LSU students proud of Lolo Jones' rare accomplishment
POSTED: Tuesday, January 21, 2014 - 6:00am
UPDATED: Wednesday, January 22, 2014 - 9:54pm
Baton Rouge, LA (NBC33) — Lolo Jones gets to continue her Olympic dream.
The former LSU track star earned a spot on the bobsled team bound for Sochi.
She becomes one of only ten Americans ever picked for both the Summer and Winter Olympics.
"I'm just very excited," said Ahmed Mohamed, "and looking forward to supporting a LSU Tiger in the Winter Olympics."
"But I think that there are a lot of people that don't really know about it," Cole Travis claimed, "just because she's not a winter athlete and we don't really have winter sports here."
When asked Monday, some LSU students thought Jones was a gymnast, or perhaps a singer, not a two-time Olympic hurdler. But her fans think the spotlight on her in Sochi will be bright enough to make her a household name.
"Well, I think the Olympics are such a big deal; people will watch whatever (event is) on TV," Travis said. But I think having a storyline of a local athlete will definitely draw more people in, even moreso than just the appeal of the world's best athletes, and she's obviously one of those."
No student of alumnus of LSU has ever won a Winter Olympic medal, but Jones could be the first. Her speed makes her a formidable pusher on a two-woman sled, and Team USA has some of the top-rated drivers in the world. Jones wrote on her Facebook page after she earned her spot that failure to bring home a medal in hurdles from the Beijing and London games is what drove her to pick up a new sport and master it in less than two years.
"It's amazing to see how multi-faceted an athlete could be," Brady Luther noted. "She runs on the track, never does bobsled before, and kind of can go out and use her athletic ability to do something that not many people can do."
So even though there is not a ski resort within a thousand miles of LSU, there will be lots of people on campus tuned into the Winter Games.
"Oh, absolutely, I'll watch anything that's got a LSU Tiger in it," Mohamed said.
The women's bobsled event is scheduled for February 18-19. Watch NBC33 and return to nbc33tv.com for complete coverage of the Sochi Olympics.