Tag Archives: allyson felix

Your Post-Olympics “Cashing In” Guide

13 Aug

Welcome back to The Sports Ace, where the Olympic flame never goes out.

The London 2012 Olympic Cauldron (photo courtesy of Inhabitat.com)

Before the Olympics, I wrote a post highlighting some of the athletes with the most to gain financially from their performances at the Games.  Now that the Games are over, it’s time to look back and see who truly did the most to create a brand for themselves that they can benefit from in endorsements, etc. now that they’re coming home.  This isn’t an all-inclusive list, but it does name some of the biggest winners in my opinion.  So, with no further adoue:

  • Andy Murray.  For years, he’s been the clear fourth-best tennis player in the world, never able to win a major event because Nadal, Federer and Djokovic have dominated in a way tennis buffs have never seen.  Well, that changed in a big way, as Murray beat the two  of them who were in London on his way to the gold in singles.  The man who had the entire weight of Britain on his shoulders when playing at Wimbledon…should now have the weight of all that cash on his shoulders now that he can show off a gold medal to the cameras.
  • Missy Franklin.  I called this one before the Games, but this 17-year-old phenom put herself on a Phelps-like pace with five medals at her first Olympics, and most of them gold.  She’s incredibly likeable, fun-loving (have you seen the “Call Me Maybe” video?) and incredibly talented.  The only way she won’t cash in is if she chooses not to – as a high school senior-to-be.
  • Gabby Douglas.  It’s obvious, really, but the rags-to-riches story combined with all-around and team gold is a powerful combination.  In my own chats with friends and family, everyone seems to be most impressed by her.  That means green.
  • Allyson Felix.  That smile, and her performance, should make her a prime candidate to be USA Track and Field’s most marketable name.
  • Kayla Harrison.  If anyone can break out from a “minor” sport to fame, it’s her.  She’s the first American to win gold in judo, and her story of overcoming sexual abuse is jawdropping.  Her winning celebration was tearjerking, and one of the best moments of the entire Games.  She’s also incredibly likeable, and proved it when she did the “Today” Show and other media.  She’s one of my favorite athletes from London 2012, and I hope she’s able to generate some well-deserved cash from her efforts.

That’s all for now.  I’m out like anyone running against Usain Bolt.

Your Pre-Olympics “Cashing In” Preview

16 Jul

Welcome back to The Sports Ace, where we’re thinking of declaring a 6-week vacation for the Olympics…like the WNBA.

One of the things I find most fascinating about sports and marketing is how little-known athletes can do something great and burst onto the scene, become national darlings, cash in on their fame with one or more endorsement deals and then fade away almost as quickly.  Sometimes these figures become enduring legends (think Mary Lou Retton or Brandi Chastain), and can parlay their accomplishments into a lifelong career.  But most of the time, the only things these athletes have after 6-12 months are the medals they won and the cash they earned while they were still in the limelight.

Each time an Olympics comes around, I try to predict which athletes will emerge in similar fashion.  So…which under-the-radar athletes will captivate America, get their face on a Wheaties box and cash in on their fame during/after the 2012 London Olympics – and maybe even become a legend?  Try these three:

1)  Jordyn Wieber, gymnastics.  This one’s easy, folks.  Every four years America’s Fabulous Five dominate discussion for 1-2 weeks, and at least one of them becomes one of the faces of the Games for the USA.  In Beijing, it was Shawn Johnson and Nastia Liukin.  This year my money’s on Jordyn Wieber.  She’s as accomplished, rock solid and cool under pressure as any member of Team USA – which is why she has emerged as the de facto leader of the squad.  And it doesn’t hurt that the team is favored to win gold.  Talk about photo ops.

2)  Missy Franklin, swimming.  She dominated the Olympic trials and will be swimming about as many events in London as Michael Phelps – so the Olympics should be her coming-out party on the big stage.  Natalie Coughlin, Phelps and all the USA swimming greats call her the next big thing.  And she’s 17, meaning she should be no flash in the pan.  Get ready to hear about Missy for a long time to come.

3)  Ashton Eaton, track and field.  He’s the best athlete you’ve never heard of – he’s a top decathlete, and a world record holder in the heptathlon.  If he lives up to form and can win gold in the decathlon (and officially earn the title of world’s best athlete), why can’t he join sprinters like Tyson Gay and Justin Gatlin on the track and field mantle?

Honorable Mention: Ryan Lochte, Allyson Felix and Hugh McCutcheon.  But these athletes and coach aren’t really under the radar…

That’s all for now.  I’m out like Blake Griffin.

(Photo Credits: all photos from TeamUSA.org)