Some excerpts from an article by Joe Battaglia about how athletes have been affected by the financial crisis: [note: about 10X the acceptable amount of cut and paste for a copyrighted article. The bulk of it axed by the mods]

After returning from Beijing, Darvis Patton figured on having to make some promotional appearances for adidas, his apparel sponsor. When you make the Olympic final in your event, especially a high-profile one like the 100-meters, it goes with the territory.
What he didn’t count on was the appearance being his last.
“I did a new store opening appearance with Jeremy Wariner just before Thanksgiving,” Patton said in a recent phone interview with Universal Sports. “Two weeks later, I found out that adidas was dropping me. My agent (Claude Bryan) said he didn’t want to tell me on my birthday. I didn’t expect it at all. It was a complete shock. It was like thank you, but no thanks.”.....