The UCLA gymnastics team has named the successor to the retired Valorie Kondos Field as long-time assistant Chris Waller is the new Bruins head coach.
It was a fantastic season for the UCLA gymnastics team. They had Katelyn Ohashi, and Kyla Ross go viral with their hypnotic floor routines and multiple perfect 10s, they broke attendance records at home and away, and had a near perfect season, fitting for the last hoorah of former head coach Valorie Kondos Field.
Before the season began, Kondos Field (aka Miss Val) had announced that the 2019 season would be her last in Westwood, ending a 29-year tenure as the head of the UCLA gymnastics program. Though it was a fantastic ride which inspired not only UCLA and gymnastics fans but sports fans around the world, the journey came to an end a few weeks ago.
But with this end comes a new beginning as UCLA has found their next coach, long-time assistant to Miss Val, Chris Waller.
On Wednesday, UCLA Athletic Director Dan Guerrero announced the promotion of Waller as the new head coach of UCLA gymnastics. Waller has been with the Bruins for almost two decades as he will be entering his 18th season in Westwood in 2020.
Waller has been a strong supporter of Kondos Field’s vision which will help the team transition to a new era of UCLA gymnastics. As a coach, Waller has been with the Bruins through four national championship seasons (2003, 2004, 2010, 2018) and multiple Pac-12 Championships.
Waller is also a former UCLA gymnast and four-time All-American, so not only does he know the demands of a student-athlete, he knows the requirements of being a Bruin. Though many will miss the Kondos Field era, the new head coach should carry that spirit forward as we enter the Waller era. Congratulations, head coach Waller!