Chad Ochocinco Dances With The Stars

David BurnettCorrespondent IMarch 23, 2010

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - JANUARY 31:  Chad Ochocinco #85 of the AFC runs his route during the 2010 AFC-NFC Pro Bowl game at Sun Life Stadium on January 31, 2010 in Miami Gardens, Florida. The AFC defeated the NFC 41-34. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Dancing the Cha Cha is number eight-five, my choice to win America’s biggest dance contest.

Over the years, football players have been among the best performers on Dancing With The Stars (DWTS ), ABC's hit show where celebrities are paired with professional dancers to perform dance routines. The new DWTS season, which premiered Monday night, finds another fancy dancer from the gridiron: Chad Ochocinco .

DWTS has had some successful football players in the past.  Emmitt Smith won DWTS in season three, and Warren Sapp, Jerry Rice, and Jason Taylor each finished in second place in the seasons they competed in. I think Ochocinco has a chance to rival that success.

DWTS is just about the perfect venue for a peacock like Chad Ochocinco. The Cincinnati Bengals flamboyant wide-receiver is used to the spotlight. His spectacular catches and creative touchdown celebrations (he once did the Riverdance in the end zone after scoring) have brought him both fame and derision.

But at least we know his name.

It’s hard to be neutral about Ochocinco , who legally changed his last name from Johnson  a couple of years ago to match his No. 85 jersey.

Personally, I like his antics. He has fun and wants to entertain his fans. Still, I’m glad he’s not an Indianapolis Colt—he would distract my team. But I like him on a team I don’t care about (the Bengals) and I want him to win DWTS .

As for his performance Monday night, Ochocinco was charming and graceful. It’s clear he has some natural dance moves. Although the judges complimented him, they gave him relatively low scores—a total of 18, which puts him in the middle of the pack.

Ochocinco ,who danced the Cha Cha, will perform another ballroom dance next Monday. I’m hoping he gets lots of fan votes.

Ochocino’s competition is tough. It includes two coordinated and fluid dancers, Olympic gold medal skater Evan Lysacek and Pussycat Dolls star Nicole Scherzinger, who is no stranger to choreography. Both Lysacek and Scherzinger were excellent.

Others in the DWTS field will most certainly provide entertainment if not victory. We know that 80 year-old Buzz Aldrin, the second man to do the (real) moonwalk, will eventually get voted off. But let’s hope he won’t go before we really get a chance to marvel that a guy his age is even moving this well at all.

Who will win? Obviously I’m pulling for the football player, a guy who may never win the Super Bowl, but really could win DWTS.

Good luck Ochocinco!


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