Diab to represent US in Italy


Austin Yattoni

Illinois’ Alex Diab performs on the still rings during the meet against Iowa at Huff Hall on Saturday, Jan. 26, 2019.

By Nithin Reddy, Staff Writer

After a historic four-year career competing for the Illinois men’s gymnastics team, Alex Diab will represent the U.S. in this summer’s World University games in Naples, Italy.  

Diab is coming off another stellar season with the Illini, where he won his fourth straight Big Ten title on still rings and his second straight national title in the event. Additionally, Diab has set the school record for still rings titles with 31 and was also named a six-time NCAA All-American, a four-time All-Big Ten and a three-time Academic All-Big Ten.

The World University games are held once every two years and consist of some of the best young athletes in the world. The U.S has only won a single gold medal since the games started back in 2011 and it has yet to win a still rings medal. Diab aims change that, as his own track record looks strong. With Diab’s career over at Illinois, he’s started to plan for his future in the sport and in life.

“I have one more year to finish school for my dental school prerequisites and I’m going to continue training and push for the senior national team and try to compete internationally,” Diab said.

The World University games will help Diab as he pursues a professional career. Along with Diab, Penn State’s Stephen Nedoroscik will compete for team USA on the pommel horse. Nedoroscik has some history with Illinois, as he beat the Illini’s standout junior, Michael Paradise, on pommel horse three times during the season. The games will start on July 2 with gymnastics events beginning on July 3 and going until July 14.

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