April 5, 2012
The 2012 Big Ten Men’s Gymnastics Championships will be contested this weekend, Friday and Saturday, at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on the University of Iowa campus. Friday’s session will feature the team and all-around competitions, while the individual event finals will be decided during Saturday evening’s portion of the championships. Both sessions are scheduled to begin at 7:10 p.m. CT, and will be televised live on BTN.
Illinois looks to win its fourth-straight Big Ten Championship after finishing atop the championships field the last three seasons. The Illini aim to become the first conference team to win four consecutive Big Ten Championships since Minnesota achieved the feat from 1977-1980 as part of five straight titles that also included 1976. Illinois leads all conference squads with 26 team championships, followed by Minnesota with 22.
Three gymnasts, Michigan’s Sam Mikulak and Syque Caesar and Minnesota’s Zack Chase, return with the hopes of defending their individual titles from a season ago. Mikulak aims to defend his all-around title, Caesar is in defense of the parallel bars crown and Chase looks for consecutive vault championships.
In the team race last season, Illinois held off Michigan by a score of 355.550-352.750 for the team crown. Ohio State came in third (350.000), Penn State finished fourth (349.000), Minnesota was fifth (344.400) and Iowa rounded out the field (339.300).