Dan Patrick Show

Bob Costas looks ahead to Rio on Dan Patrick Show (video)

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With the Opening Ceremony in one week, NBC Olympic primetime host Bob Costas went on The Dan Patrick Show on Friday to preview the first Games in South America.

“Everywhere you look, this place is a picture postcard,” Costas said. “Is it blighted, especially in the waters, by sanitation problems? Are there favelas that make what we consider poverty in the United States see opulent? Yes. But there are also soaring structures, beautiful mountainscapes, beautiful waterways, all of that, plus the world’s greatest athletes are bound for Rio. And many of them are going to do miraculous and wonderful things, and we just have our fingers crossed that the array of problems, that everyone’s aware of, don’t intrude upon what we came here primarily to document, which is this great competition.”

Costas was also asked to name his favorite Olympic sport.

“Track events are the most classic events,” he said. “Of course, swimming has moved way up there. It always was one of the premier Olympic events, and now in the [Michael] Phelps era even more so.”

But gymnastics may prove the most enduring sport of the Rio Games.

Costas said it could turn out that “Simone Biles of the United States has delivered the greatest performance of any female gymnast in the history of the Olympics, and Kohei Uchimura of Japan is the greatest male gymnast in the history of the Olympics. Now that’s if it all works out for them.”

The full interview is here.

MORE: Complete U.S. Olympic team roster

Nate Ebner on NFL vs. Olympic sevens, Rob Gronkowski’s rugby potential

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Patriots safety Nate Ebner pulled off one of the incredible feats of Olympic qualifying season, making the first U.S. Olympic rugby sevens team less than four months after announcing his return to the sport.

And he thinks other football players would fare well in rugby. Namely teammate Rob Gronkowski.

“How would Gronk be at anything that is physical? I think that answers that,” Ebner said on The Dan Patrick Show on Thursday. “He’s a beast. He’d have no problems.”

Ebner, a 27-year-old who was an elite player as a teenager (at least among Americans) before converting to football at Ohio State, was asked which sport is tougher.

“It just depends on what your definition of toughness is,” he said. “If it’s about how hard you hit somebody, I’d say football. … But there are aspects to rugby which are extremely tough, when it comes to cardiovascular standpoint. The amount of mileage that we have to run in such a short period of time, but you also have to tackle and get back up and compete.”

Ebner already has a Super Bowl ring with the Patriots from two seasons ago. His chances of joining former Cowboys wide receiver Bob Hayes in owning a ring and an Olympic gold medal are not strong.

The U.S. men’s rugby team is a medal contender, for sure, but to take gold would be an upset. The Americans were fifth in the World Series standings the last two seasons.

The favorites are Fiji, South Africa and New Zealand.

“We’ve beaten all the top teams ahead of us multiple times this year, just haven’t accrued enough points to be higher than fifth,” Ebner said. “We definitely have the ability to beat the top teams. I wouldn’t say we’re frontrunners at all, because we’re not winning the series, but we’re definitely contenders. Anyone that writes us off, they’re mistaken for sure.”

MORE: Former Lions RB makes Saint Lucia Olympic team

Bob Costas picks biggest Olympic storyline leading into Rio (video)

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NBC Olympic primetime host Bob Costas discussed Usain BoltMichael Phelps and what he thinks will be the biggest story of the Rio Olympics in an interview on The Dan Patrick Show on Wednesday.

“In terms of competition, if you look at it not from an American viewpoint, I think what Usain Bolt has a chance to do might be greater this time around than what Michael Phelps has a chance to do,” Costas said in an interview from Rio.

Bolt hopes to sweep the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay for a third straight Olympics to finish his career with nine gold medals.

Phelps, already owner of a record 22 Olympic medals and 18 golds, seeks his fifth and final Olympic berth. Phelps will not attempt to swim eight events, as he did in 2004 or 2008. Maybe not even seven, as he did in 2012.

But Phelps was the fastest man in the world in the 100m and 200m butterfly and the 200m individual medley in 2015, setting him up well.

“In terms of a signature achievement, if Bolt pulls that off, I think that will be greater for his legacy than what Phelps might be able to do here in Rio, which is add to his already record haul of 22 medals,” Costas said. “But I don’t think that would be as distinctive to him as what Bolt is trying to do.”

Costas, 64, will host primetime at a record-extending 11th Olympics in August and said he will decide on a “case-by-case basis” how many more Games he does.

What will it depend on?

“How much I enjoy my colleagues, how much I respect what they do, the good feeling you get from carrying the ball for them when you’re the host in primetime,” he said. “You don’t want to overstay you’re welcome. Maybe to some people I already have [laughs], but I’d like to leave when it’s my decision, rather than have someone wrap their arm around my shoulder and say, hey, you know, Bob, here’s a suggestion for you.”

MORE: 100 Team USA athletes to watch on road to Rio