LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 05:  Kerri Walsh Jenn...

It will be an All-American final in women’s volleyball

Last night I sent a text to a friend of mine asking if he was watching Misty May-Treanor and Kerry Walsh-Jennings in volleyball. Although I do not consider myself a volleyball aficionado, I do live in Nebraska where college volleyball is a big deal. This was a great match to watch with some great individual plays and long rallies. My buddy was pleading with me to not tell him the results as he had been waiting all day to watch this. Don’t worry Jonsey…I would never spoil the result for you.

Last week I wrote an article about the Olympics being ruined (in my opinion) by spoilers and social media. I guess my good friends don’t always check up on the articles on Facebook :)

I have tried to remain “true to my word” and follow my earlier statements, not reviewing websites and not listening to ESPN to catch any updates. I have been burned twice last week, as while in my car the “sports updates” let the cat out of the bag” and I found myself scrambling to change the dial quickly before I heard more. Darn radio….

Of course there are always big stories for the Olympics. I am looking past the Phelps and Douglas storylines to things that I have been more intrigued with personally.

We tend to focus on the stories that impact the people from our country more than others. Here are some of the things that I have found interesting.

Boxing – for the first time ever the U.S. Men’s boxing team is shut out of winning any medals. That is correct. NONE – when you think of all the greats, like Leonard, Ali, etc., that is a statistic that carries some real meaning

USA Basketball for both the Men and Women are boat-racing the competition. I still feel for the people last week at Ladbroke’s that had Nigeria and the unders in Team USA’s 156-73 drubbing of the Nigerian team. The troubling part for me is the fact that there was a lot of controversy about running up the score. Fact is, (if you watched the game like I did) it was like video game basketball, everything went in the hoop, and the end of the bench saw extensive action. This was a case where one team was far superior and having an extra good day of it on the hardwood.

Português: O bulgaro Jordan no pódio das argol...

Jordan Jovtchev (Previous event)

Jordan Jovtchev, the 39-year-old Olympian, qualified for the finals in the still rings. Read that again….39 year old gymnast. The guy has more gray hairs than Captain Kangaroo, but yet he is competing in his 6th Olympics in one of the most grueling events in gymnastics. Dude can ring it!

Usain Bolt repeats in the 100 meters for the 2nd straight games. He is trying for the double in the 200 meters. No one has ever pulled off the double – double.

And let’s give it up for the Jamaican women sprinters. – Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce of Jamaica, became the third woman to successfully defend her Olympic title by running 10.75 in the 100 meters.

Maybe even more impressive is Jamaican Veronica Campbell-Brown. She won Bronze in the 100 meters in the 2008 and 2012 games but the 200 meters is where the real action is. She is trying to complete the trifecta of winning the 200 meters in 2004, 2008 and now the 2012 Olympics. She would become the first woman in history to win an individual athletics crown in three consecutive Olympic Games if she can pull it off.

English: Oscar Pistorius during 2011 World cha...

Oscar Pistorius (Previous event)

Most impressive to me thus far is the story of Oscar Pistorius. Unless you are hiding in a closet you will know this is the South African double-amputee nicknamed the “Blade Runner,” after his “J” shaped carbon fiber prosthetic blades.

He qualified for the semifinals this past weekend after running a fabulous 45.44 in his heat race for the 400 meters.

The runner’s legs were amputated below the knee when he was 11 months old because of a bone defect. His debut Saturday made him the first Paralympian to compete Olympic Games. Unfortunately he did not make it to the final, but still he will serve as a true inspiration to many with disabilities around the world.

To me, that is what the Olympics is all about. Inspiring others through goodwill, sportsmanship, and athletic excellence.

We still have another week of Olympic stories, legends and lore will continue to play out.

I for one can’t wait.

Until next time. Stay classy Johannesburg, South Africa

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Johnny Goodman writes a weekly sports column for The Soap Boxers. His articles can be found in The Goodman File.

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