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  • Why had they never confirmed ...

    I sometimes think of some very promising young
    growing stars from the mid-eighties, while, as
    a kid, reading my favourite newspaper- L'Equipe-
    I was discovering these names:
    Lorenzo DANIEL, Derrick FLORENCE, KERR who
    seemed to have great athletic destinies, or a
    quarter-miler named KEMP (I don't remember his
    surname), or another young prodigy named James
    ROLLE.
    Most of them shined one or two seasons and
    suddenly disappeared from the athletic arenas.
    Can anyone explain me why?...

  • #2
    Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

    This is just the way sports works. All kinds of sports, all eras. The ultimate Darwinistic survival of the fittest. Some pack the gears to the make it all the way, most don't. Look at any year's high school or collegiate lists and you'll find dozens of stars who never quite panned out. There's no one explanation.

    And look at it this way: if all the almost-stars did make it, there'd be no room for the next generation. This is what makes longterm stars so truly exceptional.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

      >This is just the way sports works. All kinds of
      >sports, all eras. The ultimate Darwinistic
      >survival of the fittest. Some pack the gears to
      >the make it all the way, most don't. Look at any
      >year's high school or collegiate lists and you'll
      >find dozens of stars who never quite panned out.
      >There's no one explanation.

      And look at it
      >this way: if all the almost-stars did make it,
      >there'd be no room for the next generation. This
      >is what makes longterm stars so truly
      >exceptional.>

      and probably why we shouldn't spend hours, days and months trying to blame athletes and coaches who don't meet OUR expectations nor should we logically expect guys who run 20.13 or 3:53 to automatically move to the next level. Sometimes, possibly moretimes, it doesn't work that way.

      jd

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      • #4
        Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

        What are you talking about Dutra; Usain Bolt will run under 18 seconds for the 200 and under 40 seconds for the 400, as well as think of a solution for world peace and develop a cure for cancer.

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        • #5
          Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

          ....and Alan Webb will run 3.15 for the 1500m and rseolve the Iraq and Middle East crisis.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

            as will Allison Felix after she decimates the late Flo Jo's records next year running 10.39 and 20.99.

            She dedicates both records to the perceptive "No Name"

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            • #7
              Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

              Don't forget Ben Johnson running 9.50 clean, and that while successfully dethroning Ahnold in a recall-recall election!

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              • #8
                Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

                On a serious note (sorry Onan), just to show you that HS success doesn't count for much, here's the T&FN All-America team in the men's 100 from 10 years ago (1993):

                1. Tony McCall
                2. Jonathan Burrell
                3. Jermaine Stafford

                They really set the world afire, didn't they? Here's the other years since then (mega-kudos if you recognize many of these names):

                1994: Deworski Odom, Bryan Johnson, Pat Johnson
                1995: Marques Holliwell, Deworski Odom, Bobby Williams
                1996: Lawrence Armstrong, Vince Williams, Bryan Harrison
                1997: Ja'Warren Hooker, Lawrence Armstrong, Michael Martin
                1998: Tory Mitchell, Amar Johnson, DeMario Wesley
                1999: Marquis Davis, James Shelton, Tory Mitchell
                2000: Joey Harris, Nicholas Johnson, Leo Bookman (at last, a name!)
                2001: Brendan Christian, DaBryan Blanton, Edorian McCullough
                2002: Willie Hordge, Brendan Christian, Kelly Willie.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

                  Maybe someone can supply a list of HS and college coaches for these gentleman so we can rip them anew for burning them out, not training them properly and just generally not being very nice people.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

                    A very obvious explanation, albeit intuitive, NOT scientific, is that these phenoms had an accelerated maturation curve, which led to early burnout, physically and psychologically. Plus everything came so 'easily' to them, that they could never face the enormous amount of hard work it would take to sustain the progress they had made so early (virtually impossible). All of this makes Mary Slaney and Regina Jacobs all the more remarkable.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

                      so many times we just think of these high school kids as machines..... they are people. I'd venture to guess that well over half of the ones you never hear much if anything from again disappear due to personal issues. They get married, get involved in similar family-type situations, maybe have behavioral ( or worse ) problems, overall family problems, financial issues, just on and on.

                      Just think how many high school stars we all have known about personally to some extent who flamed out, other than seeing their name in T&FN. They all have a Story Of Their Own that the public never hears about.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

                        I don't think MJ even broke 21 flat in high school. He wasn't really a big factor as he had to go up againsnt Roy Martin 20.15 I believe.
                        Which supports everyone else's theory about the different factors.

                        I was an honor roll student in third grade; Now Im' scrapin' the bottom of the barrel.
                        It's because of Darwinism.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

                          MJ didn't really get good until after college; approx. 20.9 in high school and injuries crippled much of his college career.

                          For sprinters in general, the great ones are typically LATE bloomers, not early ones (with the notable exception of Carl Lewis and a few others).

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                          • #14
                            Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

                            Of the extraordinary teenage sprinters that had a long, distinguished career Heike Daute-Drechsler comes to mind.
                            "A beautiful theory killed by an ugly fact."
                            by Thomas Henry Huxley

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                            • #15
                              Re: Why had they never confirmed ...

                              >Of the extraordinary teenage sprinters that had a
                              >long, distinguished career Heike Daute-Drechsler
                              >comes to mind.>>

                              Except that she wasn't even a remarkable teenage sprinter. She didn't do much but LJ. Here's the sprint marks the ATFS Annual has for her as a youngster:

                              16: 11.75/24.16
                              18: no sprints, world champ in LJ
                              20: 23.19
                              21: 10.91/21.71=WR

                              So she's 21 before she even remotely blips on the sprint radar. And never ranks again in the sprints after she's 26. Her window as a great sprinter is just 5 years.

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