Settling into her seat alongside Shireen Khamedoost, senior Oregon State gymnast Megan Jimenez begins another interview.

"I'm back for another segment of Beaver Talk," Jimenez said before introducing Khamedoost and asking for her thoughts about the Beavers' meet at Stanford.

Every week this season, Jimenez has been sure to sit down with one of her fellow Oregon State gymnasts on Facebook Live.

Although Jimenez competes with her teammates, she has filled the role of a media member for the team, guiding the session along with quality questions, never allowing a lull in the conversation.

It's been a perfect opportunity for Jimenez and the gymnastics program. She wants a career in sports broadcasting or something similar, and the Facebook Live interviews enhanced the coverage of the Beavers.

Senior Taylor Ricci was among those interviewed by Jimenez. Ricci said Jimenez is very personable and has the ability to make people comfortable and want to talk.

"She just took a step back and said I want to do this, I want to help our team in this way," Ricci said. "It's been really cool. I know a lot of people have tuned in to those on Facebook, my family and friends included, so they've gotten thousands of views. I think she's going to be a great reporter someday and having that kind of being her first self-run project is really cool."

Jimenez has been limited physically this season and has focused on leading off the beam team.

Instead of fading from her senior role, she found a way to tie her career path to gymnastics.

"She works very hard on what she wants to do after school and figures out a way that the team is involved with that, too, because I know she wants to go into media and commentating," OSU coach Tanya Chaplin said. "And so she's doing a lot of that and has been able to use the resources she's had here and been able to develop those, so you can see this genuine happiness on her and I think that's something that will grow, too."

Jimenez, a senior, has been working toward the career for some time now and has interned with Beaver Athletics and OSU's Ideation team. Her dream job is working as a sideline reporter.

She has followed the career of Amanda Pflugrad and views her as a role model.

"She was an Oregon Ducks cheerleader and she worked for the Pac-12 and she actually did some of our interviews here," Jimenez said. "And looking back I realized how cool that was and how special her job was to be around gymnastics. She kept moving up and is now with the Boston Celtics, so I just found that really impressive and I'd love to follow her path and do what she does."

Jimenez is not looking past her remaining time in gymnastics, however.

After battling knee problems her entire college career, she could have chosen to walk away from the sport.

She stuck with it and has been quite happy with her decision as she finishes out her time at OSU along with five other seniors.

The No. 8 Beavers head to Champaign, Illinois, on Saturday for the NCAA regional after stringing together several strong meets in the second half of the season.

"This season by far has been one of the most fun seasons I've had with this team," Jimenez said. "It's a bigger team but the energy and the chemistry on this team has made it by far the best season. I've enjoyed every single minute of it and I think this team is really special."

Jimenez has provided the Beavers with a consistent start on beam this season.

She has a 9.800, three 9.825s and is coming off a career-high 9.850 at the Pac-12 championships. She also competed on floor for a few meets and has a season-best 9.850.

"I feel like it's gone really well as a senior and (at age) 22 this year my body's a little older and things are harder and I haven't been able to do as much gymnastics as I would have liked my senior year," she said. "But I do think for what it's worth that I'm very lucky that I could contribute on beam each meet and be used whenever they need me for anything and just give it my best. So I'm really excited this year that I could at least contribute that to the team and very proud to contribute to the team."

Jimenez has done her part in helping a big group of freshmen acclimate to college life and gymnastics.

She also brings some humor to the table. She enjoys practical jokes, often using a deadpan delivery to fool others.

"She's just really good about being serious about a joke and carrying it on to where they actually believe," senior Erika Aufiero said.

Jimenez has paid her dues as a prankster.

When the team went to the NCAA Championships during her sophomore year, the event fell right before midterms at OSU, so the gymnasts all brought their books to study.

The team rule was to always close the hotel room doors fully so nothing is stolen, but Jimenez left her door ajar and Aufiero and Cerise Witherby took notice.

"So they stole all of Megan's books and Megan came running to me crying, like, 'my books are stolen! We've got midterms when we get back.' She's like, 'I'm going to Tanya, we're going to figure this out,' " Ricci said.

"Then she went to Tanya and was like freaking out. Then I was working out with Erika right before we had our pre-meet meal and I was like, 'Erika, someone stole Megan's textbooks. She's a mess and everything,' and Erika was like, 'Oh my gosh, that was me.' "

There could be another chance at a prank at nationals this season if the Beavers finish in the top two in Illinois.

The Beavers look like a team poised to advance and Jimenez said the Beavers have had a special bond this season.

"I think it's just each individual and I think it's the way we all work together and I've never been on a more easy-going team as this team has been," she said. "So I think just the chemistry and how we work with each other and how fun, too. Every practice we're always laughing, we're joking. It's fun to be in here and I think I'm really going to miss that and this team, especially, has been by far the best."


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