This week kicked off the pre-Olympic coverage with the US Swimming Olympic Trials in Omaha Nebraska. It's a reminder that one of the greatest sporting events is just around the corner and given the long hot summer that seems to be taking hold, I couldn't be happier.
The Olympics are about great moments, individual triumphs, record breaking performances, tremendous athletic feats and the global community coming together for a stretch of time on one stage. Everyone has that moment that they remember, some related to the event, some related to the mere dedication of an athlete. Derek Redmond's dad helping the injured runner to the finish line, the Dream Team, Rulon Gardner winning the Gold, Muhammad Ali lighting the torch.
There are so many great ones to count, but for my money I have one that Olympic memory that is more a memory of something that never happened.
The 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona were the first that I found myself paying attention to and fully aware of what exactly was going on. In this modern era of sports we're consistently bombarded with athletes promoting everything from cheeseburgers to sandwiches to shoes, but in 1992 there was one campaign that I will never forget.
Dan and Dave. These guys were AMERICA to me in 1992. They were going to "battle it out for world's greatest athlete in Barcelona". In my mind no one else was even involved it was just Dan and Dave. I can remember kids on the playground running races pretending to be Dan and Dave. Those cheesy Dave sunglasses that temporarily seemed a necessity. It was going to be INCREDIBLE!!!
Then Dan and Dave got around to the business of qualifying. Dan forgot to make the team, or perhaps I should say he failed to make the team. What was Dan and Dave without Dan? Did this mean that Dave was already the 'world's greatest athlete"? What the heck was going to happen in Barcelona now?
Well Dave would go on to win the Bronze, but that meant he wasn't the world's greatest athlete. Some guy from Czechoslovakia won. Then Dave retired while Dan went on to the 1996 Olympics and managed the Gold medal which was cool, but it wasn't Dan v Dave. Maybe Dave would have altered that 1996 result had he been around and perhaps Dan would have driven Dave to the Gold in 1992 with the extra motivation of Dan v Dave.
Either way Dan v Dave was right on par with our own "History Awaits" marketing campaign in terms of biggest busts during my lifetime. Dan v Dave...my most memorable Olympic moment. And you?
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