By Patricia C. Duffy

Inside Buzz is Inside Gymnastics’ weekly gymnastics news roundup feature. Here are five gymnastics headlines you should know heading into the weekend.

Feature photo by Ricardo Bufolin.

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Olympians Sam Mikulak and Alex Naddour headline U.S. Men’s P&G championships field

The 79-man field (including juniors and seniors) also features 2017 AT&T American Cup and Winter Cup Challenge champion Yul Moldauer and 2016 Olympic alternates Akash Modi, the 2017 NCAA all-around champion, and Donnell Whittenburg, the 2017 Koper (Slovenia) World Challenge Cup parallel bars gold medalist.

Be on the lookout for a full P&G Championships preview and analysis of the men’s field next week on!


Ashleigh Gnat added as a graduate assistant coach for LSU Gym

Bugs is back! 17-time All-American, four-time Southeastern Conference (SEC) event champion and 2017 NCAA Floor Champion Ashleigh Gnat is joining the LSU Gymnastics coaching staff as its graduate student assistant for player development. In this role, the 2017 AAI Award and Corbett Award winner will work with the coaching staff, attending all staff meetings and practices and learning the ins and outs of coaching.

The transition from student-athlete to student coach should be a seamless one for the outspoken and spirited Gnat. Inside wishes her the best of luck in her new role!


Tori Tatum commits to LSU

Speaking of the Tigers, LSU added Tori Tatum (Twin City Twisters) to its recruiting class for 2021-2022 this week. A current junior elite, Tatum announced on her Instagram account that she was offered a full-ride athletic scholarship and can’t wait to join the team in a few years.


2016 Olympic alternates Ragan Smith and MyKayla Skinner set to debut new floor routines

A year ago, Smith and Skinner were training near the site of the 2016 Rio Games, there to step up if an unexpected injury or illness rendered one of the Final Five unable to compete. Now, one is the overwhelming favorite to win the all-around title at 2017 P&G Championships in two weeks and the other just finished a stellar freshman season for Utah in the NCAA.

Smith and Skinner are both dynamos on floor and contribute clean, difficulty-packed routines to their all-around arsenals, and they both have new routines that we (and everyone else) are chomping at the bit to see.

Smith is expected to debut her new floor exercise just around the corner at P&Gs. Her 2016 routine, which she used to win gold at the 2017 AT&T American Cup, alluded to her youth with its “Addams Family” theme. Now that Smith is a second-year senior and 16-going-on-17, she’s supposedly upgraded to a more mature and sassy exercise.

Those wanting to see 2017 NCAA floor champion Skinner’s routine will likely have to wait a bit longer since NCAA season is still half a year away, with preview season happening during the late fall semester. Her trademark as an NCAA competitor is her double twisting double back that she brought with her when she transitioned from elite. We hope this new routine will feature that skill and the “Skinner Shimmy” among other great skills and choreography.

Until then, check out their old floor routines below:


Olympiada Thrakomakedonon crowned World Group Champion at World Gym for Life Challenge

The World Gym for Life challenge concluded last week with Athens, Greece group Olympiada Thrakomakedonon taking home gold. The 65-gymnast team (the largest of all participating groups) showcased their remarkable attention to detail and theatrics with their wolves howling before the moon routine.

Enjoy the full routine below:


See more headlines from the week here.

Inside Buzz is Inside Gymnastics’ weekly news roundup on Check out more buzz in Inside Gymnastics Magazine. The August 2017 issue is available now!

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