This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2016, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Most of MyKayla Skinner's 19 years have been spent honing herself for an Olympic shot. She deferred a start with the Red Rocks until this fall, hoping to finally capture it.
Skinner is heading to Rio, but in all likelihood, she will not compete.
The Gilbert, Ariz., native didn't make the five-woman squad scheduled to compete in Brazil next month despite finishing fourth in the all-around competition at the U.S. Olympic Trials that wrapped up Sunday in San Jose. She will, however, travel with the team as one of three alternates in case of injury.
Skinner was a casualty of the selection panel headed by Martha Karolyi, the matriarch of modern U.S. gymnastics. http://www.mercurynews.com/mark-purdy/ci_30114173/purdy-selecting-gymnastics-team-an-especially-tough-process">The San Jose Mercury News offered insight into Skinner's predicament (the whole column is a good read if you're curious):
Douglas was the USA's big star four years ago in London when she won two gold medals. She has been the face of American gymnastics for a while. Even before the weekend began, common wisdom was that she'd be on the five-woman roster, no matter what.
But what about Kocian? Was she picked because of a secret payoff made amid a cloud of chalk dust? Not really. She made the top five because she is easily the USA's best uneven bars competitor a world champion and might win an individual gold medal on that apparatus. She'll also raise the overall uneven bars score in the team event.
So while it is disappointing for Skinner and Red Rocks fans, she's heading to Rio and will be part of the team. But her next competitive events are likely at the Huntsman Center.
Some more items with Utah ties:
• Junior safety Marcus Williams is on http://www.oksportshof.org/">the watch list for the Thorpe Award, given to the nation's top defensive back. Williams was also on the watch list for the Nagurski Trophy named last week, and is a returning first-team all Pac-12 safety after leading the Utes with five interceptions. There are now six Utes on NCFAA watch lists, which is akin to saying the Utes are among the 30 teams most likely to win a national championship but hey, it's July. Only so much to talk about.
• Jakob Poeltl made http://www.sltrib.com/sports/4101983-155/nba-raptors-need-jakob-poeltl-to">his NBA Summer League debut over the weekend, scoring 12 points and grabbing 14 rebounds in two games for Toronto. His best contributions so far might just be on defense: He's blocked three shots in each game. Past teammate and current teammate Delon Wright helped the Raptors win yesterday, 82-80, over Minnesota with some late points in his 13 total. In two games with the Atlanta Hawks, Brandon Taylor has yet to play. The Hawks have a game scheduled for 2:30 p.m. MDT today.
• The Pac-12 All-Stars won their first game against the Melbourne Tigers, and senior guard Lorenzo Bonam scored 16 points. The Pac-12 Network is televising the next two games, both exhibitions against the Australian national team, starting July 12 at 3:30 a.m. MDT live, and 8 p.m. MDT on re-air.