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BATON ROUGE – The LSU men’s gymnastics program celebrates its tremendous history and success with a reunion weekend around campus starting Friday.
The men’s gymnastics program spanned from 1968-1984 in NCAA competition, and the Tigers competed as one of the top programs in the nation.
Members of the team and coaching staff will take part in a round of golf at the University Club on Friday as well as a jambalaya dinner at four-time letterwinner Caesar Garcia’s house Friday night.
The program will be honored during the LSU football game against Kentucky Saturday, and prior to the game the members will gather for a tailgate with the National L Club.
The reunion will conclude with a Sunday morning brunch in two locations in town.
“This reunion is a long time coming,” said Paul Tellarico, a Southern Intercollegiate Gymnastics League (SIGL) champion for the Tigers on the high bar in 1977. “We have worked very hard to put this together. I've talked to guys all over the country, many I haven't spoken to in 30 years. I'm very excited, and everyone is looking forward to it.”
In 16 seasons as a varsity sport at LSU the men’s gymnastics team accumulated a 189-78 record, produced 22 All-America selections, recorded eight NCAA Top 10 finishes, finished as the NCAA national runner up in 1975 and 1976 and earned three NCAA Individual national titles.
Jerry George (1969-70), Jerry Smith (1971-72) and Armando Vega (1973-84) led the Tigers as head coach in the program’s history. With the program built on a strong foundation by his predecessors, Vega took the reins of the team and built it into one of the top contenders in the nation.
In 12 seasons as coach, Vega led the Tigers to a 167-60 record with eight SIGL titles, two national runner-up finishes, and he was named NCAA National Coach of the Year in 1977 and 1978.
“It is going to be exciting to see all of the guys that I coached along with those who were here prior to my taking over the program,” Vega said. “We were a very successful program, and I am elated to give the guys the recognition that they deserve.
“It has been so many years, so it is rather exciting to see all of them come back and take the time and effort to get the team back together and root on the Tigers this weekend.”



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