A week after signing a deal with Kellogg’s, swimming phenom Michael Phelps has been set to host the season premiere of “Saturday Night Live.” Earlier this week, beach volleyball champ Misty May-Treanor (right) was announced as part of the lineup for the next “Dancing With the Stars.” And I have no doubt some company will also pursue cherubic gymnastics medalist Shawn Johnson.
As Phelps and May-Treanor begin to capitalize on their Games glory, I can’t help but feel for the other camera-ready Olympians who could have parlayed medal victories into endorsement deals.
And Jennie Finch (below), the stunner who pitched for the silver-medal U.S. women’s softball team, finds herself in a similar situation. Silver in a sport few Americans watch just doesn’t translate into marketing gold. And Finch may not even have the next Olympics to look forward to; softball is off the Olympics roster until further notice.
Those are just two examples. Can you think of others?
— Kathy Lyford