COLUMBUS, Ohio – Brandon Wynn, a senior and two-time captain of the Ohio State men’s gymnastics team, was named a 2011 Nissen-Emery award finalist by the College Gymnastics Association.
“It is always an honor to be put in a category like this,” interim co-head coach Blaine Wilson said. “You will always be known as one of the best gymnasts in collegiate history. Brandon should be proud and there is no one that can ever take that away from him. I also think this will make him hungrier to help Ohio State try to win the Big Ten Championships this weekend.”
“Brandon has proved himself over the four years at Ohio State as one of the top gymnasts in terms of the Big Ten and the NCAA but also in the country with his international experience,” interim co-head coach Doug Stibel said. “Being in that company and having the chance to be an award winner with some of the best gymnasts to compete in this sport is a tremendous honor for him and this program.”
As he did a season ago, Wynn, the reigning Big Ten and NCAA rings champion, has continued his dominance for the Buckeyes on the event, winning four titles this season, including a season-high 16.100 at Oklahoma Jan. 15. The native of Voorhees, N.J., and product of Will-Moor School of Gymnastics has not lost on the event since September 2009, winning the rings event 17-consecutive times (23 overall). Against Brockport in the Buckeyes’ home opener Feb. 12, Wynn won the rings event with a 15.700 and also notched a season-high 15.200 on parallel bars for first overall and a season-high 14.800 on floor exercise for second overall. He concluded his final regular season competition winning the rings event with a 15.500 in a tri-meet vs. Illinois and Nebraska March 12.
A two-time All-American, Wynn won the 2010 NCAA rings title with a 15.900 mark at the individual finals in West Point, N.Y. Before winning his first national title, the two-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree claimed the Big Ten rings championship with a 15.850 score at individual finals at St. John Arena in Columbus. The three-time All-Big Ten honoree, Wynn earned All-America status for the first time in 2009 after finishing eighth in the all-around at the NCAA Championships in Minneapolis, Minn.
Wynn had a summer to remember in 2010 after claiming the rings national title at the VISA Championships in Harford, Conn. He won the event with a two-day total of 32.250, becoming the first Buckeye to take the rings title since two-time Olympian Raj Bhavsar won the event at the 2004 championships. In the all-around competition, Wynn finished third overall – the highest mark by an active NCAA student-athlete – with a combined total of 178.700, including a career-high 90.000 (program record) in the all-around during the finals.
With his performance, Wynn was named to his second U.S. national team and his first U.S. World Team, earning one of six spots to represent his country at the 2010 World Championships last fall in Rotterdam, Netherlands. The two-time first team CGA Academic All-America Scholar Athlete, Wynn finished 10th overall on rings in the elite world competition – the highest place by a U.S. member.
Four Buckeyes have won the award, including Mike Racanelli in 1990, Kip Simons in 1994, Blaine Wilson in 1997 and Jamie Natalie in 2001. In the last 20 years, only Oklahoma has had more gymnasts garner the recognition with five winners. Since 1989, Illinois has had three honorees, while Minnesota and Stanford each have had two honorees. Since 1999, the Scarlet and Gray have produced a candidate to the award’s finalists list 10 of the last 13 seasons.
Each year, the prestigious Nissen-Emery Award is presented to the nation’s outstanding senior male collegiate gymnast. In addition to excellence in the sport, the winner also must be an example of good sportsmanship and maintain a high standard of scholarship throughout his college career.
The winner will be announced at the 2011 CGA/NCAA Annual Awards Ceremony and Men’s Gymnastics Championship Banquet April 13 in Columbus, Ohio, the site of the 2011 NCAA Men’s Gymnastics Championships.
The Nissen-Emery Award Finalists:
Brandon Wynn (Ohio State)
Tim Gentry (Stanford)
Bryan Del Castillo (Cal)
Kyle Bunthuwong (Cal)
Daniel Ribeiro (Illinois)
Steven Legendre (Oklahoma)
Chris Cameron (Michigan)