Michigan Women’s Gymnastics Projected Top Team in Big Ten Preseason Poll

Dec. 10, 2015

ROSEMONT, Ill. – Defending Big Ten women’s gymnastics champion Michigan was named the favorite in the Big Ten Preseason Coaches’ Poll, the conference office announced on Thursday. The Wolverines were followed by No. 2 Nebraska, third place Illinois, No. 4 Penn State and fifth place Ohio State. Minnesota was picked to finish sixth in the preseason poll, followed by No. 7 Iowa and No. 8 Michigan State. Maryland and Rutgers rounded out the preseason poll at No. 9 and No. 10, respectively.


The Big Ten also announced the 2016 Gymnasts to Watch List, with eight returning All-Big Ten standouts headlining the list. First-team returners include Illinois’ Giana O’Connor, Michigan’s Nicole Artz, Michigan State’s Lisa Burt and Elena Lagoski, Minnesota’s Lindsay Mable, the reigning Big Ten Gymnast of the Year, and Nebraska’s Hollie Blankse. Returning second-team honorees include Nebraska’s Ashley Lambert and Penn State’s Briannah Tsang, the 2015 Big Ten Co-Freshman of the Year.


Iowa’s Mollie Drenth and Angel Metcalf, Maryland’s Abbie Epperson and Kathy Tang, Minnesota’s Ciara Gardner, Ohio State’s Taylor Harrison, Penn State’s Kiera Brown and Rutgers’ April Baker and Elizabeth Groden were also named to the Gymnasts to Watch List, along with three freshmen: Illinois’ Lizzy Leduc, Michigan’s Olivia Karas and Ohio State’s Kaitlyn Hofland.


Last season, the Wolverines won the Big Ten Women's Gymnastics Championship after finishing with a 9-0 conference record and earned the 2015 Big Ten Women's Gymnastics Championships title.


The complete 2016 Big Ten Women’s Gymnastics Preseason Coaches’ Poll and Gymnasts to Watch List can be found below.



1. Michigan
2. Nebraska
3. Illinois
4. Penn State
5. Ohio State
6. Minnesota
7. Iowa
8. Michigan State
9. Maryland
10. Rutgers




Lizzy Leduc, Fr., Illinois

Giana O’Connor, Sr., Illinois

Mollie Drenth, Jr., Iowa

Angel Metcalf, Jr., Iowa

Abbie Epperson, So., Maryland

Kathy Tang, Sr., Maryland

Nicole Artz, Jr., Michigan

Olivia Karas, Fr., Michigan

Lisa Burt, Sr., Michigan State

Elena Lagoski, Jr., Michigan State

Ciara Gardner, So., Minnesota

Lindsay Mable, Sr., Minnesota

Hollie Blanske, Sr., Nebraska

Ashley Lambert, Jr., Nebraska

Taylor Harrison, So., Ohio State

Kaitlyn Hofland, Fr., Ohio State

Kiera Brown, Jr., Penn State

Briannah Tsang, So., Penn State

April Baker, Jr., Rutgers

Elizabeth Groden, So., Rutgers