Friday, February 11, 2011
The Florida-Alabama Broadcast
Suzanne Yoculan had more of a role in the commentary of this meet. Overall, her contributions were among the more useful. She pointed out why Marissa King's vault doesn't score as highly as the stuck Yurchenko Fulls and pointed out Ashanee's release being caught with bent arms. As far as Bart, Suzanne and KJC as a trio, there is still work to be done. The order of commentary is: Bart Talks, Kathy Talks, Suzanne talks (if there is time.) Her comments are often a bit rushed during vault and bars, after Kathy names Macko's coaches (who are meaningless to most of the viewers, especially the casual ones.)
Kudos to Suzanne and Sarah for maintaining a straight face when Suzanne told her (from one coach to another) that her heart went out to her during their bar rotation. ESPN is contracted by the SEC to cover the meet, which is why they tend to be overly nice about everything being shown.
Florida is leading the country. They look solid, but they are also benefitting from a lack of competition around the country (as evidenced by the Chicago Style meet.) They are really gelling on vault, bars and floor. Their beam routine could really use team pressure sets where they need to achieve a 49.4 or so (twice) before rotating on to the next event.
Alabama is supposed to come on strong later in the season, but there are doubts whether they'll be able to be a true contender. Ashley Priess is unlikely to do All-Around this season. Her scores can only replace so much. The fact that Rachel Terry is competing on floor shows how weak they currently are in some spots. Geralen Stack Eaton continually looks deflated. She makes Gina Gogean look happy, but she also tends to be consistent like the Romanian stalwart.
Kayla Hoffman is capable of being one of the top All-Arounders in the country. Her vault and bars continue to be top-notch. If she can hit beam and floor, she will be tough to contend with during the post season.
Becca Alexin made the error of going before the green light, which can largely be attributed to her rarely ever being in the lineup. Many veterans, even Anna Pavlova (in the Olympics), have made that error.
Alabama's girls may be a tad large and in charge, but they can do some huge double layouts off bars and STICK them. Some of the Gators could really benefit from additional amplitude on their bar dismounts.
Sarah DeMeo and Kim Jacob need to step it up a notch for the team to reach the next level.
Florida prided themselves on doing difficulty and executing it well. I'd say they are looking better than usual in that respect, but still have a ways to go. Nicole Ellis' bar routine isn't that difficult, nor does she execute it that well.
Ashanee is apparently working on her form. Girl could use a little extra help.
Marissa King is looking great on vault and floor. She needs to get that beam routine consistent. It may take eliminating some of her skills, as she was quite inconsistent in workouts at NCAAs last year. Hopefully, she will remain the alternate on bars. It has never been a consistent event for her.
Macko and Alaina continue to energize the team. If they can continue to push one another in the All-Around, Florida will look good in the post season.
In closing, any judge that awards Ashanee a 9.9 on bars is on serious crack.
There has been some debate online and among coaches whether or not Mrs. Sloan sitting next to Mrs. Caquatto is an NCAA rule violation in terms of recruiting. Recruits are allowed to travel with their parents, but they are not supposed to sit with any program's boosters. It is debatable whether or not a parent is a booster. They do have a prior-relationship, but that comes from traveling to gymnastics meets. It remains a gray area. When Sloan visited UGA, Amber Trani (a former member of the team/Team Manager) was hanging out with Sloan while she was assisting ESPN. Again---another gray area. The NCAA rules get a tad ridiculous. These are obviously minor infractions, as it isn't like they are paying gymnasts under the table or buying them cars...which goes on when most big schools recruit football and basketball players.
View the rest of the videos after the jump.