July 10, 2016 |
ONE NIGHT this past week, I was looking for something to watch on TV and stumbled upon the Olympic trials for Track and Field in Eugene, Ore. The women's 800-meter race was about halfway through, and the announcer was talking about Alysia Montano, a prerace favorite. All of a sudden, a collision left Montano falling to the track. By the time she was able to get up, she was weeping, because she knew her Olympic dream had ended. She nevertheless bravely finished the race, and the crowd roared their appreciation for her courage.
July 25, 2014 |
MATT BARKLEY vividly recalls the day he met Lou Zamperini. Barkley had graduated early from high school, then enrolled at USC for the spring semester. Sports journalism class, the professor brought in this little, old guy as a guest speaker. "It was one of those classes where everyone is normally on their computers, on their phones, during class, but during that class, everyone's computers were shut, everyone was quiet, just listening so intently to the story he shared . . . It was pretty special," Barkley said this week, as the Eagles' backup QB prepared to report for his second NFL training camp, tomorrow.
February 27, 2014 |
NETS CENTER Jason Collins, the first openly gay player in the NBA, has received a groundswell of public support, including a dispatch from the King. "I got a text message last night from Billie Jean King," Collins said yesterday. "She just got back from Sochi, and with all that's happening with the loss of her mother, she was great. " King, a lesbian and longtime gay-rights activist, attended the Winter Games' closing ceremony on Sunday. Her mom, Betty Moffitt, who also was the mother of former major league pitcher Randy Moffitt, died on Feb. 7 at 91. Collins kept the content of King's message to himself.
February 25, 2014 |
KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia - On a Sunday that couldn't decide whether it was winter or spring, on a mountainside touched by sun and shadows, the United States ended its 2014 Winter Olympics in a familiar fashion. OK. Not bad. Pretty good. Bronze medal. Steven Holcomb and the U.S. four-man bobsled team captured the Americans' 28th and final medal of these Sochi Games, taking the bronze in another event won by the host Russians. Alexander Zubkov piloted Russia-1 to the gold, giving the 39-year-old a sweep of both men's bobsled events and cementing his country's medal-table dominance at its first-ever hosting the Winter Games.
February 21, 2014 |
KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia - He hoisted the white skis that had just carried him to victory high over his head, then spread his arms wide. The celebratory "V" he inadvertently formed Wednesday nicely encapsulated Ted Ligety's historic day. The 29-year-old American, taking advantage of the perfect conditions these 2014 Winter Games had lacked until Wednesday, captured the gold medal in his pet discipline, the giant slalom. In doing so, Ligety became the first American to win the event, which demands both speed and technical savvy, and the first male U.S. Alpine skier to earn more than one Olympic gold.
February 12, 2014 |
KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia - The podium that Julia Mancuso stood on Monday, after capturing the bronze medal in super-combined, was her destination all along. It's just, as usual, the journey there was not as she envisioned. "I really felt like this summer, after training, that I'd come here as a favorite," Mancuso said. "And what happened was the complete opposite. "I spent so much time on making everything perfect that the first time when things didn't go perfectly, I sort of freaked out. I started questioning every single thing I had been doing.
February 11, 2014 |
SOCHI - Asian women rule. North America's ice dancers dominate. No Russian man has stepped forward to fill Evgeni Plushenko's skates. That was last week's figure-skating narrative. But after Sunday night's raucous conclusion to the first Olympic team figure-skating competition, a new story line has emerged. The Russian bear sleeps no more. With Plushenko, 31 now and beat up, taking first place in the men's free skate and phenomenal 15-year-old Julia Lipnitskaia doing the same on the women's side, Russia coasted to a gold medal that loudly signaled its return to the sport's spotlight.
February 9, 2014 |
SOCHI - Women had been ski-jumping for decades when Jessica Jerome took her first flying leap at age 7. The Utah resident knew she liked it right away, nearly as quickly as her parents knew they did not. "My dad kept thinking of the agony of defeat [footage that shows a ski-jumper wiping out] from the Wide World of Sports," she said. But she did not give up and eventually, when her parents learned that neither their daughter nor any other young girl could grow up to be an Olympian jumper, their distaste became outrage.
February 8, 2014 |
HUNTINGDON VALLEY H. Lawrence Reinhard III is hardly the first parent to clash with a stepchild. But it was the lengths to which that animosity drove the 69-year-old Huntingdon Valley man that set off an international manhunt, squandered law enforcement resources, and spread unwarranted fears in the run-up to the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, federal authorities said Thursday. FBI agents allege that Reinhard fabricated an elaborate tale implicating his stepson in a plot to bomb the Winter Games, and sent investigators from Philadelphia to Moscow scrambling.
February 7, 2014 |
AS THE OLYMPICS begin, they present a confounding question: What should we care about? Four years ago, in Vancouver, it was simple. There was Apolo Ohno, the multiracial icon whose speedy skating (and deft dancing) gave America its unquestioned darling. There was Lindsey Vonn, a snow princess who did for ski outfits what Katarina Witt did for skating costumes. Shaun White was relatively fresh and still somewhat refreshing. There were Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto, the U.S. ice dancers who won a silver medal in 2006, trained locally and gave the world's best a run for their money before finishing fourth.