Mark’s Musings – August 3, 2016

| August 23, 2016
Mark Fortune

Mark Fortune

Well over 100 countries are participating in the summer Olympic games held in Rio. Athletes from around the world will compete in sports ranging from basketball to Taekwondo and just about everything in between.

In track and field, Usain Bolt is the male to watch with Shelly-Ann-Fraser Pryce the female to monitor as she goes for her third gold medal in the women’s 100 meter run. At 29 years old, both athletes are considered beyond the prime for the Olympics. But someone forgot to tell the two phenoms from Jamaica that.

Ashton Eaton and Justin Gatlin are a pair of athletes to watch – at 32 years old Gatlin is well beyond the prime but if anyone can knock Bolt off the gold medal stand it will be Gatlin. He won the gold medal in the 2004 games but has yet to defeat Bolt in an Olympic final. And keep in mind that you have to get to the final to have a shot at the gold medal. That can sometimes prove difficult.

Allyson Felix is another female athlete to watch – she set a record in the 400 meter trials and will compete in that race.

Brazil’s Flavia Saraiva is 4-foot-4 and will have the home crowd advantage when she takes her exciting performance to the gymnastics routine.

There are 12 basketball teams with 12 men each – the United States team includes NBA playoff finals competitors Kyrie Irving from the Cavs and Draymond Green from the Warriors. Kevin Durant is also there. Experts predict the U.S. to win with Spain taking home the silver – again.

But perhaps the ultimate athlete in this year’s game hails from none other than the good ‘ol U.S of A. Michael Phelps is looking to put a giant exclamation point on his career – having competed in 2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012. Thus far, he has collected quite a war chest of Olympic precious metals – with 18 golds, two silvers and two bronze medals. He won four gold medals in London and eight gold medals in Beijing and six golds in Athens.

Despite the scare of the Zika virus, the Rio summer games promise to deliver a world stage of sport and elite athletic performances.

The Tribe is up four and a half games over Detroit with a huge beat the deadline trade for Andrew Miller. The Cubs are up seven and a half games over the Cardinals and a whole bunch of games over the Reds. The Bucs are 10 and a half back from Chicago, who made some pretty good trades themselves.

August will not be the same here in Coshocton County without the Canal Festival which had a good run for many years. Watch for a special issue in August from The Beacon about the canal and Roscoe.

The Buckeyes have one of the toughest – if not the toughest – schedules in college football this season. With games against Oklahoma (third game), Michigan State on the road, Wisconsin and the finale against Michigan, this year’s team will have to face their own giants to make the playoff scenario.

Category: Mark's Musings, Opinion

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