Baton Rouge - The LSU gymnastics team is one of the best in the country and Tigers head coach DD Breaux feels she has one of the best support teams as well.
Team managers Nico Cusimano and Shonacee Oliva each took different paths towards joining the squad as team managers, but they both are vested in the Tigers success.
Cusimano's family owns a gym in Saint Louis and he wants to run a gym himself one day. He's been on Breaux's radar for a while: he was recruited to join the team as a manager when he was 13 years old.
"I was at a tailgate and DD was there and she said, would you like to be a manager?" Cusimano recalls. " I said 'yes' and she said 'okay, well when you graduate, I want you to come join my team."
Meanwhile Oliva was an LSU gymnast herself in 2013 and early 2014, but a wrist injury ended her career. Breaux offered her a medical scholarship to remain with the team and she's enjoyed the transition from athlete to manager.
"I'm able to talk with (the gymnasts) kind of like a coach and kind of like a player," Oliva said.
"I really enjoy it."