informed of former dean William Strampel’s conduct in 2004.
  • Under a new proposed state law, public universities’ board members would have to see all sexual assault reports. Other bills would strengthen mandatory reporting training and penalties for sexually abusing patients, and a budget bill would cut a uni’s funding by 10 percent for not following new requirements.

Other news

  • A Senate panel will hold a hearing Wednesday, April 18 as part of an ongoing investigation of how orgs like USA Gymnastics and the U.S. Olympic Committee handled the sexual abuse of Olympic athletes. A few athletes will testify.
  • Jordyn Wieber, Jamie Dantzscher, and other survivors traveled to California on Monday to support legislation that would make it mandatory for doctors to inform their patients if they are on probation.
  • USA Gymnastics is suing seven insurance companies for coverage over the 10 lawsuits filed against the org. Meanwhile, State Farm says it’s under no obligation to cover damages to survivors from Twistars, or to defend or compensate John Geddert regarding the lawsuits brought against him.

Required reading

  • The allegations against MSU are horrific (Detroit Free Press), the uni’s handling is indicative of its “sickness” (Lansing State Journal), and John Engler’s time at MSU is up (The Athletic).
  • How MSU’s culture fostered a sexual predator and masked assaults (MLive).
  • Martha Karolyi says safety wasn’t part of her job. How could she expect so much of gymnasts and so little of herself? (Dallas News).
  • Aly Raisman spoke at LSU on Wednesday, telling abuse survivors, “It’s okay to not feel okay” (Huffington Post).

Star status

Retired: Larissa Miller. The Aussie Olympian announced her retirement this morning on Instagram. Best of luck to Miller on her next chapter!


  • Team Russia is ready for nationals, including Viktoria Komova and Aliya Mustafina, who will be making her comeback at the comp.
  • Laurie Hernandez is on the road toward a 2019 comeback, and she has a picture book coming out in the fall.
  • Sophie Scheder is on the up-and-up after last year’s knee surgery, and is training a piked full-in, honestly one of my favorite skills.

Upgrades: Sentient tattoo Alex Naddour is showing off upgrades on pommels.

Staying social

Wrist risk: Badass broad Aly Raisman is personally signing each and every Flip the Switch certificate.

Frame it: Margzetta Frazier had a smokey photo shoot.

Please come back: Coach Liang Chow is in China for camp, but don’t worry, he’ll always be in your heart.

Do it: Gymnasts have feelings, and that means they need ice cream, just like you.

Get in, loser: Nina Derwael is officially licensed to drive a…car with her face on the side?

Because you asked

Will Israel be allowed to compete at worlds in Doha? Why isn’t aerobic an Olympic sport? All your questions, answered.

Last words

Yours truly ran the Boston 5K on Saturday, then found out Shawn and Nastia were there. Sadly, their times aren’t public or I’d be able to tell you if I beat two Olympic gold medalists at something.

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