AP Photo/Jochen Luebke

Pope Benedict says nope to dope

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Pope Benedict XVI invited Italy’s Olympians to the Vatican Monday to congratulate the team on its 28 medals and remind them (and everyone else) that drugs are the wrong road to the top of the podium.

“Pressure to win good results should never prompt you to take shortcuts, as happens with doping,” the Pope said Monday. “Let the same team spirit be a spur to avoid these blind alleys, and also be a support to those who realize they have made mistakes, so that they feel welcomed and helped.”

The Pope also spoke about the positive benefits of competing in sports, including learning altruism, loyalty, respect, patience, and humility, “which is never applauded but is the secret of victory.”

Despite have never having participated in the Games as an Olympic nation, the Vatican City opened its own “Culture and Sport” department earlier this year in hopes that it can continue to promote those positive benefits highlighted by Benedict on Monday.

“Sport is both an educational and cultural benefit, able to reveal to man his own self and let him understand the most profound values of his life,” Benedict said.

Bob Costas’ report 100 days out from Rio (video)

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NBC News
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Bob Costas reported from Rio de Janeiro for NBC News on Wednesday, 100 days out from the Opening Ceremony.

In the clip below, Michael PhelpsSimone Biles and even Brazil soccer legend Pelé comment on preparing for the first Games in South America.

Costas finished the clip with a stand-up from Copacabana Beach, where beach volleyball will take place in August.

VIDEO: Bob Costas picks biggest storyline of Rio Olympics

NBC, Snapchat, Buzzfeed partner for Olympic Trials, Rio Games

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NBC Olympics will partner with Snapchat for daily “Live Stories” and an NBC Rio Olympic Discover channel (co-produced with Buzzfeed) during the U.S. Olympic Trials and the Rio Games.

The Live Stories allows Snapchatters attending select U.S. Olympic Trials events and the Rio Games to contribute photo and video Snaps to the Snapchat-curated story.

The Live Stories will include behind-the-scenes and fan moments, and Snapchat will feature NBC’s Rio Olympic brand marks, logos and more.

The Discover channel will be live from Aug. 4 (one day before the Opening Ceremony) through Aug. 22 (one day after the Closing Ceremony).

From NBC Sports Group:

Buzzfeed will leverage NBC’s access to athletes, as well as clips and shots from inside and outside Rio Olympic venues, to bring Snapchatters a fresh, mobile-first look at the Games.

MORE: Full Olympic Trials broadcast schedule