Our fourth regional analysis takes a look at the Salt Lake City competition. Like the others, we delve into the matchups, who has the best chances of advancing and give you insight into whether or not your picks in the 2016 NCAA gymnastics bracket challenge were smart.
This will probably be the easiest regional to predict. Utah and UCLA are the clear leaders and should advance with no problems even if they have a mistake here or there. However, if there's a couple of biggies and Washington's having one of its mid-196 meets, there could be an upset brewing. The main competition will be between UCLA and Utah for the top spot. The bruins have now defeated the Utes twice this season, something the Red Rocks can't be too happy with. So expect the Utes so come out of the gates ready to finally beat their rivals and clear up those nasty beam troubles from Pac-12s. Oh, and don't forget the fact that the competition is in Salt Lake City.
Washington has quietly done well this season, impressing with not bottom of the conference results like we typically see from the conference. Southern Utah is also capable of a mid to low 196. Illinois is the question mark. It's still Illinois, but we can't expect much with the success or lack there of its been having this season. Add onto that the fact that both Mary Jane Horth and Giana O'Connor are our, and Illinois will be happy if it doesn't finish sixth.
As for individuals, it'll be hard for event specialists to qualify with Utah home scoring a thing that happens. However, Sunny Kato has a chance of putting up big number on bars and beam. Washington's Allison Northey and Joslyn Goings are the clear all around favorites, but SUU's Danielle Ramirez could challenge as well.
Days until the 2017 National Championships