By Jennifer Van Tuyl
Big 12 Campus Correspondent
When Megan Ferguson arrived on the University of Oklahoma campus she was not a big name in the collegiate gymnastics world. But the 4’11 freshman would soon make a big impact for the OU women’s gymnastics team.
Ferguson was recruited by many schools because of her amazing balance beam skills, a two-time national champion, and her natural athletic ability. The only thing Ferguson lacked was a good uneven bars routine. This did not discourage head coach K.J. Kindler because she saw the potential Ferguson possessed.
“You could tell that she had natural ability in her swinging and her bodyline,” Kindler said. “A lot of things that we look at when recruiting is does she have the potential to get better? She had the necessary tools on bars she just didn’t have the bigger level skills.”
Competition by competition, Ferguson showed that potential competing at a high-level on beam, floor and the uneven bars.
“I was hoping to help out my team on beam and floor, but I definitely wasn’t expecting to do bars,” Ferguson said. “I also wasn’t expecting to be competing as much but it has all been really exciting.”
Throughout the season Ferguson faced many schools that did not recruit her but she did not let that affect her because being an underdog is something she has never paid attention to.
“I didn’t feel like I had anything to prove because nobody knows who I am in the college world,” Ferguson said. “I just wanted to go out there and show people who I am. I was excited to get out there and start doing things and hope that everything would fall into place.”
Make a name for herself is exactly what Ferguson did. During the 2009 season she posted highs of 9.925 on beam, 9.85 on floor and 9.9 on bars and was the only freshman in Big 12 history to win multiple titles at the conference championship (Ferguson won titles on bars and beam). The instant success was not a surprise to Kindler because Ferguson exhibits what it takes to be a successful gymnast.
“She will do or die for gymnastics,” Kindler said. “She eats, sleeps and breathes it. She takes advice very seriously and if we recommend she does something she always does it. She is the perfect student. As a coach-to-athlete relationship, if you ask her to do something you know she is going to do exactly what you asked of her. She doesn’t blow it off, she doesn’t think it’s not important or doesn’t put other things in front of it. She definitely puts gymnastics as a priority in her life and she is very respectful of what you ask of her.”
While Ferguson’s entrance to OU didn’t make national headlines in the gymnastics world, she has quickly risen into a star on the collegiate scene.