Image Credit: (College Gymnastics Highlights Youtube Screenshot)

Fisk Gymnastics Opened the Door, Talladega College Has Followed

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In February 2022, Fisk University announced they were starting “the first HBCU Intercollegiate Women’s Artistic Gymnastics Team.”

In partnership with Brown Girls Do Gymnastics, the NAIA DI institution launched the new program as promised and on Friday, January 6th, 2023, it became a reality when the team competed at the Super 16 event in Las Vegas.

That put head coach Corrine Tarver and her team in the record books as the first HBCU gymnastics team to compete at an NCAA event.

“It’s humbling,” Tarver told ESPN before the meet. “Something that’s a long time coming and so I’m so proud to be able to bring the team to the floor that is a historically Black college and university. It’s the first time ever so we’re ready to go.”

Not only were they ready to go and make history, but they also made an immediate impact at the meet, especially Morgan Price.

The Bulldogs’ five-star recruit, who was originally headed to Arkansas before getting the call from Fisk, shined the brightest during the day. She competed in four events and scored the meet’s highest score on vault with a 9.9.

This past weekend, Fisk took third against #4 Michigan and #9 Denver, so they’ve had two great showings. Even better, they’re getting national attention and putting the institution and program on the map.

Other HBCUs have taken notice, particularly Talladega College.

The Alabama-based HBCU is following Fisk’s lead and partnering with Brown Girls Do Gymnastics and HBCU Gymnastics Alliance to launch the college’s first-ever women’s artistic gymnastics team.

“This historic moment will have a lasting impact. Establishing a women’s gymnastics team at Talladega College will expand opportunities for HBCU student athletes to compete in a rewarding sport that fosters discipline, confidence and success,” said Talladega College President Gregory J. Vincent. “Developing our first-ever women’s gymnastics team will also promote student and alumni engagement and pride; enhance the college’s brand; and help create a pipeline of diverse gymnasts.”

School vice president and athletic director Michael Grant echoed the excitement and pride of President Vicent.

Continue reading over at First and Pen.

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