Lolo Jones: Star US Hurdler's Celebrity Status Set to Skyrocket with Olympic Bid
Lolo Jones’ qualification for the 2012 Summer Olympics in the 100-meter hurdles is sure to bring along with it plenty of added spoils. This shouldn’t be too much of a change for an athlete who never shies away from the spotlight, on or off the track.
After getting third place in the 100 hurdles final at the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials on Saturday, the television cameras followed Jones as she wove her way through the crowd back to the locker room, signing autographs along the way.
She continued signing until after the women's 100 final ended several minutes later.
That signing session is good practice for what will likely follow, with Jones being asked to ink her name on a multitude of endorsement deals. She is already sponsored by Asics, Oakley and Red Bull, among others.
Appearances on different popular television shows have started trickling in already. Even before she qualified, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno had her scheduled for Monday.
In fact, it was her appearance on another show, Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel, that really allowed her celebrity to begin taking off. On that show, she described how difficult it is for her to find a boyfriend and stay a virgin—harder than training for the Olympics, even.
Jones also said she finds most of her dates through Twitter, which has also helped her celebrity. Her personality shows on her timeline, as she isn’t as guarded as most star athletes are.
Need a duck for my bubble bath. Any student from Oregon game?— Lolo Jones (@lolojones) June 19, 2012
All of this makes for a great endorsement deal waiting to happen. Marketing expert Adam Hanft told the Washington Post: “There’s a tradition around identifying personalities who are very much creatures of a particular Olympic period. She could have the perfect storm of media hunger and a unique story in our hypersexualized environment.”
Jones’ commercial potential all rested on one condition: getting to the London Olympics. Now that she’s done that, her agent’s phone—and her Twitter feed—will start blowing up.
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