Hope Solo: Why Soccer Star Is Most Exciting Athlete at 2012 London Olympics

Sam R. QuinnSenior Analyst IIIJuly 26, 2012

SANDY, UT - JUNE 30: Goalkeeper Hope Solo #1 of the USA takes a break during a game against Canada during the second half of the women's Olympic send-off soccer match June 30, 2012 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah.  The USA beat Canada 2-1.  (Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)
George Frey/Getty Images

Hope Solo is the goalkeeper of the United States women's national soccer team, but you wouldn't know it if you met her on the street.

She's the perfect amount of cocky—not too much so she comes off as conceited, but enough to lead a team of American gold medal hopefuls.

Much of soccer revolves around the goalie's actions between the pipes. They must be calm, cool and collected in the net, for panic leads to nothing but chaos. There aren't many netminders who are capable of making the transition from the pitch to the media gauntlet as smoothly as Solo can.

But Solo is smooth.

She doesn't walk on egg shells around the press, which is a refreshing trait granted the typically dull nature of Olympic athletes.

That's not to say the majority have dull personalities, but they aren't used to dealing with being in the spotlight, so they try to avoid saying controversial or possibly off-color things.

One of Solo's most recent comments pertained to sex at the Olympic Village. Solo had this to say regarding the atmosphere around the athletes' quarters (via Yahoo! Sports):

With a once-in-a-lifetime experience, you want to build memories, whether it's sexual, partying or on the field. I've seen people having sex right out in the open. On the grass, between buildings, people are getting down and dirty.

Most people would be mortified if they let those words slip out of their mouth in front of hordes of media on one of the world's biggest stages. 

She also isn't afraid to shed light on her not-so-typical past. Larry Brown was kind enough to elaborate:

Solo says her father was in and out of her life growing up. He had multiple families, fathered children with different women, and had them living in homes paid for by money he embezzled from a company where he worked.

And get this: Solo says she was conceived during a conjugal visit while her father was serving a prison sentence in Washington.

Again, most people wouldn't tell some of their closest friends that they were conceived during a conjugal visit, but Solo wrote it in her book and released it to the world.

Solo may not be the most prolific or talented athlete at the 2012 London Games, but she's one of the more entertaining personalities that will be participating.

I consider her the Chad Johnson (who recently changed his name back from Ochocinco) of women's soccer. You just never know what you're going to hear come out of her mouth next—and that's a good thing.