U.S. Men’s National Team selection?

There are a few issues. I hadn’t thought about this one … until now.

Kensley Behel poses a good question. Leave a comment if you know the answer.

… What is slightly more unclear is how some of the national team members were chosen, as both Anthony McCallum and Emyre Cole of the University of Michigan totaled 22 points apiece, tying Olympian Chris Brooks and beating out Kanji Oyama, who totaled 18. Oyama was added to the team, but McCallum and Cole were not.

What’s more, McCallum won the vault title outright and would seem to be an obvious choice for the national team, but alas, the mystery that is the men’s team point system.

The totaled points can be seen here. …

Moldauer Wins Winter Cup Title

Click PLAY or watch Anthony McCallum’s Vault on YouTube.

Tsuk double pike. Finals: 14.950 (5.6, 9.350)

Response from Daniel Steiner:

After Mouldar, modi, bower and whittenburg were selected via all around scores, the committee decides the rest of the team based on the strengths and weaknesses of the team as whole. While Mcallum clearly has one of the best vaults in the country, that is all he really offers in the grand scheme of things. Penev, naddour and whittenburg all perform similar valued vaults but it’s their strengths on other events, such as naddour on PH, that makes their perceived value higher than single event specialists. The same issue arose in 2013 when Michael Newburger won the PH title at winter cup outright, yet wasn’t selected to the team. One trick ponies don’t have much of a place on the national team anymore.

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Rick Mc

Career gymnastics coach who loves the outdoors, and the internet.

8 thoughts on “U.S. Men’s National Team selection?”

  1. After Mouldar, modi, bower and whittenburg were selected via all around scores, the committee decides the rest of the team based on the strengths and weaknesses of the team as whole. While Mcallum clearly has one of the best vaults in the country, that is all he really offers in the grand scheme of things. Penev, naddour and whittenburg all perform similar valued vaults but it’s their strengths on other events, such as naddour on PH, that makes their perceived value higher than single event specialists. The same issue arose in 2013 when Michael Newburger won the PH title at winter cup outright, yet wasn’t selected to the team. One trick ponies don’t have much of a place on the national team anymore.

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  2. Just an assumption here… Kanji was probably chosen based on earning points on multiple events, with upside to earn points on other events. He was on the Nat’l Team last year & was selected to compete at an int’l event last fall. Not to mention the fact he tied for 2nd with Akash Modi in the AA at NCAAs last spring. Certainly no slight to McCallum & Cole… They are rising stars!

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    1. Thanks Ron. You must be right.

      … I’m still waiting to hear who will be sent to the University of Calgary meet this year. Expected it would have been announced with the other events. The guys at U of Calgary haven’t heard as yet either.

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  3. Olympians, including alternates, were guaranteed national team spots if they competed on at least one event and finished in the top ten on it, so Brooks, Naddour and Whittenburg’s spots were also automatic. (Whittenburg both via all-around, and Olympic team status.) Olympians Dalton & Mikulak showed up prepared to compete, but then injured themselves at the event, making their petitions pretty safe bets based on past precedent.

    According to selection procedures, NO athletes made the team based on points. The MPC looked at the point system AND the all-around, with no preference given for either total, when making their additional selections. It is noticeable that those they selected ALL competed all-around. This is unsurprising given the reduced Olympic team size in 2020, which will severely limit specialists value to a team, especially on the men’s side.

    McCullum is a strong vaulter and did win the vault title, but the vaults he’s doing are not unique among the U.S. men; He was just the one who hit them on this particular weekend. He was not the only one-event winner left off the national team, which I presume will become more common going forward, as the all-around once again becomes a key factor. Oyama, on the other hand, was not only an existing national team member, but won an international medal earlier this year/late last year, can’t recall, which I’m sure helped contribute to his selection amongst a generally young and inexperienced group.

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    1. Oh and, the points system at this event was used for advancement to the second day. But, as noted above, was not part of the official team selection criteria.

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