East Stroudsburg University Athletics

05/07/2019 | News release | Distributed by Public on 05/07/2019 07:55

Former Ohio St., U.S. Gymnastics Coach Miles Avery Named ESU’s 1st Acrobatics & Tumbling Head Coach

EAST STROUDSBURG - , a two-time USA Gymnastics Coach of the Year who brings over 25 years of experience at the collegiate and international levels, was announced Tuesday as East Stroudsburg University's first acrobatics and tumbling head coach.

Avery, who assisted four United States Olympic men's gymnastics teams and served as the personal coach for 2004 all-around gold medalist Paul Hamm, returns to where his coaching career began. He spent six years with ESU's men's gymnastics program in the 1980's, helping the program earn two Division II team championships (1983, 1984) and a U.S. Gymnastics Federation national title in 1988.

That success spring boarded Avery to an extensive list of coaching accomplishments over the next two decades which culminated with an induction into the USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame in 2017. After leaving ESU in 1989, he spent 21 years with Ohio State's men's gymnastics program. As head coach for the Buckeyes from 1997-2010, Avery led the team to five Big 10 championships and a NCAA Division I title in 2001.

'We are very excited to welcome as our first acrobatics and tumbling head coach,' said , ESU Director of Athletics. 'We are confident the sport will grow and flourish under his expert leadership. Coach Avery brings to us many years of international gymnastics experience and, more recently, acrobatics and tumbling teaching and coaching experience in North Carolina. As a former ESU coach, he knows and lives our Warrior philosophy, mission and vision.'

'I'm thrilled to welcome Miles to our ESU family,' said ESU President Marcia G. Welsh, Ph.D. 'His decades of gymnastics experience, including helping head coach Bruno Klaus achieve national success at ESU, will give our student-athletes an impressive mentor and coach as we begin our acrobatics and tumbling program. I look forward to watching our Warriors compete!'

Avery retired from Ohio State in 2010 to form the Olympic Start Elite Gymnastics Academy (OSEGA) in Asheville, North Carolina. While there, he coached the first female gymnasts in Western NC to be invited to the U.S. National Team Training Center, and he also started the first competitive acrobatics and tumbling team in the region.

Internationally, Avery worked on the coaching staff for the 1996, 2000, 2004 and 2008 U.S. Olympic men's gymnastics teams. A list of athletes personally coached include Paul Hamm (three-time Olympic medalist, first U.S. male to win an all-around gold medal at the Olympics), Blaine Wilson (five-time U.S. all-around champion, three-time Olympian), Morgan Hamm (two-time Olympian) and Raj Bhavsar (2008 Olympic team bronze medalist). Avery was recognized as the USA Gymnastics Coach of the Year in both 2005 and 2008.

'I am so honored and humbled to be given the opportunity to be the first head coach for acrobatics and tumbling at East Stroudsburg University,' Avery said. 'Acrobatics and tumbling is a rapidly growing, exciting sport, and I am thrilled to be a part of it. I cannot wait to start letting students know that there is a new opportunity to compete in college athletics. To top it off, this move allows me to be closer to my family in Pennsylvania.'

During Avery's 21 years as an assistant and head coach at Ohio State, the Buckeyes won nine Big 10 titles and two NCAA team championships (1996, 2001). Avery's teams also stood out in the classroom, as Ohio State was honored as National Academic Team Champions by the Collegiate Gymnastics Association in 2007.

A Philadelphia native, Avery earned a bachelor's degree in accounting from Temple University. A four-year gymnastics letterwinner for the Owls, he was the oldest city finals qualifier on NBC's American Ninja Warrior in both 2015 and 2016.

Acrobatics and tumbling is a derivative of the balance and grace of acrobatics, the power of gymnastics and the uniqueness of competitive cheer. Governed by the National Collegiate Acrobatics and Tumbling Association (NCATA), it is an all-female collegiate sport in compliance and held to the same standards as other sports. Membership has grown from six to 31 schools since the first year of competition in 2010.

ESU added acrobatics and tumbling as its 22nd intercollegiate sport back in March, with competition to begin during the 2019-20 academic year. Interested recruits are encouraged to contact Coach Avery at [email protected].