The 2012 Summer Olympic Games, officially the Games of the XXX Olympiad, will take place in London, United Kingdom, from July 27 (when the opening ceremony is held) until 12 August 2012, During the course of the Games, Miami University's SCOTT USHER, assistant coach of the RedHawk men's swimming team and a former Olympian from the University of Wyoming, will be writing a blog that offers insight about the events that were the highlight of his career as well as personal commentary about the London Games themselves.

During his swimming career, Usher was a member of the U.S. National Team, competed in the 2004 Olympics, qualified for the World Championships four times between 2004-2007, earned a bronze medal at the 2005 Pan-Pacific Championships, and earned bronze at the 2008 U.S. Olympic Trials.

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There are athletes who have the ability to elevate their performances on a stage like the Olympics, who pave a new path for the future of a sport and the athletes that will compete. They are trailblazers, doing something that has never been done and will take years to be repeated. They represent not only themselves but also their family, coaches, teammates, country and all other athletes hoping to fill their shoes someday. That athlete is Michael Phelps.

Over the past week, Michael Phelps has become the most decorated Olympic Athlete, ever. Finishing his career with 22 Olympic medals, 18 of which are gold, and countless world records, Michael has done something people only dream of.  He has changed the face of swimming, creating a sport much larger than it was just 8 years ago and he will be remembered with the likes of Mark Spitz, Carl Lewis and Jesse Owens. His legacy will be remembered in homes everywhere.

One of the greatest things about this elite athlete is he has remained a genuine individual who enjoys being off the camera and hanging out with his friends. He is never short of clever remarks or sarcastic jabs at teammates that are intended to test his friend's ability to joust for verbal superiority. He enjoys the opportunity to take your money during a game of poker or hiding your room key so that you have to make the trek to the front office.

Michael Phelps' athletic ferocity and leadership moved a sport. His abilities to handle situations with grace and respect at the Olympics during the ages of 15, 19, 23 and 27 have shown a country what true passion and desire can do. The missteps that occurred in 12 years for one of the most beloved American athletes showed that he is as common as you and I but has had the ability to do what Americans are known best for, Dreaming BIG!

--www.MURedHawks.com--