Well represented: 28 former, current and future Longhorns headed to Olympics in Tokyo

More than two dozen Longhorns — past, present and future — will vie for gold, silver and bronze medals at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo (photo courtesy of texassports.com).

TOKYO, Japan — The 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan are drawing nearer by the day (the event retains the name with the year in which it was originally scheduled). The first events of the games begin Tuesday, beginning with the first round of the softball tournament. The opening ceremonies are set for Friday. The University of Texas will have 28 representatives in Tokyo, competing for an assortment of nations.

Here is a look at the future, current and former Longhorns who are set to either compete or coach at the 29th edition of the Summer Olympics, along with a brief background of their recent success in their respective events.

Jordan Windle, United States: The two-time national champion became the third diver to seal a spot on the 2020 U.S. Olympic Team and the first on the men’s side. He finished second at the Olympic Trials in the 10-meter platform, posting a score of 1401.40. This will be his first Olympic appearance; he did compete for Team USA at the 2017 and 2019 FINA World Championships. 

Hailey Hernandez, United States: An incoming freshman at UT, Hernandez claimed her spot on the Olympic Team after taking second in the women’s three-meter springboard at the Trials at the CHI Health Center in Omaha, Nebraska, with a score of 926.55. 

Alison Gibson, United States: The former UT diver will make her Olympic debut in Tokyo after she and Krysta Palmer tallied a 28-point victory in the women’s synchronized three-meter springboard competition at the Olympic Trials. 

Matt Scoggin, United States: The 2021 Div. I Men’s Diving Coach of the Year by the College Swimming Coaches Association of America, Scoggin will serve as an assistant coach for Team USA’s diving team. It is the fourth time he has served in the role with the U.S. at an Olympics, having also been on staff in 2000, 2008 and 2012. He was a member of Team USA as a diver himself in 1992.

Erica Sulllivan, United States: Sullivan is months away from beginning her college career at Texas. The 20-year old incoming freshman clinched her spot on Team USA with a second-place finish in the 1,500-meter freestyle, behind world record holder Katie Ledecky, clocking a personal-best time of 15:51.18 at the Olympic Trials. She was the first female swimmer from Texas to qualify for Tokyo. 

Anna Elendt, Germany: The 19-year old freshman broke her nation’s records in both the 50-meter and 100-meter breaststroke events at the 2021 German Championships en route to clinching a spot on the Olympic team. The 2020-21 All-America fired off a time of 1:06.50 in the 100-meter event on the second day of the meet, becoming the first female from Germany to break through the 1:07 barrier. She followed that by clocking a record-setting time of 30.67 seconds in the 50-meter race the following day. Elendt also will swim on Germany’s 4-by-100-meter medley relay. 

Joanna Evans, Bahamas : The former Longhorn will make her second trip to the Olympic Games after representing her home country at the 2016 Olympiad, having qualified in the 400-meter freestyle at the Longhorn Aquatics Elite Invite on May 21. She currently holds Bahamas’ national records in the 200-meter, 400-meter, 800-meter and 1,500-meter freestyle events. 

Caspar Corbeau, The Netherlands: Originally listed as a reserve breastroker for the medley relays, the sophomore also will compete in the 100-meter and 200-meter breaststroke events in Tokyo. The native of Portland, Oregon swept the 100-meter and 200-meter breaststroke events at the Big 12 Championships. 

Joseph Schooling, Singapore: The 26-year old clocked a time of 52.93 seconds at the ISCA International Senior Cup in March, and will seek to defend his Olympic 100-meter butterfly title. Five years ago, he entered as the underdog, but finished ahead of a field that included Michael Phelps to claim the gold. Schooling will race in the 100-meter butterfly and 100-meter freestyle. 

Remedy Rule, Philippines: Rule began swimming for the Philippines in 2019, breaking the national record in the 100-meter butterfly at the FINA World Championships. Since then, she has claimed three additional individual national records, and will be the only Fillipino woman competing in the swimming events. She is entered in the 100- and 200-meter butterfly events. 

Townley Haas, United States: Headed to his second Olympic Games, the freestyler took home a gold medal as part of the 4-by-200-meter freestyle relay in Rio de Janeiro in 2016, and placed fifth in the 200-meter freestyle. Five years later, he is headed to Tokyo in those same events, after finishing second in the 200-meter final at the Olympic Trials with a time of 1:45.66. 

Drew Kibler, United States: Headed to his first Olympics, the four-time Big 12 champion will team up with Haas on the men’s 4-by-200-meter freestyle relay, having placed third in the 200-meter final at the Olympic Trials. 

Gia Doonan, United States: The first Longhorn rower to represent Texas at the Olympics, Doonan was one of 30 athletes selected by United States Rowing Association to compete for the U.S. A member of the USRowing Senior National Team since 2017, Doonan helped Texas claim an NCAA title May 30. 

Track and Field
Ryan Crouser, United States: With world records in both the indoor and outdoor shot put, after taking down a 31-year old world-leading mark at the Olympic Trials with a throw of 76 feet, 8-¼ inches, Crouser is among the favorites in the event. 

Teahna Daniels, United States: The 2019 USATF Outdoor Champion in the women’s 100-meter dash, Daniels qualified for her first Olympic Games by placing third at the Olympic Trials, in 11.03. 

Tara Davis, United States: A finalist for the prestigious Bowerman Award, Davis jumped 7.14 meters to break Jackie Joyner Kersee’s 36-year old collegiate outdoor record in the long jump in March while competing for UT. She finished second in the event at the Olympic Trials to qualify for Tokyo, leaping 7.04 meters. 

Melissa Gonzalez, Columbia: The champion in the 400-meter hurdles at the 2021 South American Championships, Gonzalez clocked a 55.68 to receive an at-large bid to seal her spot in Tokyo. She now holds the Columbian national record in the event with her time at the South American Championships in May. 

Jonathan Jones, Barbados: The only athlete from his home country to notch the Olympic standard of 44.90 seconds in the men’s 400-meter dash, Jones heads to his first Olympic Games. He placed third in his signature event at the 2021 Big 12 Championships, clocking a time of 46.08 seconds. He qualified back in 2019 at the NCAA Outdoor Championships, in 44.64 seconds.

Steffin McCarter, United States: McCarter followed up his fifth-place performance in the long jump at the NCAA Outdoor Championships by earning a spot in the event at the Olympic Trials, finishing third with a leap of 8.26 meters. 

Pedrya Seymour, Bahamas: One of two women from the Bahamas to notch the qualifying standard of 12.84 seconds in the 100-meter hurdles, Seymour finished fifth in the 100-meter hurdles in the Rio Olympics in 2016. 

Stacey Ann Williams, Jamaica: A two-time USTFCCCA All-American, Williams will run at her first Olympics as part of Jamaica’s 4-by-400-meter relay team. Jamaica finished third at the 2019 World Championships to qualify. 

Julia Grosso, Canada: The first Olympian in Longhorn soccer history, Grosso already played in 24 matches with Canada’s senior national team, and will be one of five athletes on the roster competing in her first Olympics. Canada has had success at the last two Olympic Games, claiming bronze medals in 2012 and 2016. 

Kevin Durant, United States: Making his third Olympic appearance, Duranthelped lead the U.S. to a gold medal in both the 2012 and 2016 Olympic tournaments, scoring a game-high 30 points in the 2016 Gold Medal Game against Serbia. 

Ariel Atkins, United States: Atkins was selected to her first Olympic team, but has previous international experience representing Team USA, first in 2014 as a member of the U-18 team. The four-year WNBA standout averaged 6.3 points and 2.3 rebounds in three games with the national team during the 2019-20 campaign. 

Chiaka Ogbogu, United States: Ogbogu has represented the U.S. since 2018, and led the national team to gold at the 2021 FIVB Women’s Nations League in Rimini, Italy, May 25-June 25. 

Erik Sullivan, United States: An associate head coach for the Texas volleyball team, Sullivan is set to be a team leader for the USA men’s national team in Tokyo.

Cat Osterman, United States: Osterman will pitch in the Olympics for the third time, even though softball is not an official Olympic sport, but has been added to the program specific for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. In her last Olympic appearance, in 2008, she pitched five innings in Team USA’s gold medal match against Japan. 

Jhonattan Vegas, Venezuela: Currently ranked No. 130 in the world, Vegas's highlight of 2021 was at the Palmetto Championship at Congaree, in which he tied for second.


Riley Zayas

Riley Zayas is a high school sophomore and freelance journalist from Round Rock, Texas. He began his journalism career as a Sports Illustrated Kids reporter and has since become a regular contributor to Horns Illustrated, covering Texas Longhorn sports. His work also includes Fellowship of Christian Athletes publications, College Baseball Nation and Sports Spectrum, a national christian sports website. He currently serves as the Managing Editor of True To The Cru, covering UMHB athletics. Twitter: @ZayasRiley

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