Thursday, May 27, 2010

USA Today has a great article in today's paper about Jeff Gordon ("Despite slump, Jeff Gordon stays driven as family grows"). The reporter followed the NASCAR driver for two days last week as he scattered about his life between New York and Charlotte. I've been a fan of Gordon since I was a kid—before I knew much about NASCAR (my parents worked for DuPont, which has been Gordon's primary sponsor for years). I didn't really begin following the sport until I moved to Charlotte, and subsequently began covering it. And having met Gordon a couple of times and being around the racing world, I came to see that No. 24 truly is the nice guy he's portrayed to be. And as this USA Today article shows, he's a family man as well.

But I couldn't read it without thinking about Tiger Woods. Here are two guys who have excelled in their sports for years, amassed huge fortunes, become the faces of numerous large companies through endorsements, married models, and now have small children. But we, of course, now know there's more to Woods' story. Let's just hope there's not more to Gordon's. I really have no reasons to think so, but Tiger Woods has changed everything...ruined everything. The same way you can't look at a baseball player who's hitting 50-plus home runs every year the same anymore. Maybe one day we can have faith in our sports heroes again. Don't let us down, Jeff.


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