LSU star gymnast asks fans to 'be respectful' after wild Utah scene
BATON ROUGE - The nation's most recognizable college gymnast is asking fans to take things down a notch and to "be respectful" to others after an overzealous crowd turned out for the season's first competition in Utah.
LSU's Olivia Dunne took to social media, hoping to prevent a repeat of the scene over the past weekend.
"I will always appreciate and love the support from you guys, but if you come to a meet, I want to ask you to please be respectful of the other gymnasts and the gymnastics community as we are just doing our job," she said.
Fans hoping to get a close encounter with Dunne on Friday belittled other gymnasts at the Huntsman Center. At least one parent of a Utah athlete went public with her disgust.
Dunne has become a star of social media as well as one of the nation's top collegiate gymnasts, and she now boasts an estimated worth of more than $2 million, thanks to commercial endorsements.
Utah edged past LSU by half a point — 197.275 to 196.725 — in a match that featured two of the nation's top gymnastics squads. Dunne did not compete due to injury.
“That was a solid start,” said head coach Jay Clark. “The difference in the meet was that we walked on almost all of our landings throughout the meet, and they didn’t. We can land better than that.
"I’m proud of the fight and the fact that we can go on the road and not fall. It’s a baseline start and we came very close to doing what we wanted to do, and now we’re going to move on to the next and focus on getting better.”
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