Leftovers & Loose Ends: Denver Holiday Break Update

  • How do you replace gymnast superstar Nina McGee? Just sign-up one of the best Freshman in the country. DU’s  Maddie Karr posted the highest score at the Crimson & Gold meet in three events – 9.850 on vault, a 9.900 on the floor and a 9.950 on the beam.

  • While swimming only seems to capture the imagination every 4-years (Olympics), DU is tearing it up again in the pool with men ranked 21st nationally and women ranked 22nd – the best mid-major program in the land. Individual DU swimmers and relay teams are ranked nationally. They are breaking school records every time they hit the water and continue to be recognized with national and league awards. Six DU swimmers are ranked nationally – which means, essentially, they are world class swimmers. Last month, here is where some of DU swimmers were ranked.
    • Colin Gilbert – 12th fastest US swimmer in 1000 freestyle
    • Anton Loncar is 13th fastest in the 200 backstroke
    • Amanda Sanders is 14 fastest in the 200 breaststroke
    • Maddie Myers is 14 fastest in the 400 individual medley in the 400
    • Morgan McCormick is the 15th fastest in the 200 backstroke
    • Tim Cottam is the 21st fastest 200 breaststroke

*Anyone who has been on a swim team , even at the country club level, knows how  hard this to do. While we do not cover much swimming, we can’t help but be impressed with the  dedication and success of these student athletes. Congratulations to head coaches Brian Shrader  (men) and Alicia Franklin (women).

  • Congratulations to women’s lacrosse coach Liza Kelly on the recent recruiting class. Wow – their new 8 National letters of Intent signees seem to have every title, award, and honor available for high school lacrosse. Almost impossible to single out just one. You can get their profiles on twitter – @DU_WLAX. Also, this year’s team has added 10 new members – read about them here. They will be the first class to begin their playing career for DU in the Big East Conference.
  • Soccer head coach Jamie Franks and his staff for men’s soccer have been named NSCAA National Coaching Staff of the Year. Read more here. Two undefeated seasons in a row and their first trip to the College Cup in Houston made this a well deserved award.
  • While the women’s basketball team is off to a slow start (3-10), freshman Lauren Loven, a guard from Scottsdale Arizona, is scoring in double figures (10.8) and shooting a blistering .447 from downtown – .001 better than sharpshooter Joe Rosga on the men’s team.
  • Jim Montgomery is proving to be a great recruiter with talent coming from far and wide. We will have a recruiting update published just after the New Year.
  • DU Men’s Lacrosse was named the 2017 preseason #1 team by Inside Lacrosse. 2017 opponents North Carolina, Notre Dame, and Duke (they’re all coming to Denver!) are ranked #2, #4, and #8 respectively. As the exhibition against Johns Hopkins on January 28th draws nearer, we put up a full season preview.

6 thoughts on “Leftovers & Loose Ends: Denver Holiday Break Update”

    1. I get your point – especially for swimming. They truly can compete with Power 5 conferences – toe to toe. Basketball to this point is still strongly divided between the Power 5 and all the rest. Yes, there are upsets but not many.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. 5bwest, let’s call 1970 the start of the modern era of college basketball. (Walton UCLA era) Look at who played in the last 46 final fours: 33 teams from Big 5 power conferences and 25 teams from your mid-major conferences. 5 of the teams reaching the final 4 were not in one of the power conferences when they reached a final 4. Thus we actually have 28 majors and 30 mid-majors teams making the final 4 since 1970.
        Footnote- 1979 Final 4. Two DU transfers played in that remarkable season. Center Jim Mitchum for DePaul and Bob Heaton for Indiana State.
        Sub footnote: Heaton is from Indiana. He took his official DU visit with another kid from Indiana. Farm kid named Larry Bird.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Impressive to hear about the freshman gymnast. Although DU has a kick-ass gymnastics program, I have been a little perplexed by why the team seems to get stuck in the 10-15 rankings range. Just wondering if there is something specific about gymnastics that makes it harder to break through into the top 5. Not to sound greedy or anything…

    Hopefully women’s lacrosse can step it up. The mens lacrosse and mens soccer teams definitely have the upper hand on the womens’ teams lately!


    1. Maybe with McGee’s success, the DU gymnastics team can recruit more depth. Take a look at the incoming women’s lax recruits – impressive. I think CU adding lax put DU on their heels for a few years. Now, with the Big East affiliation they have a bigger talent pool to pursue.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Depth is why DU Gymnastics cannot seem to break into the top 12 and make the NCAA tournament on a consistent basis. Women’s Gymnastics is one of the only NCAA sports where most of the primary talent pool is very small and already passed its peak competitive years, as the best female gymnasts peak at age 16-19 and by the time they hit their 20s, are almost all past their gymnastics prime. This fact, as well as injuries and body changes, shrinks the talent pool of uber-talented gymnasts available, and DU has not been able to recruit enough of the very top talent, as some other schools can. Melissa has done a great job with what she talent can get, but it’s a tougher slog to get to the top 12.

    Liked by 2 people

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