Nittany Lion Men's Gymnastics Coaches Receive Regional Awards
April 17, 2008
STANFORD, Calif. - Penn State men's gymnastics coaches Randy Jepson and Slava Boiko were honored by the College Gymnastics Association (CGA) with regional awards at its annual banquet on Wednesday evening. Jepson was named the 2008 CGA Central Region Coach of the Year while Boiko was recognized as the 2008 CGA Central Region Assistant Coach of the Year.
The awards ceremony, which is traditionally the commencement event of activities on national collegiate championships weekend, was held at the Frances C. Arrillaga Alumni Center on the host campus of Stanford University in Stanford, Calif.
For 17-year Penn State head coach Randy Jepson, the regional coach of the year award comes just two weeks after he was honored as Big Ten Coach of the Year for the second time in his distinguished career. This season, the three-time NACGC National Coach of the Year guided the Nittany Lions to the program's second Big Ten title. Penn State thrilled the home Rec Hall crowd, securing the crown in with a score of 360.450, the highest in the nation on conference championship weekend.
Jepson had three individuals earn First Team All-Big Ten honors in 2008, including all-around and parallel bars champion Casey Sandy (Brampton, Ont.) and still rings title-winner Tommy Ramos (Guaynabo, P.R.). Senior Derek Helsby (Orlando, Fla.) became just the second Nittany Lion to earn All-Big Ten recognition in three consecutive seasons and was Penn State's seventh consecutive Nissen-Emery Award finalist. For Jepson, the 2008 season was also highlighted by Sandy being unanimously named Big Ten Gymnast of the Year, Penn State's first winner of that award.
On the eve of the 2008 National Collegiate Championships, Jepson has his Nittany Lions in position to make a run at an NCAA-record 13th national title. His roster features six All-Americans and eight competitors that hold 22 top 20 spots in the national rankings.
A member of the Penn State coaching staff for the past 12 seasons, Slava Boiko is widely regarded as one of the foremost gymnastics coaches in the world. Respected and valued for his unparalleled technical expertise, he lends a wealth of international competitive and coaching experience to the Nittany Lion program. A member of the Soviet Union National Team from 1969-1976, Boiko won 13 national championships. From 1972 until 1992, he was involved in coaching four Olympic team champions and eight World Team Championships squads as a member of the USSR and Russian staffs.
Competition at the 2008 championships begins on Thurs., April 17 with two qualifying sessions, scheduled for 4 and 10 p.m. ET. Penn State, along with Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma, and William & Mary, will compete in Session I while California, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Stanford, and Temple will comprise the Session II field.
The top three teams from each qualifier will then advance to contend for the national championship at 10 p.m. ET on Fri., April 18. The individual all-around champion will also be crowned that evening. The following night, on Sat., April 19, the individual event finals will be held at 7 p.m., with six national titles and All-American honors at stake.