ESPN Events Set To Host Inaugural College Gymnastics Invitational In Utah

Apr 12, 2023, 11:07 AM

FILE — Utah gymnastics. (KSL TV)...

FILE — Utah gymnastics. (KSL TV)


SALT LAKE CITY – ESPN Events announced Wednesday they will be hosting an inaugural college gymnastics invitational in 2024 that will be held at the Maverik Center in West Valley City, Utah and feature the Red Rocks.

The first of its kind event has also invited Oklahoma, LSU, and UCLA to compete along with the Utes in the nationally broadcast event. All four teams are set to compete for the National Title starting on Thursday in the semifinal round. 

While the event is yet to be named, fans are encouraged to circle Saturday, January 13, 2024, on their calendars and keep their eyes tuned in to ABC where the event will be available to view.


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Utah Is The Place

The event will rotate locations every year, but the fact ESPN is starting in Utah where the Red Rocks are housed could not be more perfect from a historical standpoint of the sport.

Any die-hard Utah gymnastics fan is well aware of the team’s illustrious history and the back-breaking work of the Red Rocks’ first head coach Greg Marsden to not only put his team on the map, but to give the sport of women’s college gymnastics the attention it deserved.

There is no doubt Marsden is somewhere smiling at this next step in the progression of a sport that has seen a boom in popularity over the past five or so years.

Clint Overby, ESPN Events’ vice president seems to agree with the sentiment of Salt Lake City, and the Red Rocks being the most logical place to start.

“We want to be geographically aligned with where the center of the sport is,” Overby said of coming to Utah. “That sometimes is a moving target. But we do think that being in Salt Lake City in year one is a natural fit; the fan base is there, people like that marketplace, there’s a lot of great connections there. And the audience, from a TV standpoint, we believe has been established. So I think from our standpoint, meeting the needs from an audience standpoint is the primary goal, and then we can figure out the second part with respect to where the audience is willing to travel to or congregate to in terms of being there in person.”

Michelle Bodkin is the Utah Utes Insider for KSLsports.com and host of both the Crimson Corner Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and The Saturday Show (Saturday from 10 a.m.–12 p.m.) on The KSL Sports Zone. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram: @BodkinKSLsports

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ESPN Events Set To Host Inaugural College Gymnastics Invitational In Utah