Purdue has a surprisingly good Olympic history. One of the most decorated Olympians of all-time was Ray Ewry, who won 10 gold medals in the early games of the 20th century. Since then, we've had our share of Olympians. SB Nation asked me to do a post or two this week about Purdue's favorite Olympics moment. I would argue that ours hasn't happened yet since everyone who saw Ewry perform is now long dead.
Our moment is possibly going to happen in a few weeks thanks to David Boudia. Boudia left Purdue a year early to turn pro and train for the 2012 London Olympics. Even in only three years he became the most accomplished diver in NCAA history with six NCAA championships and two more runner-up finishes. He already has one Olympics under his belt, finishing fifth with Thomas Finchum in the Synchro Platform event at the 2008 games.
Boudia has an excellent chance of medalling here in London in a few week. he has qualified for the Synchro event as well as the ten meter platform, and was a silver medalist on the 10m platform at the World Championships last year. Nick Zaccardi at Sports Illustrated wrote that he is a contender in London:
But only David Boudia, a 23-year-old recently engaged Purdue student, is expcted to medal in London. The 2011 world silver medalist on the platform ran away with from the competition by outdistancing his nearest competitor by 60 points with a 15-dive total of 1,642.4 points (almost identical to his margin of victory in 2008, when he scored 1,642.2 points). But these trials were different because USA Diving brought in a group of international judges to dampen the score inflation that can often accompany national meets. Boudia will have his hands full in London with two Chinese divers (including favorite Qiu Bo), defending Olympic champion Australian Matthew Mitcham and the host country's best diver, 2009 world champion Tom Daley.
"We're not really focused on results," Boudia told NBC. (USA Diving's new philosophy is to stress performance, not medals.) "But I know there's still more in the tank."