Oregon State gymnast Madi Dagen closes out her career after five years with the Beavers


OMN Sports

Maggie Akins, Sports Contributor

During her five year tenure, Madi Dagen accomplished personal bests, made memories to last a lifetime, and experienced mental health that just about every college student and athlete endures. 

“We made history, we beat teams we shouldn’t have beat, and the atmosphere in Gill [Coliseum] was like something I’ve never experienced before … It was so much fun,” Dagen said. 

Dagen has been one of the most beloved athletes at Oregon State, as the crowd would always cheer for her extra loud when she came out of the tunnel, or as little kids would wait by the exit to get her autograph. 

That also has something to do with the love that Beaver Nation gives to its athletes, which is something that she touched on. 

“It’s been awesome to see Beaver Gym evolve into this, not underdogs anymore … now it’s like, ‘No, we’re the top of the top,’” Dagen said. 

Gymnastics is all about perfection, and perfecting your routines. Sometimes it’s not going to come out the way you want or the year isn’t going to come out the way you want. There’s always going to be a performance that you don’t want. 

Dagen said one piece of advice she would give to younger gymnasts is that sometimes you need to remind yourself how cool you are because most people cannot do what they do.

When getting the itch for the goal of going to college gymnastics, you work day and night for it. Committing hours of your life to be able to get there. Dagen did that and it went by in a blink of an eye. 

In her experience, freshman year and her last year were her most impactful. 

For one, her freshman year the team went to nationals. That performance made Dagen want to come back and keep improving further. 

“Every year has its own special thing,” Dagen said. 

Like her freshman year, this last season for Dagen was something special for her. There of course is always something about your last year, but for Dagen, her growth within her confidence and mental health excelled.

When going to college, and when you near the end, you often reflect on your first year and your last year. 

“This is going to sound cheesy, but it really is true to just not take things too seriously and don’t stress the small stuff, because at the end of the day, it literally goes by in a blink,” Dagen said. 

This is where the topic of graduation can start to get sentimental because it means you look back on everything. Dagen is going to miss a lot of things about Corvallis, but what she will miss the most is the community and the little things. 

As an athlete and a part of a team, Dagen has seen Beaver gym grow into a more popular standing. 

It almost makes you think, “Why not us?” about Beaver gymnastics, which is why Dagen’s mom, aunt, and cousin got shirts made at the end of the year with that very statement.

“My end goal was always college gymnastics,” Dagen said. 

She completed that ambition and she has made her mark on Beaver Nation as she says goodbye to Oregon State.

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