April 4, 2011
BERKELEY - Following the retirement of one of the Cal men's gymnastics program's most prolific coaches in Barry Weiner, the next head coach of the Bears had big shoes to fill. Tim McNeill - the most decorated gymnast in Bear history - fit the billing and more. The Mountain Pacific Sports Federation named McNeill its coach of the year on Monday.
In his first year at the helm, McNeill has led Cal to a 5-7 overall record, going up against top-five teams in all but two meets. Prior to the conference meet, the Bears were 2-4 against conference teams this season with an incredible five meetings with eventual MPSF Champion Stanford, which the Bears upended in the first meet of the season when the Cardinal was the No. 1-ranked team.
McNeill has overseen the development of Glen Ishino, who was named to the U.S. Senior National Team despite not competing at the Winter Cup Challenge in February. Under McNeill's direction, three Bears - Glen Ishino (Jan. 18), Donothan Bailey (Feb. 16), Kyle Bunthuwong (March 15) - have earned MPSF Gymnast of the Week honors thus far this season.
McNeill, who graduated from Cal in 2008 as a five-time NCAA champion, spent the 2009 season as a graduate intern with the Bears before training full-time with the U.S. National team this past year. McNeill, a native of Falls Church, Va., lettered at Cal from 2005-08, earning All-America honors each year. He captured his first NCAA title as a sophomore in 2006 on the pommel horse before claiming the national crown on both the pommel horse and parallel bars in 2007. McNeill then repeated his crown on the two events as a senior in 2008. He received the Pac-10 Medal in '08 as Cal's outstanding senior male student-athlete.
Weiner was named the 2010 MPSF coach of the year.