If you want the breif history lesson - It was Jason Whitfield the mainly began it. He did start with just simply crossing and un-crossing the cables. Then took it up a notch to eventually crossing the cables to a front uprise. He would then press to an inverted cross, spin 180 degrees while in the invert, and then uncross and finish the routine.
Numerous reasons I've heard that you don't see it competed any more... Here goes... First, Jason competed it much in 91 building up to the 92 olympics. He was 17 y/o and was marked by almost everyone to be our next hope at a medal. Very unfortunately, I believe it was around August or September or 91 he died in a motor cycle accident.
In the 92 olympics, Sherbo did cross the cables and, WOW held an L. A FREEKING L. No cross. No H.S. A sucky L hold. Well, politics came into play... who do we name it after? That's one issue. The other is the danger that many gymnasts are posed with in attempting to cross the cables. Its incredibly tough on the shoulders. Many gymnasts (before it was 'outlawed') were tearing rotator cuffs and whatnot before they banned it.
Finally, in either 96 or 2000, Blaine Wilson did the same combination that Jason used to compete at the Olympic trials. He had the spot secured, so it didn't matter what he did on the rings - he was on the team.
Thanks for the info! Being a female gymnast i don't know a lot about men's gymnastics--other than the fact that I love watching them do rings and high bar, and what I learned from the men's team at my gym.
Coach nate is correct. Jason was 17 and moved to the U of Iowa to keep training with his coach Kurt. He was still in high school when he died and was the alternate to the Olympic team. His cross cable move was performed in Puerto Rico nationals. The USGA did name his technique in his honor after his death. there is a Whitfield 1 and a Whitfield 2. His parents host a memorial tournament each year at the University of Michigan in his name to award scholarships to male gymnasts. the gymnasts who have performed his maneuver were all friends of Jason. His parents also have a wonderful motivational video tracing Jasons life.