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Sports Then and Now



5 Athletes Who Made Amazing Comebacks After Debilitating Injuries 0

Posted on February 22, 2020 by Brooke Chaplan

Injuries are almost inevitable in professional sports. However, some of these injuries can be harder to recover from than others. Several athletes have made some fascinating comebacks after pushing through some difficult injuries.

Adrian Peterson

Adrian Peterson

This NFL superstar tore the MCL and ACL in his knee around 2011. As a running back, such injuries could prove catastrophic to Peterson’s career. It wouldn’t be out of the question for fans to wonder if he would ever take to the field again. Fortunately, Peterson didn’t just play the game again. He was also part of the lineup for the Vikings less than a year after suffering what could have been a career-ending problem. This short recovery period comes combined with some great plays from Peterson.

John Orozco

Most people hold Olympic contestants to the highest standard in sports. It is fair to say that gymnast John Orozco is tough and dedicated. However, few fans may know just how driven this athlete is on the mat. Orozco tore his ACL once and his Achilles twice in the span of just five years. Either one of these incidents could have spelled the end for him. However, Orozco won the championship title for the US the same year he tore his ACL.

Read the rest of this entry →

A Look Back at the 1996 Summer Olympics 24

Posted on July 20, 2011 by A.J. Foss

Muhammad Ali lights the torch to start the Summer Olympics in Atlanta.

Atlanta was a surprise selection to host the Centennial Olympic Games in the summer of 1996, as many observers believed that the Games should be held in Athens, Greece since the inaugural games were held there in 1896.

But thanks to lobbying from former Atlanta mayor Andrew Young, Atlanta was chosen to host the Centennial Games on September 18, 1990.

Nearly six years later, the city hosted the opening ceremonies in front of 85, 000 fans at Centennial Olympic Stadium (now Turner Field).

The ceremonies ended in dramatic fashion with 1960 Olympic Gold Medalist Muhammad Ali, lighting the Olympic Torch, signifying the start of the Games.
Ali would receive a replacement gold medal for the one he lost, at halftime of the men’s basketball gold medal game.

As far as the competition was concerned, the Americans were expected to dominate the medal count as this would be the first Olympics with the former countries of the Soviet Union participating as individual countries.

The individual with the highest expectations entering these Olympics was U.S. sprinter Michael Johnson, who was trying to become the first man to win the 200-meter and 400-meter races in the same Olympiad.

Johnson had performed this feat at the 1995 Track & Field World Championships, and one month earlier, he broke the world record in the 200 m with a time of 19.66 seconds.

Michael Johnson stunned himself and the rest of the world with his 19.32 run in the 200 meters.

Wearing golden shoes, Johnson won the 400 m with an Olympic record time of 43.49 seconds, and then won the 200 m with by shattering his own world record, running that race in a remarkable 19.32 seconds.

It was redemption for Johnson who had entered the 1992 Olympics as the favorite to win the 200 meters, but failed to qualify for the final heat.

Johnson was not the only U.S. Olympian to pull off a historic feat in Atlanta as U.S. swimmer Amy Van Dyken became the first woman to win four gold medals at the same Olympiad.

Van Dyken won two individual races, the 50m freestyle and the 100m butterfly, and was part of the 4 x 100 meter freestyle relay and the 4 x 100 meter medley relay in earning her four gold medals.

Van Dyken’s performance came in a banner Olympics for American woman, as the woman’s basketball, softball, soccer, and gymnastics teams all won gold medals. Read the rest of this entry →

  • Vintage Athlete of the Month

    • Randy White: The Manster
      September 4, 2020 | 5:14 pm

      In recognition of the start of football season, we have selected a two-time All-American from the University of Maryland who went on to earn a spot in both the College and Pro Football Hall of Fames as our Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month.

      Randy White actually came to the University of Maryland as a fullback, but as a sophomore new head coach Jerry Claiborne recognized that he had the skills to be a great defensive lineman and quickly moved him to defense.

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