KUED to Premiere New Documentary About U of U Gymnastics on February 11
Utah Gymnastics: Red Rocks Retrospective
Fireworks light the ambitious faces of athletes running out of the west tunnel of the Jon M. Huntsman Center into the arena. It’s a home meet for the University of Utah’s women's gymnastics team. As many as 15,000 fans pack into the arena to cheer and flash “U” hand signs.
The fervor for today’s gymnastics program has been nurtured over decades — a momentum built from grueling practices, determination, academic achievement, and the coveted perfect 10s. Utah Gymnastics: Red Rocks Retrospective, produced by KUED’s Joe Prokop, tells the impressive story of the Red Rocks, the 10-time national champion women’s gymnastics team. It airs Monday, February 11 at 8:00 p.m. and repeats Friday, February 15 at 8:00 p.m. and Sunday, February 17 at 4:00 p.m.
With the passage of Title IX in 1972 that granted women equal rights in higher education, the University of Utah expanded opportunities for women in athletics. In 1975, the university approached Greg Marsden, a graduate student from Arkansas and former college diver who taught physical education classes, about establishing a women’s gymnastics program.
Given a space in a gym shared with intramural basketball and P.E. classes, Marsden set to work posting fliers across campus to recruit his first women’s gymnastics team. From that inauspicious beginning, he went on to create one of the most successful college athletic programs of all time.
For over 40 seasons, Marsden led the team to 10 national titles, broke attendance records, and inspired academic excellence among his gymnasts. Because of Marsden’s legacy, Utah has produced more all-American athletes than any other gymnastics program. In fact, Utah women’s gymnastics is the only team to qualify for every NCAA championship since its inception.
Beyond the athletic accomplishments he inspired, Marsden also marketed the team to attract legions of fans and thousands of season ticket holders––one of the most dedicated fan bases in all of college sports.
Utah Gymnastics: Red Rocks Retrospective features archival footage from vaults, bars, and beams to floor routines over the decades that include some of the team’s memorable high-scoring feats. The film celebrates key coaches and student athletes including Missy Marlowe, Aimee Trepanier-Preston, Lisa Mitzel, and others while showcasing the inspiring drive of the all-American gymnasts who vaulted the university’s program to success.
For more, visit kued.org/gymnastics
Mon. Feb. 11, 8PM
Fri. Feb. 15, 8PM
Sun. Feb. 17, 4PM
KUED's is Utah’s PBS station, providing the state with access to exceptional content that entertains, informs, and enriches viewers. KUED airs PBS programming, plus award-winning, locally produced documentaries and series. Recognized as one of the leading public television stations in the country, KUED is committed to serving and engaging with the Utah community through its diverse productions, as well as its educational and outreach programs. KUED is always evolving to provide Utahns with relevant programming and services while maintaining its core values of integrity, fairness, independence, education, and innovation. KUED also provides three additional broadcast channels: WORLD, PBS Kids 24/7, and Create.