Former Illini Justin Spring earns spot on 2006 U.S. World Championships team.
Aug. 21, 2006
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Former Illini Justin Spring earned a spot on the 2006 USA Men's World Championships team to be held on Oct. 14-22 in Aarhus, Denmark, USA Gymnastics announced today. Spring, also a member of the 2005 World Team, earned a ticket onto the six-member squad despite sitting out the U.S. Championships after suffering an ankle injury during the World Cup in Belgium.
"Under the circumstances of not being able to compete at U.S. Championships due to injury and having to petition for a spot on the team, this a great honor," Spring said. "It is a great feeling to know that the committee has that much faith and confidence in me."
Spring, a four-time NCAA Champion for the Illini, concluded his illustrious career after grabbing the 2006 Nissen-Emery Award, an honor that goes to the top male gymnast and is equivalent to the Heisman Trophy, and earning a total of 12 All-America honors over four years. Spring, along with his selection to the World team, also will continue his involvement with the Fighting Illini as a intern coach during the 2006-07 season while he finishes his degree.
Spring joins 2006 U.S. all-around champion Alexander Artemov of Morrison, Colo./Team Chevron, Guillermo Alvarez of Denver, Colo./Team Chevron, Jonathan Horton of Houston/University of Oklahoma, Clay Strother of Jasper, Texas/Team Chevron and Kevin Tan of Fremont, Calif./Team Chevron. Alternates are David Durante of Garfield, N.J./Team Chevron and David Sender of Arlington Heights, Ill./Stanford University.
"Being named to the team has given me a lot more confidence and motivation to go out there and do my best," Spring said. "I want to prove that they made the best choice in picking me for the team."