Three-time SEC Coach of the Year Jeff Graba led Auburn to the NCAA Championship Super Six in 2015 for the first time in 22 years as the the Tigers broke or tied 52 program records.
Entering his sixth season at the helm of the Auburn gymnastics program in 2016, Graba has grown the Tigers to record heights.
Graba was named SEC Coach of the Year each of the last two seasons in 2014 and 2015 and for the third time in the last four. He was named SEC co-Coach of the Year in 2012.
Auburn's sixth place finish at the Super Six was the Tigers' second best in history and highest since 1993 with a NCAA nationals record score of 197.075. The Tigers also had a program record Super Six score of 195.625.
Auburn reached the 2015 NCAA Championship for the first time since 2003 and for only the fourth time overall as the Tigers tied a school-best with a runner-up finish at the NCAA Regional with a regional record score of 196.900. Auburn's No. 2 regional seed was the highest in history.
The Tigers broke or tied 52 program records in 2015 with six of the top eight scores in program history. The Tigers also scored record team totals in the SEC Championship, NCAA Regional, NCAA Semifinal and the NCAA Super Six. Seventeen of the top 20 scores in program history have now been achieved under Graba and his staff since 2012.
Auburn defeated seven top 10 teams in 2015, haivng only defeated seven top 10 teams in its history prior to 2015. The victories came against No. 4 LSU, No. 6 Michigan, No. 7 UCLA, Georgia (twice as No. 9, once as No. 10) and No. 9 Nebraska. Auburn's victory against No. 4 LSU in the NCAA Semifinal was the highest ranked team the Tigers have ever defeated.
Auburn was ranked in the top 10 for 10 consecutive weeks, a school record. Auburn has only been ranked in the top 10 16 total weeks in the last 20 years combined.
Auburn set school overall records in a three-meet span, capped with a 197.750 in the win vs. No. 9 Georgia in the first sellout in program history with a crowd of 7,424 in Auburn Arena. It was only the Tigers' fourth victory over Georgia in 80 meetings with the others coming in 1975, 1977 and 2010.
The Tigers finished fourth in the SEC Championship after competing in the coveted night session for the first time in history while also defeating Georgia for the second straight time, a first in program history.
The Tigers finished the regular season ranked eighth nationally, the highest finial regular season ranking in history with its program record RQS of 197.045.
Auburn's RQS score of 197.025 heading into the 2015 SEC Championship was the highest in the school's history as the Tigers' set a school record SEC Championship score of 196.925 finishing fourth, its best SEC finish in 22 years.
Auburn ranked fifth nationally in attendance by averaging a school record 6,188 with a program record 30,940 fans attending the five home meets in 2015.
Three Tigers earned All-America honors.
Caitlin Atkinson earned NAGC/W regular season first-team All-America honors in the all-around. At the NCAA Championship, Atkinson won All-America first-team honors in all-around by finishing third with 39.550 and won beam with a career-high tying 9.950.
Megan Walker earned NAGC/W regular season second-team All-American honors on beam while Walker and Bri Guy both earned NCAA Championship All-America second-team honors on beam with a pair of 9.85s.
Three Tigers earned All-SEC honors in 2015 in Megan Walker, Lexus Demers and Abby Milliet, the first Auburn freshman to earn the honor since Caitlin Atkinson in 2013. Milliet also garnered Freshman All-SEC honors.
Associate head coach Jenny Rowland and assistant Kurt Hettinger were named 2015 NCAA co-Assistant Coaches of the Year.
Atkinson was named SEC Gymnast of the Week while MJ Rott was selected SEC Specialist of the Week after the Georgia win, the first time in Auburn history that two Tigers received accolades the same week.
Auburn had a school record away meet 197.025 vs. No. 6 Alabama in a non-conference Elevate the Stage meet at Legacy Arena in Birmingham as Caitlin Atkinson broke Auburn's all-around record in consecutive weeks with a 39.750. She is the first gymnast in Auburn history to win two all-around titles vs. Alabama in the same season.
Auburn's 197.025 was the highest score in history vs. Alabama.
Auburn scored a 197 or higher six times in the 2015 season, and the Tigers had only had four 197 scores in history prior.
The Tigers were ranked seventh nationally on March 9, 2015, after the Alabama meet with a school record 197.02 Regional Qualifying Score. It was then the highest RQS ranking this late into the season in history prior to the RQS heading into the SEC Championship.
Auburn was ranked seventh nationally on Feb. 23, 2015, after scoring a 196.875 at Missouri, the highest away score in program history.The RQS score of 196.610 was the then highest in program history, and the No. 7 RQS ranking was the second-highest ever for Auburn.
A week prior, the Tigers were ranked eighth nationally after setting a then school record with a 197.300 vs. No. 2 LSU.
The Tigers were ranked ninth on Feb. 9, 2015, after recording a 196.825, the highest team score in program history at Alabama and the then second-highest away score ever.
Auburn was ranked 12th nationally in the 2015 preseason poll, the highest preseason ranking in history. The Tigers recorded a 197.075 defeating No. 12 Arkansas, marking the third highest score in school history while also setting an all-time high on bars with a 49.525.
Through the Alabama meet on March 8, 2015, the Tigers scored 197 or higher seven times in the last 25 meets, a plateau that had only been reached once in the program's previous 38 years of competition. The top six scores and 12 of the top 14 scores in program history have now been achieved under Graba, including 11 in the last three years. Auburn has recorded scores over 197.000 four times in 2015.
Auburn averaged 6,188 fans per home meet in 2015, for a total of 30,940 in attendance over the year. Both are program records and helped Auburn to the fifth-highest average attendance in the nation.
Auburn gymnastics, which was ranked as high as 10th nationally before finishing ranked 13th for the second-straight season in 2014, has continued to rise during Graba's tenure. His fourth season in 2014 was his best thus far in all aspects. One of the many high points in the season came with a win at No. 10 Arkansas 196.550-196.100 for the Tigers first win in six meetings in Fayetteville.
Auburn set a season attendance record with 27,888 in Auburn Arena with an average of 5,578 for the five home meets. The 2014 season also marked the fifth-straight season that season ticket sales have grown. Auburn's home attendance average ranked eighth among women's sports in the SEC while the total of 59,827 that saw the Tigers in home and away meets in 2014 ranked seventh nationally.
Auburn (197.000) posted its second 197 plus score of 2014 against Missouri, marking the first time that an Auburn team has accomplished the feat.
Auburn's berth in the Baton Rouge regional was the 12th-straight year the Tigers had reached NCAA postseason competition. Auburn won the SEC Gymnastics Championship afternoon session for the second year in a row and finished fifth overall.
Caitlin Atkinson and MJ Rott were named National Association of Collegiate Gymnastics Coaches/Women regular season All-Americans. Atkinson, Brittany Webster and Megan Walker were named All-SEC.
At the SEC Championship, Atkinson scored 9.875 on vault and 9.85 on balance beam to earn All-SEC honors on both events. Walker was named All-SEC on both uneven bars and balance beam with scores of 9.85 and 9.9, respectively. Webster's 9.800 on floor earned All-SEC honors. Rott was named to the all-freshman team on vault and in the all-around competition while also being a SEC Freshman of the Week selection.
Walker was named to the SEC-Community Service Team and 10 gymnasts were named to the SEC Academic Honor Roll while two freshmen were on the SEC First-Year Academic Honor Roll.
Auburn posted a vault total of 49.400 against Florida, just missing the program record of 49.500 against Denver in 2008. That score is the highest since 2008, the top vault score under Jeff Graba and the second-best in school history.
In 2013, the high point of the season came in Auburn's record win over No. 6 LSU with a program-record score of 197.175. The Tigers also added the then-fourth-highest team score in program history with a 196.725 at Missouri.
The Tigers had an Auburn record 196.700 at the Gainesville Regional while finishing third. Additionally, Graba mentored freshman Caitlin Atkinson to the program's first All-America honor since 2008 as Atkinson, Bri Guy and Petrina Yokay earned All-SEC accolades.
Auburn recorded six wins over top 25 programs in 2013 and attained a final season ranking of 13th. It was the second-highest finish in 20 years for the Tigers and tied for the third-highest finish in program history.
Capped by Graba being named Southeastern Conference Coach of the Year, the 2012 season included many notable achievements, including the program's highest regular season ranking since 2009 with Auburn reaching as high as No. 13. The Tigers also posted the second-highest regional score in program history with a 196.100 in the NCAA Auburn Regional.
In addition, Auburn posted two scores that at the time were in the top five in program history with totals of 196.875 against Florida and 196.700 against Southern Utah. Auburn's 2011 recruiting class was ranked in the top 10 by CollegeGymFans.com.
In 2012, Auburn gymnasts tied or set more than 40 career-best scores and totaled more than 60 season bests. Senior Kylie Shields made her second-straight trip to the NCAA Championship, while Bri Guy became the first Auburn freshman since 2005 to qualify for the national championships in the all-around competition. This marked the first time Auburn sent more than one participant to nationals since 2006.
Guy was named the program's first All-SEC selection since 2009.
Graba led Auburn to a 9-14 overall record in his first year as head coach in 2011 as the Tigers posted 26 individual titles while Auburn had a NCAA Regional score of 195.600, its highest score at a regional since 2004. Rachel Inniss and Shields both finished the season ranked in the top 20 nationally on floor and beam, respectively. Shields also qualified for the NCAA Championship in Cleveland, Ohio, in the all-around.
Graba was named Auburn head coach on August 16, 2010. He came to The Plains after spending five years as an assistant coach at Utah. While with the Utes, he was named the 2009 West Region Assistant Coach of the Year while coaching bars, collaborating on floor routines and serving as the recruiting coordinator.
During his first four years as an assistant, Utah finished as the NCAA runner-up three times and placed third once. Graba has also coached nine NCAA All-American gymnasts to 20 All-America performances.
As Utah's bars coach, he tutored Kristina Baskett to a 2006 NCAA uneven bars title as a freshman in his first trip to the NCAA Championships. He has also guided nine gymnasts to qualify for the uneven bars finals and has seen five turn in top 5 finishes.
Under Graba's leadership, Utah received the highest bars score in the preliminary session of team competition at the NCAA Championships in 2006, 2007 and 2009. In 2006, Graba also helped the Utes post the best bars score in the Super Six.
Prior to his stint at Utah, Graba spent two years as an assistant coach at Utah State. In 2005, he coached the Aggies to their first Western Gymnastics Conference championship and their first regional appearance in three years. In addition to his coaching duties, he served as the head of recruiting and assisted with the strength and conditioning program.
From 1995-2003, Graba was the co-owner and head coach of Midwest Gymnastics Club in Arden Hills, Minn. He had three gymnasts qualify Elite in his last three years with the club and had several level 8, 9 and 10 regional and national competitors. Graba coached Ashley Mutchler to a first-place finish at both the 2003 American and U.S. Challenge/Classic meets in the Senior National Elite Division.
Graba's collegiate coaching career began at Hamline University from 1992-98. While in St. Paul, Minn., his highlights included six-consecutive trips to the Division III National Championships and a runner-up finish in 1996. Eleven of his gymnasts combined to win 26 National Collegiate Gymnastics Association (NCGA) All-America citations. He also coached more than 20 scholastic All-Americans.
In addition to coaching at Hamline, Graba was also the head coach at Flips Gymnastics Center in Minneapolis from 1988-95. While there, he coached level 10 gymnast Sarah Reiling-Hildebrand, who made the 2000 and 2004 U.S. Olympic Diving Teams.
From 1988-92, he coached at both North St. Paul High School and White Bear Lake High School. He served as an assistant coach at North St. Paul from 1988-90 and at White Bear Lake from 1990-91, before becoming the head coach at North St. Paul from 1991-92.
Graba is a native of Forest Lake, Minn., and graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1992 with a bachelor's degree in economics and earned his M.B.A. from Salem International University in 2011. He and his wife, Bridget, have five children: Bryan, Jaymie, Jason, Kyla and Shayla.
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