Oklahoma gymnastics: Maggie Nichols a finalist for Honda Sport Award

SAN JOSE, CA - JULY 08: Maggie Nichols competes on the balance beam during day 1 of the 2016 U.S. Olympic Women's Gymnastics Team Trials at SAP Center on July 8, 2016 in San Jose, California. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
SAN JOSE, CA - JULY 08: Maggie Nichols competes on the balance beam during day 1 of the 2016 U.S. Olympic Women's Gymnastics Team Trials at SAP Center on July 8, 2016 in San Jose, California. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /
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Maggie Nichols, whose record-setting Oklahoma gymnastics career was cut short in this, her senior season, because of the coronavirus crisis that has cancelled all collegiate sports, was named a finalist this week for the Honda Sport Award for Gymnastics.

Nichols, who won the award in 2019, is one of four finalists this year in the gymnastics category.

Not only is Nichols seeking to win the award in back-to-back years, she was also a finalist two other times, as a freshman and sophomore.

The Honda Sport Award is presented annually by the College Women Sports Award to the most outstanding athlete in 12 NCAA-sanctioned sports.

Nichols is the OU women’s gymnastics record-holder for perfect-10 scores in both a season and a career and in national titles. She earned five perfect scores this season and has 22 in her career, fourth-best in the nation all-time.

At the point the season was cancelled for all winter and spring sports, Nichols owned the three best all-around scores nationally this season. The two-time NCAA all-around champion won 28 event and all-around title this season alone to raise her career total to 148.

Nichols serves as the quintessential example of a student-athlete. She not only excels athletically but also in the classroom. She was named to the Academic All-Big 12 First Team in 2020 for the third consecutive year.

The other three gymnastics finalists for the 2020 Honda Sport Award are Trinity Thomas of Florida, Lexy Ramler of Minnesota and Kyla Ross of UCLA.

Nichols is also a finalist this year for AAI Award, which honors the best senior women’s gymnast in the country.

If Nichols wins the Honda Sport Award this year she will become the third Oklahoma women to win the award twice. Former Sooner gymnast Kelly Garrison won it in 1987 and ’88, and Keilani Ricketts won it for softball in 2012 and ’13.