Wow, what a difference a few months can make. It looks like after being publicly disgraced and banned from cycling for life, Lance Armstrong is considering confessing to doping. By admitting his guilt, Armstrong is hoping that his lifetime ban from cycling can be reduced. In order for Armstrong to even possibly be allowed to race again, he would have a lot of confessing to do including how he doped, who helped him, and how he hid it for so long. Many people are trying to persuade the once beloved athlete to come forward including those involved with his old charity LiveStrong. I think that Armstrong should confess, but the lifetime ban should stay in place. I always rooted for the guy and what he stood for, but knowing that it was all false is pretty disappointing. Here is my ruling: Stay off the bike, but let him get involved with LiveStrong again.
Mr. Olympia! Michael Phelps not only brought home the gold for America, but also pride for our country. Phelps was long considered not only one of the best athletes, but the best Olympian of all time. This year he made it official when he broke the official record for most medals at NINETEEN! Getting invited to the Olympics is an accomplishment, but to win more medals than we have fingers is in a whole other stratosphere. In true style, the nineteenth medal was a gold and all he had to do was not disqualify. All he had to do was take four laps at his own pace and let his fans cheer for him the entire time. While Phelps vows he is done in the pool, he has cemented his piece in history. It was one of the greatest moments to be American!
It was definitely not a good year to be Lance Armstrong. The former sports hero pretty much lost everything he has earned over his career including his charity LiveStrong. Armstrong has long been considered one of the best cyclists ever. He won seven Tour de France titles even while battling testicular cancer. People had long been suspicious that Armstrong may be getting some artificial help to win all these titles. Armstrong has always been adamant that he never used steroids and was always willing to fight these accusations.
However, in October, eleven of Armstrong’s former teammates turned against him and testified to the US Anti-Doping Agency that Armstrong had used steroids in the past. Wow, I do not think we have ever seen an athlete receive so much backlash for using steroids. Lance lost everything including all seven of his titles, most of his endorsements, and his partnership with Nike. However, the saddest thing for Lance to walk away from had to be his charity LiveStrong that has raised millions of dollars for cancer victims.
It was incredibly sad to see Armstrong have to separate himself from the charity that he was such a big part of. Lance Armstrong the athlete may have been a fraud, but Lance Armstrong the charity man did some great things for cancer research. I can’t imagine Armstrong making a comeback in 2013, but stranger things have happened.
What makes a true athlete? It is more than just physical stature. It is about hard work and heart. We all learned that over the summer, as we watched Jonnie Peacock break world records. He did it without his right leg. At age five, Peacock contracted meningitis that destroyed the tissue in his right leg forcing doctors to have to cut it off above the knee. Growing up, Peacock wanted to be a normal boy and play football.
The doctors who performed his surgery told him about a day just for Paralympics sporting events. Peacock started his quest for gold in May when he won his first international race in Manchester at the Paralympic World Cup. He then moved onto The 2012 Summer Paralympics where he won the gold for the 100m. He also broke the record, running the distance in an impressive 10.90 seconds. If that is not inspiration to not let anything stand in your way, then I am not sure what is.
Tonight two of the biggest names in the boxing world go at for the fourth time. Even though many people like to think that these two are heated rivals, the truth is is that they actually have a friendly relationship. In fact, Pacquiao said that outside the ring the two treat each other like brothers. The fight has sold out and expects to draw an enormous television crowd in true Pacquiao fashion. Expect a good fight between these two, but more importantly who you takin?
Maybe it is not all about winning. Naturally athletes are all competitive. However, middle schooler Justin Kievit showed that it may be more important how you play the game. Kievet was at a wrestling match with his school when he learned that his opponent was going to be Jared Stevens. Stevens has played in a few football games and helps coach his school’s basketball team. However, Stevens suffers from cerebral palsy and lives his life in a wheelchair. Kievit was chosen to be Jared’s competitor because they all know he would put winning aside and display the best sportsmanship. That is exactly what Kievit did when he shook Jared’s hand to start the match and pulled Jared over him in order to pin him. It really says something when a twelve-year-old can show more maturity and humanity than some professional athletes. Maybe we can all learn something from this video. Warning: You will most likely tear up watching it!
By now everyone has heard the sad news that boxer Hector Camacho passed away after being taken off life support. It was the one fight he could not come back from and win. However, I believe that this great athlete should not be remembered for how his life ended, but instead for his incredible drive and tenacity. It is something that people can really learn from. Even when times did not look good for Macho in the ring, he somehow managed to always give it his all and never go down without a fight. Instead of looking at his faults, people should look to him as a guy who refused to be knocked out. RIP.