Wheaties
Wheaties

Greg Louganis, Janet Evans, Edwin Moses to appear on Wheaties boxes

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U.S. Olympic champions Greg LouganisJanet Evans and Edwin Moses will appear on Wheaties boxes for the first time next month.

Louganis is most noteworthy, for there was a petition to put the four-time Olympic diving champion on the iconic cereal box following his 2015 documentary, “Back on Board.”

In the film, Louganis said that he wasn’t as celebrated as other 1980s Olympic champions.

“Never got a Wheaties box,” Louganis said in the film. “Their response was that I didn’t fit their wholesome demographics or whatever. Basically, being gay, or being rumored that I was gay.”

Louganis, who swept the platform and springboard titles in 1984 and 1988, retired after the Seoul Olympics and came out publicly as gay and HIV positive in the mid-1990s.

Evans also earned four gold medals while swimming in three Olympics in 1988, 1992 and 1996.

Moses, winner of 122 straight 400m hurdles races from 1977 to 1987, won the 1976 and 1984 Olympic titles and was an Olympic teammate of Louganis and Evans in 1988.

Below are images of the boxes to come out in May along with comments from each athlete, via General Mills:

VIDEO: Janet Evans relives 1996 Olympic torch handoff to Ali

Greg Louganis

Louganis: “It’s so iconic, everybody looks at the Wheaties box and it’s such an honor. I can’t wait to see Janet’s and Edwin’s boxes too. I’m excited for them as much as myself. What great company to be in. Edwin’s always been a hero to me. It’s such an honor to be in this group.”

Janet Evans

Evans: “I think getting the honor now actually means more. I think when you’re competing and you’re young, you kind of just take it for granted that of course if you win a gold medal you might have the incredible honor of being on a Wheaties box. To even be listed with the incredible athletes that have been on the Wheaties box, and to be a part of this great legacy … for me to be on a Wheaties box with these incredible legends that have already graced the front of your boxes. It’s truly an honor and I honestly can’t think of anything that makes me more excited. I’m really honored.”

Edwin Moses

Moses: “I was very impressed, because I know it’s a very prestigious honor to be on the box of Wheaties. Several icons in track and field, and people that I know, have been on the box – starting with Bruce Jenner in 1976 – so it’s quite an honor to be included among that subset of athletes.”

Salwa Eid Naser, world 400m champion, provisionally banned

Salwa Eid Naser
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Salwa Eid Naser, the world 400m champion of Bahrain, was provisionally suspended for missing three drug tests in a 12-month span.

“I’ve never been a cheat. I will never be,” Naser, 22, said in an Instagram live video. “I only missed three drug tests, which is normal. It happens. It can happen to anybody. I don’t want people to get confused in all this because I would never cheat.”

Naser said “the missed tests” came before last autumn’s world championships, where she ran the third-fastest time in history (48.14 seconds) and the fastest in 34 years.

“This year I have not been drug tested,” she said. “We are still talking about the ones of last season before the world championships.”

The Athletics Integrity Unit, which handles doping cases for track and field, did not announce whether Naser’s gold medal could be stripped.

“Hopefully, it’ll get resolved because I don’t really like the image, but it has happened,” she said. “It’s going to be fine. It’s very hard to have this little stain on my name.”

Naser, the 2017 World silver medalist, upset Olympic champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo of the Bahamas for the world title in Doha on Oct. 3.

The only women who have run faster than Naser, who was born Ebelechukwu Agbapuonwu in Nigeria to a Nigerian mother who sprinted and a Bahraini father, were dubious — East German Marita Koch (47.60) and Czechoslovakia’s Jarmila Kratochvilova (47.99).

“I would never take performance-enhancing drugs,” Naser said. “I believe in talent, and I know I have the talent.”

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When Laurie Hernandez winked at the Olympics

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Blink, and you may have missed one of the social-media-sensation moments of the Rio Olympics.

Laurie Hernandez, then 16, was the youngest woman on the U.S. Olympic team across all sports. She was about to start arguably the most important floor exercise routine of her life.

So, she winked.

“The amazing thing about the Olympics is that you feel so many different emotions in the span of a few days, and they are all intense,” she wrote in her 2017 book, “I Got This,” a nod to what she told herself before her balance beam routine earlier that night. “So it was nice to have at least one totally playful moment.”

The U.S., on its fourth and final rotation, already had the team gold all but locked up. Knowing she was nervous, Hernandez’s teammates confirmed to her that they were a few points ahead.

Then Hernandez heard the beep, and it was time to go. She was in the view of an out-of-bounds judge at the Rio Olympic Arena.

“Well, I looked straight at her and suddenly felt this surge of confidence to wink,” she wrote. “Later, a woman came up to me while I was watching Simone [Biles] and Aly [Raisman] compete in their all-around finals and she said, ‘Wow, I just want you to know that when you winked at the judge, it really worked.’ I didn’t know how to respond, so I just said, ‘Thank you. That’s very nice of you to say.’ That’s when she told me she was the out-of-bounds judge! All I could say was ‘Oh my goodness.'”

Hernandez, a New Jersey native, finished the Olympics with a team gold and balance beam silver.

She took more than two years off before making a comeback in earnest last year, announcing she planned to return to competition this spring under new coaches in California. Now that’s on hold given the coronavirus pandemic, which pushed the Tokyo Olympics to 2021.

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