Senior finished sixth in the all-around for the session
Senior is making her fourth and final appearance in the NCAA Championships
Lions finish fourth in Norman Regional
NCAA Norman Regional can be viewed live and for free via the NCAA Website
The Nittany Lions are set to compete on April 6 in Norman
Jeff Thompson is entering his third year as the head coach of Penn State women's gymnastics after being named the ninth head coach in program history on July 15, 2010. The two-time SEC Coach of the Year, joined the Nittany Lion family in 2010 after 11 successful years at Auburn University in Alabama. He is joined at Penn State by his wife Rachelle, who serves as the associate head coach.
In his first season at the helm of the Nittany Lion program, Thompson guided the Nittany Lions to a second place finish in the Big Ten Championship, with two gymnastics earning individual event titles, and a berth in the NCAA Regional Championships as the No. 2 seed. He coached three Nittany Lions to All-Big Ten honors, and Sharaya Musser, a Honda Award nominee advanced to the NCAA National Championship to represent Penn State. Outside the gym, the Nittany Lions excelled in the classroom and community. Five gymnasts earned Academic All-Big Ten laurels and the team was awarded the Team Community Service Award.
In 11 years as the head of the Auburn University women's gymnastics program, Thompson was named the SEC Coach of the Year and NCAA Regional Head Coach of the Year in 2003 and 2008. Despite facing stiff competition in the SEC, Thompson's teams improved each year. The Tigers qualified for NCAA Regionals eight consecutive years.
In 2010, Thompson coached Auburn to upset victories against then No. 8 Arkansas and No. 12 Kentucky. In addition, the Tigers defeated then No. 8 and five-time defending National Champion Georgia for the first time in program history.
As a coaching team at Auburn, the Thompsons produced four NCAA All-Americans, four All-SEC team members, three SEC Gymnast of the Year winners and one SEC Freshman of the Year. They coached nine NCAA Championship individual qualifiers and four NCAA Regional Event Champions. Their gymnasts also excelled in the classroom and in the community in their 11 years with the program. There were three SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year winners, three CoSIDA/ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District members, 41 NACGC/W Academic All-Americans and 53 SEC Academic Honor Roll selections.
Prior to arriving at Auburn, Thompson was the assistant coach at Louisiana State University from 1994-99 and was the Junior Olympic Program Director at the Cincinnati Gymnastics Academy in Fairfield, Ohio from 1993-94. Thompson also held assistant coaching positions at two Big Ten institutions, Illinois and Wisconsin, as well as serving as a graduate assistant coach at Kentucky.
Thompson earned a Bachelor of Arts in Education with an emphasis in Physical Education from Kentucky in 1985. He went on to receive a Master of Science in Biomechanics in 1995.
Jeff and Rachelle have two sons, Parker (17) and Griffin (15).