GOPHERS GEAR UP FOR REGIONAL SPRINTS COMPETITION
The University of Minnesota rowing team heads to Oak Ridge, Tenn., to compete at the 2007 Aramark South/Central Sprints, May 12-13. The Golden Gophers will compete in three events, the Varsity Four, the Second Varsity Eight and the First Varsity Eight. Minnesota will compete in Heat 2 of the Varsity Four event at 10:20 a.m., the Second Varsity Eight at 11 a.m. (Heat 2), while the Gophers’ First Varsity Eight is scheduled for a noon race. The Gophers will then race in the semifinals that afternoon, which is based off their morning heat finish. The sprints course is the same course that will be used at the 2007 NCAA Championships, May 25-27.
The 2007 sprints will feature 23 teams, including all seven from the Big Ten Conference. Of the 23 teams, nine teams are ranked in the Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association First Varsity Eight poll. Last year five teams from the South and Central regions were selected to participate at the NCAA Championships (Notre Dame, Michigan State, Ohio State, Tennessee and Wisconsin), while Minnesota was selected as an at-large 1V8 bid. Listed below include all of the teams:
GOPHERS IN THE RANKINGS
Minnesota’s First Varsity Eight is ranked the highest it has ever been in school history, currently at No. 7 in the country. The Gophers rank second among Big Ten 1V8 boats, with Michigan holding the spot ahead of them at No. 6. At the South/Central Sprints, nine 1V8 boats are ranked in the CRCA poll, including four in the top 10 (No. 3 Notre Dame, No. 5 Virginia, Michigan and Minnesota).
GOPHERS WIN 2007 BIG TEN CHAMPIONSHIPS
Minnesota won four events and medaled in all six en route to a Big Ten Championship title on April 28 in Madison, Wis. The Gophers set a Big Ten Championship record when they collected 150 points. Minnesota won the Second Varsity Eight, the First Varsity Four, the Second Varsity Four and the Novice Eight race. Along with their four wins, Minnesota finished second in the First Varsity Eight and third in the Second Novice Eight.
BARNES AND DAVIS EARN BIG TEN HONORS
Minnesota All-American and two-time first-team All-Big Ten honoree Jenny Barnes added another accolade to her list when she was named the Big Ten Athlete of the Year following the Big Ten Championship. It is the first honor by a Golden Gopher since the inception of the program in 2000-01. Along with Barnes’ honor, head coach Wendy Davis was named the Big Ten Coach of the Year for the second-straight year.
ON THE DOCKET
Minnesota will await to hear if they will be one of 12 teams selected to compete at the 2007 NCAA Championships, May 25-27, also at Oak Ridge, Tenn. The Gophers earned a First Varsity Eight at-large bid to make their first appearance on the national level.