Draft Diary for 2012


7:30 p.m.  We are coming to you live from Fantasy Olympian headquarters here in Chicago, with draft participants joining in from New York, Columbus, and Cincinnati.  Shout-out to AOL Instant Messenger, which we are using for our draft.  It feels like college again!  "Is this for real? Click '1' if yes. OMG!"

This is the official draft of the Fantasy Olympian Commitee, which consists of the four original Fantasy Olympians who started the game in 2006 and their closest friends.  Among the group we have several league and overall champions from past Olympics, so theoretically, we should know what we are doing -- assuming we can remember our AIM passwords to get online.

7:31 p.m.  We just had our first Jerry Sandusky/Joe Paterno joke.  WAY too soon... and not suitable for publication. Let's just move on...

7:37 p.m.  No surprise... Phelps, Lochte and Franklin are quickly off the board, in that order.  Our Athlete List 2.0 put Lochte ahead of Phelps on the big board, but in watching highlights over the last couple weeks, it's hard to deny that Phelps has a knack for winning the big ones in dramatic fashion.  But will he get the help in 2012 that he got in 2008? Seems like less team spirit for USA Swimming this time around.

7:41 p.m.  We all agree that having the fourth pick in this year's draft sucks.  Allyson Felix is next off the board.  After three surf picks, we've got a turf pick.

7:47 p.m.  Big run on Women's Gymnastics to finish out round one and lead into round two. Douglas, Wieber, Maroney and Raisman all off the board.  Hard to argue with that -- medal favorites and multiple events.

7:50 p.m.  Back on the track, Carmelita Jeter (Derek's sister?) and Sanya Richards-Ross (wife of Giants CB Aaron Ross, soon to be best known as "That Guy Married to Sanya Richards") are next off the board.  The consensus? Sanya wins that relationship.

7:57 p.m.  Justin Gatlin is off the board and the doping trash talk begins.  Tough crowd.  He's followed quickly by Wallace Spearmon, Jr. -- because his name sounds a like a chewing gum.  And these are Fantasy Olympian veterans, folks.  "Who the hell besides you guys know all of these people?"

8:04 p.m.  The run on gold-medal favorite team sports begins with Women's Soccer.  "I like the team out for revenge.  I reached because I had to have them.... That's what she said."

8:11 p.m.  Men's basketball is selected amid contentions that they may be "better" than the 1992 Dream Team -- if by "better," you mean "better" at barely beating South American teams.

8:20 p.m.  One of our guys is taking forever -- how many draft guides could he possibly be consulting?

8:22 p.m.  John Isner is picked and we all agree this is a great idea as long as the matches will last three days.

8:26 p.m.  When Ryan Bailey goes off the board, someone unfamiliar with Bailey inquires "What kind of name is Ryan Bailey?" The guy drafting him thinks it's probably a "skinny white runner kind of name."  Yeah, about that... clearly everyone did their homework before this draft.

8:38 p.m.  Gymnasts Jonathan Horton and Jake Dalton both get picked ahead of John Orozco, which I think is questionable.  But I'm told that Dalton is "hotter."  My wife confirms that it's no contest -- Dalton is apparently quite good looking.  Well then... you heard it hear first.

8:47 p.m.  Fencer Race Imboden is the first selection that is not on our Athlete List 2.0.  You can read more about him here.

8:57 p.m.  Queen Underwood is off the board "because of the name."  Of course.

9:09 p.m.  In a homer pick from Columbus, someone takes a late round flyer on Holley Mangold.  Fun fact - Holley will be lifting her brother (Jets' center Nick Mangold) in the final round.

9:15 p.m.  Team Show Jumping is off the board.  Why?  "Horses."  We're running out of ideas here.  The next pick is trampolinist Savannah Vinsant.  "Wow. I had no idea my neighbors' kids were training for the Olympics."

9:18 p.m.  I take China as my tie-breaker country in the 10th round, figuring there won't be a good tie-breaker left at the end of the final round.  A little later, someone takes USA as his tie-breaker.  In years past, this would not have been a legal selection, but we determined that it is acceptable under the current rules.

9:30 p.m.  Luxembourg is the last tie-breaker country off the board (they have 10 athletes this year -- look it up) and we are done.  Good luck to everyone with your drafts.