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Olympic silver linings and the start of football training camp

Gymnast Mykayla Skinner is twisted in a backbend with her arms on the vault as she performs during the artistic gymnastics women’s apparatus final at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Sunday, Aug. 1, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan.
Mykayla Skinner of the United States, performs on the vault during the artistic gymnastics women’s apparatus final at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Sunday, Aug. 1, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan.
Ashley Landis, Associated Press

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Former Utah gymnast MyKayla Skinner produced one of the best storybook endings of the Summer Games in Tokyo by earning a silver medal in the individual vault finals last weekend. Skinner replaced Simone Biles in the competition for Team USA.

“To make this comeback and be kind of one in a million to make this, it’s so cool to show age is just a number and that anything is possible if you work hard and dream for it,” Skinner told USA Today. “I’m so honored I never gave up.”

Meanwhile, August has arrived and so has the start of Utah’s fall camp. The Utes are eager to get to work after last season’s strange, truncated 2020 campaign.

“Excited for the season to get going. Hoping and praying for a normal season. It’s going to be great to get fans back in the stands,” said coach Kyle Whittingham during Pac-12 football media day in Los Angeles. “We have a huge home field advantage at Utah. We’ve had 10-plus years of sellouts in a row. We’ve just added a south end zone expansion to the stadium to bring it up about 5,000 or 6,000 more seats. Looking forward to that home field advantage we have at Rice-Eccles.”

Utah kicks off the 2021 season on Sept. 2 against Weber State.

Numbers game

15.033: MyKayla Skinner’s score on her first vault in the individual competition on her way to earning an Olympic silver medal.

14.916: Skinner’s average vault score.

10.7: Points per game averaged by Both Gach at Utah before transferring to Minnesota.

From the archives

Extra points

  • Ty Jordan’s absence still weighs on Utah’s program (Deseret News)
  • What should be expected from Utah out of the gate? (Deseret News)
  • Why Both Gach returned to the U. (Deseret News)
  • Why Whittingham calls his team ‘the most diverse’ in America (Deseret News)
  • What Britain Covey is doing to help resolve teammates’ vaccine concerns (Deseret News)

Fanalyst

Comments from Deseret News readers

“Absolutely wonderful to see a local girl/lady medal. Amazing accomplishment. This Cougar is proud of this Ute for her dedication, talent and great attitude. Congratulations!”

— RockOnAmerica

“You didn’t need to be in the stands to fall in love with this kid. Thank you for this great article. It brings back some painful memories, but some good ones too. RIP Ty (Jordan). You were something to see. and to pay attention to.”

— xert

Up next

Sept. 2 | TBD | Football | vs. Weber State | @Rice-Eccles Stadium