SALT LAKE CITY — During the course of any collegiate gymnastics season, fans of the University of Utah’s team, famously known as the Red Rocks, get to see the gymnasts live and in person maybe five or six times.
That's only five or six opportunities to watch MyKayla Skinner, MaKenna Merrell-Giles, Kari Lee and Missy Reinstadtler, among others, in action.
As disappointing as that can be for the 15,000-plus fans that fill the Huntsman Center each winter, the number events staged in Utah will be going up, at least for each of the next three seasons.
The Pac-12 and the Maverik Center, located in West Valley City, announced a three-year partnership Wednesday morning that will bring the Pac-12 Gymnastics Championships to Utah for the 2019, '20 and '21 seasons.
“The Pac-12 is thrilled to bring one of our premier events to the Salt Lake Valley,” Pac-12 senior associate commissioner Teresa Gould said. “With a rich tradition of excellence across the sport and a strong following among Utah’s community, we look forward to this showcase featuring some of the top gymnasts in the world competing at Maverik Center.”
“The Maverik Center of West Valley City is honored to host the Pac-12 Women’s Gymnastics Championship,” added Maverik Center CEO Kevin Bruder. “Our community looks forward to hosting such an elite and esteemed event.”
The meet will take place on podium, a driving force in the decision, and marks the first time the conference championships will be held at a neutral site.
“Holding our championships on podium at a neutral site will help keep the Pac-12 schools on a level playing field with the other top teams in the nation,” Utah co-head coach Tom Farden said. “We are grateful to the Maverik Center and West Valley City for investing in our sport to make this a reality.”
The championships will take during the third weekend of March each of the next three seasons, starting Saturday, March 23 in 2019.