After taking home second place at the Pac-12 Championships over the weekend, the Bears added more hardware to their collection. Co-head coaches Elisabeth Crandall-Howell and Justin Howell were named the Pac-12 Women’s Gymnastics Coaches of the Year.
The couple has led their team to arguably its best regular season in recent memory. This year alone, the No. 5 Bears have broken four team records and have achieved their highest ranking in program history. They have also made a promising postseason debut, earning Cal’s highest finish ever at the conference championships.
Record-breaking improvement has seemed to be a tradition under the Howells. Before Justin Howell took over head-coaching duties in 2012, it had been five years since the No. 49 Bears had made an appearance at NCAA Regionals. In two years, Cal rose 33 spots in national rankings, a feat that has only been matched once in NCAA gymnastics history.
The duo has shown no signs of slowing down this season. With high postseason expectations in tow, the blue and gold will look to build on their historic Pac-12 Championships performance at NCAA Regionals on April 3.
Aiko Sudijono covers women’s gymnastics. Contact her at [email protected].