Favorite colors? Gold, silver and bronzePublished 9:27am Monday, July 23, 2012
Column: Aaron Worm, Behind the Mic
You might not know their names now, but in a couple of weeks you will.
There will be athletes that will go from obscurity to being a household name.
It’s one of the greatest things about the Olympic games; getting a couple of weeks to watch stories unfold and to become mesmerized with the accomplishments of people that as of today we have never heard of.
Now the Olympic games isn’t a coming out party from all, we do recognize the names of Michael Phelps, Kobe Bryant, Serena Williams and others, but it’s the stories of the Olympians that are not making millions of dollars that always capture my attention.
It might not be fair to include Phelps in that group because back in 2004 to those outside the swimming world, he was an unknown.
Eight medals in Athens, Greece, including six gold, was his introduction to the sports world and his eight golds in Beijing, China in 2008, was his ticket to instant stardom.
I do prefer the winter games over the summer, and the edge will probably continue to grow, without baseball and softball at the Olympic games.
In 2005 it was announced that baseball would not be part of this year’s games, and in 2008 Korea captured the final baseball gold, that we might see for a while.
The International Olympic Committee decided to already not have either sport in the 2016 games in Rio de Janerio Brazil, but a push is in the works to revive both sports in 2020.
The lack of professional baseball players and the steroid era had to do with the ouster of baseball.
Why the elimination of softball? Because, Team USA is just too good.
Softball has only been included in the last three Olympic games, with USA winning the gold all three times.
In 2004, USA outscored their opponents 51-1.
Hopefully in eight years in either Istanbul, Turkey; Madrid, Spain or Tokyo, Japan both will make a comeback.
So what past Olympic story caught your attention and kept you glued to your TV for a couple weeks?
I was only eight back in 1984, but I remember my mom watching every moment of the world’s introduction to 4 foot 9 inches Mary Lou Retton.
At the age of 16 she was the first USA women’s gymnast to win the Olympic All-Round gold medal.
I think somewhere I might still have a box of Wheaties with Mary Lou on it. In 1992, there was absolutely no suspense in who was going to win the gold in men’s basketball, as the “Dream Team” won by an average of almost 44 points per contest.
And who can forget in 1996 when Kerri Strug helped her team win the gold in gymnastics, competing in the vault with an injured ankle.
We will all find out in the next few weeks what stories will capture our attention and which athletes will become Olympic heroes.
I remember as a kid sometimes imagining what sport I could become an Olympian in someday. Table Tennis?
After watching 15 seconds of a match back in 1988 when it became part of the games, I thought I would stick to playing against my brothers. I could at least see the ball when I played them.
KATE Radio Sports Director Aaron Worm’s column appears every Monday in the Tribune. He can be heard from 6 to 11 a.m. weekdays on The Breeze.