Missy Franklin won her fourth gold medal in the 4×100 medley relay, bringing her London-haul to five Olympic medals in all. In the future, will she be the greatest female Olympian of all-time? Compared to the greatest, Missy more than stacks up after her first Olympic Games.
Among the greats:
Jackie Joyner Kersee won 5 medals in track and field, but at four Olympics.
Natalie Coughlin won 12 medals in swimming in three Olympics, medaling in every race, a tough career performance to beat.
And the greatest female Olympian of all-time, Larisa Latynina, won 18 medals in gymnastics at three Olympics.
Missy’s only 17 years old, with three more Olympics in her future: 2016 in Rio, 2020, and 2024 where she’ll be 29. Also, she’s pacing herself, not going pro, not going for the money, choosing to compete at the NCAA level. That bodes well for the future in terms of balance and building an even bigger athletic-base.
I think Missy has shot, albeit I’m making this judgment early on.
A bold comparison for Missy, and forgive me for this, might be Michael Phelps. If Missy’s freestyle develops more, if more power and speed come with age, she could be aiming for 23 medals by 2024. Yes, it’s a long way off, and a lot has to happen, but it’s good to dream.
What do you think? What has to happen for Missy to continue her Olympic succees into the future?