The Big Ten men's gymnastics season came to a close at the NCAA Championships, where Illinois' C.J. Maestas and Penn State's Thad Lawson claimed national titles.
NCAA Champions: On the final day of the NCAA Men's Gymnastics Championships, two Big Ten student-athletes claimed national titles. Illinois' C.J. Maestas won the high bar with a score of 15.125, while Penn State's Thad Lawson claimed the floor exercise title with a tally of 15.725. For more on the NCAA Championships, click here.
Senior Status: Minnesota's Ellis Mannon was named the 2015 recipient of the prestigious Nissen-Emery Award. The Nissen-Emery Award is given annually to the nation's outstanding senior gymnast and is the most coveted award in collegiate gymnastics. With the distinguished honor, Mannon becomes the fourth Gopher to receive the coveted award and the first since Guillermo Alvarez in 2005. This season, Mannon has continued to reach new heights as he scored a 15.25 and a 15.45 during the Winter Cup Challenge in Las Vegas, Nev. to clench the 2015 Winter Cup Challenge pommel horse title. For more on the Nissen-Emery Award, click here.
Nittany Lions: The Penn State men's gymnastics team captured the 2015 Big Ten Championship at Rec Hall in University Park, Pa., on Friday. The Nittany Lions secured their third Big Ten title and first since 2008. Penn State totaled 436.700 team points, followed by second-place Illinois (436.100) and third-place Michigan (434.750). Minnesota finished fourth (433.750), Ohio State placed fifth (429.350), Iowa came in sixth (427.600) and Nebraska rounded out the team standings in seventh-place with 420.100 points. The Nittany Lions' Matthew Felleman was the Big Ten all-around champion after tallying a score of 87.200 points, claiming his first Big Ten all-around title and becoming the first Nittany Lion to win the event since Casey Sandy in 2008. For more on the Big Ten Championships, click here.
All the Awards: Following the Big Ten Championships, the individual award winners and All-Big Ten teams were announced. Illinois' Bobby Baker was named the Big Ten Gymnast and Freshman of the Year, while Penn State's Randy Jepson was tabbed the Big Ten Coach of the Year. Baker became the first Illinois gymnast to win Gymnast of the Year laurels since Maestas in 2012, while Jepson earned the first accolade for Penn State since winning the award in 2008. For more on the awards, click here.
Academic Success: The Big Ten Conference recognized a total of 735 winter sports student-athletes who have been named to the Academic All-Conference team, which included 47 men's gymnasts. To be eligible for Academic All-Big Ten selection, student-athletes must be letterwinners who are in at least their second academic year at their institution and carry a cumulative grade-point average of 3.0 or higher. For more on the Academic All-Big Ten selections, click here.